Port Macquarie review – Monday 26 April 2021
After a stellar period for the stable over the last couple of months, the Milligan family continued their successful run when Faatinaat landed the prize in the John Oxley Motors Benchmark 58 Handicap at Port Macquarie on Monday.
In an event considered a match race on paper with French Marine, the Glen Milligan trained filly was able to loom towards the early pacemakers, Kotinos and Manangatang, before striking the front inside the last two hundred metres.
Under strong riding from Ashley Morgan, Faatinaat was able to withstand the finishing burst of Zioptimus to score a decisive victory while French Marine finished just behind the placegetters after being trapped wide for most of the journey.
It has been a great period of racing for the Milligan family following Charmmebaby’s great placing behind Art Cadeau in the Newhaven Park Country Championship Final at Randwick earlier in the month and a treble at the recent Port card.
Ashley Morgan is enjoying an outstanding riding season with Faatinaat’s victory taking his riding tally of 53 ½ wins and the day could have proven even more successful as the prominent hoop was placed on Dreamawin, A Room Somewhere and Prince of Troy earlier in the program.
The leading rider on the day was Aaron Bullock following success aboard Schoona the Better for Allan Kehoe in the opening event before piloting Glowing Red to victory for Kris Lees in the Great Northern Class 2 Handicap.
Bullock’s strength and riding determination was seen to advantage as Glowing Red had to withstand the finishing burst of A Room Somewhere with the prominent rider lifting the Artie Schiller filly to success.
It wouldn’t be a Port Macquarie racing program without success to the Lees training establishment with the Novocastrian mentor completing a double when Andrew Gibbons stormed down the outside to salute on Jaja Chaboogie in the following event.
Rachael Murray was responsible for the ride of the day when she was able to weave a passage from well back in running to claim the second event on Jade’s Destiny with the filly continuing the great run of success being enjoyed by popular Taree trainer, Karen Owen.
Sancta looked the winner a fair way from home as the daughter of So You Think was able to stride to the front and claim the following event for Adam Duggan while Eyewitness was supported at longer odds and ran her rivals ragged to take the final race on the day.
Considering the deluge of rain the track has endured over the past few weeks, the surface raced particularly well with all competitors given their chance of winning and successful horses came from various sections of the circuit.
Racing continues at Port on Tuesday May 18th with a seven event program headed by a Benchmark 58 Handicap and Class races with $154,000 in prizemoney.
This will be followed by a stand-alone NSW fixture scheduled for Monday 31st May.
The club would like to acknowledge the continued support provided by Carlton and United Breweries, De Bortoli Wines, John Oxley Motors, Schweppes and Tabcorp in the successful staging of the program.
The complex remains a Covid-19 safe environment and details regarding tickets and seating arrangements in the Livermore Stand and Clydesdale Room are available by contacting the club on 02 6581 1964 or email on email@example.com.
Race 1 –TAB LONG MAY WE PLAY MAIDEN PLATE (1500 M)
Earl of Sandwich was dispatched as a ruling odds-on favourite for the event with Schoona the Better a solid second elect while Luck Aplenty was just under the double figure quote.
After working hard around the leaders in the early stages, Serg Lisnyy allowed Earl of Sandwich to stride clear from Wanmei and Supreme Vision with Rizzoli handily positioned.
Schoona the Better was camped just off the pace on the outside of Miss Money Tree with Tax Haven heading the remained of the field while Raining Up missed the start by four lengths and tailed the field.
Earl of Sandwich continued to dictate terms in the lead and rounded the home bend with a four length lead from Wanmei and Supreme Vision with Rizzoli making a move and Aaron Bullock hooking towards the centre of the track on Schoona the Better.
Rizzoli was the first to claim Earl of Sandwich but was no match for Schoona the Better with The Allan Kehoe trained gelding racing clear to score a decisive victory.
Race 2 – CARLTON DRAUGHT MAIDEN PLATE (1000 M)
Kiani was the solid elect for the event from Pollard with Jade’s Destiny attracting plenty of value wagers while Chelsea Magic drifted three points to be just under the double figure quote.
Pollard assumed his customary role in the lead from Nicconi Rain with Chelsea Magic working towards the firing line from Markwell Dreamer and Dreamawin.
Jon Grisdale positioned Kiani on the outside of Dreamawin while Jade’s Destiny was on the rails and towards the rear underneath Superclaid with Killabakh Dancer back at the tail of the field.
The pattern remained the same as the field headed for home with Pollard having a handy lead from Chelsea Magic as Nicconi Rain toiled along the fence and Dreamawin commencing a forward move.
Pollard still led at the two hundred metre mark before being challenged by Dreamawin down the outside as Rachael Murray was able to weave a passage through the field and race towards the front on Jade’s Destiny.
A masterly ride by Murray allowed Jade’s Destiny to claim the lead in the shadows of the post and the Karen Owen trained filly landed the prize by a half length margin from Dreamawin with Chelsea Magic landing third while Pollard weakened noticeably and Kiani failed to fire over the concluding stages.
Race 3 – CARLTON DRY MAIDEN HCP (1200 M)
Sancta attracted plenty of confidence and was sent to the barrier in red figures with Miss Twenty Twenty tightening two points late in betting to be a solidly backed second pick while Nevada Smoke drifted noticeably in late wagering operations.
Nevada Smoke raced to the early lead from Sensei Jackie with Dylan Gibbons allowing Sancta to stride into the firing line while Ben Looker positioned Miss Twenty Twenty in the second half of the field with Mr Magsman and Pride of Lomar.
Sensei Jackie attacked Nevada Smoke for the premier position as the gallopers raced towards the home turn before Sancta cruised up towards the leaders with Mr Magsman and Miss Twenty Twenty commencing their moves from the second half of the pack.
Sancta raced straight past the leaders down the home running and the So You Think filly was able to withstand the finishing effort of Mr Magsman to score well with Miss Twenty Twenty doing her best work late to land the minor prize.
Race 4 – GREAT NORTHERN CLASS 2 HCP (1200 M)
Glowing Red eased a half point, but the Kris Lees trained galloper secured the favourite position from Oakfield Prince with late confidence around the chances of Sarah Elizabeth and some support for A Room Somewhere.
Tools Down raced to the early lead from Savanna Jeurne with Whatyoulookingat settling third on the outside of the Brett Cavanough trained mare, A Room Somewhere.
Oakfield Prince travelled just off the pace on the inside with Aaron Bullock positioning Glowing Red a horse off the fence in front of Two Up while Sarah Elizabeth whipped the field in.
Tools Down straightened with a narrow lead before Aaron Bullock made his move on Glowing Red with the daughter of Artie Schiller claiming a narrow lead before being challenged by A Room Somewhere and Two Up.
Glowing Red was able to withstand the finishing efforts of A Room Somewhere and Two Up and score by just under a length with Gin Runner doing his best work late to finish just behind the placegetters while Oakfield Prince and Sarah Elizabeth failed to fire in the latter stages of the race.
Race 5 – DE BORTOLI WINES CLASS 2 HCP (1500 M)
Jaja Chaboogie attracted plenty of confidence and was sent to the barrier as the popular pick from Duchess Marizza with a noticeable move late in betting for Endangered Species while Obscene and We All Agree were on the next line of betting.
Salamangkera assumed control in the early stages of the event from Prince of Troy and Endangered Species with Midnight Rambler racing into a prominent position in front of We all Agree and Grand Eagle.
Obscene settled back in the second half of the field in front of Jaja Chaboogie and Karloo Dreaming while Duchess Marizza showed no gate speed and dropped to the tail of proceedings.
Salamangkera clung on to a narrow lead straightening for the run home before Prince of Troy moved up to challenge while Endangered Species was labouring in the centre and Jaja Chaboogie began to warm up to her task down the outside.
Salamangkera and Prince of Troy were battling out the finish before being claimed by Jaja Chaboogie with the daughter of Your Song racing clear to score a decisive victory.
Endangered Species and Obscene finished just behind the placegetters with Dutchess Marizza making up good ground over the concluding stages while We all Agree ran an even race and Midnight Rambler weakened to finish last.
Race 6 – JOHN OXLEY MOTORS BENCHMARK 58 HCP (1200 M)
Form students assessed the event to have only two main chances with French Marine holding the call in front of Faatinaat while Supreme Streak was on the third line of betting despite being around an eleven dollar quote.
Following a perfect dispatch, Kotinos raced to the early lead from Manangatang with Faatinaat handily positioned in the early stages around Lord John Grey while Supreme Streak was back in second last place on the outside of Tis Toby.
Aaron Bullock was able to obtain cover on French Marine as the son of Epaulette tagged Faatinaat along before being pratted wide by Zioptimus.
Kotinos swung the home bend in the lead from Manangatang with Ashley Morgan angling into the clear aboard Faatinaat while French Marine was forced to track wide on the outside of Zioptimus.
Manangatang obtained the lead from Kotinos in the straight before being claimed by Faatinaat with the Glen Milligan trained filly able to withstand the finishing effort of Zioptimus to score a narrow victory while French Marine ran an even race behind the placegetters after travelling wide and Supreme Streak failed to finish off the event.
Race 7 – SCHWEPPES BENCHMARK 58 HCP (1000 M)
Goofy Mick attracted most of the betting activity for the race with a significant move late for Eyewitness with Murungal a drifting third elect while Free Dawn drifted noticeably.
Mikayla Weir had no hesitation in allowing Eyewitness to stride to an early lead from Slickster and Slice of Heaven with Fashionetti camped off the speed.
Free Dawn was beaten for early pace and settled back in the second half of the field with Murungal while the Grant Allard trained gelding, Goofy Mick, showed no gate speed and dropped back to the rear of proceedings.
Eyewitness set up a solid tempo and had a commanding lead from Slickster as the field wheeled the home bend with Slice of Heaven sticking on resolutely towards the fence and the outside division of Murungal, Bangalley Lad, Vendome and Khitany commencing their runs together.
Despite Slice of Heaven making good ground over the later stages of the race, Eyewitness was able to provide Kristen Buchanan with a decisive victory with Murungal finishing on resolutely at his debut run from a lengthy spell to claim third prize.
There were excuses for the outside division as some of the riders were hindered over the concluding stages of the event by Khitaamy, who raced most ungenerously, while Goofy Mick was a disappointing last.
Horses to follow
Miss Twenty Twenty, Zioptimus, Murungal