Vinery Stud’s young gun All Too Hard sired his 4th winner in 3 days with a drama-packed double on Friday to take him well clear of rivals with 18 first crop winners.
Waimea Bay scored a straightforward victory in a Tuncurry 1200m maiden for trainer Kris Lees and she was followed by Team Hawkes first-starter Lakota who claimed a controversial win at Geelong.
Stewards delayed correct weight after Lakota passed the post a neck clear of The Freak in the Prestige Jayco Maiden Plate (1000m). Some jockeys called for a ‘No Race’ but officials let the result stand even though Royal Effort and Lil’ Bit Sassy were clearly denied a fair start.
And favourite punters fumed when Spring Choice was eased out of the race by jockey Steven Baster who thought it was a ‘No Race’.
While confusion reigned at the back, Dwayne Dunn settled Lakota in the box-seat and then let him lengthen to overhaul the leaders close to home. “It was a messy start but I had a beautiful run in transit,” Dunn admitted. “He had been aggressive and a little bit upside-down at home so it was good to feel him relax and find the line today.
“We’re on a learning curve with All Too Hard knowing how to train and ride them,” Dunn added. “This horse was having his first start and it’s probably all come a bit too quickly for him. But he’s going somewhere.”
Lakota’s dam Fasline (Fasliyev) won the SAJC Stakes-LR and he cost $220,000 at the 2016 Gold Coast Magic Millions. Syndicate manager Rupert Legh races him in the same colours as star stablemate Chautauqua.
Team Hawkes trained All Too Hard to Champion 3YO honours in Australia for Nathan Tinkler and their strike-rate with his stock will keep improving courtesy of coming winners like Darhad, Newburgh & Reflectivity.
All Too Hard is setting a cracking pace, as expected, with his first crop 3yo’s this season. He’s established an early lead on the second-season prizemoney table and is surging clear with 18 individual winners from Your Song (15), Golden Archer & Pierro (10).
Waimea Bay’s victory earlier on Friday was overshadowed by the commotion at Geelong, however, she lived right up to an odds-on quote in the Tuncurry Bowling Club Plate (1200m).
The All Too Hard filly was doing her best work at the finish giving Overreactive a couple of lengths at the furlong before reeling in the older Redoute’s Choice mare right on the line.
Waimea Bay is raced by John & Cath Murray of Emmaroo Bloodstock in partnership with bloodstock agent James Bester. Bred and sold by Kia-Ora Stud for $200,000 at the 2016 Inglis Easter Sale, she is the first named foal of Waveline, a USA-bred daughter of Stravinsky who was a Listed winner of the B Thoughtful Stakes at Hollywood Park.
All Too Hard stands for a $44,000 (inc gst) service fee at Vinery.