Headwater 3yo Tidal Rush showed enough potential at Scone on Tuesday to suggest he will keep rising through the grades this season.

Tidal Rush made headlines when landing a plunge on debut at Dubbo last month and he had excuses second-up on a bog track at Scone on December 4.  Back at White Park yesterday, he appreciated a Good 4 surface, albeit in driving rain, to nail the Newgate Hcp (1400m).

“That was his first time on top of the ground,” trainer Brett Cavanough said.  “He’s been working well and it was a natural progression to put him over 1400m.  They chased from the half-mile but he has a lovely turn of foot and that helped today.”

Tidal Rush (3g Headwater – Lady Lewinsky by More Than Ready) got the nod in a photo-finish with even-money favourite Still In Fashion (Redoute’s Choice) after they raced in tandem for the final furlong.

“There looked to be a lot of speed on paper and we got a lovely cart into the race,” winning jockey Grant Buckley reported.  “It was head up, head down and he’s a credit to Brett.”

Tidal Rush races for a partnership headed by Vinery Stud’s General Manager Peter Orton after being passed-in at the 2020 Inglis Scone Yearling Sale.  His dam Lady Lewinsky is from the famed family of blue-hen Tracey’s Element (Last Tycoon) and she has a Headwater yearling colt with Tasmanian trainer Yassy Nishitani.

Cavanough wouldn’t be drawn on a NSW Country Championships campaign in 2022.  “I will leave that up to Peter – I’m only the assistant,” he laughed when questioned about qualifying for the $500,000 Final at Randwick in April.  “But this horse is a nice type and I couldn’t believe it when they bet $9.50 today.”

The wily Scone trainer had orchestrated a coup when Tidal Rush was backed from $71 into $5 at his first start on November 14.  Formerly prepared by Team Hawkes, he had been beaten over a dozen lengths in barrier trials at Canterbury and Muswellbrook before Cavanough unlocked the key with the addition of blinkers.

“He beat one of ours by a couple of lengths one morning and I put the E-Trakka on him for the next gallop and he produced the fastest reading I had seen in years.  I broke all the rules at Dubbo putting a tongue-tie on him and a 2kg apprentice.  But Madeline (Owen) put him in the box-seat and they got the job done.”

There are 11 Headwaters catalogued for the Gold Coast Magic Millions including Lot 957, Valiant Stud’s half-brother to Dragonstone (Mikki Isle) who has wins at Warwick Farm and Kembla Grange for trainer Mark Newnham.  Lot 968 from Kenmore Lodge is a half-sister to Star Turn’s promising Hong Kong galloper Cordyceps Six who won again at Sha Tin last month for trainer Richard Gibson.