Vinery sire Headwater stole a march on Australia’s young guns with two more maiden winners from his first crop on Friday.
Headwater has skipped clear with 8 individual winners to top the second-season winners table from a pack of chasers on 5 winners. He won 2019-20 freshman winners title in a tie with Spill The Beans.
River Twain kicked off Friday’s double in the Bet365 Plate (1221m) at Geelong. With Damien Oliver aboard, he started an odds-on favourite after close seconds at Bendigo and Seymour on either side of a winter spell.
The speedy 3yo jumped straight to the front and controlled the race for trainers Mick Price and Mike Kent. “Damien thought there was a bit of dead-wood in the race and wanted to cross the field instead of getting too fancy and being caught in traffic,” Price said. “As usual, Olly was right.
“He can develop into a metropolitan horse and will toughen up with more racing. He was looking around in the straight but found again when shown the stick.”
Prince and Kent also prepare Headwater’s Group 3 winner Wisdom Of Water and Echuca maiden winner Yulong Holiday (NZ).
River Twain (3g Headwater – Manju by Henny Hughes) was bred by Kia Ora Stud and graduated through the 2019 Inglis Classic Yearling Sale for $140,000. He’s from a half-sister to the Redoute’s Choice black-type winners Ravi (Sheraco Stakes Gr.3) and Elzaam (Carnarvon Stakes LR).
Headwater first-starter Arctic Thunder filled out the second-leg in Canberra for Darby Racing. She settled third on the fence for Alysha Collett before peeling off the leader’s back to give chase and hit the front for a half-length victory.
“It’s a perfect start for Arctic Thunder!” syndicate manager Scott Darby said after the Brynes Last Fling Plate (1300m). “We were thrilled to see this daughter of Headwater win on debut at Thoroughbred Park in such good style. Her owners are certainly going to have some fun with her!”
Among the syndicate is bloodstock agent Will Johnson who teamed up with Darby Racing to purchase 27 yearlings at the 2020 yearling sales. “Scott does a fantastic job syndicating horses,” he said. “I had previously worked with Hubie de Burgh, who has bought yearlings for them in the past, but couldn’t get out here this year due to COVID-19.”
Arctic Thunder (3f Headwater – Arctic Success by Big Brown) is trained by Gary Portelli and was a $30,000 buy at the 2019 Inglis Classic Yearling Sale. Her dam is owned by Vinery partner Greg Perry and is a half-sister to Golden Slipper Stakes Gr.1 winner Polar Success. She has a 2yo filly by Press Statement and a yearling filly by Star Turn.
Vinery stands Headwater (Exceed And Excel) for a $13,750 (inc GST) service fee, payable on a live foal and he is fully booked for 2020. For further information about Vinery’s other stallions please contact Adam White (0414 800 918) or Harry Roach (0401 970 006).