Newcastle trainer Paul Perry is under no illusions of the task ahead of his Breeders’ Plate runner-up Hidden Warrior, who is chasing a berth in the Magic Millions 2YO Classic.
The smart youngster took an important step on the Magic Millions path with an all-the-way win in a Broadmeadow barrier trial at Newcastle on Tuesday.
Hidden Warrior jumped in front of his five rivals and was unextended in landing the 800m trial on the No 2 grass.
At his only start to-date, the Hidden Dragon two-year-old was narrowly beaten by Gai Waterhouse’s Pierro, another potential Magic Millions contender, in the Listed Breeders Plate (1000m) at Randwick on October 1.
Perry was understandably pleased with Hidden Warrior's hitout on Tuesday and he said afterwards the gelding was likely to head towards the Magic Millions 2YO Wyong Classic (1100m) on December 22.
Last year’s Wyong winner Karuta Queen went on to capture the $2m Gold Coast feature in mid-January.
"The Wyong Classic looks a logical target,” Perry said.
"He earned $20,000 in the Breeders Plate and we’ve got to get his prizemoney up to make certain of a Magic Millions start at the Gold Coast.
"It’s not going to be an easy race to win in January. There are some very smart Magic Millions two-year-olds around this season.”
The 2012 edition will be run at the Gold Coast on January 14 and Hidden Warrior would appear a worthy representative in the rich juvenile feature.
A fool-proof youngster that jumps and runs, he looks perfectly suited to the tight turning Gold Coast track.
Of course, the Newcastle mentor is no stranger to feature two-year-old success, having won the 2005 Golden Slipper Stakes with Stratum.
Newcastle trainers have captured two Magic Millions two-year-old events since the first was run in 1987.
The late Max Lees scored with Zephyrz in 1995 and David Throsby’s filly Lovely Jubly scored in 2002. Lees also ran third with Shalt Not in 1999 to Testa Rossa.
Perry purchased Hidden Warrior at the 2011 Magic Millions Premier sale on behalf of his owners for $105,000, having trained the horse’s older half-brother Sea Spur, who won two races from only 12 starts and was placed at Listed level in Sydney.
Whilst Hidden Warrior was the horse to watch at Tuesday’s trials, fellow Newcastle trainer Darren Smith also got in the spotlight; winning seven of the 10 heats conducted.
Smith scored with Oakfield Honour, Chain Of Events, Oakfield Barron, Ella Supero, River Thames, Redscilla and Rushing To Win.
Promising youngster Lobor Treasure gave us a glimpse of what we had all been expecting from him with a dominant win on international night in the Class 5 over 1050 metres.
Prepared by Gary Moore, Lobor Treasure was fired out of his wide gate by Brazilian rider Fausto Durso to share the lead with the race favorite Wonderful Steed until the corner. From then on the son of Hidden Dragon (AUS) left them in his wake as he powered away to win eased down by three lengths from the debut USA bred runner Good Racing, with Fortune Horse running on well for third.
Lobor Treasure had shown plenty of promise from day one and was sent out a warm favorite at his first two runs but failed to deliver, however there were excuses for him according to Gary Moore.
“He was going through a bit of a growing stage and I feel I did ask a little too much of him early.”
“I just gave him some time and then honestly he had no luck at his second run he could not get a crack at them and was still very green.”
“Now he is showing us what we always expected of him.” Moore said.
Lobor Treasure has really blossomed into a nice neat individual and whilst it was a huge win last Friday on the all weather Moore won’t be restricting him to that surface.
“He will measure up on any surface I’m confident of that and he will make the top bracket here in Macau.”
The handicapper didn’t miss the win hitting the three year with nine points to take him to a mark of 48 but that’s not going to faze Moore.
“I had a 30 to 50 picked out for him in a couple of weeks as I expected him to win the other night anyway.”
It was a huge night for Gary Moore winning Macau’s first ever International race the Star River – Windsor Arch Sand Premier Cup (GR1) with Golden Star, and as well as the other feature event on the night The Japan Racing Association Trophy over 1600 metres with the talented sand galloper Viva Ocho.
Five times Macau champion Moore has come out of the gates running for the new season and has 14 wins on the board and a six win lead for the season in his quest for six trainers titles in the enclave.
Racing results in November have seen Hidden Dragon, a Danehill winner of six races in Hong Kong whose oldest are four, stamp himself as another budding prolific sire of winners at the Kruger’s Lyndhurst stud at Warwick in Queensland, one which in the past has had five lead Australian statistics numerically.
Racing on November 19 was a good advertisement for the contribution Hidden Dragon is making.To start with he gave treble a shake at the Doomben meeting, supplying the winners Hidden Kisses (4yo, two lengths winner at class 6 level) and Saraji (3yo, too good for 14 opponents in a feature sprint for the age group, her fifth win in eight outings) and third placegetter Miss Imagica (4yo, previously won six of 17 starts).
Hidden Dragon had two doubles on that Saturday, the other at Cairns in North Queensland and provided by two new winners, Speed Dragon (2yo) and Hidden Manner (3yo). Both trained on the home track by Fred Wieland, they are bargain buys out of the Lyndhurst drafts at the Magic Millions QTIS 600 yearling sales at the Gold Coast, Speed Dragon costing $16,000 and Hidden Manner only $7,500.
Winner at Cairns by an amazing 10.3 lengths, one of the most awesome victories by a juvenile in recent years, Speed Dragon was one of two spectacular new juvenile winners on that Saturday by Hidden Dragon. Making his debut, the other is the Tony Sears trained gelding Bullet One and he lived up to his name when he romped to a 6.3 lengths win. A brother to Miss Imagica, he is another Lyndhurst sold QTIS sale yearling, costing his trainer $35,000.
The highlight of the seven winners, six of them first crop runners, the previous week for the Hidden Dragon progeny was a new success on Adelaide’s Morphettville for one of the most brilliant of them, Obsidian Dragon. In scoring by 2.9 lengths, she was recording her sixth win on this track. Earlier successes had included winning margins of 5.1 lengths, 3.5 lengths and 3.2 lengths.
From November 1 to 26 inclusive, Hidden Dragon has had winners of at least 17 races and is set to wrack up his 70th individual winner, a tally obtained in 25 months of representation.
On earnings, Queensland’s champion juvenile sire and tenth most successful nationally with his first crop in 2009-10, Hidden Dragon has got off to an impressive start with his new youngsters in the current year. He is the first sire to have three winners in the age group and also has been represented by Hidden Warrior, a Paul Perry trained head second in the historic Breeders’ Plate at Randwick at his only outing to date. Well fancied for that race following a seven lengths trial win, Hidden Warrior is being aimed at the rich Magic Millions 2YO Classic at the Gold Coast in January.
Earlier Stakes performers by Hidden Dragon comprise Hollowlea (four wins, Moonee Valley Stakes-Gr.2, VRC Exford Plate-LR; third Moonee Valley Vase-Gr.2), Obsidian Dragon (six wins Adelaide; three Listed thirds), Hidden Kisses (four wins, second Eagle Farm Princess Stakes-LR) and Steel Dragon (five wins, third Eagle Farm Golden Stakes-LR.
Principal venues on which the Hidden Dragons have won have been, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Ipswich, Toowoomba,Townsville, Cairns, Rockhampton, Pakenham, Singapore (five runners, all winners), Macau and New Zealand (one runner each).
What a day for Hidden Dragon!
Two states, three tracks, four winners… another successful Saturday for Lyndhurst’s regally bred son of Danehill.
A particularly well deserved win was that recorded by pacy mare Obsidian Dragon who showed her customary speed to burn off her rivals in a 1000m handicap at Morphettville.
Leading clearly early, the David Balfour trained four-year-old was steadied mid-race by Scott Westover who then eased her away from the rails in the straight before letting her go.
Quickly putting ground on her rivals, Obsidian Dragon won by a soft three lengths – recording the sixth win of her 19 start career and taking her prize money tally to beyond $260,000.
Bred by Fraternity Thoroughbreds and sold at the Magic Millions National Weanling Sale for $23,000, Obsidian Dragon is raced by Jason Carvill, Jeff Collins and Robyn Balfour.
Collins was, as always, proud of Obsidian Dragon’s effort – “she has never disappointed us,” he said, pointing out that the only recent blemish on her consistent record was an unplaced run at Balaklava after which she was found to have a virus.
“We were very confident she’d win,” he said, adding that “there were excuses for her two previous defeats.”
Collins is looking forward to Obsidian Dragon’s next runs at Morphettville (1000m) on November 26 and at Moonee Valley (955m) on December 16 – providing she continues to thrive.
“David Balfour doesn’t overtax her,” he said, “and as soon as she indicates that she’s had enough this campaign she’ll be tipped out with the hope of getting that elusive black type win next time in.”
A mare who always shows great fight in her races, Obsidian Dragon is aptly titled said Collins who referred to the Wikipedia description of the fictional animals after which she is named…
“Obsidian dragons, while the most intelligent of the gem dragons, are also the most vicious. They are extremely haughty, anger easily, and like to toy with prey before finishing it off. “
Obsidian Dragon is one of four winners from as many foals to race for the city winning Monde Bleu mare Aradina. A regular visitor to Hidden Dragon, she is also dam of the Listed winner Danedina and the metropolitan winners Johadina and Fasadina.
Meanwhile at the Gold Coast the Len Bryant trained four-year-old Forbidden Dragon recorded an impressive victory over 1200m, proving nearly two lengths too strong for her rivals. That was her second success from just eight starts.
Hidden Dragon’s quartet of winners was made up by a double at the Innisfail meeting – three-year-old Dragon Keeper breaking his maiden over 1100m whilst consistent four-year-old Hidden Run won his second race from his last three starts when taking out the Class 3 Plate.
Hidden Dragon’s great day followed hot on the heels of a double last Thursday, Hidden Rewards (winner of her last two) and Feuer Drache (Lyndhurst bred gelding who has won three of his last four) both successful at the Rockhampton meeting.
The well-supported Danzig Rocket did not let his backers down by scoring an easy win in the $55,000 Class 4 race over 1000m on Polytrack on Friday.
Tracking up pacesetter What A Cat (Steven Li) from the break, the Dr Yeoh Kheng Chye-trained Danzig Rocket (Vlad Duric) quickly put the issue beyond doubt at the top of the straight as he poured forward before pulling away for a fluent 3 ¼-length win over Good Boss (Olivier Placais) with Biggest Secret (Shafiq Rusof) third another two lengths away. The winning time was 59.62 seconds.
Danzig Rocket ($13) was at his second win from 13 starts having scored his maiden win for leading apprentice Shafiq Rusof in an Initiation race over a similar trip last April.
Danzig Rocket (Vlad Duric) wins in Singapore
Dr Yeoh said the Hidden Dragon four-year-old had been thereabouts of late and deserved the success.
“He’s been pretty consistent and with the good barrier (4) tonight, I was expecting him to win,” said Dr Yeoh.
“Things went according to plan. He had a good sit off the speed and when he straightened up, he just accelerated beautifully.
“He’s a Polytrack specialist and 1000m and 1100m are his pet trips, but eventually, he may go over 1200m.”
Duric concurred with the former veterinarian, saying that Danzig Rocket was right in his element on Friday night.
“Class 4 is just about right for him. With a light weight and a good barrier, he was a big chance tonight,” said the Australian jockey.
“He is honest but has always found a couple better before, but as he was well weighted tonight, it was his turn.
“He was well ridden to win as well.”
It has been a great couple of weeks for Hidden Dragon with two recent impressive metropolitan winners.
First up on Melbourne Cup Day was Hidden Jewel, a highly promising filly who, on the strength of an eye-catching debut third at the Gold Coast two weeks previously, was sent out favourite in an Eagle Farm maiden over 1300m.
Settling second from a wide gate, the Matthew Dunn trained chestnut extended nicely over the final stages, putting two lengths on her rivals and winning in a style that suggests a bright future looms.
Bred and raced by David & Linda Thompson, Hidden Jewel is out of the unraced Jan Murray mare Maximum Chance who has been a regular visitor to Lyndhurst stallions. A half sister to the stakes placed multiple city winner Bridled Chance, she hails from a good international family whose members include the stakes winners Two’s Company, Aldora, Polar Gem and Bid For Blue.
Check out photos of Hidden Jewel at: http://racepix.com.au/race/race/284764/Hidden+jewel+-+Eagle+Farm+-+Nov++1,+2011
November 5 saw the exciting three-year-old Saraji win her second in a row, stepping up from a three length Sunshine Coast victory and handling the rise in grade with aplomb.
Putting on display her great natural speed, the Barry Baldwin trained filly was always travelling well in front for apprentice Prescilla Schmidt and was never in any danger of defeat – saluting by a soft 3½ lengths.
Former airline stewardess Schmidt, who was enjoying her first city double, was not surprised at the strength of Saraji’s pedigree – “she won well at Caloundra and her work since has been very good,” she said.
Successful at four of her eight starts to date, Saraji is named after a central Queensland coalmine – owner Jack O’Connor a retired businessman who worked in mining – “I name all my horses that way,” he said.
A $28,000 Scone Yearling Sale graduate, Saraji was bred by Classic Park Bloodstock out of the winning Al Hareb mare Bethany. Also dam of the city winners Mr Barlow and Mashudu, she is a half sister to the Gr.2 winner Dynamic Love and the Listed winner Key Bar Nights.
November has been a great month already for Hidden Dragon whose other winners have been Ballard Boy, Danzig Rocket (Singapore) and Dragon Size (Gold Coast).
This success follows on the back of a busy October for the Hidden Dragon progeny – wins for Hidden Shuffle (two in a row at the Gold Coast and Eagle Farm), Hide ‘N’ Seek (Gold Coast), Boom Sha La (1.8 length debut winner at Townsville), Ballard Boy, Hidden Run, Feuer Drache and Hidden Rewards – as well as a debut Listed second for juvenile Hidden Warrior in the Breeders Plate at Randwick.