2018 XXXX Gold Stand Alone Saturday
Hawkesbury Race Club's famous "Stand Alone" Meeting will be held again in 2018, with Saturday April 28 the day to mark in your calendar!
The day features the Hawkesbury Gold Cup, Hawkesbury Guineas, Godolphin Crown and XXXX Gold Rush, with the latter being awarded Listed status for the 2018 renewal.
Join us again track side for one of our feature meetings of the year.
Words by John Curtis, Clinton Payne and Ray Hickson.
GOLD CUP - FABRIZIO
Classy galloper Fabrizio produced a magnificent show of sustained speed to lead all the way and claim the $200,000 Group III Livamol Hawkesbury Gold Cup (1600m).
The Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained galloper ran his rivals into the ground, stretching the field out over a space in the middle stages before finding plenty to hold off the challengers in the straight.
"Wasn't it a treat to see him get to the top of the straight and kick again," Waterhouse said.
"Jason (Collett) judged the speed on him very well today."
"He was very bold" is how Collett described Fabrizio and the jockey said Saturday's feature win won't be the last for the son of High Chaparral.
"He just likes to roll along and his tempo doesn't suit other horses that are chasing," he said.
"I knew cantering around to the barrier he was a horse. He gave me a lovely feel and then that's what I felt during the run.
"He was pretty tough late. I really went for him at about the furlong and he really dug deep."
Fabrizio ($9) defeated the John O'Shea-trained Moher ($11) by three-quarters of a length with a short-half-head back to Gary Portelli's Testashadow ($18) in third. The $4 favourite Spectroscope finished sixth.
HAWKESBURY GUINEAS - SHAZEE LEE
Hawkesbury’s leading trainer of the 2016/17 season, Scott Singleton, clinched the biggest win of his 13-year career on his home track, ending a 15-year drought for the locals in the $200,000 Group 3 Blacktown Workers Club Hawkesbury Guineas (1400m).
Singleton’s triumph with $51 outsider Shazee Lee was not only his first Group success, but the first time a local trainer had won the Guineas in a decade and a half.
Until Shazee Lee, former champion jockey Mal Johnston was the last Hawkesbury trainer to win the feature event for three-year-olds, scoring with Shags (Brad Pengelly) in 2002.
Singleton’s breakthrough Group victory wasn’t the only reason the Guineas result was special.
He trains the Ready’s Image filly for her breeder Dr Max Kowalczuk and his wife Evelyn.
“Max was virtually the first owner to give me a horse when I started training, and has been a loyal supporter ever since,” Singleton said.
“We’ve enjoyed a great relationship.”
Brilliantly ridden by Jay Ford, Shazee Lee came from last to run down heavily-backed $3 favorite Prompt Response and $26 chance Salsonic.
GODOLPHIN CROWN - SHILLELAGH
There wouldn’t be too many feature races in Sydney trainer Chris Waller hasn’t won and he can tick the Group 3 $175,000 Godolphin Crown (1300m) off that list after Shillelagh’s fast-finishing win.
Waller plus a smart ex-Kiwi galloper usually means success and the champion trainer was always confident the five-year-old only needed a dry track to fire but admitted it was a win he needed to see. Shillelagh had failed to run a place in three starts since joining Waller.
“She’s been a pretty talented mare, she came to me in pretty good form but lost her way a little bit,’’ Waller said. “That was mainly due to the wet tracks and now she has found her winning way she can certainly hold her form.
“The tracks have been really wet, I’d say a soft 5 would be OK but she doesn’t let down on a wet track. There were no excuses today, she was back on a good track in the right type of race.’’
Shillelagh ($11), ridden by Tye Angland, came from worse than midfield with a surge down the Hawkesbury straight to haul in favourite Daysee Doom ($2.70) and edged away late with 1-1/4 lengths back to Kinshachi ($17) in third.
While it was Waller’s first success in the race, prolific winners Peter and Paul Snowden had a hardluck story with second favourite Artistry, who was badly held up in the straight.
Race favourite Daysee Doom’s jockey Andrew Adkins couldn’t offer any major excuses for his mare’s defeat, though she was coming off a freshen up and was left a sitting shot in the straight.
“We did a little bit early but I got into a good position and she travelled quite well,’’ Adkins said. “She held her own right until the last few strides. The big straight gives them plenty of time to run her down.’’