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  • Writer's pictureHawkesbury Race Club


PROMISING Hawkesbury three-year-old Blaze A Trail is a spring carnival absentee.

Trainer Matt Vella had planned to set the colt, a son of multiple Group 1 winner Criterion (who was also raced by Sir Owen Glenn’s Go Bloodstock Australia), for the $1m Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on October 10 following two wins from as many starts for him during the winter.

“Blaze A Trail started to jar up a week or so after he had trialled at Rosehill Gardens last month,” Vella said this afternoon.

“We had scans done of his knees and everything was okay, but there was no point pushing ahead with him as he is a big colt.

“He is in the paddock and won’t race again until early next year.

“We’ll aim for the better races with him during the autumn but if he shows he isn’t up to the top grade, we have the Provincial Championships as a nice option.”

Blaze A Trail began his career with Peter and Paul Snowden at Randwick and on debut finished third to then stablemate Dame Giselle in the $1m Golden Gift (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens in early November.

After two more runs when not disgraced in Group 2 company (sixth in both the Silver Slipper Stakes, 1100m and Todman Slipper Trial, 1200m), he was transferred to Vella, who heads Sir Owen’s Glenn Haven Farm operation at Hawkesbury.

Blaze A Trail scored first-up on his home track in a 1300m Maiden Handicap (beating subsequent winners Sammy, Invictus Felix, Timely Shadow and Young Heart) on June 7, then stamped his potential by carrying 61kg to victory in a 2YO Handicap (1600m) at Newcastle on July 4.

. Leading Hawkesbury trainer Brad Widdup has entered Icebath for Friday’s $160,000 Group 3 Tibbie Stakes (1400m) for fillies and mares at the Newcastle Gold Cup carnival.

She is one of 17 horses in the 28-strong entry list on the minimum weight (55kg), with classy New Zealand mare Probabeel the 59.5kg topweight.

Icebath, a four-year-old daughter of dual Doncaster Mile winner Sacred Falls, was luckless in a couple of feature races during the autumn, and luck has again deserted her at both starts since resuming.

At her latest, she made good ground from well back when fourth to Cristal Breeze in a Benchmark 78 Handicap (1200m) at Randwick on September 5.

Icebath is also an entrant for a Benchmark 78 Handicap (1400m) at the George Main Stakes meeting at Randwick on Saturday.

Widdup also has nominated both Junglized and Rare Episode for the Hurricane Handicap (900m) on Friday’s Newcastle Cup program.

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