Gold Coast turf stars on right track for southern glory this spring

Trainer Bruce Hill with Teronado. Picture: Gregg Porteous

Trainer Bruce Hill with Teronado. Picture: Gregg Porteous

THERE was no joy for the Gold Coast’s “big three” on Saturday but the trainers of Rudy, Sagaronne and Teronado all left the races content they can claim a feature race this spring.

All three Gold Coast horses proved in their respective races in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne on Saturday that they won’t just be making up the numbers down south this spring.

Rudy caught the eye when flashing home to run a close third in the Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m) at Randwick despite sitting three-wide throughout, while Teronado put in arguably the run of the day at Doomben when he flashed home from last to finish a close third in the slowly run open handicap (1350m).

Toby Edmonds also described Sagaronne’s first-up effort as a “barrier trial” after the promising filly went to the line untested when a close up 11th in the Listed Atlantic Jewel Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley.

While neither of our three big guns saluted, it gave the city reason to hope that a Gold Coast-trained horse can win a Group 1 this spring for the first time since Shoot Out in 2010.

Even bookmakers Luxbet believe we have a slight chance, offering $21 for any of the trio to claim a Group 1 this spring.

Teronado’s connections are now convinced he has come back as good as he was before a tendon injury threatened to ruin his career last year, Edmonds now believes the Group 1 Thousand Guineas is a winnable race for Sagaronne and Helen Page walked out of Randwick racecourse on Saturday knowing everything was on track for Rudy’s grand final in four weeks.

“We’ve set him for one race this spring being the Epsom (on October 3),” Page said.

“It was very satisfying (on Saturday) and he was entitled to run midfield because he was caught deep and around the turn he was struggling but he was getting to the line better than anything at the finish.

“We will bring him home (today) and then we will take him back for the Bill Ritchie Handicap (at Randwick) in a fortnight and then it’s on to the Epsom.”

Hill has decided to give Teronado one more run in Brisbane before heading south.

The Caulfield Cup is still the pipeline dream but the five-year-old will need to win the Group 3 Craven Plate (2000m) at Randwick on October 3 to be any chance of making the Caulfield Cup field.

Either way, Teronado can claim a nice race this spring.

“We are slowly getting there and he ran good sectionals home (on Saturday),” Hill said.

“We will give him another run here in a mile race in a fortnight and then we will sit down and think about it after that and there are plenty of races down south for him.”

Sagaronne will now head to the Group 2 Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m) at Caulfield on September 26 before the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) at the same track a fortnight later.

Sagaronne’s grand final is the Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) at Flemington on November 5 but Edmonds feels she will be a genuine chance in the Thousand Guineas as well.

“She will be very competitive from here on in,” he said.


Story courtesy Brad Davidson Gold Coast Bulletin

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