Trainer Stuart Kendrick ponders southern raid for Rancho Montoya

STUART Kendrick is playing a delicate balancing act with promising colt Rancho Montoya, who gave a glimpse of his staying credentials in beating older horses at Doomben on Saturday.

Kendrick has big-race ambitions for Rancho Montoya, who is a son of champion sire High Chaparral from the Group 1-winning mare Isolda, whose claim to fame was beating Octagonal in the 1995 Champagne Stakes.

Isolda has had nine winners from 11 foals to race, with Hobart Cup (G3) winner Bid Spotter her best to date. Kendrick is hoping Rancho Montoya can trump Bid Spotter’s feats, but whether it’s this spring or next year remains to be seen.

“This race was the one that was going to tell us what happens next,” Kendrick said. “If we go south, the race I am looking at is the Caulfield Classic (2000m, October 21). But I have to keep in mind it’s only his first campaign and I want to look after him.”

Jockey Robbie Fradd, who was successful on the colt on Saturday, said Rancho Montoya is showing no signs of training off yet, but whether he is ready for a southern trip remains to be seen.



Rancho Montoya is showing great staying potential. Picture: Grant Peters, Trackside Photography

“He is coping with (the long preparation), but I’ve got no doubt he’s going to be a superior horse in 6-8 months’ time,” Fradd said. “That was only his fourth start and he’s still got so much to learn. I think he’s going to be better with cut in the ground, but he’s a very nice horse regardless and he will run 2000m easily.”

Former Kiwi mare My Diamantine earned herself a shot at the Newcastle Cup after breaking a long run of outs over the mile. My Diamantine performed with distinction at the latter end of the winter carnival, placing in the Caloundra and Queensland Cups.

Despite having not won for 666 days, punters found her at longer odds on Saturday, firming from a morning quote of better than $20 to run $10. Larry Cassidy guided the mare along the rails and she gunned down well-backed favourite Sheiswhatsheis.

Trainer Brian Smith immediately flagged his intention to make a tilt on the Newcastle Cup, a race he won in 2006 with Bikkie Tin Blues.


Story courtesy Natahn Exelby – Brisbane Courier Mail


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