Horse Racing: Victorian-trained Away Game has taken out the Magic Millions 2YO Classic in a huge boilover on the Gold Coast, continuing the domination of fillies in the race.
Jye McNeil rode four winners at Flemington to take his season tally to 24. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
Rising star Jye McNeil continued his amazing start to 2020 by riding a quartet of winners at Flemington.
McNeil completed his first haul of four winners on a city track when he won the $140,000 Chester Manifold Stakes (1400m) on Amadeus for Mick Kent.
Earlier he saluted aboard Jabali Ridge, Rubisaki and Blazejowski.
The 25-year-old said he had ridden city trebles before and once rode four winners at Echuca but there was considerably more prestige attached to a Flemington quartet.
McNeil has won eight city races this year to take his season tally to 24, four more than his total of 20 last season.
But he’ll be cooling his heels until Australia Day after being suspended for his winning ride on Amadeus. Stewards found McNeil guilty of careless riding when he interfered with Firsthand and Bumper Blast after 400m.
He’s had another eight meetings added to his nine-meeting suspension from Sandown on Wednesday.
Jye McNeil pilots Amadeus to victory in the Chester Manifold Stakes. Picture: AAP/Vince CaligiuriSource:AAP
His talent, however, is without question. Amadeus trainer Mick Kent said that a few years ago he was at McNeil’s apprentice year’s graduation.
“Every apprentice was asked who’d be the first of the group to ride a Group 1 winner and they nearly all said Jye,” Kent said.
The trainer said he was thrilled to win a stakes race for owner Jane Walker, whose family bred and raced Reckless, in the same colours as the famous horse from the 1970s trained by Phar Lap’s strapper Tommy Woodcock.
“It wasn’t the toughest stakes race but he goes so well on bigger tracks,” Kent said.
McNeil also drew praise from another Cranbourne trainer, Greg Eurell, after he won on Blazejowski.
“Jye is flying. Through experience and maturity he’s getting better and better,” Eurell said.
McNeil claimed his first quartet at a city track. Picture: Getty Images/George SalpigtidisSource:Getty Images
Meanwhile, promising two-year-old Jabali Ridge is eyeing the Blue Diamond Stakes — where he will get the chance to go one better than his sire Jabali — after his comfortable win in The Arbour Plate (1000m).
Mick Nolan, the stable representative for Mick Price and Mick Kent Jr, said that was an obvious path for the gelding although he would need a late entry to make the field.
Nolan described Jabali Ridge as “a little tradesman”, saying he had benefited from his debut second placing behind Conceited at Flemington on December 14.
“He was defeated by a handy horse at his debut,” Nolan said.
“A bit of race experience makes a difference.
“He had a little break after his debut and he’s probably improved in his work.”
McNeil was also impressed with Jabali Ridge. “
I thought he was quite dominant. His race experience helped, as well as having had the experience down the straight,” he said.
IN A NUTSHELL
Greg Eurell was not surprised that Blazejowski resumed as a winner in The Furlong Bar (1100m).
Blazejowski was first-up from a spell but continued where he left off as he won three on end and was beaten in a photo at Flemington before being spelled.
Although the race was on a soft track, Eurell is certain Blazejowski can handle all surfaces.
“It was good to get that one under our belt — 1100m was a test,” Eurell said.
“He’ll find himself in a good race this campaign. I’d love to see him stretch out to a mile and I think he can get to stakes level.”
Blazejowski returned a winner at Flemington. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
■ Trainer Patrick Payne was on the Gold Coast but would have been thrilled with his winning treble at Flemington, scoring with Rubisaki, Power Dream and Modear.
Power Dream’s racing days are numbered as she is in foal to Overshare. Rubisaki is being aimed at the $1 million Inglis Sprint at Warwick Farm next month.
■ Another jockey who has made a great start to the year is apprentice Jessica Eaton, who followed her win last Saturday at Caulfield on roughie Saucy Jack with her first Flemington winner on Power Dream. Eaton said it was a great thrill to have ridden her first winner at headquarters.
DID YOU SEE/HEAR …
It was a good start for the Vics on Magic Millions Day, winning the first two races. The $250,000 Magic Millions Plate (1200m) went to the Mick Price and Michael Kent Jr-trained He’ll Haunt Us.
Ciaron Maher and David Eustace chimed in with the second winner, Etana, who took out the $250,000 Magic Millions Quality (1800m).
■ Well-known trainer Jim Conlan took a tumble at Pinecliffe, where he trains, when he fell from a horse.
Conlan was taken to the Alfred Hospital and a family member said he had suspected broken ribs.
The five-time Group 1-winning trainer has a boutique stable and likes to ride his horses in trackwork.
HEAVY HEART: Daughter of Frankel who looked all at sea down the Flemington straight yet still held on to finish third.
ROCK ON: Missed the start and didn’t have a lot of room in the closing stages when fourth to The Lord Mayor.
NEIGHBOURHOOD: Tough ride for Teo Nugent as she just wanted to lay in. Underlined the strength of Craig Williams in getting her to win her three previous runs.