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Caulfied Guineas Day Review

From Martin Green: October 2017

Caulfield racecourse

One of the biggest boilovers of all time took place on Saturday as $101 outsider Mighty Boss romped to victory in the $2 million Caulfield Guineas. In the build-up all the talk surrounded the much-vaunted trio of Royal Symphony, Catchy and Kementari and they were expected to battle it out for the win. Mighty Boss, meanwhile, was on the reserve books and was only drafted in when Summer Passage was scratched late on. He started the famous race at double the odds of the next biggest outsiders, $51 shots Azazel and The Mission, and was not given a hope in hell of winning.

He had not won in five races and was running to form as he languished near the back of the field during the first half of the race. But jockey Michael Walker drove him to within touching distance of the leaders and sneaked through a gap on the inside rail to be within contention with 200m to go. Kementari had the pace and dashed past the pack in ominous fashion, leaving Catchy and co in his wake. But he did not reckon on the $101 shot, who battled back bravely and won it by a head. Cue jubilation for Walker and trainer Mark Price, who retained a 10% ownership in Mighty Boss, but a distinctly muted applause from the crowd. Catchy had been backed into $4.40 favourite and Kementari and Royal Symphony were also heavily backed, so Mighty Boss' shock win was a bitter pill to swallow for punters.

Yet Walker was delighted as it marked his comeback from a long-term injury in style, Price was elated and Mighty Boss is destined for a great life as a stallion following this fairy-tale story. But first he will head to the Australian Guineas, so be sure to check all the horse racing odds. Kementari, Catchy, and Royal Symphony, who finished second, third and fourth respectively, will all be back with a vengeance too.

Elsewhere on Caulfield Guineas Day, there was good news for punters as Darren Weir's heavily fancied Gailo Chop overcame Aiden O'Brien's Irish raider Johannes Vermeer and Jon Snow to win the $1 million Ladbrokes Stakes. Bonneval started as favourite after winning the Underwood Stakes, but was too far back to challenge after a tough start. Gailo Chop will now be heading to the Cox Plate to take on the superstar Winx in the most eagerly anticipated race of the year.

Weir's stable made it a fantastic double as Tosen Stardom shrugged off being lumbered with top weight to blitz the field over a mile in the Toorak Handicap. Weir, the champion Victorian trainer, will have a strong hand in the upcoming $3 million Caulfield Cup as his charge, Humidor, is joint favourite along with Bonneval. He also saddles Admire Deus and Amelie's Star and has a great chance of celebrating victory in Australia's second most prestigious handicap, held Saturday week.

There was another upset in the Thousand Guineas on Caulfield Guineas Day as outsider Aloisia beat Shoals and favourite Alizee. It was the first ever Group 1 win for trainer Aaron Purcell, who stood in for the suspended Ciaron Maher. German-bred stayer Lord Fandango beat Wall of Fire and Gallic Chieftan to win the Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes, while Tony McEvoy's Cool Passion claimed the 1200m Cape Grim Beef Stakes with a commanding performance.

Qaflia kicked off proceedings on Caulfield Guineas Day with a win in the Inglis Debutant Stakes, beating Sacred Sword by a neck, and looks to have great potential to develop into a star going forwards. Invincible Star lived up to her name in the G3 Thoroughbred Club Stakes, blitzing the field from the off and winning by a comfortable margin.

Fast 'N' Rocking made it a double for Lindsay Park with a win in the Weekend Hussler Stakes, while Super Cash closed the day in style by overwhelming short-priced favourite Sheidel and holding off the challenge of Illustrious Lad to win the G2 Keno Kwikpik Schillaci Stakes.


Author bio:
Martin Green is an experienced horseracing correspondent and has been covering the industry for many years.




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