Boban returned to his best form to win the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 over 1350 metres after being given a great ride by Glyn Schofield; in a three-horse war over the concluding stages Boban proved just too strong for Charlie Boy and Generalife. With a strong speed from the outset the 10,000 was set-up for the backmarkers and the three placegetters all came from well back in the field; Knoydart and Sacred Star were the best of the rest but they were more than three lengths astern of Boban. Boban captured his fourth Group 1 with his 10,000 success and it was his first since he defeated It's A Dundeel in the Chipping Norton at Warwick Farm in March 2014. Boban has not been the same horse since then so it was a great training performance by Chris Waller to have Boban at his best again.
Read more: Boban Back To Best In Doomben 10,000
Flamberge, one of Australia's most underrated sprinters, cracked it for his first Group 1 with his superb victory in the Goodwood Handicap over 1200 metres at Morphettville; after drawing an outside barrier Vlad Duric had no option but to sit three-wide throughout aboard Flamberge. Lord Of The Sky was travelling well in the lead and he looked the likely winner before Flamberge proved far too strong in the drive to the line; Lord Of The Sky battled-on well for second while Under The Louvre and Perth star Black Heart Bart finished well for third and fourth respectively. Flamberge had a tough run close to the speed and yet he came-away to win by three-quarters of a length so Flamberge was clearly the best run in the Goodwood. Trainer Peter Moody has found the key to Flamberge, which was having his first run for two months, as Flamberge has an excellent record when on the fresh side.
Read more: Flamberge Flies Fresh In Goodwood
Blake Shinn stole the show at Doomben with 5 winners for the day including the Group 1 double of the BTC Cup and Doomben Cup; after riding Sadler's Lake, I've Got The Looks and Charlie Boy to victory Shinn then rode Pornichet to a superb win in the Doomben Cup before he completed his red-letter day with victory aboard outsider Hot Snitzel in the BTC Cup. Shinn confirmed, if confirmation was needed, that he is one of Australia's elite jockeys; one galloper Shinn will be very keen to continue his association with is the Gai Waterhouse-trained Pornichet which proved classes above his rivals in the Doomben Cup. Pornichet displayed a rare brand of acceleration when let-go by Shinn and the race was all over at the top of the straight. Pornichet's major goal in the Spring will be the Cox Plate and for those who think winning the Doomben Cup is not strong-enough, think again; Silent Achiever and Foreteller were both beaten less than a length in last year's Cox Plate.
Read more: Group 1 Doomben Double In Blake's High-5
Miracles Of Life, one of Australia's most popular horses recorded her second Group 1 with her success in the Robert Sangster Classic for fillies and mares at Morphettville and she will now be retired; Miracles Of Life's first Group 1 was as a two year old when she won the Blue Diamond Stakes at Caulfield with Daniel Clarken as trainer and Lauren Stojakovic as her jockey. After being transferred to Peter and Paul Snowden last year Miracles Of Life claimed another Group 1 more than two years after her first; just when Gregers was being hailed the winner Miracles Of Life with Hugh Bowman in the saddle came with a wet-sail to snatch victory from Gregers in the very last stride. Gregers was gallant in defeat, striking the lead early in the straight only to go-under by a short half-head. I Love It and Miss Steele ran the race of their lives for third and fourth respectively.
Read more: More Miracles At Morphettville In Sangster
Team Hawkes' Leebaz just held-on to defeat Sir Moments in the Group 2 A.D. Hollindale Stakes over 1800 metres at the Gold Coast; Jim Byrne always had Leebaz tracking Hooked in second position before Leebaz quickly took-over at the top of the straight. Only Sir Moments emerged from the ruck to make a race of it with Leebaz and although the winning margin was a narrow one the honours of the race go to Leebaz. It was almost a year to the day since Leebaz won his last race in the Hawkesbury Gold Cup; Leebaz then finished a very good second to Streama in the Group 1 Doomben Cup and now that Leebaz has returned to the winner's circle he is a good chance to go one better in this year's Doomben Cup. I'm Imposing finished strongly for third while Silent Achiever, Arabian Gold, Hooked and Hawkspur were all disappointing.
Read more: Leebaz Back In Winner's Circle In Hollindale
Peter Moody's Dissident bowed-out of racing on a winning note in the All Aged Stakes at Randwick; this was Dissident's fifth career-Group 1 and his fourth for the season which should make him hot favourite for Australian Horse Of The Year honours. However Dissident has always been grossly underestimated in racing circles and the title is by no means a fait accompli; Dissident's All Aged victory adds to those in the C.F. Orr this Autumn and the Memsie and Makybe Diva in the Spring and whether he claims the title or not Dissident is assured of a happy life as a stallion at Newgate Farm. Two of Australia's greatest-ever jockeys, Jim Cassidy and Damien Oliver rode for their lives in the best race of the Sydney Autumn Carnival but Cassidy prevailed with Dissident winning by a head from Oliver's Wandjina. It was 52 year old Cassidy's second Group 1 in a week and his 104th career-Group 1 and there is plenty of life in the old boy yet.
Read more: Dissident's Swan Song One For The Ages
Criterion produced a career-high performance to dominate the $4,000,000 Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick in the feature event of The Championships; Criterion was always traveling well and Craig Williams hardly had to move on Criterion and the race was all over. Criterion has always been a good horse as evidenced by his wins in last year's Rosehill Guineas and Australian Derby but Criterion has become an elite galloper since being taken-over by David Hayes and Tom Dabernig. Contributer had been in wonderful form this Autumn and his scratching was a tragedy for connections but it is doubtful that he would have beaten Criterion on the day. Japanese pair To The World and Tosen Stardom and Cox Plate winner Adelaide did not handle the conditions and they finished down the track. It was left to nine year old war-horse Red Cadeaux to battle-on very strongly for second while Royal Descent ran her usual honest race for third.
Read more: Criterion Crushes Internationals In Queen Elizabeth
Glen Boss made it six wins and Chris Waller five wins in the Group 1 Doncaster Mile at Randwick when the three year old Kermadec raced-away to win from Japanese galloper Real Impact and Waller's Royal Descent on Easter Monday; Kermadec had been very unlucky at his previous two starts in the Australian Guineas and George Ryder Stakes but his luck changed for the better when he secured a start after being second emergency. Real Impact looked the likely winner when James McDonald went for home topping the rise but they had no answer to the withering burst of Kermadec courtesy of a superb ride from Glen Boss who registered his 80th Group 1 victory. Real Impact had no wet track form leading into the Doncaster and his effort to finish second was outstanding.
Read more: Kermadec Gives Boss & Waller Another Doncaster
James McDonald, John O'Shea and Godolphin had a field day at Rosehill culminating with victory in the Group 1 BMW with Hartnell; Hartnell and Japanese galloper To The World dominated the market and they dominated the race from the top of the straight. To The World looked likely to win but Hartnell was much too strong over the last 200 metres and he came-away to defeat To The World by 1.3 lengths with 100/1 pop Beaten Up in third place. To The World's task was not an easy one having his first start since December over 2400 metres; To The World is still a serious contender for the Queen Elizabeth Stakes but all honours from the BMW go to Hartnell. Hartnell was the third of four winners to John O'Shea and Godolphin while he was the fourth of five winners for James McDonald.
Read more: McDonald & O'Shea Dominate BMW Day
Gai Waterhouse has now equalled her father, the late great T.J. Smith, with six Golden Slipper victories following Vancouver's superb win in the $3,500,000 Group 1 for two year olds at Rosehill. All the pressure was on Tommy Berry riding the short-priced favourite Vancouver from the outside barrier but Berry handled it beautifully having Vancouver in a good trailing position close to the leaders. Vancouver had plenty of company at the 200 metre mark but Vancouver proved much too strong over the concluding stages; English provided the sternest competition to Vancouver and she held-on bravely for second to give Gai Waterhouse the quinella. Vancouver was the second Group 1 for Waterhouse after she won earlier in the day with her outstanding mare Sweet Idea in The Galaxy.
Read more: Vancouver's Slipper On Gai's Golden Day