The Hawkes family landed a double and Gerald Ryan produced a potential star at Tuesday’s Newcastle race meeting.
The first of the Hawkes stables two winners was the New Zealand bred three-year-old Peak in the 900 metre Red Funnel 3YO Maiden Plate. The gelding put the writing on the wall with an unlucky second at Newcastle on August 15.
Despite racing greenly in the straight, Peak raced clear to win by one and a half lengths on Tuesday. He has a good turn of foot and is a future Metropolitan winner. Later in the day the lightly raced four-year-old Aoraki completed the double for the Hawkes partnership when he careered away to win the 1500 metre Reward Hospitality Maiden.
It was the easiest win of the day with Aoraki, putting 4¼ lengths on the nearest rival. The gelding was unlucky first up at Kembla after flashing home from last to go down by less than a length.
Gerald Ryan predicted a bright future for his three-year-old Snitzel colt Bottega following his three lengths debut win in the Easy Payroll Global Maiden Plate (1300m). In February 2017 Ryan produced another Snitzel colt called Trapeze Artist in a two-year-old Maiden on the Beaumont track. He was a $20 chance and stormed home to win and he went on to win $5½ Million in prizemoney.
Ryan said he reminded him of Trapeze Artist. “He reminded me of Trapeze Artist the day he won at Newcastle. Bottega’s turn of foot at the top of the straight was very good and he hit the line hard. Kerrin McEvoy rode him in a recent trial and he said to go to 1300 meters on a big track and he will win,” Ryan said.
Newcastle premier trainer Kris Lees had a mixed day. He saddled up the $1.14 favourite Urbino in the opening event the $1M Hunter Class 1 & Maiden Plate (2335m). The imported stayer raced clear in the straight only to be run down by Plucky George. Two races later Kedah made it back to back wins when she stormed home to win the Sharp Electronics Group F&M Benchmark 64 (1200m).
The mare won impressively at Gosford in her previous start and Lees said on Tuesday that Kedah is ready to progress to Metropolitan midweek class.
Top Sydney jockeys Tim Clark and Brenton Avdulla rode doubles at the meeting.