Warwick Farm trainer Bjorn Baker expressed surprise at the generosity of bookmakers following the impressive debut win of his three year old filly Classify at Saturdays Newcastle race meeting. A daughter of one of Australia’s great sires Fastnet Rock, Classify was set for a first up win in the 900 metre Maiden Plate.
With Wyong speedster Perfect Style backed as if unbeatable firming from $2.20 into $1.55, Classify drifted from $3.20 to $5. Perfect Style quickly led and appeared to be cruising approaching the home turn. However, once in the home straight Classify issued the challenge and she raced past the favourite and she drew away to win by 1 ¾ lengths.
Baker a Kiwi and son of the legendary Murray Baker enjoyed a successful day on Saturday landing a treble. At Randwick, he saddled up two winners Goodfella and Sir Plush. He is off to a flying start to the 2017-18 season with 28 winners in the first two months and seven days of the season.
Baker said on Sunday that he was extremely confident about Classify’ s prospects. “This filly trialled good and she has worked well. We were very confident and backed her accordingly, I can’t believe that Classify got to $5. We paid $220,000 for her at the Inglis Easter Yearling Sale. She is still learning but is very talented. I will probably give her a mid-week run in Sydney at the end of the month.” Baker said.
Very few horses win with 63 ½ kilograms on their back these days but the inform Warwick Farm stayer Bon Equus did at Newcastle on Saturday. The tough stayer defied a betting drift ($2.30 to $3.80) before leading all the way to win the 2330 metre Benchmark 60 Handicap. Sixteen days earlier Bon Equus again led throughout to win over the 2100 metre trip at Hawkesbury carrying 61 kilograms. The five year old is trained by Joe Pride for the ‘potato king’ Mick Moraitis who raced Caulfield and Melbourne Cup winner Might And Power.
Saturday was another successful day for the powerful Godolphin stable and their young trainer James Cummings. The famous royal blue colours were carried to victory by Viridine and Interlocuter at Randwick and at Newcastle Speedway and Organza were Godolphin’s winners.
The only Newcastle trainer to win a race at Newcastle on Saturday was Kris Lees who produced a promising three year old colt High Power to win the 1200 metre Maiden Plate. Given the run of the race by Mitchell Bell, High Power overhauled the leader Riva Romance in the closing stages to win by a long neck. Lees landed a double at Port Macquarie with Wallangarra and Face Like Thunder.
It was a frustrating day for trainer Paul Perry with five placings from eight starters at Newcastle. However, the master trainers promising filly Red Braids was first home at Port Macquarie on Saturday.
Jockeys Grant Buckley, Jeff Penza and Rory Hutchings took the riding honours at Newcastle with two wins a piece.