The Chris Waller-trained Militarize has produced a stunning finishing burst to claim the Group 1 Golden Rose (1400m) at Rosehill.
Having caught the eye when flashing home for fifth in the Group 2 Run To The Rose (1200m) on September 9, the three-year-old Dundeel colt managed to add a third Group 1 win to his name at just his seventh start.
Jockey Joao Moreira had Militarize (+500) settled on the fence in the second-half of the field and despite seemingly being strung pu in traffic with 200m to go, Militarize flew late to blouse Encap (+1400) and Cylinder (+320) in the shadows of the winning post.
The win handed the jockey/horse combination a third win from as many starts, all at Group 1 level after combining to claim the Group 1 ATC Sires’ Produces Stakes (1400m) and Group 1 Champagne Stakes (1600m) in Militarize’s two-year-old season.
2023 Group 1 Golden Rose – Militarize | T: Chris Waller | J: Joao Moreira
The win handed master trainer Chris Waller an impressive third victory in the Golden Rose and it was evident how impressed he was with Militarize.
“It was a classic Golden Rose, good field. I guess we had a nice favourable draw, confident jockey and I always thought the 1400m would be a bit short,” said Waller.
“We chose to put the blinkers on which I don’t like doing too early in a horse’s career, but it might’ve just got us home.”
“We certainly will be talking about a (Caulfield) Guineas for sure, that looks a nice race for him in terms of a traditional set-up. I don’t think there’ll be any differing along the way.”
Having his first Group 1 ride back in Australia since the autumn, Joao Moreira further heaped the praise on Militarize.
“I couldn’t feel any better, he’s such a great horse for myself. Every time I’ve sat on him he hasn’t let me down,” said Moreira.
“Today he had to make it tough considering that he didn’t have everything go his way today.
“To be honest I wasn’t that confident I would be able to win as we approached the last 300m. I had a wall of horses right in front of me, I just couldn’t get the split right away.
“That forced me to be in behind horses but I found myself behind the right horse that will take me forward (Cylinder – 3rd). The last bit when I was able to get him into the clear where he just dashed home like a star.
“Good horses make jockeys’ lives so much easier.”