Militarize bolts clear in ATC Sire Produce Stakes

Militarize bolted clear to claim the 2023 ATC Sires Produce Stakes.

After combining with Surefire in the Group 2 Chairman’s Quality earlier in the day, Chris Waller and Joao Moreira have teamed up again with Militarize storming clear in the Group 1 ATC Sires Produce Stakes.

It comes after finding zero luck in the Group 1 Golden Slipper behind stablemate, Shinzo, when being involved in the calamity involving Lazzago and Learning To Fly toward the rear of the field.

Today there was no bad luck with Joao Moreira riding up the inside of challengers turning for home on what looked to be a strong tempo set-up by the Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained Bases Loaded speeding across from the wider barrier.

Butch Cassidy, Don Corleone and Brave Mead all made a line of three turning for home but it was all Militarize once the gap came and he was never going to be chased down. While Pier Pressure has run third at a massive price, stepping into Group 1 company for the first time.

2023 Group 1 ATC Sires Produce Stakes Replay – Militarize

The Dundeel colt clearly relishing conditions on the heavy track and this now the fifth year in a row the Golden Slipper form-line has produce the winner of this 1400m feature for the two-year-olds.

Chris Waller spoke post-race about his impressive colt and although he hasn’t traditionally been known for training two-year-old features, with wins with Shinzo and now Militarize he spoke to the magnitude of the wins for his stable.

“I wouldn’t say we were confident (today), but we knew we had a lovely horse,” said Waller.

“He’s done a great job and it’s an absolute honour.

“We’ve been going OK without them (two-year-olds). But it’s always a talking point for people and actually it probably makes us a little more accessible to the really fast two-year-olds because often owners would buy a portfolio of horses and they’ll say, ‘we’ll give Chris the ones that need a bit of time’. So it puts us on the back foot to start with, so maybe they’ll give us the fast ones now as well.”

In regard to heading on to the Group 1 Champagne Stakes Chris Waller kept the cards close to his chest.

“I’m not sure. I’ll talk to Mr Teo, Henry Field and all their team. We’ll see what they’ve got to say.

If Militarize doesn’t go to Champagne, any others for that race?: “There are a couple of others that I thought might be better milers.”

Joao Moreira spoke post-race about the privilege of riding Group 1 winners in Australia and of course mentioned the class of his galloper.

“Another Group 1 win in Australia is so special and once again I wouldn’t have done it without the support of all connections,” said Moreira.

“This is the kind of thing that makes us (have) no regret coming over here. It’s quite far away from home but when you get on top of a nice horse like this one, I just couldn’t be any happier.

“He’s such a nice horse.

“He kind of floated on the surface which not many horses would be able to considering the track is quite heavy today. Getting a good gate, putting himself in the right spot, he was the winner a long way from home.”

Militarize is currently a $4.50 favourite in futures markets for the Champagne Stakes with online bookmakers.

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