Spring Racing Contenders: Rothfire steals the show at Rosehill

Rothfire lowered the colours of Sydney’s best three-year-olds with a barnstorming Rosehill win.

It was another massive weekend in racing, headlined by the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington. In Sydney, Rothfire stole the show with an emphatic victory in the Run To The Rose. We take a look back at the week that was and help you find your next winner.

Fierce Impact wins Makybe Diva Stakes

It was Fierce Impact’s third Group 1 victory on Saturday, adding another 1600m feature to his resume. After landing in a beautiful spot under Mark Zahra, he was able to find clear running at the top of the straight and put in a bold bid to hold off a brave Russian Camelot. After jumping from barrier 14, Damien Oliver elected to push forward with Russian Camelot and was forced to sit four deep on the speed. That would have been race over for most horses, but the Russian knuckled down hard to the task and looks set for a very big Spring Carnival.

One horse we black-booked in our August 29 review came out and got the job done in the Listed Exford Plate. Ridden a treat by Daniel Stackhouse from the outside alley, Crosshaven was able to get across, park outside the leader and romp home to a 1.5L victory at around $9.50. We specked him in the Caulfield Guineas at $21 two weeks ago and he is now into $13, so followers will be keeping a close eye on him going forward.

It was a boilover in the Lets Elope as Pretty Brazen upset market elects Arcadia Queen and Savatiano. The $21 chance was caught wide throughout but still proved too strong for her rivals under Luke Currie. The McEvoy stable have always had a strong opinion of this mare, so we expect to see a big campaign from her. Given she is a four-year-old, it wouldn’t be the worst move to send her to Sydney for the Golden Eagle on October 31, but she would also be a fantastic chance in the Empire Rose at her favourite track on the same day over a mile at Group 1 level. She is said to be backing up this weekend in the Sir Rupert Clarke, where she will be very competitive at the 1400m journey. The team will have a big decision to make, but we want to follow her wherever she goes. Arcadia Queen was good from the back once again and keeps punters interested, while race favourite Savatiano left us scratching our heads.

Doubtland was sent to Melbourne after a lacklustre first-up run in the Rosebud a fortnight ago, but after the heavens opened up, he was in his element and returned to the winner’s stall. The one-time Golden Rose favourite was given a peach of a ride by William Pike, who had to navigate a path through the centre of the field in the straight race and managed to get the colt’s head down on the line in a thrilling four-way go. Amish Boy nearly spoiled the party at $41, while another of our black-booked runners out of the McNeil Stakes, Ranting, was super in defeat when running third. Prague was the other runner who crossed the line in the blanket finish and will be worth following.

Rothfire burns brightest in Run To The Rose

On the other side of the Murray River, Queensland’s top sprinter spoiled the Farnan party in the Run To The Rose. After Farnan took off and set a blistering tempo up front, it was Rothfire’s for the taking. Jim Byrne won the race at the start when he elected to take the cold sit on Farnan, and it was all over once he peeled out off his rival’s back in the straight. Rothfire went on to win by 1.5L and ran 0.5 seconds quicker than the Group 2 Sheraco Stakes over the same trip. He rated through the roof and looks to have the Golden Rose in his grasp.

Mo’unga justified his impressive last-start win and kept his unbeaten record intact with a good performance in the Dulcify Quality over 1500m. After jumping from barrier seven, the Savabeel colt settled last and was gifted an A1 ride by James McDonald to land the prize over stablemate Global Quest and Jet Propulsion. Bazooka was also good from off the pace and finished sixth in the middle of the track. Mo’unga looks to be very smart and is a deserving favourite for the Spring Champion in a few weeks’ time.

The feature of the afternoon in Sydney was the Group 2 Theo Marks Stakes, which was taken out by Wild Planet ahead of Funstar and the fast-finishing Ranier. After landing in the box seat, Tommy Berry looked to be all boxed in in the straight, but he managed to bustle his way clear and finish strongly over the top of Funstar. Ranier was very good from the back in his first run since the Stradbroke.

It was JMac and Chris Waller again in the Group 2 Sheraco Stakes when Haut Brion Her raced away with an impressive victory in what was the mare’s first start since October. She made it her sixth win in just nine starts, taking her record to 9:6-3-0. She won two trials in the lead up to this and was solid in betting all afternoon. She looks to head towards the Empire Rose on Derby Day and will take a power of beating in that race.

Best Bets
Golden Rose (Sep 26) – Rothfire @ $2.70
Empire Rose (Oct 31) – Haut Brion Her @ $9

Horses to add to your blackbook

  • Bazooka
  • Haut Brion Her
  • Mo’unga
  • Prague
  • Pretty Brazen
  • Ranier
  • Ranting
  • Rothfire
  • Russian Camelot