A very competitive renewal of the $150,000, Listed, Winter Stakes (1400m) run at Rosehill Gardens in Sydney pretty much went to script for favourite backers when Dreamforce (by Fastnet Rock) overcame the complications of an outside barrier to land the odds by a winning margin of just under half-a-length.
Brenton Avdulla checks the winning margin on Dreamforce, picture Stevehart.com.au
Drawn the widest of all in a field of 13, Dreamforce benefitted from a confident Brenton Avdulla ride which saw the partnership race distinctly wide in the back straight for the first 400m of the contest before slotting in to be racing immediately outside the leader just before negotiating the home-turn.
In what appeared to be a moderately run race which didn’t seem to begin in earnest until well into the straight, Dreamforce took charge of the contest with 350m to go and always seemed to be doing too well for his opposition before scoring by a clear-cut margin.
The Chris Waller-trained Invinzabeel (by I Am Invincible) did best of the rest, running on admirably over the closing stages to take second place.
Third in the contest was Special Missile (by Smart Missile), ahead of the Kiwi invader Hiflyer in fourth and the Victorian raider Chamois Road in fifth.
Dreamforce had narrowly failed to land the Listed Civic Stakes at his previous outing and winning trainer John Thompson was of the opinion that the 5-year-old’s Winter Stakes success was well earned on a number of accounts.
Speaking after the victory, Thompson contended: “He still had to work from the outside gate, [as] it makes it that little bit harder. But credit to the horse… again he was left a sitting shot late, but two weeks between runs this time [made the difference].
Thompson added: “He’s a good horse. He keeps trying 100 percent every time. I think he’ll go a bit higher again.”
“He’s as honest as the day is long. He’s a lovely horse. Good to do anything with. On raceday he just turns up and gives his all on all surfaces, from all barriers. You know, he’s just the perfect horse to train really.
“I was hoping to win the other day, but we’ll [now] just give him a little freshen-up. There are some nice handicaps in the spring. Hopefully we can get into them on a low weight and he’ll be very competitive,” Thompson concluded.
Dreamforce has now won eight of his 18 starts, having also placed on another six occasions. His collective earnings are just a shade shy of $432,500.
Raced by Joy Luck (Mgr: A J Crisafi), the beautifully-bred son of Fastnet Rock was produced by the 2008 Group 1 Coolmore Classic winner Eskimo Queen.
Dreamforce was returned at a starting price of $3.20 favourite, the runner-up Invinzabeel at $9.00 and the minor placegetter Special Missile at $6.00.
Winning time was registered as 1m23.50s (last 600m in 34.87s), the official margins being posted as a long-neck by one-and-a-quarter lengths.
Dreamforce and Avdulla have the right measure on Invinzabeel and Blake Shinn, picture Sportpix.com.au
Winter Stakes, photo finish picture ATC