Four for McDonald at The Farm - make that five

Godolphin made it a winning double to open the Australian Turf Club’s meeting at Warwick Farm on Wednesday and jockey James McDonald won the first four on the programme. The stable and jockey then combined to win the last with Roosevelt.

The first win for Godolphin was with the well-bred Roheryn with the Lonhro colt having his first start when taking on the Heavy 10 track in the TAB Rewards Handicap (1100m) for three-year-old maidens.

Roheryn was the $1.90 favourite but the task was not as simple as the price indicate with the track at the bottom end of the range. Tio the credit to Roheryn lengthened well for McDonald to finally put away the leader Vedder (Star Witness) and Tommy Berry with 100m to run.

The winning margin was 3/4L with Vedder 2 3/4L ahead of Flying Legend (Redoute’s Choice) and Kerrin McEvoy leading the rest home.

The time of 1.07.48 and final 600m in 36.78 reflected the track.

Roheryn is out of the Danehill mare Mannington and therefore a half to Group 1 winner Benicio, by More Than Ready, and Group 2 winner Romneya, by Red Ransom.

Trainer James Cummings spoke for the stable about the significance of the win.

“He is an important horse to get his career under way,” he said.

“He is open to improvement and he has a great style and movement. He drew away over the final 100m like a really good horse,” he added.

Cummings said that they would wait for the right race for Roheryn later in the spring after his winning debut.

McDonald was straight to the point.

“Very special,” he said.

“He did not enjoy the ground but good horses overcome that. He covers the ground well and had a great brain on him.”

For McDonald it was then onto Godolphin’s three-year-old Lonhro filly Colombina winning her maiden in the fillies division and then Joe Cleary’s five-year-old Canford Cliffs gelding Cliff for his sixth win from 36 starts.

The fourth in succession was with the Waller stable’s four-year-old Sebring mare Velocita who carried 59.5kg for her third win from 13 starts.

“That horse was really good through the mud. She scooted through it,” exclaimed McDonald.

TAB Rewards Handicap, photo finish picture ATC