Big Memory has achieved an impressive victory in the 2014 Herbert Power Stakes at Caulfield this afternoon. In a rapidly advancing second place was Signoff, followed by Let’s Make Adeal in third.
The Gai Waterhouse-trained Bonfire had a somewhat rough start but was able to shoot straight to the front and take up the pace early on. Sangster settled in close, with Hugh Bowman focussing on keeping him in the competition.
As the field settled, Bonfire was out front, followed by Signoff, Sangster and Big Memory. The first few hundred saw some tussling, with Chris Symons pushing Renew up into second place early on.
Albonetti and Masked Marvel found their place in the second half of the field. Unchain My Heart brought up the rear of the field, with Ancient King just in front and Kerrin McEvoy keeping Lord Van Percy way back in third last.
At the 1200m Bonfire, Renew, Big Memory and Signoff were leading strongly. Craig Williams kept Protectionist close to the rail, with Let’s Make Adeal just outside.
Signoff ran a strong race. After pushing out into the pace early on Glen Boss took him back a touch into fifth place at around the 1000m, just off the tightly clustered lead. This move proved to be very effective.
At the turn Tommy Berry made his move, peeling Big Memory off the fence and making an incredible dash. Let’s Make Adeal also ran off, with Dwayne Dunn determined to maintain control over Big Memory’s lead. Signoff made every effort to stay amongst it, coming around strong.
Protectionist made a final effort up the inside but was unfortunately pipped at the post by Let’s Make Adeal.
Tommy Berry was extremely happy with the hard-fought result, indicating that nothing was ever concrete throughout the race. “It’s a bit of a weird track, a few sharp bends” he said following the race.
Albonetti was the potential dark horse heading into this race. She had an impressive run in the Naturalism Stakes, coming from last to fourth at $61. A third in the Balaklava Cup also put her on the map.
Protectionist and Sangster were both strongly tipped, paying $6.50 and $8.50 before kickoff in a race where no horse was shorter than $4. Heading into the Herbert Power Stakes, Protectionist had secured a place from all 8 career starts to date. Already proven over 3000m, a win in the Herbert Power Stakes would have granted a good lead-in to the Melbourne Cup.
Gai Waterhouse had Cafe Society nominated for this event but was forced to withdraw the French import following a hoof injury. The end goal for Cafe Society was the Caulfield Cup and possibly the Melbourne Cup.
Many in the field today may have been relieved that renowned stayer Red Cadeaux will be heading straight into the Melbourne Cup, rather than having a preparatory race in either the Herbert Power Stakes or the Caulfield Cup.
The Herbert Power Stakes is the final race that offers ballot exemption for the $3 million Caulfield Cup. Big Memory will very likely contest the Caulfield Cup now.
In late September Mike Moroney gave indications that Manduro’s Son would need a Herbert Power Stakes victory to gain ballot exemption for the Caulfield Cup. It now appears that he’ll be missing that target, and may be forced to run in the Group 3 Lexus Stakes on November 1st in order to have a crack at the Melbourne Cup.
2014 Herbert Power Stakes Results
|1||9||BIG MEMORY (FR)||Tony McEvoy||Tommy Berry||–||1||53kg||$6|
|2||10||SIGNOFF (IRE)||Darren Weir||Glen Boss||0.4L||12||53kg||$4.20F|
|3||5||LET’S MAKE ADEAL||Nigel Blackiston||Dwayne Dunn||0.6L||5||53kg||$15|
|4||1||PROTECTIONIST (GER)||Andreas Wohler||Craig Williams||0.9L||2||59kg||$6|
|5||4||LORD VAN PERCY (GB)||Andrew Balding||Kerrin McEvoy||2.15L||3||54.5kg||$10|
|6||12||ALBONETTI||Sue Jaensch||Dean Yendall||2.9L||7||53kg||$21|
|7||3||BONFIRE (GB)||Gai Waterhouse||James McDonald||4.15L||4||54.5kg||$6|
|8||13||WALTZING TO WIN||David Huxtable||Corey Brown||5.9L||6||53kg||$101|
|9||6||UNCHAIN MY HEART||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Craig Newitt||8.15L||10||53kg||$41|
|10||8||ANCIENT KING (IRE)||Peter G Moody||Jim Cassidy||8.65L||8||53kg||$31|
|11||2||SANGSTER (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Hugh Bowman||10.9L||9||56.5kg||$8|
|12||11||RENEW (IRE)||Marco Botti||Chris Symons||11.65L||13||53kg||$31|
|13||7||MASKED MARVEL (GB)||Robert Hickmott||Steven King||16.9L||11||53kg||$31|
|Scr||14||DARK THUNDER (NZ)||Robbie Laing||Daniel Moor||Scr||0||Scr||Scr|