It was a pretty solid Saturday in horse racing betting as we are nearing the end of our Summer racing and looking towards the Group 1 races in Autumn and my Saturday tips went well across the Aussie betting sites as we picked up a few winners even if our best bets tips didn’t go so well. Our exotics tips also went quite nicely and this article dives into I’m Thunderstruck’s half brother’s debut race, a Historic Group 1 races being named renamed after Veery Elleegant and Ben Thompson’s offshore prospects as he goes over to Hong Kong.
I’m Thunderstruck’s half brother’s debut
Primal Spirit stepped out for his debut at Benalla earlier this week and whilst he has a long way to go to match the achievements of his half-brother I’m Thunderstruck he did display some brilliant class of his own when debuting this Tuesday.
He was backed into $2.80 favouritism across the Aussie betting sites in a 1212m maiden race at benalla when scoring by just under a head in his debut.
The Price and Kent trained three year old had plenty of work to do in the run after jumping slowly but with the sharp jockeying of Thomas Stockdale he was able to get up in the dying moments of the race as five of the horses crossed the finish line with less than a length to separate them.
"He raced a little bit ungenerously throughout and I wasn't expecting him to finish so strongly," Stockdale said post-race.
"It's good to see him put a win up on the board and I think once he learns his caper he's going to be an even better horse."
The horse found himself blocked for a run at the top of the straight before Stockdale was able to squeeze a gap in the last 150m or so of the race and once he did Primal Spirit picked up very well to bravely win the race.
I am very keen to see where he next is placed by connections so watch for him in my free horse racing tips when he next steps out.
Group 1 race set to be renamed after Verry Elleegant
Our most popular local horse is set to have a Group 1 race to honour his achievements in The Chipping Norton Stakes. A $1 million race that is generally the first Group 1 race of the season will be renamed to the Verry Elleegant Stakes this year.
It is a WFA race that will be run this year on March 2nd at Randwick over the Mile and has historically been won by some of the most famous horses in Australian racing since it commenced in 1925. Waller’s Verry Elleegant took it out twice in 2021 and 2022 and also had his most famous mare, Winx, take the race out four times in a row from 2016 - 2019
Waller is the all time leader in wins in this event with 10 individual winners of the race and has said that Verry Elleegant deserves to have this race honoured to her:
"She was able to win Group 1 races from 1400m to 3200m which is very rare in the modern era and her Melbourne Cup win, carrying 57kg proved she was a champion."
"It's great she will have this race named in her honour. We are hoping to have a few runners in the Verry Elleegant Stakes with Fangirl our No.1 seed.''
Speaking of Fangirl, we covered her trialling prospects in my last News article but as Autumn approaches be sure to look out for her in my free horse racing tips and more specifically Saturday racing tips as she is likely to step out in Saturday grade in a month’s time.
Ben Thompson set for spell in Hong Kong
Ben Thompson had his Group 1 races breakthrough last season when winning the Oakleigh Plate on Uncommon James for Chris Waller and now looks set to capitalise on the breakthrough by signing a contract for a stint in Hong Kong.
“The Club has arranged for jockey Ben Thompson to be available to accept race riding engagements at the Chinese New Year race meeting and for a further period up to and including 4 April 2024, subject to completing the Club's formalities," Terry Bailey, Hong Kong's stipendiary steward and Licensing Committee secretary, said.
In non horse racing related news, Benny recently became a father as well last September and the young family now prepares to move to Hong Kong whilst Thompson rides there. Whilst Onlyracing.com.au doesn’t tip in Hong Kong, I have always been a fan of the Queenslander and his rides will be covered in my Saturday Tips when he returns to Australian racing.