Hartnell returned to the races with an outstanding victory in the 2017 P.B. Lawrence Stakes at Caulfield this afternoon.
Charmed Harmony took up the running in the early stages of the P.B. Lawrence Stakes and Craig Williams elected to press forward on Hartnell to trail the leader into the race.
Tosen Stardom and Black Heart Bart both loomed at the top of the straight and Charmed Harmony was in for the fight, but Hartnell never really looked like getting beaten and he savaged the line to score a most impressive win.
The Godolphin stable were very confident that Hartnell would make a winning return to the races in the P.B. Lawrence Stakes and trainer David Charles was pleased that the imported galloper had proven worthy of their confidence.
“He arrived from Sydney in great order,” Charles said.
“He came here on Tuesday morning and I was very happy with his work.
“James and the team in Sydney will be absolutely thrilled.
“We left the tactics to Craig and he was just going to ride the race as it unfolded.
“It worked out extremely well.
“He is an amazing adaptable horse and I am really looking forward to the rest of the Spring with him.”
Godolphin elected to bypass the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) with Hartnell last year in order to target the Group 1 Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) and Charles refused to confirm what path the gifted galloper will follow for the rest of his 2017 Spring Racing Carnival.
“We will just take it one run at a time and he will probably have his next race start in the Makybe Diva Stakes,” Charles said.
“We will get past that in a month and then make a decision.”
Charmed Harmony produced one of the best performances of his career to finish a gallant second and Black Heart Bart was not disgraced in third.