Top class Kiwi galloper Ocean Park will be searching for his third Group 1 win this Spring when he lines up in the $400,000 Cathay Pacific Caulfield Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
Big race jockey Glen Boss will be aboard the four year old again after winning the Group 1 $400,000 Hyland Race Colours Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on September 22 and has full confidence the Thorn Parkentire can continue on his winning way.
“I’ve got a very big opinion of him and I can’t wait to see him come out next start and back up what he did the other day,” Boss said.
Ocean Park lowered the colours of many high profile Spring contenders in the Underwood including last year’s Caulfield Cup winner Southern Speed, Peter Moody’s weight for age star Manighar, top Sydney five year old Sincero and Doomben Cup winner Mawingo.
Boss was aboard Ocean Park when the pair went down narrowly to Laser Hawk in the Group 1 $500,000 Flinders Lane Rosehill Guineas (2000m) at Rosehill in the Autumn and took over the reins this preparation from Lisa Allpress who steered the stallion to a first up Group 1 victory in the NZ$200,000 Makfi Challenge Stakes (1400m) at Hawke’s Bay, Hastings on September 1.
“He has got a Group 1 horse’s attitude. All the good horses I’ve ridden, they have all got that X-factor thing, they all just get there, they do their job. There is no fuss,” Boss said.
“That is the attitude this horse has. He is a little beauty.”
Boss was full of praise for the classy New Zealand galloper after taking out the Underwood Stakes in such a dominant manner after being checked early in the straight.
“I was poking up behind them and I was going to get the perfect run through but I got tangled on heels for a couple of strides. He was always going to explode. It was a very soft victory .He’s a very exciting horse,” Boss said.
“He’s a very good horse. He’s got an electric turn of foot and that’s what he showed me that day at Rosehill. He’s a genuine superstar.”
Saturday’s Caulfield Stakes has attracted twelve nominations and Ocean Park will again be up against Mawingo, Manighar and Sincero.
On face value Manighar appeared to be disappointing when sixth in the Underwood as the short priced favourite but jockey Luke Nolen was willing to forgive the import at his second run from a spell.
Nolen was able to get Manighar over from a wide barrier to be one off the fence midfield and even though he failed to pull in the leaders, Nolen was pleased with the run.
“He’ll bounce back wherever we go with him. I’m very satisfied with the horse at home,” Nolen said.
At Manighar’s first preparation under Moody, the grey’s worst run was a second up third to Lucas Cranach in the Group 2 $200,000 Carlton Draught Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on February 25 after scoring first up in the Group 3 $125,000 Catanach’s Jewellers Carlyon Cup (1600m) at Caulfield on February 11.
Ocean Park has maintained his position in early markets in the Group 1 $3m Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 27 at $8 behind the Gai Waterhouse pair of Pierro ($2.60) and More Joyous ($7.50), with Turnbull Stakes winner Green Moon at $8.50 in front of Manighar at $10.