Connections of multiple Group 1 winning mare Suavito will meet this week to discuss her possible retirement after she failed to perform in last Saturday’s Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes.
The six-year-old daughter of Thorn Park could have run her last race when finishing a flat 10th beaten nearly six lengths by the Cox Plate-bound winner Awesome Rock in Moonee Valley’s Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m).
Hoop Michael Walker rode the $1.3 million earner in a “10 out of 10” ride according to trainer Nigel Blackiston, but Suavito just didn’t rev up with her customary late burst when needed.
“Michael rode her 10 out of 10 and I thought the Suavito of old would have been right in the finish,” the Flemington-based Blackiston told Racing Victoria on Sunday.
“She’s done a wonderful job, but maybe she just wants to be a broodmare.
“A decision will be made by ownership group in coming days.”
A winner of eight of her 24 starts, Suavito is best known for her big autumn runs over the past two seasons.
In 2015 she won the Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield and this February she became a dual Group 1 winner with success first-up off a lengthy spell in the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes over the same track and distance.
After a third in a failed but brave Futurity Stakes title defence, she has failed to finish in the money in her four subsequent runs.
Two back she kicked off her spring with a sixth when beaten only two lengths by Miss Rose De Lago in the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m).
The P.B. Lawrence Stakes winner Miss Rose De Lago was even more disappointing in the Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes last weekend running dead last when 14th to the upset Leon & Troy Corstens-trained winner Awesome Rock.
The Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes triumph was the first win by Fastnet Rock stallion Awesome Rock since he lost the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on protest back in March.
He now has the Golden Ticket ballot-free-ride into the $3 million Group 1 W.S. Cox Plate (2040m) back at Moonee Valley on October 22, but is still at a generous $31 in pre-field betting for Australasia’s weight-for-age championship through Ladbrokes.com.au.
One mare that has officially been retired after running in her swansong on Saturday meanwhile is John Sargent’s Gust Of Wind.
The five-year-old daughter of Darci Brahma finished last on a Heavy (8) Randwick track in Sydney on Chelmsford Stakes Day when walking home behind Hauraki in the Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m).
She retires with a record of three wins from 14 starts, Gust Of Wind just shy of the million dollar earnings bowing out with $974,900 in prize money.
Gust Of Wind peaked as a three-year-old in the autumn last year adding to her value as a broodmare with an impressive two and a half-length victory over Winx in the Group 1 ATC Oaks (2400m).
That would turn out to be her final turf triumph and she will now be served by the fellow Sir Owen Glenn-trained Criterion.
Originally she was to race on after her date with Criterion for another Spring Cups’ bid once in foal, but connections have instead retired her after the poor Tramway performance.
“We knew something was wrong straight after the race and had her checked out immediately,” Sargent told NZ Racing Desk.
“She fibrillated badly so Sir Owen decided to retire her and she will now make a visit to Criterion to commence a breeding career.
“She was already booked to visit Criterion next week with the plan to then race her up until the Melbourne Cup so instead of returning to the stable she will head to the broodmare paddock instead.”
Gust Of Wind was the last horse to defeat Chris Waller’s glamour mare Winx who, since the ATC Oaks second, has won all 10 of her subsequent starts.
A six-time Group 1 winning daughter of Street Cry, Winx was last seen putting an easy three and a half-lengths on Hartnell in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) first-up on August 20.
She was scheduled to run second-up on Saturday in the Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes (1600m), but was scratched on race morning due to the rain-affected track.
The John O’Shea-trained Warwick Stakes runner-up Hartnell relished the absence of Winx in the Chelmsford Stakes winning by a runaway seven and three-quarter lengths ahead of the Waller-trained duo of Grand Marshal (2nd) and Storm The Stars (3rd).