Trainer Clinton McDonald is looking ahead to Group 1 glory in the Memsie Stakes (1400m) after Second Effort’s impressive victory in the Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
McDonald didn’t get the heavy track that he was after at Caulfield on Saturday but it didn’t matter as Second Effort produced a typically strong effort to win the second Group level race of his career.
The Mossman gelding was given a terrific ride in the box-seat by jockey Brad Rawiller and stormed to the front with 300 metres left to run to record a half a length victory from the fast-finishing Academy Jack and Launay.
McDonald was delighted with the victory and said he is full of confidence for the rest of Second Effort’s spring campaign that will see the rising seven-year-old defend his Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) title at Caulfield on August 17 and contest the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at the same venue on August 31.
“He’s been terrific for the stable, he just keeps turning up,” McDonald told the media after the race.
“We’re looking towards the next two pretty confidently.
“We’ve looked at these four weight-for-age races with him all along, ending with the Memsie.
“It would be nice to get that Group 1 beside him.”
The victory was extra special for Rawiller who has had a great affinity with the McDonald family since he partnered Weekend Hussler to several Group 1 victories, including the Caulfield Guineas (1600m), Newmarket Handicap (1200m) and Underwood Stakes (2000m), in 2007 and 2008.
“They (the McDonalds) have been the biggest part of my career with Weekend Hussler and to get one back for them has been great,” Rawiller said after the race.
Rawiller is set to keep the ride on Second Effort for the Memsie Stakes – a race he won with Weekend Hussler in 2008.