The first wildcard entry Happy Clapper has been added to the ten confirmed runners for the $5m All-Star Mile (1600m) at Flemington on March 16.
Multiple Group 1 winner Happy Clapper was selected by Racing Victoria as the first of the four wildcard entries for the inaugural running of the All-Star Mile shortly before the top ten in the voting were made official.
Trainer Pat Webster was over the moon that Happy Clapper was given the wildcard entry after he didn’t gain enough votes to make the top ten.
“He’s the first one in into this great new race so I’m proud for him but I’m so proud to be his trainer,” Webster told the Herald Sun.
“I’m so lucky he arrived on my doorstep and this is another feather in his cap.
“It’s another piece of recognition, It’s a compliment to him. I’ve got to say I’m very excited.”
“I don’t know too much about social media and getting campaigns going. Chris Munce and the Urban Ruler team were smart about it. The best I could do was to get a couple of old pensioners I know to vote for him and that wasn’t going to get him too far.
“Also it might have been a bit of the old Sydney-Melbourne thing.”
The Chris Munce trained Urban Ruler headed up the voting from the start and when the final count was taken the five year old grey was ranked second with 8,428 votes prompting Munce to send out a thank you tweet to all who sent his their vote.
“We are in. Thanks to everyone that voted for Queensland’s only runner in the inaugural All-Star Mile,” Munce tweeted.
Happy Clapper won his first Group 1 trophy in the 2017 $1m Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Randwick and then followed that up with a win the $500,000 Bisley Workwear Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Randwick during the 2018 Sydney Autumn Carnival and then two starts later won another Group 1 over the Randwick Mile by taking out the $3m The Star Doncaster Mile (1600m).
The evergreen eight year old has had one run back from a spell for a second to Winx in the Group 2 $250,000 The Star Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on February 16 and is scheduled to line up against Chris Waller’s super mare again in the Group 1 $600,000 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on March 2.
Top ten runners for the All-Star Mile ranked in voting order:
Balf’s Choice (Ryan Balfour) – 9793 votes;
Urban Ruler (Chris Munce) – 8428 votes;
Grunt (Mick Price) – 7097 votes;
Alizee (James Cummings) – 6744 votes;
Amphitrite (David and Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig) – 5784 votes;
Foundry (Terry Kelly) – 5558 votes;
Material Man (Justin Warwick) – 5358 votes;
Man Of His Word (Dean Krongold) – 5135 votes;
Moss ‘N’ Dale (Peter Gelagotis) – 5072 votes;
Mr Money Bags (Robbie Griffiths) – 5013 votes.
Early betting for the 2019 All-Star Mile at Ladbrokes.com.au: $2.80 Alizee, $6 Happy Clapper, $7 Amphitrite, Land Of Plenty, $10 Mystic Journey, $11 Grunt, $15 Ringerdingding, $18 Best Of Days, Extra Brut, Material Man, $21 Hartnell, $26 Moss ‘N’ Dale, Tom Melbourne, $61 Mr Money Bags, $101 Balf’s Choice, Foundry, Man Of His Word,, Urban Ruler.