Kiwi trainer Jamie Richards completed a momentous day at Randwick today when he claimed a second Group 1 with Te Akau Shark winning the $600,000 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m).
Richards had saddled up his star filly Probabeel to win the Group 1 $500,000 Heineken 3 Surround Stakes (1400m) forty minutes early and Te Akau Shark gave him and Kiwi jockey Opie Bosson a Group 1 winning double.
Bosson rode a cool race on Probabeel to win the Surround Stakes and he rode a similar race on Te Akau Shark ($2.80 favourite), bringing the big chestnut from well back in the field down the middle of the straight to score a half a lengths win over the Chris Waller trained Verry Eleegant ($21).
“He’s too far back! But he can do things other horses can’t. He’s something special isn’t he,” Richards said.
“They didn’t go quick early, Blake slowed them and they only went steady but gee he was good late. He’s a very, very exciting horse.”
“I said to Opie just don’t be as far back as you were on Probabeel but he ended up back in a sticky spot. When he gets on his outside leg and gets a bit of clear air he can really charge late.”
“He has a bit of arrogance about him, he’s grumpy, he’s just one of those horses that knows he’s pretty good. He’s not a fantastic eater, he’s not a big strong horse, he’s pretty lean and mean but he has a big ticker.”
Fierce Impact ($7) put himself into the race half way down the straight but found two in front of him at the post to wind up in third spot while Dreamforce ($5) finished in eight spot after setting the pace.
Richard still has some high targets for Te Akau Shark during the Autumn Carnival and will aim the five year old towards the Group 1 $1m The Agency George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on March 21 and the Group 1 $4m Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on April 11.