A rejuvenated Voodoo Lad kept the punters happy and has booked himself a start in the Group 3 $150,000 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on July 28 after returning to the winner’s stall at Caulfield last Saturday.
Voodoo Lad was heavily backed and firmed in on course from $3.50 to start the $2.80 favourite and took his Caulfield record to four wins from five race starts there when he came from last in the seven horse field to win the Group 3 $150,000 Ladbrokes Sir John Monash Stakes (1100m).
Winning rider Brad Rawiller made it four wins from four rides on Voodoo Lad when he brought the six year old wide on the home turn before storming down the middle of the track to record a one and a half lengths victory over Inn Keeper ($8) with the Ciaron Maher trained three year old Jukebox ($3.50) in third position.
Voodoo Lad was coming off two unplaced runs at Group 1 level and appreciated the drop in class after finishing tenth in the Group 1 $1m Darley Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville on May 19 followed by a fifteenth in the Group 1 $1.5m Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) at Doomben on June 9.
Trainer Darren Weir was very happy to see Voodoo Lad return to the winner’s stall and the six year old will now return to his favourite track in a fortnight for the weight for age Bletchingly Stakes and could join stablemate Nature Strip.
“Probably have two in (Bletchingly Stakes) at this stage,” Weir said after the Sir John Monash Stakes.
“He probably got the right the right run, that was the most important thing.”
“His previous two starts things just haven’t gone ideal and obviously he likes Caulfield as well.”
“He has to be relaxed and then follow into the race at the right time and then has that really good turn of foot late. So he got the perfect ride today.”
“He’s not easy to ride and Brad just clicks with him.”
“You’ve got to do everything properly – get him to switch off and blend in at the right time. But when he got to the outside, you knew he was going to run well.”
Voodoo Lad has raced well at Group 1 level in the past with his best efforts being a second in the Group 1 $500,000 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield during the 2016 Melbourne Spring Carnival and a second in the Group 1 $1.25m Lexus Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington during the 2017 Melbourne Autumn Carnival.