Smart money on top filly Melody
BRENTON Avdulla sacrificed a full book of rides in Sydney to partner promising filly Smart Melody to an impressive win at Flemington yesterday.
A hot favourite firming from $2.80 into $2.25, Smart Melody scored a 1½-length win over Music Bay ($9) with Lady Pluck ($71) a further 1¼ lengths away third in the Listed Cap D’Antibes Stakes (1100m).
The Kris Lees-trained filly is now unbeaten in four starts after making a winning debut at Newcastle in June.
Avdulla won this year’s Golden Slipper on Estijaab and gave Smart Melody a glowing report after winning aboard the filly at Canterbury at her second start.
“I rode her as a late twoyear-old, which can be a bit different as they’re more seasoned and educated, but the way she destroyed her rivals at Canterbury I thought she was pretty smart,” Avdulla said.
“Even though she beat midweek, provincial horses she did it off a standing start in inferior ground.
“I’ve sacrificed a lot of rides in Sydney to come down and ride her today, so I’m keen to stay aboard.”
Avdulla said Smart Melody was likely to get her chance at 1400m in the Thousand Guineas Prelude on September 30 ahead of the Thousand Guineas (1600m) on October 13.
SEVERAL options are on the table for Brutal after the colt’s all-the-way win in the Antler Luggage Plate (1400m).
Pushed along from his inside draw by Dwayne Dunn, Brutal ($2.90 favourite) fought back after being headed by runner-up Leonardo Da Hinchi ($10) to win by a half-head. Good ‘N’ Fast ($10) was a further 1¼ lengths away third.
Co-trainer Wayne Hawkes said a decision was likely tomorrow on which direction the stable took with the threeyear-old.
Options include backing up next Saturday in the Golden Rose at Rosehill, pressing on towards the Caulfield Guineas (1600m) or freshening for the Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington in November.
Hawkes even indicated the colt could be sent for a spell.
“Those races are there and they’re very tempting, but we’re going to let him tell us what he wants to do,” Hawkes said.
“It’s his first prep and he’s going to be a hell of a horse in the autumn.”
Hawkes said Brutal had to do it the tough way yesterday by leading and racing into a fierce headwind.
“He’s won a stakes race over 1400m at Flemington, so for where he is at this stage of his career, it doesn’t get any better,” Hawkes said.
UNBEATEN: Hot favourite Smart Melody races clear of her rivals at Flemington yesterday.
OPTIONS: Co-trainer Wayne Hawkes is delighted.