Wu leads pro­ces­sion

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - RACING - RAY THOMAS

HALL of Fame trainer Chris Waller pre­pared the first five placeget­ters as mud­lark Wu Gok led home the sta­ble pro­ces­sion in the Group 3 $160,000 race over 1900m at Rose­hill Gar­dens yes­ter­day.

Waller’s dom­i­na­tion wasn’t sur­pris­ing as had seven of the 10 starters, in­clud­ing favourite Come Play With Me, but very few horses han­dle a heavy track as well as Wu Gok.

Jockey Tommy Berry, who won the San Domenico Stakes on Ex­ceedance, com­pleted a Group 3 dou­ble in suc­ces­sive races as Wu Gok ($6.50) drove through near the in­side to win by a length from Come Play With Me ($3.20) with Carzoff ($13). “I rode him last start and I said to Chris ‘we just need a track with a bit of sting out of it again’ and he would run well,’’ Berry said.

“He was very well placed, he was down in the weights.

“I’ve been mak­ing an ef­fort in the last few weeks to ride at 53kg on a Satur­day so I could get some de­cent rides and I was lucky enough to get this bloke.’’

Berry banked on Wu Gok’s wet-track abil­ity when he took an in­side run on the home turn.

“I al­ways knew they’d prob­a­bly come off the rail a bit and, al­though it’s get­ting a bit chewed up this part of the day, he lapped it up,’’ Berry said.

“He trav­elled so sweetly in the run, he was so happy.

“He found about a length at the top of the straight and held it the whole way to the post.

“He’s a horse in form at the mo­ment.”

Waller said, pro­vided Wu Gok pulled up well, there was ev­ery chance the stayer would back up in the Wy­ong Gold Cup on Fri­day.

“It was a good win, a wellde­served win for him and he might head to Wy­ong on Fri­day as well to have another race be­fore he goes out for a well-earned break,’’ Waller said.

Waller made par­tic­u­lar men­tion of new sta­ble re­cruit, former Perth stayer Come Play With Me who ran very com­pet­i­tively at his Syd­ney de­but.

“I thought Come Play With Me was ex­cel­lent,’’ the trainer said.

“I spoke to (former trainer) Adam Dur­rant this morn­ing and he thought he would im­prove with the run and I think he is right.

“I don’t think a win is far away for him and he was beaten today by an out-and­out wet-tracker.”

Tommy T B Berry re­turns t rns to scale on Wu Gok.

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