Toona Ciliata outpowers rivals in Chairman’s Cup
TOONA CILIATA welcomed Horse of the Year NIPSTER to grade one with an avenging victory in yesterday’s Chairman’s Trophy, virtually making all the running, under constant hounding, to stave off late-charging SENTIENT by a neck.
Breaking sharply from post-position two in the eight-horse field, TOONA CILIATA, running with 121lb under Dane Nelson, took the fight to featherweight speedsters, SUPERLUMINAL and ROY ROGERS.
NIPSTER, out for the first time this season after slamming SENTIENT and TOONA CILIATA at eight and a half furlongs on Boxing Day, made a bid at the leaders, approaching the home turn, to straighten third but flattened in the stretch run after pulling alongside ROY ROGERS.
No threat close
Loose on the lead, 7-5 favourite TOONA CILIATA quickened away with no threat close, until SENTIENT improved into second but taking Anthony Thomas to the rail, charging too late when switched inside the last half-furlong.
TOONA CILIATA won the seven-and-a-half furlong event by a cheeky half-length in 1:32.2, confirming his status as a top handicapper, turning the tables on his new stablemate, NIPSTER, who finished down the track in his first start for Anthony Nunes since moved from Gary Subratie.
Christopher Mamdeen rode a two-timer on the opening day of the weekend meet, booting home 10-1 shot, MOVIE STAR, in the sixth event for $180,000 claimers, before repelling rivals in the stretch run aboard T BRADY in the ninth for three-year-old maidens.