Stockman is the “blue collar champ” of the Joe Pride stable.
There are more talented racehorses but few as persistent as Stockman, a resolute winner of the Listed $150,000 WJ McKell Cup (2000m) at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
It was a typically tough, grinding win by Stockman. The gelding prefers it when the needle on the pressure gauge goes to extreme level.
“Stockman is a very genuine horse, I’d love more like him in the stable,’’ Pride said.
“You know what you are going to get from Stockman every start – he puts in 100 per cent every time.’’
Stockman takes out the Listed W J MCkell Cup for @PrideRacing & Sam Clipperton 👌👏 pic.twitter.com/M7d5UpHeMS
Stockman ($4.80 favourite), superbly ridden by Sam Clipperton, was too strong for the grey Berdibek ($26) and won the feature race by a widening 1¼ lengths. Parry Sound ($6.50) was 2¼ lengths away in third.
Pride identified the potential in Stockman early in the gelding’s career and had expected a lot from the stayer which made his McKell Cup success so satisfying for the trainer.
“Stockman was 12 months in the losing ‘barn’, which was frustrating, but he had gone close many times and he always turns up,’’ Pride said.
“I’m not sure he quite knew what to do when he go to the front.’’
Clipperton said Stockman “had a bit of a wander” when he reached the lead in the McKell Cup.
“It’s good to see him back in the winner’s circle because he’s been racing well,’’ Clipperton said.
“The race just panned out perfectly for him. The two leaders tore away but I was happy to let Jason Collett (on Parry Sound) cross me on to the fence.
“I thought he was one of my main dangers, so I just grabbed his tail and followed him everywhere he went. Stockman showed a good turn of foot – he just excels in this ground.’’
Sam Clipperton and Stockman combined to win the McKell Cup. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
Stockman, who is by leading New Zealand sire Tavistock out of the Zabeel mare, Crimson, gave Pride his second McKell Cup after the trainer’s win with Destiny’s Kiss in 2018.
Remarkably, Pride’s two stayers are closely related, as Crimson is the grandam of Destiny’s Kiss.
Pride said he had been waiting to get Stockman back on to a heavy track.
“Stockman relishes these heavy tracks and this is the first one he has hit this time around,’’ Pride said.
“The race worked out absolutely perfectly for him, as it was a genuine staying test and you could see a long way out he was comfortable in the run.
“He’s been racing really well, he was just beaten by No Compromise when he conceded that horse, then he ran third to the Brisbane Cup winner Knights Order last start.
“He had raced on three successive Saturdays going into his last start and he loved it, he was thriving.
“The last two weeks I’ve just freshened him up a bit and he came here today with some real power in him.’’
Pride said he was considering starting Stockman in the $125,000 Stayers Cup (3200m) at Royal Randwick next week, but is fearful his gelding will be weighted out of the race following his McKell Cup success.
Instead, the trainer may wait a week and start Stockman in the Listed $175,000 Caloundra Cup (2400m) on the Sunshine Coast on July 3.
Pride’s other McKell Cup runner, Brutality, pleased the trainer with his close fourth.
Berdibek, trained by John O’Shea, made a race of it with Stockman, but found the winner too strong in the wet track conditions.
Collett wasn’t making any excuses for Parry Sound’s third placing, adding he had run into a “better wet-tracker”.
Trainer Bjorn Baker said Parry Sound is maintaining his form and he will look at aiming the stayer at the Listed $200,000 Grafton Cup on July 8.
At The Track with Ray Thomas
LACK OF INTEREST IN EDUARDO PUZZLING
Gytrash and Lost And Running are the latest top sprinters to gain starts in the $15m The TAB Everest — but what about Eduardo?
Everest slot-holders have ignored Eduardo so far despite the sprinter’s outstanding autumn carnival form which included Group 1 wins in The Galaxy and Doomben 10,000.
Eduardo also beat The Everest favourite Nature Strip in the Group 2 Challenge Stakes, breaking the Randwick 1000m course record in the process.
Surely, Eduardo will earn his place in the field for the world’s richest turf race alongside confirmed starters Nature Strip (slot-holder Chris Waller Racing), Masked Crusader (Max Whitby and Neil Werrett), Lost And Running (TAB) and Gytrash (Inglis).
Defending champion Classique Legend is back in light work at trainer Les Bridge’s Randwick stables and is certain to be selected in owner Bon Ho’s Everest slot.
Eduardo won two Group 1s in his most recent prep, including the Doomben 10,000 over 1200m. Picture: Trackside PhotographySource:Supplied
GAI’S BRUSH WITH FAME
Hall of Fame trainer Gai Waterhouse features on Anh’s Brush With Fame program on the ABC at 8pm on Tuesday.
Racing’s first lady said she was honoured to be asked to appear on the show to discuss her life and training career.
BOWMAN STILL DRIVEN
Hugh Bowman is a hard marker. The champion jockey has had another successful season with his mounts earning more than $13m including three Group 1 winners but he isn’t completely satisfied.
“I’ve had a good season but it was disrupted at times and I found it hard to maintain momentum,’’ Bowman said.
“I will have a short break in July but I don’t want too much time off because I want to be ready for the new season.’’
Bowman is chasing his 100th Group 1 winner with Subpoenaed in the final major of the 2020-21 season, the Tatt’s Tiara at Eagle Farm this Saturday.
Hugh Bowman won the Queensland Oaks board Duais earlier this month. Picture: Trackside PhotographySource:Supplied
FAMILY RETURN TO THE PARK
Changing times for the famous Hayes family at Lindsay Park.
The training partnership of Tom Dabernig and Ben Hayes have its final runner together when Dark Horse lines up at Bendigo on Sunday.
But from Monday, all Lindsay Park runners will be trained in partnership by the brothers, Ben and JD Hayes.
Racing Victoria has granted the brothers a licensed partnership while Dabernig has decided to set up his own training business based in Warrnambool.
The Hayes family dynasty continues with the brothers taking over at Lindsay Park from their father, Hall of Famer David Hayes, who is now based in Hong Kong, and grandfather, Colin Hayes.
TOM’S TIP OF HAT
English jockey Tom Marquand enjoyed Royal Ascot success on Alenquer in the King George VI Stakes on Saturday.
Marquand, who has ridden in Sydney for the past three years, is best known as the rider of Addeybb, winner of successive Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick.
But trainer William Haggas withdrew Addeybb from the Prince of Wales’ Stakes at Ascot last week as the track was too firm.
Addeybb is now likely to return to racing in the Eclipse Stakes next month.
Originally published asWorking class Stockman revels in pressure test
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