RACING Queensland (RQ) and UBET have announced a new-look format for the highly successful Queensland Summer Crowns Series which returns for the 2017/18 Queensland Summer Racing Carnival.
The 2017/18 Queensland Summer Racing Carnival features more than $15 million in prizemoney with $1.6 million in bonus stakes, once again on offer as UBET Summer Crowns.
The Carnival begins this Saturday, November 18, 2017, with the 1200m Listed Keith Noud Handicap at Doomben, and concludes with the Listed Sunshine Coast Cup at Corbould Park on Saturday, January 17, 2018.
The new format follows the success of the last season’s inaugural series, which attracted some of Australia’s leading trainers and jockeys to Queensland.
This season the bonuses for sprinters, 2YO and 3YO horses can be achieved by winning any three out of the five Summer Crowns legs within one category held over three weekends at Doomben and finishing on Magic Millions Day at the Gold Coast on January 13, 2018. Sprinters will vie for a $400,000 bonus, while the 2YO and 3YO horses will race for $500,000 bonuses respectively.
One of the new features is the Summer Crown Points series with a bonus of $50,000 each for the leading trainer and jockey at the completion of the 15 Summer Crown races over four race meetings. The top-five runners in each of the 15 Summer Crown races will be awarded points. The individual with the most points accumulated across the races will win the Summer Crown title and bonus.
National focus on Queensland
RACING Queensland chief executive officer Dr Eliot Forbes hopes bonuses on offer during the Queensland Summer Racing Carnival will again attract some of racing’s leading names.
“The structure of the Queensland Summer Crowns provides the optimum lead-in platform for horses being set for the $10 million Magic Millions race day. It also aims to ensure national focus remains on Queensland racing over the summer period. RQ hopes to build on the success of the 2016/17 Queensland Summer Racing Carnival, which achieved a 7.1 percent increase on total turnover compared to the same time a year earlier, and an increase of 22.4 percent in average turnover per-race,” Dr Forbes said
The $100,000 Villiers Stakes/Bernborough Handicap bonus returns for any horse that can complete the winning double, with a $50,000 bonus also on offer for any horse that runs second, third, or fourth in the Villiers, then travels north to win the Bernborough Handicap on December 30, 2017.
RQ increased the Bernborough Handicap’s prizemoney to $300,000 earlier this year in line with a sustainable prizemoney increase of $2.28 million for the thoroughbred code. The race now carries the equal second-highest purse for a Listed race in the Australian Black-Type Calendar, and $50,000 more prizemoney than the Villiers.
“This is set to provide added incentive for trainers to set their Group-quality horses for a Queensland Summer preparation, with the chance to win more than $430,000 in stakes and bonuses by completing the double,” Dr Forbes said.
RQ wagering partner UBET was the first to throw its support behind the revamped Summer Carnival in 2016/17, and has again stepped in to ensure the $1.6 million in bonuses remained on offer.
Chief Operating Officer Brendan Parnell said UBET was proud to support the concept into its second year and looked forward to two action-packed months of racing.
“From a wagering perspective, having a strong Summer Carnival in our home jurisdiction is a great boost and we anticipate the second year of the Crowns and the revised program will have punters across the country looking to Queensland,” Mr Parnell said.
Lucky Lyle Rowe has the Spirit
THERE'S been a great result for the winner of the $5,000 Pre-Inspection voucher that was awarded by the Thoroughbred Breeders Queensland Association (TBQA) at the March Magic Millions Sale earlier this year.
TBQA webnews reports Rockhampton trainer Lyle Rowe was the lucky winner of the competition, which was entered by trainers or owners who inspected yearlings at the Sale in the days prior to the auction starting, and is reaping the rewards.
He used his $5000 voucher towards the purchase of a filly by Spirit of Boom from the winning Chester House mare Lantern Court (USA) bred by Trevor and Rhonda Alexander, Myall Lodge, Chinchilla.
It’s an impressive pedigree as her sire is Australian-bred dual Group 1 winning sprinter Spirit Of Boom while her dam Lantern Court is by the Mr Prospector sire Chester House from USA dual Group 1 winner Ms Eloise.
A half-sister to three winners, the promising filly – named Legal Ties because her connections all work in law firms – had her first start in the Rockhampton Capricorn Breeders 2YO Fillies Maiden Handicap on Friday, November 10 for a win. Rowe now plans to target lucrative QTIS races, with the ultimate aim being a Magic Millions race run in Rockhampton early next year.
It seems that there's a great story behind all the great horses, and Legal Ties is no exception. Lyle was keen to use his $5000 and bid on a few horses that he liked but all went past his budget.
"At the end of the day James Dawson from Magic Millions came and saw me and showed me the filly which had been passed in for $25,000. I really liked her and, thanks to the voucher that I'd won, I was able to buy her. It’s a great story and I really need to thank James for pointing her out to me!" Rowe said.
Australian-bred horses excel at Cup carnival
AUSTRALIAN-bred horses have again excelled at this year’s Melbourne Cup Carnival winning 14 of the 26 black-type races held over four days racing.
All up, there were 37 races with 26 carrying black-type – eight Group Ones, three Group Twos, nine Group Threes and six Listed – throughout the week, distributing $19.1 million in prizemoney.
Aushorse webnews reports that despite a large international presence, Australian-breds won 14 of the stakes races, including the Derby (Ace High), the Oaks (Pinot), the Coolmore (Merchant Navy), the Myer Classic (Shoals) and the Darley (Redzel).
The first four each added considerably to their racetrack earnings, but as colts and or fillies, each now have massive residual value in the breeding shed. Redzel won’t be given that opportunity as he is a gelding, but considering the $120,000 yearling buy has won close to $7.8 million from 21 starts, no one is complaining.
Importantly, the majority of Australian-bred stakes winners were offered at sales, again highlighting buyers have a better chance of buying a Group 1winner in Australia than anywhere else in the world. The carnival also highlighted the dominance of Australian sprinter/milers with 15 of the 16 black type races staged from 1000m to 1600m won by locals.
Aushorse reported that while some might lament Australia’s lack of representation in the Melbourne Cup, with only three runners in the final field, it’s worth remembering that Australian-breds – Ace High (Derby) and Pinot (Oaks) – won both of the blue ribands over 2500m, while Boom Time won the Caulfield Cup (2400m) and Winx, the best horse in the world on turf, won her third Cox Plate (2040m). Again, each of those four were offered at public auction.
Redzel dominates sprints
REDZEL proved he is Australia’s current pre-eminent sprinter after a dominant win in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) at Flemington on Saturday, November 11.
In a power house performance 5YO gelding Redzel led from start to finish to win the Melbourne Cup Carnival's feature sprint with Terravista second and Impending third.
Recording his sixth straight sprint success, Redzel boosted his record to 11 wins and five placings from 21 starts. Redzel has developed into Australia's champion sprinter of the season by continuing to beat all comers in a 12 months to remember. The Darley Classic was Redzel's first run since winning Australia's richest ever race – the $10 million The Everest at Randwick last month.
An orphan foal, Redzel was a graduate of the Magic Millions National Weanling Sale before eventually selling to Triple Crown Syndications for $120,000 at the 2014 Gold Coast Yearling Sale. The outstanding short course star now boasts earnings of almost $7.8 million.
Co-trainer Peter Snowden said Redzel would almost certainly be set for next year's The Everest while races like the TJ Smith Stakes would also be targets.
Redzel is a son of champion Arrowfield Stud sire Snitzel, who was also sold at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, while his group winning dam Millrich has also produced the Gold Coast sold group winner Danerich – sire of Derby Day Group 2 winning sprinter Rich Charm.