Talented gelding Bentles took the first step towards a possible start in the $1 million Magic Millions Trophy with his win at Ipswich on Wednesday.
Sent out favourite, Bentles ($1.80) drew on his class to make it four wins from nine starts when he won the Sirromet Winery Handicap.
It may seem a giant step from midweek restricted class to the Magic Millions Trophy (1800m) but trainer Tony Gollan has a high opinion of Bentles.
Gollan believes if he can qualify Bentles for the January 9 race, the gelding can be competitive.
“There is a long way to go in a short time. I am not going to rush him. I half rushed him today and it could have come unstuck,” Gollan said.
Bentles was a $200,000 Magic Millions buy and has the breeding to run a strong middle distance, being by sire Onemorenomore out of the Redoutes Choice mare Lady Gracious.
Gollan also had praise for Archytas ($2.20) who overcame a slow start to win the Schweppervescence Maiden Plate (1000m).
“It was a good effort because he is much better suited at 1200 metres than 1000 metres,” Gollan said.
“He can win more races,” Gollan said.
Trainer Robert Heathcote got off the plane in Perth to receive the news his galloper Sunguine Red ($6) had won the Pepsi Max Maximum Maiden Handicap.
Stable foreman Michael O’Leary said it was a perfect start for Heathcote’s Perth trip where he will supervise stable star Buffering’s lead-up to the Group One Winterbottom Stakes on Saturday.
Apprentice Emma Ljung continued her successful comeback from injury when Taiyoshin ($16) won the Good As Gold Maiden Handicap.
Darling Downs-based Ljung was on the crest of a winning wave when she was hurt badly hurt in a race fall at Toowoomba in June.
She didn’t return until early October but has ridden six winners in the past few weeks.
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au