Canton Road hopeful of start in Magic Millions Classic 2016

Snubbed in the sale ring, Canton Road looms as a stumbling block for several expensive horses trying to qualify for the Magic Millions Classic.

Canton Road faces a strong field in Saturday’s Two-Year-Old Hcp (1000m) at the Sunshine Coast which is the last chance for horses to qualify for the $2 million Classic a week later.

Those trying to book a spot on Saturday include Just Orm, Heart Skipt A Beat, Rothabye, Pinch Mountain, and Rainy Day Woman.

Canton Road appears a real danger to their aspirations after her impressive debut win at the Sunshine Coast on December 20.

The filly was bought back for $2000 by her breeder Neville Bell when she went through the Magic Millions sale ring earlier this year.

Bell, the chairman of the Brisbane Race Club, said the Magic Millions wasn’t on Canton Road’s radar.

“Depending on how things go on Saturday we will be taking a different path with Canton Road,” he said.

Bell said Canton Road was the result of a breeding experiment hatched by himself and trainer Mick Mair.

“We have had a lot of success putting broodmares by Clang to my sire Ombra Della Sera. Mick and I decided we would try the reverse and put a broodmare by Ombra Della Sera to Clang,” Bell said.

“So we sent Shadow Princess to Clang and the we got Canton Road. She came from a wide barrier to win by more than two lengths at her only start.

“When she won Mick and I thought we had solved the breeding problems of the world. But now Clang and Ombra Della Sera are no longer on active duty.”

He is far from surprised that Canton Road has ability as he had a big opinion of Shadow Princess as a race mare.

“As a young horse Shadow Princess showed a lot of ability and won a race at the Sunshine Coast,” Bell said.

“But she had a lot of bad habits and we ended up sending her to Stuart Kendrick when he was still training at Mackay.”

“He got a win with her but then she lapsed back into her old bad habits so we retired her.”

Kendrick meanwhile, has decided to scratch Rare Occurrence from Saturday’s race after she drew barrier 19.

Rare Occurrence won her only start in October and is at No.15 in the Magic Millions Classic ballot but now faces the chance of being leapfrogged by several other runners.

The filly won a jump-out last week and Kendrick is happy to go into the Millions first up.


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