A week after a stunning all-the-way performance to win the Gr.1 Empire Rose Stakes (1600m) at Flemington, Pride Of Jenni returned to the course and distance to repeat the dose.
This time the Trelawney Stud-bred mare took down a star-studded cast in the Gr.1 Champions Mile (1600m) as Kiwi-bred star Mr Brightside and warhorse Alligator Blood filled the minor placings.
The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-trained Pride Of Jenni and jockey Declan Bates go together like peas and carrots, with Bates extracting the best out of the bold front-runner, who was more controlled but equally as impressive on Saturday.
Maher was full of admiration for Pride Of Jenni saying it was a great effort from her as her style of racing took a lot out of horses.
“That was unbelievable. I think it is the combination of a lot of things. She’s an older mare now and they need to be very seasoned to race in that style that she does,” Maher said.
“She’s come up very well. The team have done a great job. Tony and Lyn Ottobre (owners), they put so much in and to win one on Saturday, I thought we’d have a throw at the stumps but she’s run as good or better.
“Dec Bates, just spot on. He really suits her. It’s hard to get someone to peel off 11s the whole way in a mile race. She was phenomenal.
“It is so good to watch a horse race like that.”
Declan Bates was thrilled to land another Group One win on the Pride Of Dubai mare and said her victory a week prior hadn’t been fully appreciated by some.
“A few people have said to me that I stole it last week and it is a discredit to her to say that I stole it because I think I’m happy with how I executed the tactics, but they are tactics that you can’t employ on many horses. You need a horse with a serious engine and a will to win,” he said.
“I think we are made for each other. I just love this mare so much. She proved its no fluke. She’s a champion now, especially in my eyes.”
A $100,000 Sydney Classic purchase from the Segenhoe Stud draft for Tony and Lynn Ottobre’s Cape Schanck Stud, Pride of Jenni was bred by Brent and Cherry Taylor’s Trelawney Stud and is the first foal of the winning O’Reilly mare Sancerre.
She stems from one of Trelawney Stud’s most notable families, and is a grand-daughter of Gr.1 Queensland Oaks heroine Vouvray.
Sancerre has a yearling filly by Per Incanto that will be retained by Trelawney Stud to race and is in foal to Cambridge Stud stallion Hello Youmzain. – NZ Racing Desk