There is no denying that all roads lead to Melbourne during spring for the Carnival which famously stops the nation. It is the dream of many a racing enthusiast to have a runner during the carnival let alone a winner.
Group winning mare Longport began her spring campaign for Danny on Derby Day in the 1200m Yellowglen Stakes. Whilst the distance was just a fraction short we were thrilled with her late run when she stormed home strongly giving us confidence that she is on target for her main aim this preparation.
Whilst Longport and Oakleigh Girl have been in Melbourne they have been ridden and strapped by our track work rider Tommy Johnston who flew down on the plane with the girls. The horses are stabled at Tommy Hughes Flemington stables on course and our vet whilst in Melbourne is Dr Tom (Tommy) Brennan from Flemington Equine Clinic so you can imagine how confusing it can be trying to distinguish which Tommy is being discussed.
The facilities at Flemington for horses and humans are absolutely first class. Everything is so safe for the horses and whilst well planned and practical they have still managed to make the environment atheistically beautiful. The roses which have all bloomed on cue are simply spectacular and every nook and cranny has a flowering garden bed. Even the centre of the horse swimming pool is a virtual flora bunda.
The VRC are also to be commended on what a pleasurable experience they make it for the connections of the winning horses. Ushered into the Winners Bar following the presentation for winning the Group III Channel Seven Stakes, Oakleigh Girl’s owner, Louise Gillard was presented with a beautifully bound photo album keepsake containing photos of the filly parading in the mounting yard, at the winning post, wearing the sponsor’s rug and with the winners Silver Cup trophy.
Over the years Danny has had success taking horses to Flemington (Scenic Peak still holds the 1600m record after winning the Group 1 Emirates Stakes) so hopefully we will be able to make the trip down south an annual event. Already we are planning which horses would be suitable to take next year.