Australian trainer Gai Waterhouse won the 150th Group 1 race of her career on Saturday with the success of Alligator Blood in the Stradbrook Handicap at Eagle Farm Racecourse.
Under jockey Tim Clarke, the son of All Too Hard was a one length winner over Private Eye to give 67 year old Waterhouse her first victory in the 7-furlong Stradbrook Handicap.
Scottish-born Waterhouse, who trains in partnership with Adrian Bott, was on the other side of the world however, as the Australian conditioner is currently in England ahead of the Royal Ascot meeting this coming week.
Drawn wide in the Group 1 contest, Alligator Blood showed his sprinting prowess in the closing stages of the race when asked to make his move by Tim Clark.
The winning jockey admitted that everything went to plan throughout the course of the race and he was satisfied with his willing partner’s effort in the latter stages.
“He began well but as expected there was a fair bit of tempo and not only did I not have the horse to be in that speed battle, I knew if I attempted to be with them I’d have nothing left at the end,” Clark explained after his Group 1 victory.
Today was Alligator Blood’s second Group 1 victory, having won the Australian Guineas in his three-year-old season. His dam, Lake Superior, who is an Encosta de Lago mare, has produced two winners from just three runners, with Sophie’s Choice being the other to claim a win.
Alligator Blood cost AUD$55,000 when sold by Baramul Stud at the 2018 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, and has now won in excess of AUD$2.79 million in win and place prize-money.
Gai Waterhouse, daughter of top Australian trainer TJ Smith, made racing headlines in 1995 when training Nothin’ Leica Dane to win Australia’s most famous race, the Melbourne Cup, only three days after claiming the Victoria Derby.
In the Group 1 JJ Atkins Stakes also at Eagle Farm today, the second favourite Sheeza Belter held on narrowly for a long neck success in the one-mile contest.
A winner on her previous start at the track in the BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes, Sheeza Belter came late in the home stretch before valiantly holding off the opposition by the shortest of margins.
Trained by Peter and Paul Snowden, it was a third feature race win for Sheeza Belter who previously claimed the Magic Millions WA 2YO Classic at Pinjarra and the AUD$1 million BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (G2) at Eagle Farm.
Purchased by Justin Warwick for AUD$50,000 at last year’s Perth Yearling Sale, the Mt Hallowell Stud-bred daughter of Gold Standard has now won almost AUD$1.5 million in her seven races to date.
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