If the rest of the autumn carnival is scuppered by the coronavirus, trainer John Thompson has already celebrated his biggest day on a racecourse.
Thompson arrived at Rosehill for Saturday’s closed door meeting with two Group One chances and left with a George Ryder Stakes winner and Golden Slipper placegetter.
The Randwick trainer, who has a relatively small team compared to the major stables, rated Saturday afternoon as his greatest day on a racetrack.
“You’d have to say yes,” Thompson said.
“It’s pretty good.”
Dreamforce bounced back from a disappointing last-start run to lead throughout in the George Ryder Stakes (1500m), claiming the scalp of star New Zealander Te Akau Shark, who finished third.
In the Golden Slipper, Thompson saddled the least experienced runner, Mamaragan, and the youngster gave a great sight under Nash Rawiller with a fighting third behind Farnan and Away Game at just his second start.
Given many of the two-year-olds who contested the Slipper are at the end of long campaigns, Thompson says Mamaragan will press on to the Group One Sires’ Produce Stakes provided he pulls up well.
“He’s done super against some more seasoned two-year-olds,” Thompson said.
“To run like that in your second start in a race, in Nash’s words, we might have lost the battle but I reckon we will win the war. We’ve got a nice horse on our hands.
“If he pulls up good and well he will go to the Sires’.”
Because the colt’s owners could not attend the meeting, the normally conservative Thompson honoured them by wearing a garish tie in Mamaragan’s black and shicking pink colours.
Plans are for Dreamforce to head to either the Doncaster Mile (1600m) or All-Aged Stakes (1400m), both at Randwick next month.