It took just over 70 seconds for star Godolphin colt Anamoe to confirm his standing as the nation’s best three-year-old and put one hoof on the Golden Rose trophy with a dynamic first-up win at Kembla Grange.
Talk of the Group 1 Inglis Sires’ winner being vulnerable after a setback last month and just the one short trial leading into the Group 2 $200,000 XXXX Run To The Rose (1200m) saw Anamoe deposed as favourite.
But ultimately it didn’t matter and shortly after James McDonald let him loose to run down leader In The Congo, with Remarque third, he firmed to $2.50 favourite with TAB in the Group 1 $1m Golden Rose (1400m) on September 25.
Trainer James Cummings can only expect Anamoe to be even better as he attempts to join an impressive list of colts to claim the Run To The Rose-Golden Rose double – the likes of Bivouac (2019), Astern (2016), Exosphere (2015), Hallowed Crown (2014) and Denman (2009) in recent years.
“Every time these sorts of colts step out and run in races like this they improve their value and reputation as they should,’’ Cummings said.
“He’s well and truly on his way, he’s had a pretty light preliminary in the last couple of weeks to be ready for this. What I like is he doesn’t look like an absolutely natural 1200m horse.”
Question marks will hang over the spring prospects of Golden Slipper winner Stay Inside, who ran fifth after sitting outside In The Congo, and Converge who didn’t finish off after looming early in the straight.
As for Anamoe it’s all upside and Cummings said in beating a field of top class colts, which included four of the five two-year-old winners last season, it confirms his standing in Godolphin’s operation.
“He’s a supreme athlete and the onus is on us to try to get him back to the races and be in the same winning form as he left off,’’ he said.
“Champion two-year-olds like him need to come back and be going just as good when you want to go on with him with the sort of goals we’ve got.
“It was great that James was able to let the race unfold with the speed up front and the horse just gets mobile and gets into his gorgeous action and savages the line like a horse that’s ready to go right on with it.”
Anamoe’s last 600m in the Run To The Rose, 33.75 (Punter’s Intelligence), was a tick outside the race’s best but he was dominant late clocking the fastest last 200m of 11.62.
The overall time of 1:10.24 compared reasonably well with top class five-year-old Kiwi mare Entriviere’s 1:09.99 in winning the Sheraco Stakes over the 1200m a couple of races earlier.
McDonald was naturally very impressed with Anamoe’s performance and said it’s exciting to think about what the three-year-old can do this spring when he reaches his peak fitness.
“I think it’s remarkable how he’s come back after one trial and a setback,’’ he said.
“To come away with the win is a great testament to his ability. He has a tremendous will to win this horse and I knew once he was in (In The Congo’s) eyesight he would get him but it took a lot of work to get there.
“It was a good effort and he’s going to jump out of the ground (fitness wise).”
– Racing NSW