Golden Group One double at Caulfield
Golden Mile won the “stallion-making” Caulfield Guineas over 1,600m after stable star Anamoe stamped his claims on the G1 Cox Plate in a fortnight with a lion-hearted win in the G1 Might And Power Stakes (2,000m).
Both horses were expertly ridden by champion Sydney jockey James McDonald and complemented earlier wins at Caulfield by stablemates Paulele (McDonald) in the G2 Schillaci Stakes over 1,100m and Gravina (Blake Shinn) in the Listed Neds Village Stakes (1,200m).
Golden Mile held off Elliptical and Osipenko to record his first G1 in the Guineas - a spring classic for three-year-olds renowned as a “stallion-maker’’.
“There’s a certain thrill about creating another colt for the (Darley) roster and Golden Mile has been able to justify his position on that roster this afternoon,” Cummings said.
McDonald said he loved the colt and his determination to win.
“He was great, he’s got a great turn of foot which probably won him the race today,” said McDonald, who won his third Caulfield Guineas.
“He was quite messy on the first bend, went to go right instead of left.
“Once he gathered momentum, he bridled into the race and came with a great turn of foot.”
Anamoe won his sixth G1 and his 10th Stakes race from 19 starts when he showed the heart of a lion to run down the best weight-for-age horses in Australia.
The four-year-old also justified Cummings’ confidence by wearing down I’m Thunderstruck and Zaaki.
After travelling beautifully in fourth spot to the 450m mark, Anamoe appeared off balance on the home turn and struggling to catch the leaders.
But with McDonald riding hard, Anamoe nailed I’m Thunderstruck and Zaaki to win narrowly but impressively.
“That was a proper horse race that Might And Power,” Cummings said.
“Anamoe just drove and drove at the line to win the race.
“He’s such a rare talent, it’s a pleasure to be a part of his career.
“We are thrilled and grateful for the chance to train beautiful horses.
“The team had them absolute cherry-ripe today.”
McDonald was left shaking his head in admiration after the race.
“He had to lift off the canvas today, it was probably the proudest I’ve been of him,” he said.
“I was wondering at the 400m whether he was going to be there for me and he was there in spades.
“He had the audacity to coast to the line over the last little bit, he’s a great horse.”
Cummings said a decision whether Paulele will stay in Melbourne for the G1 Manikato Stakes at Moonee Valley or return to Sydney and take Godolphin’s slot in The Everest next weekend won’t be made until after this weekend.
Paulele overcame two hits on the head from a rival jockey’s whip to beat stablemate Ingratiating and Zoustyle in the Schillaci.
“We’d have to make a decision early in the week, but in the meantime we can enjoy him winning the Schillaci,” Cummings said.
“At the moment, we haven’t locked in any plan, we’ve got all that to weight up.”
Paulele’s race record now reads seven wins and six placings from 18 starts for earnings of $1,534,200.
Earlier in the day, Gravina won Listed Neds Village after a brilliant ride by Shinn.
Gravina forged between runners at the 250m mark to beat Nicolini Vito and Zethus by a length, taking his record to five wins and eight placings from 20 starts for prize money earnings of $506,875.