Newbury - THE DUBAI DUTY FREE HANDICAP STAKES
(Class 2 Handicap)
This beautifully bred son of New Approach, out of a Street Cry mare, arrives at Middleham Park, a very lightly raced and we are led to believe, very talented performer with any amount of improvement in front of him.
We have enjoyed an awful lot of success when purchasing very lightly raced horses from big training yards, given they have to sell numerous horses each and every year to make way for the new cohort of yearlings. Just occasionally, lightly raced horses who have shown form on the track, but not quite enough form to convince their current owner and trainer that they could prove able to win big races, slip through the big yard net. Recent examples of our inexpensive, lightly raced horse purchases from big yards are Tawdeea (11,000gns from Hamdan Al Maktoum) who subsequently won 4 races for us and £117,275 including the prestigious Old Newton Cup at Haydock. G Force (25,000gns from Richard Hannon) who won 3 races for us, including the Group 1 Haydock Park Cup and was crowned Champion 3yo Sprinter of 2014. Waarif (23,000gns from Hamdan Al Maktoum) who, purchased rated 82 is now 100, having won 5 races including the famous Carlisle Bell and £91,061 in prize money. He's still going strong and looks a listed performer in the making for 2019.
David O'Meara has made a career out of training horses, seemingly past their sell by dates at big yards. He trained all three of the horses quoted above as well as Penitent for us, who we purchased for 40,000gns from William Haggas and Cheveley Park, who went on to win two Group 2's and be placed 2nd in the Group 1 Prix de la Forêt, at Longchamp on Arc Day.
Southern Rock has already been placed in France and was recommended to David O'Meara and Jason Kelly as one of those Goldolphin/Big Sheik cast offs, that potentially has a very good future, if afforded a little time, patience and good tutelage. Still only a 3yo, and closely related to St Leger winner Encke and Epsom Oaks winners no less, as his 3yo season progresses and as he races over a distance of ground, there surely remains the distinct possibility that he will improve no end.
You'd imagine that winning a maiden should be a formality and we can easily see him progressing through the handicap ranks and affording his owners several wins and some big days out.
He's typical of the sort of horse that David has made a career out of acquiring and we can't wait to see him grace the turf and possibly also the All Weather, in the Middleham Park, light blue and orange silks.