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Clarken Racing | Clarken Racing News 53729 Bittersweet Moment For Clarken As Yasuke Makes Smart Debut

Bittersweet moment for Clarken as Yasuke makes smart debut

Bittersweet moment for Clarken as Yasuke makes smart debut

Breaking his maiden at Metropolitan level on his first start is exactly what Clarken imagined Yasuke was capable of once he’d got him up and running at his South Australian stable.

However, as circumstances changed, through no fault of his, the horse was transferred to Champion Trainer Chris Waller and Clarken watched on as on Wednesday Yasuke made his debut.

Settling three wide and without cover, Jye McNeil made his challenge down the centre of the track aboard the 3-year-old colt, grabbing the lead with 50 metres to run and seeing out the race in good style to win by 0.75l from Magnupur (Magnus), with Futile Resistance (NZ) (Almanzor {Fr}) a further 0.75l away in third.

Having retained a share in his ownership, Clarken couldn’t help but think back to when he identified him as a yearling as he crossed the line in front.

“He was a horse that Suman (Hedge) and I identified at (Inglis) Easter,” Clarken told TDN AusNZ. “I just went for a bit of a look around and saw him and we both fell in love with him. He’s got a South Australian pedigree, it’s an amazing family from a bit of obscurity.”

Bred by Arrowfield Stud, he was offered in their draft at the 2021 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale, where Suman Hedge Bloodstock (FBAA), Clarken Racing and Ausbred Racing signed for him for $540,000.

Out of the South Australian mare Only Roses (Redoute’s Choice), Clarken was immediately attracted to his second dam, Gift Bouquet (King’s High), whose progeny are led by G3 CS Hayes S. winner The Inevitable (Dundeel {NZ}).

“The mare’s unbelievable, she’s only a little pony and she’s left several stakes winners,” he said. “He’s the granddaughter of her, and when I saw the page and I saw him I fell in love with him, and so did Suman.

“He’s a horse that, at Easter, you’d have expected to make $300,000 but he passed $500,000 because every trainer wanted him. He’s just so full of class. He’s got a beautiful head and a big jowl.”

His dam Only Roses is a fair producer herself too, with her three foals to race including the Group 3-placed Game Of Thorns (Animal Kingdom {USA}) and three-time winner Temple One (Real Impact {Jpn}).

“We bought him and for a little while it was a bit sketchy because we thought one client was taking more than he ended up doing. He ended up taking a quarter and Suman and I were left with the rest. I rang Ozzie Kheir and he was good enough to take half of the horse, then I syndicated a quarter of the horse to my stable clients including myself.”

Settling the horse into his stable, Clarken brought him along steadily as a late-season juvenile until he was ready for his first trial in March of last year. He showed up well, leaving connections pleased, and was steadily progressed to a second one. When he disappointed in that, it was obvious to Clarken that he was in need of a rest.

“We sent him for a good, long spell and whilst he was out we had a discussion with the ownership group - he was a $540,000 yearling, the prizemoney in Adelaide is out of step with the big states…

“The ownership group, as a whole, wanted to move him. I have a share in the horse, I’m a great believer in him and I wanted to stay in and make sure we didn’t have an emerging star on our hands that I wasn’t in, so I’m going along for the ride.

“It’s a touch bittersweet, but I think if you’re going to be a racehorse trainer in an area like I am in South Australia or New Zealand you have to be completely aware that, unfortunately, you’re going to lose horses just to the enormity of how these other states have snowballed their prizemoney.

“I’ve got a really good relationship with Ozzie Kheir, and I’m sure we’ll do something again in the future.”

With some loyal stable clients, now friends of Clarken, also sharing in the ownership group, the sweet part of the victory is accentuated further.

“I’m really happy for everyone and hopefully he can get to a really big race one day and I can go and watch him.”

Although it might seem a little out of kilter, it’s not the first time that Clarken has raced horses with other trainers, and his talents as a selector often play into his hands.

“It’s a business, and you go along for the ride. I’ve been lucky enough to race a few really good horses with other trainers.

“A while ago I raced a horse I bought as a yearling, breezed up then raced it... The horse ended up being sold to Hong Kong for about $1 million off a $20,000 yearling purchase in Adelaide.”

Aside from the financial rewards, Clarken has also found that racing the odd horse with other trainers has helped him bring his own business along too.

“It was a really big turning point in my career because I got the updates and I realised how other trainers operate.

“I’ve since raced a couple of horses with my good friend Ciaron Maher and I’ve got one at the moment there - it gives you a bit of inside information as to the level of professionalism that we have to target for our owners.”


Kuro's low-key return

A home-state, black-type win is the immediate aim for South Australia's most-exciting young horse Kuroyanagi, but Will Clarken admits it's hard not to dream about spring features in both Melbourne and Sydney. The Blue Diamond placegetter made a low-key return to the track in a 600-metre jump out at Thomas Farms Racecourse Murray Bridge on Thursday, pleasing both her trainer and jockey Ben Price. Clarken said the Listed Lightning Stakes (1050m) at Morphettville later this month shapes as the perfect kick-off race and a suitable chance for the filly to secure a Stakes win, after her Group 1 and Group 2 placings over summer. "All being well, we'll get a good trial into her at Balaklava in seven days' time and then a nice gallop on some Good ground, we'll look to kick her off in the Lightning," Clarken said. "It'll come down to her first-up performance but races in both Melbourne and Sydney are definitely there as options. "It was such a vintage year of juveniles, so we'll just have to pick our way through and dodge a few of them. "We just want to get a black-type win next to her name, so we'll just chase little fish to start and build into it. "But we cant hide our excitement about her." During her first racing campaign, Clarken maintained that the daughter of Written Tycoon was far from the finished product and he said he's satisfied with the physical development she's made since the Blue Diamond. And while her early targets are likely to be in the 1000-1200-metre range, he's excited at the prospect of stretching her out in trip. "She's got a lot stronger in her time off," he said. "We did the right thing by stopping after the Diamond, so she got a really good spell into her. "Skeletally, everything has settled down because she was just feeling her shins off and on last prep. "I'd love to see her rolling over seven furlongs because I just think she's got this amazing action. "Brenton (Avdulla) gave us some amazing feedback that she felt like a horse that would get further after he rode her in the Diamond."Story from (James Tzaferis)

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Former South Australia galloper a future Hong Kong star

Galaxy Patch showcased his remarkable turn of foot once again at Sha Tin on Sunday, June 23, clinching a dominant victory in the HK$4.2 million G3 Premier Plate Handicap (1800m) for trainer Pierre Ng. Ridden by Vincent Ho, Galaxy Patch surged from near-last to first in the home straight, completing the race in 1 minute and 48.64 seconds. The four-year-old galloped the final 200 meters in a swift 21.69 seconds, finishing as the race’s second favourite with betting apps in Australia. “He’s a future star with immense potential. He was the best horse in the field, and that’s why he can perform like this. From a wide barrier (10), we just aimed to settle him. He was a bit keen over the first 400 meters but then relaxed just before the turn,” Ho said post-race. Galaxy Patch, sired by Wandjina, initially raced in South Australia as Gulinga Spirit under Will Clarken and Niki O’Shea before being sold to Hong Kong. Earlier this month, Galaxy Patch triumphed in the HK$4.2 million G3 Lion Rock Trophy Handicap (1600m). His impressive record now includes six wins from 12 starts in Hong Kong, with notable runner-up finishes in the HK$13 million G1 Queen’s Silver Jubilee Cup (1400m) and the HK$26 million BMW Hong Kong Derby (2000m) this season. “I just took my time, let him gradually advance, and then asked for an effort. He’s a very decent horse,” Ho remarked. “Thanks to Pierre’s team for their support and trust – riding such quality horses means everything.” Beauty Joy finished a neck behind in second, with Happy Together securing third place. The race favourite, Chancheng Glory, ended up in fourth. “It was likely from an impossible position, but he’s shown versatility across various distances. Now at 1800 meters, he even placed second over 2000 meters,” Ng commented. “He’s like an all-rounder, typical of Australian horses, adaptable from short to long distances. He was much more mature today, and I hope he continues to develop next season.” “We’re definitely targeting big races. Let’s see what the schedule holds,” Ng added. This victory was part of a treble for Ng, propelling him back into the lead for the trainers’ championship with 65 wins, ahead of Francis Lui’s 63. Ng also celebrated success in both feature races of the day, with Mugen and jockey Karis Teetan overcoming California Spangle in the HK$4.2 million G3 Premier Cup Handicap (1400m).Story from JustHorseRacing

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