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Clarken Racing | Clarken Racing News 58760 Clarkens Premiership Chase

Clarken's premiership chase

Clarken's premiership chase

Will Clarken believes it will take a 'herculean effort' for he and training partner Niki O'Shea to win this season's South Australian metro premiership, as they lead the winners of the past two titles, Richard and Chantelle Jolly, by just one win with six meetings remaining.

For Clarken and O'Shea, who joined forces in early January 2023, it has been an incredible first full term together, but Clarken says the premiership is not a major focus.

"Things really could not have unfolded much better on the track for Niki and I this season," said Clarken.

"I still feel it is going to take a herculean effort to upstage Richard and Chantelle for the title.

"My theory with the premiership is yes it would look nice on our CV and would be a huge honour, but ultimately there is no financial gain attached to it.

"We will be slowing down a little bit over the next month or so and at the end of the day doing the right thing by our horses and their owners.

"Episodic is an example, she is airborne at the moment, but rather than stay at home on Saturday to try and bank another win, if we feel Flemington is a good opportunity for a Melbourne victory, she will head that way."

One horse definitely heading to Flemington this weekend for the stable is Extremely Lucky, who will line up in the Country Achiever Shane Fliedner.

"The horse is going really well and was excellent at Caulfield last time out," he said.

"He's drawn low, which is probably not ideal, but we have Blake Shinn, which is certainly a positive."

Of the runners Clarken and O'Shea will saddle up at Morphettville on Saturday, it is Sachem in the final race on the program that Clarken has the most upbeat.

"His best run for us was his effort first time out when second to the Jollys' smart filly Aviatress," Clarken said.

"Subsequently, his next two have been ok but we have just changed a few things around with him since his last run.

"Hopefully we get the desired result and get him back in the winner's stall."

One other horse Clarken touched on for the program was one of his four acceptors in the second event of the day.

"We could possibly keep Mazovia for another day, but of the quartet, Absinthe has us little bit excited," he said.

"A Toronado filly, she won a trial at Murray Bridge recently, had a good blow after it and we like her a lot."


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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