It’s A Warwick Day Out At Belmont

14
Jun

Lucciola made it four consecutive wins at Belmont on Saturday, but perhaps more importantly for trainer Justin Warwick was the ride produced by his daughter Lucy.

The emerging apprentice had Lucciola box-seating to claim the second leg of a double after an equally impressive ride on favourite Celebrity Miss.

It was Warwick’s first foray into metropolitan Saturday racing and to cap off a great afternoon she ran second on Arcadia Rose.

“She is coming along in leaps and bounds,” said her proud father.

“She is taking everything in her stride and doesn’t worry about too much.

“It’s been a good day and you may as well ride a double when you start off in town.”

Lucciola has won six races and been placed once from eight starts since joining the Warwick camp last year.

“The weight helped and that is the key to her because she is a tiny mare,” said Warwick.

“The track was probably not ideal because a bit of sting out brings out the best in her.

“The races in this part of the world are not really long enough for her to really show how far she can go.

“I think around the 2800 or 3000m mark she would really come into her own, especially as she is learning to relax.”

Grant Williams celebrated a double when Celebrity Miss relished a return to the fillies and mares and Elite Belle won the Hyperion Stakes (1600m).

Elite Belle, who started a hot favourite, was made to earn her victory when she held out Ranger by a head margin.

Bob Peters, who also races Ranger, said Elite Belle, closing in on half-a-million dollars in stake earnings, was unlikely to contest next fortnight’s Strickland Stakes (2000m).

“She has done well and has been good to us,” said Peters.

“She most likely will go to the paddock.”

Simon Miller had a mixed day but savoured the win of quality three-year-old Sujet who successfully backed up from last week to take out the Westspeed Handicap (1200m) by two lengths.

The son of Vital Equine appeared to be labouring in the straight but the longer the race went the stronger he became and he finished powerfully.

Miller atoned after Portonian failed to run in the first four as the warm favourite in the Barry James Farmer 70th Birthday Handicap (1200m).

“It’s amazing the difference one race can do,” said Miller.

“He is still raw but oozes potential.

“It’s not ideal to back-up but he is a quality animal.”

Darren McAuliffe was absent from Belmont but he still managed to have an impact courtesy of boom two-year-old Rebel King.

The Universal Ruler gelding had no problems stepping up to 1200m and was unextended to bring up his third consecutive win this campaign.

A stable representative said Rebel King was likely to have one final run this campaign before being aimed at feature three-year-old races later this year.

David Harrison admitted a fast track and hot speed favoured Pininci who ended a 364 day losing drought in the Tabtouch Supporting The Industry Handicap (1000m).

Pininci scored narrowly from Great Southern galloper Dream Lifter who ran an eye-catching second

The Paul Hunter-trained four-year-old was on the comeback trail after a 12 month injury layoff.

He copped a check near the 400m but under jockey Mitchell Pateman he regained his momentum and speared his way through a narrow opening.

The margin was just a half-head with Pininci, ridden by Pat Carbery, getting the bob on the line.

Jim Taylor applied the blinkers to New Time and it paid off with the Key Business gelding holding on against the closing run of Dark Delight.