Champion galloper, Luckygray, can become the fourth horse to win multiple Hyperion Stakes when his return to racing reaches its peak in the Group 3 feature at Belmont on Saturday.
On the comeback trail after a 12-month injury layoff, Luckygray is out to join Cambana Lad (1974-75), Heron Bridge (1984-86) and Marasco (2008-10) as dual Hyperion Stakes champions.
Luckygray created WA racing history in 2012 when he came the first horse to win Perth’s feature winter sprints: the Roma Cup, Belmont Sprint (1400m) and Hyperion Stakes (1600m).
Other champions to grace the Hyperion Stakes honour roll, first run in 1972, include: Detonator (1976), Asian Beau (1979), Sky Filou (1987) and Barossa Boy (1991).
Sky Filou, Heron Bridge and Sky Filou also enjoyed success at the elite level in the Group One Salinger Stakes, Newmarket Handicap and Doomben 10,000 respectively.
Luckygray is now in the care of Trevor Andrews, who claimed his first Hyperion Stakes when No Questions defeated Arctic Park and Star Laser in 2007.
Veteran horseman, Vern Brockman, holds the Hyperion Stakes training record with three wins: Alpine Wind (1977), Junction Girl (1978) and Old Fashion (2002).
The most successful Hyperion Stakes jockeys are Paul Harvey, Jason Brown and Stephen Miller. Who have ridden three winners a piece?
The Hall Of Famer, Harvey, combed with Michael Pateman’s, Willoughby (1998), the John Price-trained Local Legend (2006) and Fred Kersley’s, Marasco (2008).
Miller teamed up with John Bow’s Brave Kite (1994), Bar Dreamer (1997) for Chris Willis and Old Fashion (2002), the third of Brockman’s winners.
Miller’s son, Duncan, matched his father’s feat in 2011 when he partnered, Ian Glading’s, King Kool Kat.
Brown claimed his maiden win on the Jim Taylor-prepared, Country Blazer (2001), Arthur Mortimer’s, Tribula (2003) and No Questions from the Trevor Andrews camp.
Shaun O’Donnell is one win away from joining the trio after piloting Luckygray (2012) and Lakeside Rhythmn (2005), who dead-heated with Ambers Halo.
Keith Watson with Heron Bridge and Ian Albuino, who partnered Fimiston (1988) and Craft Memory (1993, are also dual winners of the Hyperion Stakes.
Barrier one is the most successful starting position in the Hyperion Stakes with eight wins, gate five has won on six occasions and barriers four and nine have five wins each.
Marasco’s two wins were from the exact barrier positions: gates four.
Three horses have completed the Roma Cup-Hyperion Stakes double: Luckygray (2012), No Questions (2007) and Tribula (2003).
Eight mares have won the Hyperion including the past two years: Fuchsia Bandana (2015), Elite Belle (2014), No Questions (2007), Ambers Halo (2007), Dedicated Miss (2004), Tribula (2003) Bungler (1982) Junction Girl (1978).
RWWA: Julio Santarelli