Team Williams Chasing Northerly Stakes Partnership


The Williams stable are no strangers to Northerly Stakes success.

Grant Williams won the race for the first time in 2011 with enigmatic galloper Ranger.

His partner and co-trainer, Alana Williams, won it as a jockey when she combined with the David Harrison-trained Storm Shot 16 years ago.

At Ascot’s season-opening meeting on Saturday the husband and wife team will be out to claim their first Northerly Stakes as a training partnership.

With the scratching of Chocolate Holic, owned and bred by Alana Williams, their hopes in the Group 3 feature rests with top mare Cosmic Storm.

The six-year-old, a winner of seven races from 14 starts, marks her return to racing after enjoying a top campaign last year with a feature race trifecta.

The daughter of Street Sense won the Listed Jungle Mist Classic (1200m), the Listed Starstruck Classic (1600m) and the Group 3 La Trice Classic (1800m) in December.

“You couldn’t fault her form last year when she was absolutely flying,” Grant Williams said.

“She arguably could have gone to the Railway, but her points were low.

“She is a great little mare who is doing everything right now.

“She only has to improve a length from what she was doing last time and she will be right in it.”

Cosmic Storm, to carry 55.5kg, has drawn barrier eight for jockey William Pike.

The champion hoop opted for Cosmic Storm over Adam Durrant stable mates Disposition and Silverstream.

The champion hoop won the Northerly Stakes previously with Ranger.

Cosmic Storm is second favourite for the Northerly Stakes at $4.80.

Heading the TAB market is Salorsci, rated a $3.10 chance.

Julio Santarelli