What a golden week for the Gangemi family! John Gangemi made an early start on Tuesday when Diamond Tonique scored a thrilling win in the Tabtouch Broome Sprint (1300m). Four days later he handed the baton over to his sons Chris and Michael who didn’t let him down with a race to-race double. Crystal Spirt was the entrée and Samizdat the main course after coming from the clouds to win the Belmont Newmarket. The brothers have made the Listed event their own in recent years after Saracino (2020) and Super Maxi (2018) scored respective wins.
There were concerns from the Gangemi camp that first-up the six-year-old might have gone into Belmont Newmarket underdone, but class prevailed when he let down with a brilliant sprint over the last 150m. With that explosive finishing burst the 2017 Magic Millions Perth Yearling sale topper ($325,000) is on his way to Melbourne for a maiden interstate campaign.
The popular jockey enjoyed a top day out by claiming the riding honours with a treble. He picked up winners at either end of the meeting: Secret Deploy in the opener, Brave Dream in the last and a signature victory in between on Samizdat in the Belmont Newmarket. He sits comfortably in the upper echelons of Perth’s top riders behind William Pike and Chris Parnham.
Fresh from a ninth metropolitan trainer’s premiership, Durrant has made a flying start to 2021-22 with seven winners, five of those coming from the past two meetings. Boosting that tally on Saturday was Secret Deploy on debut, scratched from Wednesday, Kelly’s Callisto, who broke through after nice efforts behind The Spruiker and a rampaging Brave Dream in the last.
She goes out on a high piloting favourite Strathmore Rose in what is quite possibly her final Perth victory for some time as she departs for New South Wales next week to continue her apprenticeship under Kris Lees. She showed adaptability by switching the whip to her left hand on the improving Roy Rogers-trained mare.
When you’re riding for the state’s leading trainer you have to maximise every golden opportunity that’s presented and heed sage advice; that’s exactly what Corver did according to Adam Durrant. Learning from her previous ride on Kelly’s Callisto, she allowed the gelding to get comfortable and find his rhythm out in front which is his preferred style.
Adios to track manager Chris Nation who officially departs Perth Racing after overseeing his final meeting. He’s off to commence a new tenure in Newcastle, but has left behind a strong body of work that’s earned him high praise. His replacement has big shoes to fill.