Maiden winner shows plenty to breakthrough
Albany trainer Maurice Sheridan has high hopes for impressive maiden winner Athlone Castle after he sprinted home well to win at his third career start at Percy Spencer Racecourse last Thursday.
A five-year-old gelding by Cardinal Virtue, Athlone Castle was placed in his first two starts last month before top jockey Peter Hall produced a superb ride to break his maiden tag in the TABtouch Maiden (1100m).
Jumping from barrier 11, Hall had Athlone Castle sitting midfield on the rail before making his move as the field turned for home.
Hall switched back to the inside and charged clear to down the luckless Red Moon by half a length on the line.
Sheridan said it was a great result and was confident that his galloper could progress through his grades.
“I do like him,” he said. “I liked his half-brother I See Luck and this bloke just needed time.
“He was broken in back in April and was in work in July through to now, so he’s done well.
“He is still pretty green but I think he’s got some ability.”
Double Edged, a minor placegetter at his past two starts, also saluted for Pingrup trainer Gordon Keay in the Nexus Risk Services Handicap (1100m).
Ridden by Troy Turner, the four-year-old found the front from gate five and was never run down as the well fancied Anna Amalia finished second, beaten by 1¼ lengths.
Meanwhile, Albany trainer Roy Rogers confirmed smart two-year-old Ionyx will progress to the WA Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) later this month after his victory in the opening race last week.
Ionyx, a $100,000 yearling, stated a warm $2.10 favourite on the tote and never looked like being in trouble as he led all the way to notch his maiden win over 1500m.
“He’ll go to the Sires now and be competitive in that,” Rogers said.
“I thought he wasn’t a 1200m horse so we skipped the Karrakatta and now he’s beaten older horses convincingly over 1500m for the first time, so that’s a big effort.”
Rogers finished with a double after Tranquilla Sunrise claimed the Iron Jack Handicap (1230m).
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