Classic connection at Randwick

Vinery’s Classic Sale connection raised the bar with a winning double at Randwick on Wednesday.

And there are more updates on the radar just hours before this year’s Inglis Classic Sale gets underway at the Riverside Stables on Saturday evening.

Vinery’s 2017 Classic Sale graduate Zourhea looked a classic filly of the future winning second-up over 1550m for trainer Gerald Ryan.  She lost her spot when the speed went on at the half-mile but knuckled down in the straight to edge out Bring The Magic (Sebring).

Stallion Racing Australia manager David Raphael bought the Zoustar filly for $52,500 from Vinery.  She’s a half-sister to Ryan’s 2017 Australian Derby Gr.1 runner-up Harper’s Choice and began paying off her purchase price with wins at Goulburn and Hawkesbury earlier this season.

“Zourhea is a very nice filly with a beautiful action,” Ryan said.  “I’m hoping we can get her to the (G1) Australian Oaks in the autumn.  She has to earn more prizemoney but I feel she can measure up.”

Vinery sire Mossman doubled up on Randwick’s Kensington circuit with the Matt Dale-trained gelding Mossman Gorge.  He was a $90,000 graduate of the 2016 Classic Sale and refused to surrender the lead first-up after a nine-month spell.

More Than Ready’s 2017 Classic Sale graduate Speedgun won his maiden at the Ipswich metro meeting on Wednesday.  He cost $300,000 and is bred to keep improving for trainer Kelly Schweida – his dam is an unraced daughter of Group 1 winning mare Stella Cadente.

The Vinery legend was also in the frame at Randwick with high-priced 2017 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale graduate Trope.  The Team Hawkes-trained newcomer flew home from last to score by a neck on debut.

Trope was a $500,000 buy for Alan Bell who raced Vinery’s Group 1 stallion Star Turn.  “He still doesn’t know what he’s doing but really attacked the line,” Michael Hawkes said.  “He looks a very talented colt.”

Vinery sire Press Statement can add an update of his own when Jericho Missile runs in the Magic Millions WA Classic RL on Saturday.  He won the Crystal Slipper Stakes on debut in December and has the services of Willie Pike in the $250,000 feature at Pinjarra.  His half-brother by Press Statement has been catalogued as Lot 570 at the Classic Sale by Holbrook Thoroughbreds as agent for breeder David Bentata.

Gerald Ryan, Sterling Alexiou and David Raphael at the Classic Sale inspections this week