Musket winner makes the grade with Mills

Warwick Farm trainer Dave Mills has spent a lifetime in racing and he reckons Stocky has the potential to make the grade in stakes company.

Stocky is a son of Yarradale Stud sire Musket and will be winning much better races than his debut victory in the Biofiba Plate (1000m) at Gosford on Friday.

Stocky (2g Musket – Dial A Mood by Geiger Counter) camped behind the favourites Tennessee Jill and Crotchet before mowing them down in the straight.  “He’s a very good horse and wasn’t really entitled to win today,” Mills said.  “But in saying that, he was only beaten a length by that good colt Dalton in a Rosehill trial last week.”

The winner is a homebred for Brian Stockwell who has been mates with Mills since they were kids.  “Brian owns a farm right next to Darley’s Twin Hills Stud at Cootamundra,” Mills explained.  “He sent Dial A Mood to Musket when he was standing there in 2009.”

Musket (Redoute’s Choice) is a three-quarter brother to Makybe Diva and was a Group 2 winner of the Shannon Stakes at Rosehill.  He stood a sole season at Twin Hills before transferring to Yarradale in WA.

“My bloke is still immature in mind and body,” Mills added.  “I didn’t really expect to get a start out of him this preparation.”

Mills, 76, has been training since the 1960s and he also had a stint as foreman with Jack Denham.  “There were some real top-class horses like Filante with Jack back then,” he recalled.  “I’ve trained a couple of smart types myself – not in the same league as Filante – but you can pick out the good ones.

“Stocky fits the bill.  I will give him one more run at most and then look out next season!”

Musket moved off the mark when the David Payne trained Rutherglen scored at Newcastle earlier this year and there have been just five runners from his first crop to date.

Yarradale Stud will stand Musket for an $8,800 (inc gst) service fee this year.

– Karl Patterson