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THE “DO WAH DIDDY DIDDY” AWARD

 

WINNER: HONG KONG TRAINER MANFRED KL MAN

Manfred Man receives this award for this headline which appeared in the South China Morning Post: “Setback might prove to be a blessing for Regiment, says upbeat trainer Man.” Huh? Manfred Man was talking about his horse Eagle Regiment. He was to add, “It’s hard for me, and strange to bring a horse overseas, and probably strange for him, too, but I am learning and hopefully he does as well.” Eagle Regiment never took its place in Dubai. It was withdrawn: Lame. So was Manfred Man.

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THE “IT’S A MIRACLE” AWARD

WINNER: THE RIDE OF MICHAEL WALKER TO WIN ON “EASTSIDE” AT CRANBOURNE ON FRIDAY NIGHT.

Jockey Michael “Moses” Walker shows his unique riding style to get Eastside first past the post.

It missed the kick, it trailed the field for most of the race, we were about to tear up our tickets and then, suddenly, Michael Walker took it for an inside run and while everyone was looking at every other horse, it, literally, sneaked through and won. And it didn’t just have our nickel and dime money on it. Eastside was backed, baby.

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THE “PAYNEFUL TO WATCH” AWARD

WINNER: MICHELLE PAYNE’S RIDES AT CRANBOURNE

Still at Cranbourne, we have no idea what the hell happened to the Michelle Payne-ridden odds-on favourite Simpre Arriba. No Red Seas parting for this one and which was never ever in the hunt. The next ride by Miss Payne on the well-backed Green Papaya was another melon of a ride. Perhaps the dear girl still has Kathy O’Hara on her mind and is going through a “frivolous” period?
 

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THE “LION CITY ROARS” AWARD

WINNER: JOAO MOREIRA

In Singapore on Friday night, Joao Moreira, the “Douglas Whyte of The Lion City”, rode his “usual” treble and with a horse called Super Boy being very impressive  The odds of Moreira riding in Sydney are very VERY high and there’s almost an “inked” deal with Nathan “I eat jockeys for brekkies” Tinkler. Let’s just hope this relationship lasts when Moreira moves- and he definitely will. If it doesn’t, he certainly has the talent to freelance. Still in Singapore, Danny Beasley rode a double as did Stephen Baster who as also responsible for The Ride Of The Night in Singapore on Friday aboard Monte Cristo.

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THE “GONE TO THE “DOGS” AWARD

WINNER: PAUL “DOGS” DOLAN

Perhaps the old boy needs a rest and perhaps he’s been calling greyhound racing for too long, but we have anxiety attacks every time Perth’s Racing Radio plays their interview with Paul “Dogs” Dolan. Seriously, the man sounds as if he is on some serious meds and after being now ambushed a few times with repeats of this interview, are feeling very nervous, shaky and have developed a nervous tic- the same symptoms we have developed listening to Perth’s Racing Radio “Sam” Lee (?) and that bloody awful and pretentious plumy accent. Give us “Ash”, any day over The Plum One. 
 

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THE “ALL TOO EASY” AWARD

WINNER: ALL TOO HARD

After the way it missed the start and then swooped on them wide, The Golden Slipper looks to be a two-horse race between Samaready and Saturday’s very good winner in All Too Hard. We know which horse we’ll be backing.

We don’t think jockey Dwayne Dunn flinched even once. He smiled and guided the weapon of mass destruction under him. Hell, the horse could have won with even owner Big Nate Tinkler sitting on him.

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THE “RAINING ON THEIR PARADE” AWARD

WINNER: RAIN AFFAIR

Well, it sure rained on the parade of those who came in late for Bel Sprinter. After flopping out when the barriers opened, Bel Sprinter, having its first start in Sydney, had its work cut out and was never ever going to win. Corey Brown, who rode a great rail-hugging race to win race 1 on Ichihara, bounced Rain Affair to the front and though Satin Shoes tried its best along with Neeson, the favourite had no real problems.

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THE “WHY AM I STILL RIDING? AWARD.

WINNER: CHAD LEVER

It was one of the worst rides of the day- Chad Lever on the steaming hot pot Bowerbird at Morphetville. Some jockeys going around should do the right thing to punters and hang up their boots and saddle sores. Racing expert Nadia Horne would have lost her, well, Horne after THAT ride. We gulped after THAT ride and also his ride on Family Portrait which cracked under pressure and where a big plunge- and equally big tip- on the Adrian Patterson-ridden Big Chill froze out the others. As for Chad Lever, perhaps someone should show him the winning ride by apprentice Ibrahim Gundoghu on Laker’s Bay at Werribee later that day.
 

“What? I lost? Really?” Chad Lever is dumbfounded after losing on Bowerbird.

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THE EINSTEIN RACE-CALLER AWARD

WINNER: THE RACE-CALLER AT EAGLE’S FARM

It started when he said, “Diago didn’t leave badly even if it’s at the back.” Huh? Next, “Diago has swept around and dashed away.” We watched the race: Diago was barely in front. Next came, “It’s dashed away again” and, finally, and mercifully, “It’s bolted in.” Yes, Diago ridden by Damien Browne won the race.

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RIDES OF THE DAY

WINNERS: COREY BROWN ON “ICHIKAWA”

DEAN YENDALL ON “CONSTANT FORCE”

TOMMY BERRY ON “NIAGRA”- WE RECKON THIS FRONT-RUNNING EFFORT WAS THE BEST OF THE DAY.

NASH RAWILLER ON “LASER HAWK”

HUGH BOWMAN ON “PERMIT”

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THE “ROSE AMONGST THORNS AND KNOBS” AWARD

WINNER: LADY GAI WATERHOUSE

Training a treble at Rosehill and taking it all in stride- and in style- makes her one extremely smart Lady who doesn’t suffer fools- and knobs- gladly. Watch for the winners to keep on coming and understand the immense respect Gai Waterhouse receives from all. No one screws with the Lady and we had to laugh listening to a few knobs on the radio who came close to crossing the line and “talking bad” about her, then realizing where they were going and who they were talking about and quickly back-peddled. As Oprah would say, You go, girl!

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THE REVOLTING AWARD

WINNER: REVOLT

Talk about giving a horse the right- or in this case- wrong name. after dumping its jockey Josh Adams, the aptly-named Revolt made such a pig of itself that it was.

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THE “UP THE PIKE” AND “DOWN THE TOILET” AWARD

WINNER: WESTERN AUSTRALIA’S WILLIAM “ON YER BIKE” PIKE

If he rides in Hong Kong the way he rode Rafferty at Ascot on Saturday, he won’t be getting many rides between the start of his stint over there and when he returns to Perth, His rides on the hotpots Rafferty, Besorisky and Proud Hero on Saturday- each being huge flops- had us befuddled, be-bothered and bewildered. We were even more bemused- and bewildered- when some dullard on Perth radio described “On Yer Bike” as “one of the world’s best jockey.” Oh, puhleeeeese, stop, you’re killing us. How “On Yer Bike” Pike got a call up- again- to Hong Kong beats us. Douglas Whyte, Zac Purton, Brett Prebble, Tye Angland, Tim Clark, Matty Chadwick, Mark Du Plessis and even Ben So and Howard “The Duck” Cheng will chew him up and spit him out. 

A tip for those who waste their time with racing from Ascot: The two knobs giving their “tips”- Wes and Ritchie- had a “perfect” record of imperfect tipping for all nine races.  They share the “Up The Pike” and “Down The Toilet” Award with you-know-who.

 

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RACE OF THE DAY

THE ROSEHILL GUINEAS

What a great Group 1 finish: Nash Rawiller, Glen Boss and Hugh Bowman! Each throwing everything at their horses! Nash and Bossy! Hughie closing in on them on Silent Achiever! Ocean Park or Laser Hawk? Ocean Park and Bossy! No! It’s the “Gnasher” on Laser Hawk and a brilliant treble trained by our favourite lady- Lady Gai Waterhouse! Though we were on Ocean Park, we didn’t mind getting the pretty hefty trifeca!
 

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THE “FIELD OF DREAMS” AWARD

WINNER: SHEIKH MOHAMMED BIN RASHID AL MAKOUM

It’s not always about money. It’s also about dreams and passionate and a genuine and passionate love of watching the greatest horses from around the world race, ridden by the greatest jockeys in the world, trained by some of the greatest trainers in he world for some of the biggest owners in the world – and which is what The Dubai World Cup Races are all about and with Sheik Mohammed, the greatest and most humble host in the world, building the greatest race track in the world at Meyan to stage the world’s “biggest horse racing party.” Phew! All that is one sentence. 
 

We were there and one HAS to be there to appreciate what this one man has done for truly International racing. And what a gig to be able to work for him and his setup. Terry Spago is a very lucky man and, we hear, many more clever and creative talent from around the world have been tapped by Sheikh Mo to join his team. The ONLY ‘thing’ still escaping his “Field Of Dreams”: China: “E.B” and the HKJC has this in the bag. And, to paraphrase James Bond, Papa’s Got A Very Powerful Brand New Bag.
 
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THE “TIMELESS” AWARD

WINNERS: KIEREN FALLON AND FELIX COETZEE IN THE DUBAI GOLDEN SHAHEEN- AND HONG KONG’S JOY AND FUN.

Felix Coetzee is 51, Kieren Fallon is 47 and watching these two brilliant jockeys fight out the Golden Shaheen was wonderful to watch. Coetzee is a bloody genius and the way he drove Singapore’s Rocket Man to the front, then, very subtly, give it a slight breather before having it kick again is something which should be watched in slow motion- and studied. He gave it every chance but, at the end, it was no match for that withering burst from Krypton Factor and Kieren Fallon- a jockey who gets a different type of high from winning. The racing world was very fortunate to see these two great jockeys in action. And though Hong Kong’s Lucky Nine ran a very good third from an awkward barrier, even if drawn better, it could not have got closer than it did to these two- and certainly not the winner.

     

And though all credit to Ortensia, trainer Paul Massara and a great ride by Craig Williams for winning the Dubai Al Quoz Sprint, let’s never forget the third place-getter in the race- Joy And Fun. Now a rising eight-year-old and which has come close to dying a few times, the horse is still racing like a spring chicken. And what a real team it is with this amazing horse, trainer Derek Cruz, jockey Brett Doyle and the extremely loyal and patient owners.
 

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THE “ROADRUNNER BEEP BEEP” AWARD

 

WINNER: CITYSCAPE AND JAMES DOYLE

For a moment, we thought young James Doyle had gone too early on Cityscape in the Dubai Duty Free Classic, but the kid knew what kinda motor the horse he was riding has underneath the bonnet. He led and led and then led all the way home while we waited and waited and waited to see if anything would close the yawning gap. And we’re still yawning. The three Hong Kong horses including the 2 to 1 favourite Ambitious Dragon looked a different horse as did California Memory. Xtension did the “best” of the three and which isn’t saying much. Now, no excuses anyone. There were none and it’s back to the drawing board. Cityscape was more like The Great Escape and every other horse in the race was caught flat-footed and/or napping. A prediction: The racing world will be hearing much more about jockey James Doyle- and for all the right reasons.
 

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THE “YOUTHFUL EXHUBERANCE” AWARD

WINNER: MIKAEL BARZALONA

Sure, he needs to curb that trademark standing-in-the-irons-long-before-the-winning-post, but let’s not become party spoilers and whine about this. Sorry, Jim McGrath, but by going on about this, you came across as an old fart, a whingeing Pom and a party pooper. As Sheikh Mo said, The Dubai World Cup was a “big party” and every “party” has its characters. Plus, the kid- kid- had just won the night’s biggest race of the night aboard Godolphin’s Monterosso- The Dubai World Cup- for the host of this world party. So, Jimbo, put a sock in it and suck it slowly. We watched you interviewing Sheikh Mo and let us tell you this: He basically gave you the bird. He wanted to get back to his party and leave you to suck on that soggy Pommy sock.

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