SUNDAY: September 3, 2023: The “girls” shouted themselves hoarse!

A ladies’ syndicate which races lightly-raced three-year-old filly Manhattan’s had plenty to cheer about when she shed her maiden status on her home track at Hawkesbury yesterday.

Leading Hawkesbury trainer Brad Widdup, whose wife Milissa is a syndicate member, claimed his fifth winner of the new season when Manhattan’s ($3.20) took the Maiden Plate (1400m).

One of early NSW premiership front-runner Jean Van Overmeire’s three winners, Manhattan’s did best to overhaul $2.90 favorite River Tamar in the closing stages.

A daughter of Hellbent and Snitzel mare Air Apparent, she was a $250,000 purchase in January last year at the Gold Coast Magic Millions yearling sale.

Brad hasn’t pushed Manhattan’s who was having only her fourth start yesterday, and is confident there will be further improvement from her as she gains more experience.

“I feel she will run at least 1600m,” Brad said today.

“Provided Manhattan’s continues to do well, we will keep her going for now to help both toughen her and become more experienced, and also with an eye to the Magic Millions meeting at the Gold Coast in January.

“You have to consider it with such big prizemoney races available.”

Brad was at Royal Randwick where his recent Sydney winner Tintookie ($7) ran well again when a close fourth to Waverider Buoy ($4.60) in the Benchmark 78 Handicap (1100m).

However, she is almost certain to be given a break.

“Tintookie has done a good job this preparation, and was coming back from her 1200m win at Randwick a fortnight ago to 1100m,” Brad said.

“But I feel it is the right time now to give her a rest.”

Brad is in two minds about whether Travelling Kate will have one more run before a decision is made about retiring her to stud.

“I’ve spoken with her owner Max Whitby,” he said. 

“If we can find another suitable race in the coming weeks, we will start her and her performance will determine whether she races more this season or goes off to stud.”

Travelling Kate won consecutive races at Canterbury (1900m) and Rosehill Gardens (1800m) before tackling 2000m at the latter venue yesterday week and tailed the nine runners home after having to do too much work.’