WEDNESDAY: January 18, 2023: HAWKESBURY’S leading trainer Brad Widdup is on a roll, and flies to the Gold Coast in the morning hoping to maintain the momentum.
Brad won his third race in two days when The Halo ($16) bolted in with the Benchmark 64 Handicap (1350m) at Wyong today against her own sex.
He had landed a Newcastle double a day earlier, and shared two of his three winners with Sydney racing’s latest recruit, experienced jockey Brett Prebble.
Prebble has hit the ground running since relocating from Melbourne, and won on debutante Shalaa’s Moment yesterday before scoring on The Halo today.
The $130,000 Melbourne Premier yearling sale purchase in 2020 for Tricolours Racing made the grade from country to provincial with authority.
She had won a Bathurst Maiden (1400m) last July, and Brad was pleased with her first-up fourth to Obvious Step at Gosford on December 31.
“She drew the outside that day, and I thought her run was excellent,” he said.
“Her appearance was so good this morning that suggested to me that she would run well today.”
The Halo tracked La Jolie Fille to the turn today, then scooted clear in the straight to easily defeat Linguee ($17) and Pink Baroque ($4.40).
Brad, with 34 winners up (and 271 overall) in not quite the first half of the season, is understandably delighted with his stable’s progress.
He will be even more delighted if Hellbent filly Fire Lane (Jay Ford) can win tomorrow’s $2m Magic Millions 2YO Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast, postponed from last Saturday.
And he is hoping the current “Heavy 9” track rating is upgraded in the morning.
“Fire Lane is in great order,” Brad said. “She did win a Canterbury trial in late November on a soft track, but I do feel she is better on top of the ground.”
Fire Lane has won two of her three starts – and they have been on good tracks.