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Saint's Saintly

How apt that promising galloper Saint Or Sinner win a race called the Saintly Handicap – and how well he won it too!

Always travelling well behind the leaders, the in-form four-year-old hooked out early in the straight, hitting the lead perhaps a shade too early but finding plenty in a battle with Backstedt.

Whilst the margin was not a long one, the win was an easy one – jockey Glen Boss declaring it “soft” and Michael Moroney “painless.”

“He was going to win by a bigger margin,” Moroney said, “ but he just knocks off when he hits the front.”

That is just in experience, the still lightly raced gelding on the improve and racing in great heart winning his last three in impressive style.

An eye-catching bay, Saint Or Sinner impressed Boss before he even climbed aboard – “he just looked like the winner walking around the enclosure,” he said,

“He was walking around with a good deal or purpose about him and that’s what he felt like as soon as I got on his back.”

Boss was not happy with the slow tempo of the 1700m event but happy with the way Saint Or Sinner came under him – “and he was in the right spot and his win was so soft in the end.”

Always held in high regard by the stable, Saint Or Sinner was taken north for a Queensland campaign last winter but “things did not go right.”

“He knocked his leg which was not serious but he just took a little while to come good,” Moroney said.

Things are on the up now for Saint Or Sinner however with the $100,000 Yarra Valley Cup on March 16 a likely immediate target.

It is always satisfying winning races with horses who have a special connection with the stable’s history and Saint Or Sinner is one such horse – Ballymore having been home to his dam and his half-sister.

One of Paul Moroney’s great bargain purchases, Saint Or Sinner’s dam It’s My Sin fetched just $17,000 at the 1995 Easter Yearling Sale – the cheapest horse at the sale.

She went on to win five races including the Group One Otaki Maori Stakes and at stud she has done a great job producing six winners including our classy stayer Divine Rebel.

Also a great buy at $80,000, that Group Two winner who was twice runner-up in the Group One Sydney Cup, won well over half a million dollars. Saint Or Sinner meanwhile has already won over $160,000 in stakes and he too was a yearling sale steal at just NZ$36,000.

Congratulations to Saint Or Sinner’s happy owners R & C Legh Racing, Gurners Bloodstock, GG Ltd, Barry Broomhead, Barry and Deidre Neville-White, Glenn Mews, Harold Hansen, Noel & Judy Griffin and Ballymore Stables (Aust) Pty Ltd. It was lovely to see several connections on course including the family of the late Andrew Ramsden (pictured, photo courtesy of Bruno Cannatelli).

[02 Mar 14]

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