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Church Boy Breaks Through

Having run into smart types when game seconds at his two previous runs, it was a deserved maiden victory for Church Boy at Mornington on Wednesday.

Lining up in a $25,000 metropolitan graded maiden, the up-and-coming three-year-old was sent out a warmly supported favourite – never giving his supporters any cause for concern.

Travelling beautifully with his ears pricked behind the leaders for Damien Oliver, Church Boy was forced to make an early run when the leader took off at the 400m.

Quickly claiming that rival, Church Boy headed to the turn in front and upon straightening kicked clear to win by a soft 1¾ lengths. Promising Zabeel gelding Purple Smile was second and there was another 3¼ lengths to the third placed Bloukrans.

“He won well,” Oliver reported, “when he quickened he really quickened up well.”
“He came off the back of the leader nicely and he had the race won a long way out.”

Stable representative Matt Hoysted was relieved to see Church Boy break through at his sixth outing.

“He has always had the ability but he has been a work in progress.”

“He put it all together today and hopefully he can go on with it from here.”

A New Zealand bred son of the classy sprinter Iffraaj, Church Boy was a NZ$53,000 purchase at the 2012 NZ Bloodstock Select Yearling Sale.

Chosen by Paul Moroney and raced by Segenhoe Thoroughbreds in their famous red and yellow seamed silks, Church Boy is out of a four times winning full sister to the Group One mare Acushla Marie.

On Thursday we head to the Bendigo meeting with two runners starting with debutant Merion in the Super Vobis 2Y0 Handicap.

The son of O’Reilly and the stakes winner Sapphire Belle has shown talent, Moroney describing him as “an interesting runner.”

He won a jump-out in nice fashion here recently, he said, “and he has been pretty professional.”

Asadauskaite – a Pentire filly named after a Lithuanian gold medal winning pentathlete – hails from the same family as Circles Of Gold, Elvstroem and Haradasun; hence her sporty name!

Showing ability at her first few starts in New Zealand, she has performed well in local jump-outs.

“The query is whether she wants a bit more ground but the 1400m should suit her first up,” said Moroney.

We also have a runner at Hawkesbury on Thursday – Exceed And Excel filly Music Of Life lining up in the 1000m maiden.

Showing ability when a solid sixth at her Bendigo debut last spring, she has been given time.

“She trialled really well on wettish going in New Zealand before coming over,” Moroney recalled, “but she probably didn’t settle in straight away and she was still a bit backward.”

“But she has really matured now and this looks a nice starting point for her.”

We are hoping some rain comes to Albury on Friday for Shenzhou Steeds (pictured), a quality galloper who has just not had conditions to suit of late.

“Any rain about would really give him a chance,” Moroney said of the Albury Gold Cup contestant.

[27 Mar 14]


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