POPULAR North Coast mare Sofin spoiled the party for the Gai Waterhouse-trained favourite Caped Crusader, when the Ben Looker-ridden mare came home with a winning run down the straight to win the $100,000 2016 Carlton Mid Port Macquarie Cup at Port Macquarie run over 2000 metres last Friday.
Comfortably winning by five lengths, Sofin defeated the front-running New Zealand bred Caped Crusader, by O’Reilly, with the Lesley Jeffriess-trained Lonely Orphan, by Domesday, third.
A monster crowd was trackside to witness Sofin’s win on the refurbished Mid North Coast track with her local jockey stating that the track was “super”.
It was jubilation from her trainer Shannon Fry from Bowraville and for the six-year-old’s owner Byron Fegan from South West Rocks, who were both taking their first Port Macquarie Cup success.
In fact, it was the first runner in the Cup for the trainer, a hands on conditioner who only has two horses in work.
The daughter of Vinery Stud’s Casino Prince, Sofin was purchased by her owner for $6000 as a yearling as part of the Nathan Tinkler reduction sale at the Magic Millions on the Gold Coast.
“I bought her because she was by Casino Prince, and out of the Galileo mare,” Byron said after the win.
“I tried to get a syndicate together to buy her with me, but a could not get enough interested to put in some dollars, thinking she would cost a bit more.
“But as it turned out I ended up buying her myself for only $6000.”
Showing her liking for middle distances, Sofin won the Port Macquarie Cup Prelude over 1812m at her previous start.
The mare took her record to nine wins – as well as having 10 placings – from 38 starts for earnings of over $234,000.
Eagle Farm conditioner Danny Bougoure made a successful raid taking home two winners with Magic Albert mare Be The Magic and Neptune Palace, by Astronomer Royal, and both ridden by Grafton apprentice Cassie Schmidt.
Sydney jockey Jay Ford also rode a winning double, partnering provincial prepared Woomera, by Smart Missile, to win its maiden race, and Supreme Effort, by Shaft, in the $50,000 feature De Bortoli Port Macquarie Sprint over 1200m.
Savabeel’s half-brother and young sire, Arlington, who stands at Tamalee, Tamworth, scored a new winner Fast Arli, a filly that opened the winning proceedings on the Port Macquarie Cup day.
In her third start, Fast Arli fought hard in the straight to win for her Rosehill trainer Tim Martin, who races the three-year-old in partnership with Arlington's owner Bruce McHugh.
Shaft progeny Supreme Effort takes winning tally to seven
SUPREME Effort’s win in the $50,000 De Bortoli Wines Sprint feature on the massive Port Macquarie Cup meet program is good news for his Australian-bred sire Shaft, who stands at the Peter Holloway managed Hardwicke Stud, near Yass.
Following his second successive win this preparation for Wyong trainer Kim Waugh, Supreme Effort has now won seven races and had five placings from 21 starts for stakes over $281,000.
Other recent Shaft winners include Sydney winner Royal Engineer, Alassak, Gingie, Zedfast, Flight Academy, One Last Poet, and Power Shaft. Now sire of over 129 winners, Shaftm, by champion Danehill sire Flying Spur, was an early two-year-old winner himself who captured Sydney’s major Golden Slipper lead-up race the STC Silver Slipper Stakes-G2.
Shaft was produced from the Rahy mare Traceable, a daughter of Australian-bred but champion South African race filly Tracy’s Element, dam of four stakes horses including Australian Horse Of The Year and champion mare Typhoon Tracy.