Viddora Drops Group 1 Winterbottom Stake Field Coasts Home

The Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200 m) at Ascot this weekend past proved interesting on a number of levels.

First, the win by five-year-old mare Viddora was simply astounding. She ran away at the end to the degree that it almost seemed as though the others had gone into some sort of slo-mo replay mode. She got to the line so easily that she started to float at the end.

It was the first Group 1 win of her career, although she did come close at Moonee Valley in the Moir Stakes back in September, losing to She Will Reign by a short neck.

Secondly, it was the second Group 1 win for jockey Joe Bowditch. Bowditch has taken over 10,000 rides since he started out in 1991. It took him from that beginning until 2004 to win the South Australian Derby on Hard To Get in 2004. Call in patience or call it persistence, either way, it is a remarkable stat, although Bowditch has taken the reins in only 45 Group 1 races.

Finally, Morphettville-based trainer Lloyd Kennewell needed 17 Group 1 starts and over 4,000 races to notch his first Group 1 winner, so it is highly unlikely that he will ever forget the 2017 Winterbottom Stakes.

Viddora came out of the seventh barrier at $5, second favourite to State Solicitor at $4.20. That horse had an off day and could manage nothing better than an eighth place finish.

Second place went to Fuhryk. The Hayes – Dabernig triumvirate and their gun jockey Damien Oliver missed the jump a bit, but with the spurt Viddora produced in the final 200 m, it seems doubtful that Fuhryk could have prevailed.

The third place went to Durendal, who started on the rail at $26, so it was a good showing for him. It was his first Group 1 jump.

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