Winx Thrills with 19th Consecutive in Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes
Last time out, in the Group 2 Missile Stakes, Winx missed the jump and gave the others a chance to end her winning streak at 17. She overcame that adversity to win in a heart-stopper. Others could only hope that she expended so much energy in the comeback that she would be flat going into Saturday’s Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes.
This time around the turf, however, it was jockey Hugh Bowman who could have been the goat if Winx had failed to win her 19th straight.
You would not have expected Bowman to drop his whip, but he did exactly that in the final 300 m of the race when the and the mighty mare were trying to close a 10-length gap that Gerald Ryan’s Red Excitement had opened, as Ryan’s go-for-broke strategy was about the only tactic at his disposal.
Even more surprisingly, Bowman did not have a back-up stick along for the ride. This is, after all, a professional jockey, right?
Red Excitement jockey Josh Parr almost pulled off the upset of the young spring season. Trainer Ryan had instructed him, pre-race, “”I told Josh to be aggressive, lead because none of the others are quick enough,” Ryan said.” I just told Josh once he got there let him get into a rhythm and he’ll tow you around.”
Red Excitement looks like a potential de-throner of the Ceresi Lannister of the Australian turf. The close result against a horse that normally puts a lot of grass between herself and her closest pursuers has Ryan touting his horse’s chances when Winx takes to the track again in two weeks.
Winx appears to be unstoppable. She ran the closing 600 m of the Chelmsford Stakes in just over 33 seconds, almost a full second better than any of the other 11 horses in the race.
Bowman has been getting some thrill rides of late, but he went into the race having won two from the undercard at Randwick.