Red hot sire Fastnet Rock added a new stakes-winner to his tally at Moonee Valley on Friday night when promising colt Highly Recommended (3c Fastnet Rock x Suggestive, by Al Hareb) scored a courageous win in the Group II MVRC Alister Clark Stakes.
Despite only having won one of his previous 11 starts, Highly Recommended has not been far away in some very good races and always appealed as a serious contender in this 2040 metre staying test.
Ridden just off the pace set by Victoria Derby winner Sangster, Highly Recommended travelled well throughout and when Sangster poured on the pressure before the home turn, he responded gamely to chase hard to the line.
Highly Recommended gradually overhauled Sangster and then held off a late challenge from Ethiopia to win his first Black Type event by half a length, his overall record two wins and six placings from 12 starts with prizemoney in excess of $280,000
“He’s always raced in top company and I’ve been looking forward to getting him out to a mile and a quarter as we’ve always had the Rosehill Guineas in mind for him and now it’s all coming together,” said Peter Moody.
“He’s a big dopey bugger and it’s taken a while for the penny to drop.
“Very few horses can win their first go at a mile and a quarter and the fact that he has will stand him in good stead for the future.
“We were considering the Randwick Guineas tomorrow, but opted to stay here for this race, although he’ll be on the truck to Sydney next week.”
Highly Recommended was purchased by Moody for $235,000 at the 2010 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale from the draft of Stuart Ramsey’s Turangga Farm.
He is the third stakes-winner for outstanding producer Suggestive and is a half-brother to Group I VRC Emirates Stakes winner Sky Cuddle and Group III winner Sky Love.
Highly Recommended is the 28th stakes-winner for Fastnet Rock and is his 12th in Australia this season.