Fastnet Stayer Wins Back to Back G3 Counties Cups
Enigmatic stayer In A Twinkling (5g Fastnet Rock x Moment in time, by Archway) was on his best behaviour as he secured his second Group III Franklin Auctions Counties Cup (2100m) with a gritty effort on Saturday.
The Jamie Richards-trained five-year-old can be a headstrong character at times and has tested Richard’s patience on numerous occasions. However, when his mind is on the job, he is a highly talented galloper as evidenced by his runner-up performance in the 2019 Group I New Zealand Derby (2400m) along with a stirring front-running effort to win his first Counties Cup last season.
Sent for a lengthy summer spell, Richards gave In a Twinkling a slow build-up before he made his raceday return in September.
Having the fourth run of the campaign, In A Twinkling was handy throughout for rider Opie Bosson and held off a late charge of stablemate Savy Yong Blonk to secure the victory.
Some impressive trackwork during the week had Richards hopeful of a good showing although he was mindful of his charge having a few tricks up his sleeve after he finished last at his most recent run.
“We had been expecting him to run well and turn his form around as his work this week had been very good,” Richards said.
“He is a bit of a hard horse to get a line on as you have to take him on trust a little bit.
“On top of the ground and up in trip this time, he was very good.
“We gave him a good break as he had had a big season as a three-year-old and I think that has paid off and justified the owners’ patience with him.”
In A Twinkling holds a nomination for both the Group III SKYCITY City Of Auckland Cup (2400m) and Group I Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup (3200m) with Richards believing he is best suited on right-handed tracks like Pukekohe and Ellerslie.
“I think the main thing is that he likes it up here and maybe we might need to just keep him going right-handed in the future,” he said.
Purchased out of the Curraghmore draft at the 2017 Karaka Premier Yearling Sale for $250,000 by Te Akau Racing boss David Ellis, In A Twinkling is raced by the Te Akau Fastnet Moment syndicate has the overall record of four wins and four seconds from 22 starts.
Foaled and raised in Australia at Coolmore, In a Twinkling is a half-brother to stakes-winner I’m Incredible from multiple Group III winner Moment in Time, a tough and talented stayer that won up to 2800m.
Henley Park sold the full brother to In a Twinkling at Karaka Book 1 last year for $250,000 to Lindsay Park Racing / Andrew Williams Bloodstock.
Moment in Time has a yearling filly by Fastnet Rock and is due to foal to Justify.