Trans-Tasman Stakes Double for Fastnet Rock
Champion sire Fastnet Rock added two new stakes-winners to his tally on Saturday with Gino Severini (7g Fastnet Rock x Green Castle, by Indian Ridge) and The Harrovian (7g Fastnet Rock x Harrow by Dehere) showing plenty of pep in their step, even as older horses.
A well-travelled galloper that started his racing career in Ireland before an unsuccessful stint in Hong Kong saw him sent to New Zealand, Gino Severini (pictured) has struck career best form at age seven for his new trainers Bruce Wallace and Grant Cooksley.
It took every metre of the Ellerslie home straight for Gino Severini to finally gain the upper hand over his rivals as he captured his first stakes victory in the Group III Eagle Technology Stakes (1600m) by a short head.
“He always tries really hard and is normally thereabouts,” Cooksley said.
“I think he can go on most tracks and over most distances but he does seem to like it at Ellerslie.
“It was a good win as the runner-up can be a very hard horse to get past.”
While all of his wins have come at either 1400m or 1600m, Cooksley believes a rise in distance won’t hold any fears for the former European and Hong Kong galloper.
“I think he can go over most distances as he relaxes well in his races,” he said.
“He went a super race for fourth in the Herbie Dyke Stakes (Gr.1, 2000m) earlier this year so 2000m won’t be a problem for him.
“He goes well at Ellerslie so we might have a look at the Zabeel Classic (Gr.1, 2000m) on Boxing Day although there is also the Rich Hill Mile (Gr.2, 1600m) on New Year’s day, so there are plenty of options for him.”
Irish bred Gino Severini is a half-brother to Group I winner Millisle, the Champion 2YO European Filly of 2019, and stakes-winner Ithoughtitwasover being one of nine winners from terrific producer Green Castle.
A cult hero in far north Queensland, The Harrovian lined up in the Listed BRC Recognition Stakes (1350m) at Doomben in Queensland chasing his tenth consecutive win, not an easy task when you have to carry 59kg and are dropping back in trip from 1640m.
Having his first start for new trainers Toby and Trent Edmonds after transferring from Stephen Massingham, who guided him to his previous nine wins, The Harrovian rose to the challenge scoring a popular length and a quarter victory.
The Harrovian was passed in shy of his $100,000 reserve at the Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale where he was consigned by Newhaven Park and later found his way into the stable of Victorian trainer Jim Conlan.
He won three modest races at country tracks in Victoria and was then sold to new owners in far north Queensland and given to Stephen Massingham, who has transformed a fairly average horse into a stakes-winning cult hero.
He won three of his first five starts at Cairns and Townsville for his new trainer, finishing second in the other two, before starting on his current winning streak on July 16, 2019 that is still going!
“This was his best win since I’ve been riding him,” said winning rider Brad Stewart, who has won three from three on the seven-year-old.
“He seemed to really appreciate the hard pace. He will be competitive in anything they run him in from 1200m to 2000m.”
The Harrovian was bred by Victorian breeder Nick Turnbull and is a full brother to multiple Group I placed Group III winner We’re Gonna Rock and is the second stakes-winner among six winners from Harrow, a half-sister by Dehere to Group I winners Bluebird the Word and Porto Roca, the dam of Dubai World Cup winner Monterosso.
The family bristles with Black Type and also includes Group I winning sprinting mare Silent Sedition.
The Harrovian has the overall record of 15 wins and four placings from 28 starts with prizemoney topping $550,000.
Gino Severini and The Harrovian are the 163rg and 164th stakes-winners for champion sire Fastnet Rock.