Group 2 Glory for Scott Base
22 Mar 2020
Recording win 99 for trainer Jamie Richards this season in New Zealand (102 in total this season), Scott Base (5 g Dalghar – Extra Celestial, by Danehill Dancer) romped away in the $100,000 Ultimate Mazda Japan Trophy (Gr. 2, 1600m) on Saturday at Tauranga.
In just his second season of training solo, and including victories in Australia, Richards recently notched his 200thwin when Aromatic (Sacred Falls) saluted impressively on 18 March at Rotorua, having finished his first season (2018-19) with 98 wins.
Poised ominously in the trail throughout, behind race favourite The Mitigator (Master of Design), rider Danielle Johnson was clear to challenge early in the home straight and Scott Base raced away to score by two and three-quarter lengths.
On Dead4 footing, he ran the 1600 metres in 1:35.3 and returned $5.90 & $1.90 on the NZ TAB. Odds that could have compounded had he not floundered on rain-affected footing in the Kaimai Stakes (Listed, 2000m) last start.
“I was thrilled to see him win like that and the owners have been very patient,” Richards said. “He came up to us because he’d developed a few issues that require managing and he spends plenty of time on the treadmill and in the swimming pool.
“He’d freshened really well with a month between runs and back in trip, with a hood on, and he sprinted well.
“It was a nice ride by Danielle (Johnson), particularly to get him out of the barriers and away with the field because he had been missing the kick. But, he was on the job there today and sprinted away from them.
“The team at the colt barn have done a great job with him and I’m stoked for everyone involved.”
For owners Chris Rutten, John Norwood, and Joanna & John Frew, it was a fitting victory by a talented horse that had previously won the $1m Karaka Million 3YO Classic (Restricted Listed, 1600m) and Wellington Guineas (Gr. 2, 1400m), and seen getting back to his best recently with third in the Anniversary Handicap (Gr. 3, 1600m) and fourth to stable-mate Prise De Fer (Savabeel) in the Taranaki Cup (Gr. 3, 1800m).
“It was picture-perfect ride by Danielle (Johnson) and one that they should show at Apprentice School,” said Te Akau principal David Ellis. “And to win a race for Chris Rutten and his team of owners is a hell of an honour. He’s a good friend of mine and just a champion bloke.
“We trained Yourdeel to win both the Sistema Stakes (Gr. 1, 1200m) and Sires’ Produce Stakes (Gr. 1, 1400m) for him, and he became our seventh Champion Two-Year-Old, and with this horse it suited a professional like Chris that we have a treadmill and swimming pool that we can use in training a lot of horses like Scott Base that have had soundness problems over the years.
“It was the third time we’ve won this race, after winning with Society Beau and Integrate, and Jamie’s 17thblack type win this season in New Zealand, and 20thoverall with three Group Ones in Australia.
“We had a special breakfast this morning with the staff at Matamata, to congratulate them on the wonderful season we’re having and to announce Scott Lucock as the “Team Member of the Month”. Scott does an absolutely outstanding job for us in running the colt barn and with Jamie (Richards) on a restriction because of Covid-19 protocol, Scott is in charge of everything today at Tauranga.
“You’re always confident that things will be done right when Scott is there because he leaves nothing to chance and he’s a true horseman with a wealth of experience. We’re lucky to have him.”
Scott Base was strapped Reece Trumper.
Photo credit – www.raceimages.co.nz