Zoustar, Atlantic Jewel Win in Australia
Zoustar got up the closing stages to win the lucrative Golden Rose Stakes (Aus-I) at Rosehill Gardens Sept. 14 in Sydney, while rising star Atlantic Jewel kept her unbeaten record intact at Moonee Valley near Melbourne.
Racing well off the pace, Zoustar swiftly accelerated when called upon after angling widest of all on the home turn and secured his victory in the final 200 meters. He overhauled runner-up Dissident to win by a neck in the $1 million ($924,600 in United States funds) race, the richest of the Sydney Spring Carnival.
Bull Point made a brilliant run from last to take third in the 16-horse field. Fast 'N' Rocking, the 9-2 favorite, finished tenth.
Under veteran Jim Cassidy, Zoustar was timed in 1:22.51 in the 1,400-meter (about seven-furlong) race for 3-year-olds, bringing the rider his 99th group I victory.
Zoustar is trained by Chris Waller for a partnership that includes Iskander Racing. He is from the first crop of Northern Meteor, who died in July after a swift onset of colic at Widden Stud in the Hunter Valley of New South Wales. The son of Encosta de Lago was Australia's leading freshman sire last season.
The colt, who improved to four wins from six career starts, won the BRC Sires Produce Stakes (Aus-II) in May at Doomben. He was an Aus$140,000 purchase at the 2012 Magic Millions Gold Coast yearling sale purchase for Iskander Racing from the Kulani Park consignment. He is out of the winning Redoute's Choice mare Zouzou.
Atlantic Jewel tallied her ninth win from as many career starts when handily taking the Top Cut Stocks Stakes (Aus-II) by 2 1/2 lengths. The race was a prep for the W. S. Cox Plate (Aus-I), Australia weight-for-age championship Oct. 26 at Moonee Valley.
The even-money favorite under Michael Rodd, the 5-year-old Fastnet Rock mare took control on the home turn and coasted clear for the decisive win over 21-1 longshot Oasis Bloom. Atlantic Jewel was making her second start in a comeback from injury that sidelined her for 490 days. She entered off a dazzling 2 1/4-length triumph in the New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (Aus-I) Aug. 30 at Caulfield.
Atlantic Jewel finished 1,600 meters (about one mile) in 1:36.88.
Rodd, the unbeaten mare's regular rider, told ABC News that he is excited to be involved with the blossoming star.
"We've had more than a preview with Black Caviar and what she did for racing, and obviously this isn't anywhere in the realm of what she brought to the track, but it's nice to think that she's brought a few more people through the gates...the momentum will keep building."
Trained by Mark Kavanagh, Atlantic Jewel is out of the winning Zabeel mare Regard, who also is the dam of 2012 Schweppes Thousand Guineas winner Commanding Jewel, by Commands. She was bought by Coolmore bloodstock adviser Demi O'Byrne for Aus$320,000 at the 2010 Magic Millions Gold Coast yearling sale. He retained a share in the mare and races her in partnership with Coolmore and associates, Laurie Macri, C. Murphy, and Mathilde Texier.
Stallion Fastnet Rock, who stands in Australia for Coolmore, currently leads Australia's general sire list.
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