Miss Andretti, one of the greatest sprinters in the world, is upset in the Robert Sangster Stakes in Australia
- By Ric Chapman
"Get on this, he is unbeatable today," declared trainer Ross McDonald as his powerhouse 3-year-old Weekend Hussler was lining up for a return to racing in the group I, Oakleigh Plate over 5 1/2 furlongs at Caulfield in Australia on Feb 23.
Miss Andretti is widely regarded as the best sprinter on the planet. She leads the Global Sprint Challenge, is now in Hong Kong readying herself for the $2.5-million Cathay Pacific International Sprint (HK-I), and on Nov. 26 in Australia she was crowned Australian Racehorse of the Year.
Sacred Kingdom has just one formidable challenge left -- a race against Australian speed ace Miss Andretti at Sha Tin in three weeks time -- and the right result there will see him claim the title of the world's champion sprinter for 2007.
It was only six very quick furlongs, but The Age Sprint Classic at Flemington on Nov. 10 has been the race of the Melbourne Spring Carnival thus far.
The numbers may be down, but the quality is higher than ever for this year's Cathay Pacific International Races in Hong Kong in December, with Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe Lucien Barriere (Fr-I) winner Dylan Thomas and runaway Global Sprint Challenge (Jpn-I) victor Miss Andretti leading an all-star nomination list.
The many outstanding performances by Australian Thoroughbreds, both domestic and abroad, have been officially crowned in Australia. The 2006-2007 ANZ (Australia and New Zealand) Classifications were released, reflecting the best individual performances by Southern Hemisphere-bred horses in the past 12 months.
Much of the pre-race attention focused on Australians Miss Andretti and Takeover Target, but it was local hero Soldier's Tale that captured the Golden Jubilee Stakes (Eng-I) on the closing day of Royal Ascot on Saturday.
Australian star Miss Andretti roared to an impressive victory in the King's Stand Stakes (Eng-II) on Tuesday at Royal Ascot.
In the euphoria which followed Miss Andretti's record breaking Newmarket Handicap (Aus-I) success on March 10, Lee Freedman placed the mare on the same elevated plane as Makybe Diva.
Miss Andretti powered her way to a third group I win for the season in taking the William Reid Australia Stakes (Aust-I) at Melbourne's Moonee Valley racecourse Feb 17.
Miss Andretti, named for Mario Andretti, had enough horsepower to win Australia's first group I of the year, the Lightning Stakes.
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