Rosehill trainer Chris Waller was the leading trainer in Sydney last season and the stable success rolled on at Canterbury on Saturday with three winners with first Stout Hearted (USA) taking the Canterbury BMW Strong Relationship Bm 87 Handicap (1900m), secondly Relaxed And Happy taking the Canterbury BMW Inglis Bonus Bm 75 (1200m) and thirdly Madam Nash the Canterbury BMW Ambassador Darren Beadman Bm 80 Handicap (1900m).
They were all similar wins with fit horses rolling along well and having the fields chasing hard, but to no avail.
The progressive Relaxed And Happy made it three wins in succession and making the step up to Saturday company in fashion well within keeping of the Exceed And Excel three-year-old gelding’s name.
Brenton Avdulla was very positive in his intentions from the start on Relaxed And Happy (56kg) going forward to the lead from barrier 10 and that basically was end of the challenges from the rest of the field.
Relaxed and Happy scores an easy win under Brenton Avdulla, picture sportpix.com.au
Avdulla had plenty of gears left entering the main straight and such was the easy lead he waited until the 200m before clicking up into a higher one. He did not need to extend for long and the result was an easing margin of 2 3/4L.
White House (54.5kg) (Fastnet Rock) and Corey Brown were second with the $3.50 favourite Albrecht (55kg) (Redoute’s Choice) and Kerrin McEvoy third, the margin a half-head.
The time was 1.10.62 on the Dead 4 track with the final 600m in 35.72. Relaxed And Happy paid $7.70 on NSW TAB.
Waller was going to consider the options for Relaxed And Happy with one being a short refresher spell and the possibility of a Melbourne campaign over the spring, and another being a longer spell and a summer campaign.
“He is ready for a spell as he is just not developed yet,” said Waller.
“He will be winning a good race, he is a good sprinter,” he added.
“The speed map looked like there was one thing to do and that was to go forward. He left the gates quickly so I thought I might as well give him a good 50m and get across,” said Avdulla.
“I was able to get across nicely and get in front. I just held him back until the corner and broke away when I asked. He definitely quickened and obviously gets through the wet alright but he is just as good on the top of the ground.
“He gave me a real good feel. I have not ridden a lot of Group 1 horses but he gives you the feel of a progressive horse who is stakes class,” he said.
Relaxed And Happy, out of the Royal Academy mare Regal Kiss, is owned by CC Lai. After the two earlier wins at ATC mid-week meetings at Newcastle and Wyong he has now earned stakes of $95,880 plus a Saturday BOBS bonus of $20,000.
Race Three Relaxed And Happy, picture ATC
Race Four Madam Nash, picture ATC