Superstar galloper Pierro extended his win streak to eight after a dominant victory in the $220,000 Group 2 City Jeep Bill Stutt Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley on Friday night and looks on target for a crack at the WS Cox Plate next month.
Pierro gives a galloping lesson to his rivals, picture Turfpress
Gai Waterhouse’s triple crown winner came down to Melbourne with an eye on the Caulfield Guineas though more importantly, the weight-for-age championship of Australasia.
Ridden by Nash Rawiller, Pierro jumped well from the barriers, but Rawiller was happy to hand up the lead and take a sit in second place.
Little changed until the field approached the turn when Rawiller peeled off the fence to ensure Pierro wasn’t blocked in and the race was as good as over. Pierro cruised up to the leader before kicking clear on straightening.
Despite the short straight, Pierro still managed to put on four and three quarter lengths on Carringbush Jack (Noonan) with a further two and a half lengths to Jimando (Neilson). The overall time was 1.36.31 with the last 600m run in 35.86.
“He is going on to better things,” Rawiller said. “He needed this tonight, I wanted to be as soft as possible but still wanted to get the job done and get a bit of improvement out of it.
“(He handle the track) like he had been here 100 times. He is such an adaptable horse and that is just what makes him as good as he is, he just adapts to situations.
“I knew (Gai) would have him fit enough for tonight and there is still more improvement to come. Tonight we just wanted him to show he was heading in the right direction and he certainly showed that.”
“He is just such an exciting colt,” Waterhouse said. “It was a galloping lesson and I loved the way he lowered himself and found the line, and his acceleration at the end of the race, that was the best thing.
“People said about him going from 1200m to 1600m, I knew it wouldn’t be a problem.
“(The crowd) love him, and rightly so, he is such a handsome horse, he takes your eye.”
Pierro, by Lonhro out of the Daylami mare Miss Right Note, is owned by Mr and Mrs Greg Kolivos.
In the $200,000 Group 3 Programmed Property JRA Cup (2040m), Darren Gauci stole victory by making a run for it on board Bianmick at the 700m before fending off all comers in the straight to score.
Sitting off a moderate tempo in running, Gauci got impatient, sitting three deep near the speed so took the initiative and it paid off for trained Michael Brady and whoever took the $21 with TAB.com.au.
Earlier in the evening, Buffering withheld a late and unlucky challenge from Ready To Rip to grab victory in the $300,000 Group 2 A.J. Moir Stakes (1200m).
With Hugh Bowman on board, Buffering jumped slowly but mustered early speed to lead the field along comfortably. Rounding the turn Bowman kicked and Buffering looked to have the race in the bag before Luke Nolen and Ready To Rip looked to push between runners.
Fortunately for Buffering backers, the gap wasn’t quite open and Ready To Rip lost a length getting through before charging late to just miss.