There was considerable satisfaction all round after the win by Alberton Park (NZ) in the $100,000, listed Big Sports Breakfast June Stakes (1100m) at the Australian Turf Club’s meeting at Rosehill on Saturday, from the John O’Shea stable, part-owner Tony Bott and jockey Tommy Berry who beat his twin Nathan on Stratana.
Alberton Park (NZ) and Tommy Berry with Stratana and Nathan Berry inside, picture Sportpix.com.au
Berry was told by Bryce Heys, foreman for O’Shea, that the five-year-old Thorn Park mare was the best horse in the race and to be patient, and it was sound advice as Berry was blocked for room with 100m to run.
In front was brother Nathan and Stratana (54kg), but Tommy calmly took Alberton Park (54kg) over the heels of Stratana, and then set off again between Skytrain (58kg) and Josh Parr on the outside.
Alberton Park lengthen again and showed a good turn of foot to sprint clear and the 3/4L winning margin was a good reflection of not only her skill over the field, but also her ability to sprint twice after the interrupted passage.
Zaratone (59kg) and Richard Bensley had led into the straight and it took until the 200m for the chasers to swamp the six-year-old with Stratana and Skytrain leading the charge. Alberton Park was coming well, but then Nathan kept Tommy at bay necessitating the change of racing position to the outside.
At the line Alberton Park was well clear of Stratana (Stratum) with Skytrain (Lonhro) coming to the end of his run for third, the margin a head. See The World was fourth and Emotional Circus fifth.
The time was 1.05.25 on the Slow 6 track with the final 600m in 35.52. Alberton Park paid $2.90 on NSW TAB.
Tommy Berry, picture Sportpix.com.au
“It was a perfect result. I was holding my breath over the final furlong (200m) and I was not sure the way the day was going we had not had the rub of the green and I thought not again, but I am delighted for Tony Bott,” said Heys.
“He has put a lot into the sport and he has supported the stable and we have some nice fillies for him and it is important we do the job. She is deserved of a race like this.
“I know it was out mare that won the Breeders’ Stakes (Steps In Time) but she was desperately unlucky and that was a superior form race for the mare’s races through the autumn. Look she had a great profile coming into the race and she has delivered and I am delighted she had a black type race and she will rain on from here,” he said.
Heys said that Alberton Park would most likely go forward to the listed Takeover Target Stakes (1200m) at Gosford on June 22nd.
“It was great to beat Nath. It was funny, I was going for a run inside him and it was very tight, and when I roared he must have heard me roar, I do not know, but he kept it like that, he was not moving an inch,” said Berry.
“So I was switched to the outside and she showed a very good turn of foot and she was too good for them. I was worried when I switched but I knew she would let down like she did in her trial and I was very confident.
“I knew Nathan’s horse had no kick as I rode it the start before and it was a bit one paced so I was there to win the race,” he said.
It was the first stakes quinella for the Berry brothers.
Alberton Park is out of the Stylish Century mare Alberton Star and this was her seventh and most important win from 34 starts. With 16 placings she has earned stakes of $383,700 for the E-Thoroughbred Syndicate, managed by Bott, and Larry Nestadt.
It was metropolitan win number 52 for Tommy Berry with Nathan on 18 winners.