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Canterbury Heavy 8 no issue for Socialist and Astrologer

A Heavy 8 racing surface at Canterbury Park on Wednesday for Sydney’s midweek metropolitan meeting saw the two juvenile contests on the program fully test the mettle of a good selection of lightly raced 2-year-olds before first and second race winners Socialist and Astrologer came through their respective assignment posting their maiden career win.

The Ciaron Maher & Davd Eustace trained Socialist went to post the $2.25 favourite of the $50,000, Vinery Stud Handicap (1200m) for fillies and virtually led every step of the way after a very clean break from barrier 7.

Very narrowly beaten at her previous outing over the same course and distance, the first-crop daughter of Capitalist was ridden in very confident fashion by Jason Collett who basically bossed the race, dictating terms to their seven rivals before proving too strong over the closing stages.

Second favourite Morioka ($2.50) made Socialist work from start to finish, but came under pressure very early in the Canterbury straight and was never a genuine threat to the winner over the final 150 metres.

Contentedly ($9.00) claimed third, but was well beaten on the line, finishing in the region of five lengths adrift of the first two fillies home.

Socialist saluted at her fourth career start after having made her first race appearance in October, before showing steady improvement since resuming in March.

Raced by Seymour Bloodstock, Mr M G Donegan, Mr J M Simmons, Mr R Smykowsky, Big Red Racing, Mr D Distefano, Mr R Catoggio, Mr S Ioannidis & Mr P Taing, this promising filly is the sixth living foal of a very precocious daughter of Exceed And Excel by the name of Baby Corn, who has also produced the ATC Sires’ Produce (G1) and Blue Diamond Stakes (G1) placegetter Cornrow.

Socialist scored in the time of 1m11.14s, running home the final 600m of the contest in 35.01s.

Official margins on the race were 1-1/4 Len x 4-3/4 Len.

Astrologer ($4.20) broke through for his first career win with a determined effort which saw him race just behind the leaders in the early stages of the $50,000, Darley 2021 Roster Handicap (1200m), before producing a strong finishing burst in the straight.

In similar fashion to previous race winner Socialist, Astrologer was made to work for his maiden victory when Overmann ($2.30 fav) battled every inch of the straight, but the Peter & Paul Snowden trained colt responded well to a typically forceful Tommy Berry ride, proving too tough for his main rival when closing in on the finishing line.

Bartoselli ($7.00) finished third, but was well beaten into the minor placing.

Astrologer placed in the Group 3 Breeders’ Plate at the very beginning of the Sydney juvenile racing season and was also tested in Brisbane black-type company very late last year. The son of Star Turn is raced by James Harron Bloodstock Colts, Love Racing, Mrs B C Bateman, Mr P Mehrten, Doyles Breeding & Racing, Mr S N Gillard, G1G Racing & Breeding, Mr D Saab, Rockingham Thoroughbreds, Mr J A Ingham & Mrs F A Ingham and got off the mark at his fifth race start.

Astrologer ran 1m11.65s, coming home the final 600m in 36.64s — both his overall time and sectional time being markedly slower than that recorded by Socialist earlier on the same Canterbury Park card.

Official margins of the $50,000, Darley 2021 Roster Handicap (1200m) were a Half-Length x Four Lengths.

Vinery Stud Handicap

Darley 2021 Roster Handicap, photo finish pictures ATC

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