Takeover's eyeing another target
TAKEOVER Target will be set for another English racing success in Saturday's Group One Golden Jubilee Stakes (1200m) at Royal Ascot.
The Coffs Harbour-trained speedster was beaten into fourth place in yesterday morning's King's Stand Stakes at Ascot but was far from disgraced.
He finished just over two lengths behind the winner, fellow Australian Miss Andretti, who won the 1000m sprint in race record time.
Despite failing to defend the crown won 12 months ago, Takeover Target was far from disgraced, battling on well after sharing the lead from the start, and jockey Jay Ford has high hopes for a return to the winner's circle on Saturday.
"He"s that little bit older now and I think he'll be better over some more ground," Ford said.
Takeover Target may again have to come up against the brilliant Miss Andretti with the mare's trainer, Lee Freedman, leaving his options open.
Freedman was highly emotional after seeing his horse dominate some of the world's best sprinters.
"It's up there with the Melbourne Cups," Freedman said.
"For an Australian trainer there is nothing like winning our biggest race, but this is another dimension.
"This is harder in a lot of ways to bring a horse this far and win."
Miss Andretti's win was the third in five years for Australian horses in the King's Stand, with the Newcastle-trained sprinter Choisir having scored a breakthrough win in 2003.
Jockey Craig Newitt had difficulty finding the words to describe his emotions after landing the most significant victory of his career.
"I don't know what to think," Newitt said.
"My head's spinning, it's almost too much."
Damien Oliver, who rode another Australian horse, Magnus, into third place for trainer Peter Moody, said his horse had run up to its best form.
"But she (Miss Andretti) is simply too good for him," Oliver said. "She's beaten him a couple of times before, that's all there is too it."
Australia's other King's Stand starter, Bentley Biscuit, turned in a disappointing effort jockey Nash Rawiller put down to the firmness of the track.