Blackfriars began the momentum for Low Tide’s build-up to the $500,000 Karrakatta Plate with a another winning double-act at Ascot on Saturday.
Low Tide’s chances in the G2 Karrakatta this Saturday received a boost when William Pike preferred to ride the Blackfriars youngster instead of two-time Ascot winner O’Hara De Belle (Snitzel).
Blackfriars began last Saturday’s meeting with an overdue victory by Black Felix in the Ozbet Hcp (1400m). It was his first win since the LR Placid Ark Stakes in November 2010. “He’s had plenty of issues and beach work helps,” trainer Stephen Miller said. “The owners have been patient and so have I!
Black Felix (5g Blackfriars – Catch The Cat by Royal Abjar) is raced by a syndicate that includes South Perth Rugby League club stalwarts Bob Wilson, Trevor Sanders and Kevin Gould. They also raced stakes winning sprinter Kaprats several years ago.
Black Felix failed to reach a $30,000 reserve at the 2009 Perth Magic Millions. He is a direct descendant of G3 Sir Ernest Lee Steere Classic winner Edge Of Darkness.
Black Uma brought up the Blackfriars double in the Vitsas Family Hcp (1800m). The giant gelding was placed in the LR Belmont Guineas in June 2012 and trainer Jim Taylor believes he could develop into a Railway Stakes horse.
“We’re racing him over 1800m because of the Westspeed bonuses but I think he will be better suited over a mile,” Taylor predicted. “He’s just about the biggest horse I’ve trained – must be 17.2 hands!”
Black Uma (4g Blackfriars – Uma Princess by Umatilla) is a homebred for Scenic Lodge owner David Smith. He is a younger half-brother to Taylor’s old war-horse Idyllic Prince (Scenic) who bowed out of racing a millionaire after winning the 2011 Goodwood Sprint at Belmont.
The Scenic Lodge team is looking forward to the Karrakatta Plate after Low Tide won his final lead-up in a canter at Ascot. The gelding has more upside than any other two year-old seen out in Perth this season.
“He’s not really a two year-old type but has earned a start,” Morton explained after the gelding won the Westspeed Plate (1200m) last week. “I’ve got a lot of time for Low Tide and he will handle the hustle of the Karrakatta.”
Low Tide (2g Blackfriars – True Believer by Is It True) was bred and reared at Scenic Lodge and sold for $65,000 at the 2012 Perth Magic Millions. He’s a half-brother to Brisbane Easter Cup winner Majorca (Encosta de Lago) and his dam is a half-sister to Old Comrade (Old Spice), a G1 winner at Flemington and Ascot.
Morton is gunning for his first Karrakatta after close seconds with Scenic geldings Scenic Blast (2006) and Oroya Gold (2007).
– Karl Patterson