Danehill Express is in red-hot form leading up to the Perth Magic Millions. The Mungrup Stud stallion was Sunspeed’s Champion freshman in 2011-12 and he kicked in with another five winners last week.
Danehill Express has 23 yearlings entered for the Magic Millions and Mungrup studmaster Gray Williamson has 14 of them coming up from the Great Southern. “Winning that first-season title was a bonus,” Williamson said. “He didn’t race as a two year-old and you can see many of his first crop are still maturing. We have a couple that could turn out to be WA Oaks prospects.”
The Perth Sale is a month away and one of Williamson’s early favourites is the Danehill Express filly from Fleeting Angel (Lot 70). “She’s a real good looker,” Williamson said. “Some of the family can be a bit on the small side but not this one.”
Neville Parnham’s precocious colt Lenience was first of the five Danehill Express winners when he lobbed at Ascot last Saturday week. Mungrup sold him for $54,000 and, with a Westspeed bonus into the bargain, he earned $55,000 on debut.
Danehill Express doubled up at Pinjarra on Wednesday with Miss Omeresa and Helder The Painter.
Miss Omeresa is prepared by Perth Cup winning trainer Graeme Ballantyne and is a half-sister to Metal Storm’s G1 Railway Stakes winner Old Fashion.
Helder The Painter is from Metal Storm mare Chanihi who won three Belmont sprints for Lex and Shirley Piper. “He’s a handy horse although I thought the 1200 metres at Pinjarra might have been a bit short,” trainer Aaron Morton said. “He had won over 1400m at Bunbury so I freshened him up and he handled the drop back in distance without any problems.”
Morton is based at Pingelly and he has catalogued 10 yearlings for the Perth Magic Millions under the Queenslea Park banner. The majority are being prepped for Mungrup Stud’s clients including three colts by Danehill Express.
Over in Victoria on Friday night, Mungrup homebred Livorno Express landed a Cranbourne maiden second-up after a spring spell. She is trained by Jason Warren for Williamson and fellow part-owners John Boccamazzo and Brian Fuller.
Danehill Express added a fifth notch when Sooky Lala won on Sunday and, appropriately enough, it was at Mt Barker’s signature Mungrup Sprint meeting.
The Steve Wolfe trained filly made an auspicious debut in the West Cape Howe Wines Maiden (1100m). She was backed for a stack and won like a good thing as the $2.60 favourite.
Sooky Lala is from Wolfe’s 2006 WA Oaks winner Moodometer and he won’t die wondering whether she is capable of winning this year’s classic on April 6.
– Karl Patterson
Danehill Express filly ranges up on the outside to win at Cranbourne