Star Turn can cement his place as Australia’s Champion 3YO Sprinter in the Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on Friday night.
The Team Hawkes colt has been installed a $4.40 favourite by the TAB for the final Group 1 of the season in Victoria. He beat older horses untouched in the Group 2 Schillaci Stakes at Caulfield in October and is knocking on the door after straight-course placings against all ages in the G1 Lightning and G1 Newmarket at Flemington.
Foxwedge (2012) was the last 3yo to win the William Reid after coming off a third placing in the Newmarket. He camped on Buffering and Hay List before powering clear for a career-high victory that clinched a start at stud.
Star Turn has already been signed to stand at Vinery and Dwayne Dunn is planning to use an inside gate to advantage at Moonee Valley. “He’s drawn beautifully and I’m going to push up on-speed,” Dunn said. “It would be lovely to tick that box in a Group 1. He’s a beautiful animal and he deserves it. He’s done nothing wrong and fights hard every time.”
The $2.50 million Group 1 T J Smith Stakes at Randwick on April 1 and a trip to Royal Ascot are also on the radar after Friday night.
Star Turn (Star Witness) was initially purchased for $400,000 as a yearling and owner Alan Bell has remained in the syndicate that will stand him at stud. His dam Golden Delicious (Made of Gold) won 13 races including a Listed William Crockett Stakes at Moonee Valley.
Trainer John Hawkes would have had the William Reid in mind when he was interviewed after Vinery bought into Star Turn. “He’s a brilliant athlete capable of superb on-pace speed. Natural development and progression would suggest he’s in for an exciting campaign ahead.”