Hard To Express looked a filly with a future after a remarkable debut victory at Belmont on Wednesday.
The daughter of Danehill Express was in commission after winning a Lark Hill trial last month but she looked a forlorn chance when the leaders kicked clear at the furlong.
“She needed every yard of the 1200 metres,” trainer Dan Pearce said after his filly won the Westspeed Nursery Hcp with a whirlwind finish. “She’s still very raw – this is only the third time she’s galloped on grass.”
Hard To Express (2f Danehill Express – Elusive Pride by Elusive Quality) was bred by De Grey Park and caught the eye of Dan’s father Colin Pearce at the 2012 Perth Magic Millions. “Dad came up to me at the sales and said he had just bought the next Travinator. I hope he’s right!”
Travinator won 7 of his first 9 starts for the Pearce family before going amiss in last year’s G1 Winterbottom Stakes at Ascot.
“We don’t push the babies – she’s a big girl and takes a while to wind up,” Pearce continued. “She was here today just for a look around but we will be back for the summer carnival.”
Danehill Express added another first-time winner on Friday when Jetson Express broke his maiden at Albany.
The up-and-coming son of Danehill has now sired 29 individual winners in Australia this season. Magnus (32 winners) tops the national second-season winners’ premiership ahead of Danehill Express and Casino Prince who are level-pegging behind the leader.
Hard To Express is the first foal of Bunbury maiden winner Elusive Pride from a Group 1 family that keeps supplying winners for De Grey Park’s Dick Vincent. Second-dam Pride Of The Park (Bluebird) foaled four winners including De Grey homebred Summer Swallow (LR South West Breeders’ Classic).
Her third-dam Coronation Night (Marauding) is a half-sister to G1 winners Shogun Lodge (Grand Lodge), Referral (Dr Grace) and Singing The Blues (Bluebird).
Danehill Express has a couple more juvenile winners on the boil. Last Monday’s barrier trial winners Ain’t Bad and Bandera Miss have both been nominated to make their debut at Belmont and/or Pinjarra next week.
Mungrup Stud sold his yearlings to $95,000 at the 2013 Perth Magic Millions. He will stand for an $8,800 (inc gst) service fee in 2013.
– Karl Patterson