Bradbury Chocolate: A great racing story
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It’s a great Australian horse racing story – a young filly bought cheap and raced on country tracks with success. Then, the horse takes on Brisbane’s best in the Metropolitan races and remains unbeaten after seven starts. Her name? Bradbury Chocolate.
It could be said that undefeated Queensland filly Bradbury Chocolate waited for carnage among her opposition in a 3YO Handicap over 1110m at Doomben on Saturday on a heavy track.
When it didn’t happen the daughter of Bradbury’s Luck had to produce a powerful burst from the back of the field of 10 to win by 0.2 lengths securing her seventh consecutive win and her first in town.
Toowoomba trainer Donald Baker said the horse showed ability in her gallops, trial and first few wins in the bush, but he was surprised to see her win by 7 lengths “at her first real test” in a 3YO handicap over 1050m at Toowoomba on the 28th of April.
At her sixth start also at Toowoomba, she defeated Top Of The Rock by 3 lengths, who then went to Doomben and won a 3YO handicap on 11 June over 1110m by 3 lengths.
Top Of The Rock had shown plenty of ability herself having pushed last June’s Sky Racing Tattersall’s Tiara Group 1 winner Pear Tart to 1.3 lengths over 1200m at Eagle Farm last December.
Top Of The Rock also finished Saturday’s race 0.3 lengths behind Bradbury Chocolate in third place.
Bradbury Chocolate out of Success Express mare Glennie Gal was originally purchased for $4,000 at the Magic Millions Racehorse Sale last year.
However she was put up for sale again because of behavioural problems and Baker impulsively paid just $800 for the filly while searching the internet for a birthday present for his partner.
Baker said laughing “I’m glad I didn’t go and look at her, if I did, I probably wouldn’t have bought her. (Then) she was just a small, light, little filly.”
He said the reason she was so cheap was she wouldn’t stop bucking but his decision to send her to country tracks including Cunumulla, Roma and Charleville to race and work on behavioural problems has turned the filly around.
What makes Saturday’s win even more remarkable is the horse had never even galloped on a turf track before, let alone raced on a Heavy 9. “Having seen what the other filly (Top Of The Rock) did in town, I was confident she’d race good, but first time on the grass, first time on a bog, we didn’t know what to expect.”
Baker was lucky enough to train Russeting in her first eight wins, but the owners sold her to Bell View Park Stud and she was ‘officially’ trained by Bart Cummings to win the 2009 Group 1 Tattersalls Winter Stakes a week later. Russeting finished her racing career with 9 wins from 28 starts and over $500,000 prizemoney.
Baker said “I think at the same age she’s (Bradbury Chocolate) going as well as Russeting was. She’d won a similar race in town at the same stage.”
Bradbury Chocolate’s ($88,000 in prizemoney) next target is the 3YO QTIS Added Stakes Handicap at Doomben over 1200m on 28 July.
However leading trainer Peter Moody having spotted the filly’s talent after her second win thinks Baker should aim higher with her in the future. Baker said he spoke to Moody after she won at Roma over 1000m by 6 lengths last October and “he (Moody) told me she could win a fillies and mares race in Melbourne.
“You have to respect Peter Moody’s opinion. He was probably the first bloke to spot the real potential.”
Asked about the naming of the horse, Baker said it had been his partner.
Laughing, he said “I hated it when I first saw it, but I like it now.”
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