Trial Watch Review : 23rd February 2021

Chris Scholtz reviews Sydney barrier trials at Canterbury on February 23.

SAMADOUBT Picture: Steve Hart

CANTERBURY February 23

Course Proper; Soft 5

19 Heats – 4 x 1100m (2 Open; 2 Maiden); 5 x 905m (5 Open); 5 x 900m (5 2YO); 5 x 895m (3 3YO; 2 Maiden)


Strong set with several noted Group performers taking the spotlight, especially the G1 winner Samadoubt.

Team Hawkes have a bevy of talented youngsters coming through the trials, winning three 2YO heats with a trio of promising types.

SAMADOUBT (Bjorn Baker): You wouldn't think this G1 winner has had a prolonged time away from the races due to a tendon injury. This was his second impressive trial win since resuming and just as he did at Randwick on January 27 he led easily and did it in style to score by a soft 5.3 lengths in the fastest of the four 1100m heats (66.36; 34.17). The accomplished trio DREAMFORCE, SPIRIT RIDGE and NETTOYER all worked nicely behind him.

PRAGUE (Annabel Neasham): After missing a key start in the Hobartville Stakes he quickly dispelled any fitness concerns with an impressive win over the classy older sprinters JUNGLE EDGE and EDUARDO in  the fastest 905m heat (53.51; 33.78). Dwelt at the start but quickly recovered to sit second off the speedster JUNGLE EDGE and extended sweetly when called on by Tommy Berry for a soft 1.3 lengths win. EDUARDO coasted in third place and put in his best work through the line.

GSTAAD (Team Hawkes): This impressive Sebring filly was visually the pick of the 2YO heat winners, improving off her first trial at Hawkesbury to record a strong 900m heat win (54.61; 34.90). She extended like a certain winner from behind the pace to run past the leaders with plenty in reserve. The Hawkes stable also won 2YO heats with SOLAR WINDS (55.17; 34.99) and MR MOZART (55.48; 35.59) and while there times were slow there was merit in their performances. The quickest 2YO heat wins were recorded by the fast running types LOVEMETENDER (54.10; 34.72) and MAURICE'S MEDAD (54.17; 34.76).

WILD RULER (Peter & Paul Snowden): Crack 3YO showed his class to share the lead under a hold and work strongly to the line for a narrow win over his classy rival DOUBTLAND in the fastest heat over 895m (53.73; 33.60). This followed his earlier easy trial win at Randwick and he is obviously primed to resume in top form. Plenty of depth in this trial with the well regarded MAMARAGAN fading to fourth after working outside the lead. TORUN (5th) took the eye with his closing effort under a kind ride. He is a moral in restricted grade.

HAUT BRION HER, SIGNORE FOX and MARWAY were responsible for quality wins in the other open heats. There was also plenty of merit in the placings by SAVATIANO and BELLA VELLA.


XX Samadoubt; Prague; Gstaad; Wild Ruler

X Akari; Attestar; Bella Vella; Bullfinch; Doubtland; Eduardo; Fiesta; Hasty Duchess; Haut Brion Her; Intole Rant; Lovemetender; Marway; Matchmaker; Maurice's Medad; Mr Mozart; Rainbow Connection; Remain Humble; Savatiano; Signore Fox; Solar Winds; Torun

Racing and Sports

Chris Scholtz

Managing Director Tronta Media P/L; Contributing Editor Racing & Sports
Chris is an award winning racing media professional working in the print, radio and online mediums since 1971 and managing director of his own racing industry media company since 1988. He has covered all of Australia’s major racing carnivals, numerous international events and is widely recognised as a leading form assessor and race analyst. Chris brings his passion for racing to as its contributing editor since its launch in 2000.