Snapdancer’s dashing Sangster victory

A first Group 1 win for Ethan Brown puts him in surreal territory after Sangster Stakes victory.

Jockey: Ethan Brown
Jockey: Ethan Brown Picture: (Vince Caligiuri/Getty Images)

A fast start was key to Snapdancer turning last start disappointment into success at the highest level as the five-year-old mare by Choisir took out the Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes (1200m) at Morphettville.

While it was the first win in this race for training juggernauts Ciaron Maher & David Eustace, Snapdancer ($17) provided 23-year-old Ethan Brown with his maiden Group 1 win in the saddle.

Jumping cleanly and quickly was a major task to overcome after Maher was left at a loss following the mare's 15th placing in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) on 12 March.

"I couldn't really make of what happened last start," Maher said post-race.

"Track bias or whether she didn't like the straight, but we freshened her up and pretty much like what we did at the Gold Coast and the main thing with her is the start.

"I said to Ethan, if you get the start, the rest is easy and I was very surprised how easily she got across," he added as Snapdancer worked across from barrier 15.

Eight years after leaving home to pursue his riding dreams, Brown was just as surprised to break his Group 1 duck.

"I can't really believe it," Brown said.

"I left home at 15 years-of-age – Mum and Dad let me go, I was fortunate enough for that and it has been a lifelong dream.

"To get it at such a young age it is so surreal.

"I can't explain the feeling (as) I've been in that situation before and been run down.

"Ciaron said to just make sure I was on top of her in the gates."

Snapdancer scored by 1½-lengths over stablemate Away Game ($7.50) with $5 equal favourite September Run 1¼-lengths away in third.

"Away Game, she must be the best bridesmaid in the country," Maher said as a date at the Magic Millions Broodmare Sale beckons for the four-year-old later this month.

Craig Williamson reported that the well-supported last start William Reid Stakes winner September Run slipped at the start.

"That was detrimental from then on but she ran super to still finish in the placings," he said.


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