Another Widden Sold Group I Winner
The powerful Chris Waller stable claimed another big victory at Randwick on Saturday with the Group I ATC Spring Champion Stakes going the way of Vanbrugh, a $100,000 Inglis Easter purchase from the draft of Widden Stud.
A winner at Randwick on debut back in February, Vanbrugh was held in high regard and considered a Golden Rose prospect at the start of this preparation, although has taken time to come to hand… but hasn’t he come to hand!
The well bred son of retired champion sire Encosta de Lago has really hit his straps over the longer journeys scoring a powerful last start win in the Group III ATC Gloaming Stakes last month which earned him favouritism for his first foray into Group I racing.
Ridden by Glyn Schofield, Vanbrugh sustained a long finishing burst to reel in the leaders and forge clear to win the 2000 metre staying test by a length and a quarter.
Having captured a Group I at his seventh run of the preparation, Vanbrugh is a strong possibility of heading to the spelling paddock with a view to returning in the autumn, although does hold an entry to the Group I VRC Victoria Derby.
“We’ll discuss that with the owners over the next couple of days, Group Is are hard to win and he’s going to be a much better horse in the autumn,” said stable foreman Liam Prior.
“He probably got shuffled back further than expected during the middle and latter part of the race.
“He’s got a knack of being very patient Glyn Schofield and that’s what experience buys you.
“At the 600 (metres), I’ve got to admit I was pretty worried.
“But he showed his true class, he’s a very good colt with a Group I next to his name now.”
Vanbrugh has won four of nine starts earning over $525,000 in prizemoney for his Northern Hemisphere based owners Merriebelle Stable.
Vanbrugh was foaled and raised at Widden Stud for his breeder Mr Leung and is the second winner for Soho Secret, a metropolitan winning half-sister by Lucky Owners to Group winners Sportsman, Prisoner of Love, Hoystar and King of Prussia.