Hong Kong Stakes-Winner for Star Witness
Widden Stud’s ever reliable sire Star Witness added a new stakes-winner to his tally at Sha Tin on New Year’s Day when Explosive Witness landed the Group III Bauhinia Sprint Trophy (1000m).
The six year-old gelding won on debut at Moonee Valley in 2017 for the Greg Eurell stable before being sold to Hong Kong where he has raced ever since.
Trained by Caspar Fownes, Explosive Witness has built a good record in easier grade and was stepping up in class for this Black Type assignment with happy results. He finished off hard under Alex Badel to win by a neck.
“It’s magic when you get a winning result like that, you go in there hoping he’ll pick up some prize money for second, third or fourth but to win – it’s magic – well deserved for the owners,” Fownes said.
On a rating of 92, the Star Witness gelding upstaged better credentialed rivals and carried bottom-weight to victory, as top-rater Computer Patch (133lb) – who sits on a mark of 115 – faded to the rear of the five-runner field after finishing a close-up sixth in December’s G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint (1200m).
“He’s (Explosive Witness) a horse who wasn’t that far out of the ratings – that’s why I decided to put him in and you take your chances in these sort of races when they have no weight on their back,” Fownes said.
“He’s racing really well – his 1000 metre form at Happy Valley has been superb running off big sectionals and he deserved the chance under handicap conditions to take them on – it was a tightly bunched finish but it’s wonderful for the result to go my way.”
Explosive Witness was bred by Golden Grove and has the overall record of five wins and four placings from 15 starts.
He is the best of three winners from placed Danzero mare Rocket Baby, a grand-daughter of Group III winner Rockets Galore.
Explosive Witness is the 17th stakes-winner for Star Witness, who has 10 entries for Magic Millions.