Sebring Colt Wins $1million Golden Gift
The race to the $5million 2022 ATC Golden Slipper started in earnest at Rosehill on Saturday with the running of the $1million ATC Golden Gift (1100m) with the winner Sejardan, now assured of a start in the world’s riches race for two year-olds.
Trained by Gary Portelli, Sejardan won the Group III ATC Breeders Plate last month and confirmed his obvious potential when charging home from back in the field for Jason Collett to win the Golden Gift by a long neck over race favourite Shalatin with the Godolphin filly Ojai in third place.
“He had to do what he did today to prove to me he’s the real deal,’’ Portelli said.
“This was a strong race and the backmarkers weren’t really ‘playing’ today. He’s just done everything you want to see from a young horse.
“He has this beautiful, big action, he can accelerate quite easily and he has this massive finish.
“And he wants to win – it’s not something you can teach him, they have to want to do it and he has this fierce determination to win.
“I know there are going to be better horses coming through, we’ve only seen a small group of two-year-olds to this point, but he’ll improve as much as anyone. I think we saw a winner.”
Sejardan was a $160,000 Inglis Classic purchase for his trainer from the Middlebrook Valley Lodge draft and runs for a syndicate of stable clients including Portelli’s wife Kellie as well as John and Anne McDonnell, who were in the original ownership of Sebring.
Sejardan has already banked $665,000 from his first two starts earning his place in next year;s Golden Slipper with Gary Portelli indicating a tilt at the $2million Inglis Millennium in the autumn would be a part of his plan going forward.
Sejardan is the second foal and first winner for Miss Amajardan, a former smart spring two year-old Sydney winner by Hinchinbrook and a half-sister to speedy stakes horses Blazing Miss and Tristate.
Miss Amajardan has a yearling colt by Trapeze Artist.
Sejardan is a rising star from the final foal crop of Golden Slipper winning sire Sebring, who sadly died in 2019 at the height of his powers with his brilliant sprinting son Supido set to carry on his line at Widden Stud with his first crop of two year-olds racing this season.