Sentimental Winner for Star Witness
A three year-old Star Witness filly bought by a group of Australian cricketers to honour late teammate Phillip Hughes won on debut in good style at Gosford on Wednesday.
Never Out is trained by Kim Waugh whose husband Mark played 128 tests for Australia and is now a national selector.
She jumped smartly and raced up on the pace for Mitchell Bell before kicking clear to win the 1000 metre maiden by three quarters of a length.
The three-year-old filly’s ownership includes Mitch and Shaun Marsh who played in Australia’s recent defeat by South Africa in the first Test in Perth, as well as white-ball specialists Glenn Maxwell and Aaron Finch.
Former Test players Greg Blewett and Ryan Harris also have a share along with national coach Darren Lehmann’s wife Andrea and broadcaster Alan Jones.
The horse was named Never Out as a tribute to Hughes who died after he was hit by a ball while 63 not out in a Sheffield Shield match in November 2014.
“We bought the horse in memory of Phillip Hughes,” Mark Waugh told Sky Thoroughbred Central.
“We got together to all buy a horse because he used to love horse racing so she might have had a bit of help today.
A $57,500 Inglis Classic purchase from the Amarina Farm draft for Kim Waugh Racing, Never Out is the fifth winner from stakes-placed Rory’s Jester mare Jesterchine.
She is another smart winner for Star Witness, who has been riding high this spring thanks to brilliant three year-olds Global Glamour and Star Turn.