Star Colt for Witness
Unbeaten Star Witness colt Graff made a brilliant return to racing at Rosehill on Saturday with a stylish victory in the Group III ATC San Domenico Stakes prompting his trainer Kris Lees to declare him the ‘best colt’ he’s ever had.
Well known Sydney owner Alan Bell enjoyed plenty of success racing Star Witness’s brilliant son Star Turn, who won the 2016 edition of the San Domenico, and may enjoy even more with Graff.
A winner at his only two previous starts in April at Rosehill and in the Clarendon Stakes at Hawkesbury, Graff was sent to the paddock after an aborted Brisbane campaign as the result of hitting his head in a barrier mishap.
That is now seen as a blessing in disguise by connections, with Graff returning in awesome form on Saturday.
He was content to travel midfield for Jason Collett behind the brilliant leader Neutrality and when that handsome son of Sebring could do no more, Graff stormed past to win the 1100 metre sprint by a couple of lengths with quality Exceed and Excel colt Performer a good third.
“He’s the best colt I’ve had anything to do with, a really exciting horse,” said Kris Lees.
“We’re really pleased with how he’s come back, ther are some good races in store for him.
“We’ll go to the Run to the Rose (Group II) and then the Golden Rose (Group I September 28). He’s a serious horse.”
Foaled and raised at Widden Stud, Graff was offered by Widden at the Magic Millions, making $200,000 to the bid of Alan Bell Racing and has already won back over $217,000 with three wins in as many starts.
Graff is the best of two winners from Dinkum Diamond, winner of the Group III SAJC The Jansz from Group III SAJC Dermody Stakes winner Raja Lane.
Dinkum Diamond’s current two year-old , a filly by Star Witness, was sold this year for $320,000 at the Magic Millions Gold Coast sale when offered by Widden Stud. She has a yearling filly by Shamus Award and was served by Your Song last season.
Graff is the 14th stakes-winner for Star Witness, stands this spring at Widden Stud at a fee of $33,000.