There’s Stakes racing in four states across Australia this Saturday, but there’s little doubt which race, and in particular which horse, will garner most attention.
While Rosehill has the Winter Stakes and the Sunshine Coast the 3200-metre Queensland Cup, most focus will centre on the listed Sir John Monash Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield, a race this year that has added intrigue due to the presence of another boom visitor from the west.
Good Perth horses invariably measure up when they travel east, and Chocolate Holic looks a good ‘un. He’s won seven of 11, with three seconds (one of those behind subsequent Goodwood winner Vega Magic).
Weir is no stranger to getting a good Perth horse, and if he can’t make them better, he’ll certainly keep them at a high level.
Black Heart Bart, also by Blackfriars, was a multiple Stakes winner before Weir got him. He’s now a five-time Group 1 winner. Real Love and Star Exhibit are others he has enjoyed success with.
Chocolate Holic was bred by Alana Williams, who said this week that if they didn’t send the gelding to Melbourne, he faced the prospect of spending too long in the paddock before getting ready for their Summer Carnival.
“There isn’t much around for him at the moment so we thought it was the perfect time to give him an opportunity in Melbourne and see if he measures up,” she explained.
While helping to put the polish on a very strong team of horses with her husband, Williams dabbles in the breeding caper with a couple of mares each season. Her first foray was with Chocolate Holic’s dam, World Famous. What a start!