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Hannam pulls the right rein in Group One
A tough decision had a Group One reward for Robert Hannam at Trentham where his judgement proved impeccable.
The popular Awapuni jockey settled on Aide Memoire as his mount in the Rydges Wellington Captain Cook Stakes on Saturday and they accounted for Authentic Paddy, the ride he passed over.
“She’s the new kid on the block and while Paddy has been a great horse to me, I had to look to the future,” Hannam said.
The 50-year-old bounced Aide Memoire out of the gates to be upsides with the pacemaker before he dropped back to the fence.
“The plan was to sit outside the leader, but they were going hard so I slotted into the trail and put her to sleep,” he said.
When a gap presented itself between the front-runner Battle Time and Aide Memoire’s stablemate Julinsky Prince soon after straightening, the daughter of Remind needed little persuasion from Hannam to take her chance.
“She really kicked well in the straight,” Hannam said. “You can’t beat a Group One – they are the pinnacle of horse racing.”
Aide Memoire drew clear to score by a length and a quarter from Authentic Paddy with Ringo taking third from Scapolo and Big Dreamer. The multiple Group One winner Volkstok’n’barrell was tardily away and he made ground stylishly to finish sixth.
The winner is trained at Marton by Fraser Auret, who was also represented by Julinsky Prince but last year’s winner uncharacteristically dropped out in the straight under Johnathan Parkes to tail the field home.
“I had a quick word with Johnathan and he said the horse was just a bit quiet today, but this girl hasn’t put a foot wrong since day one,” Auret said.
“Robert and I go back a long way and he rode my first winner. This is very special, just massive.” – NZ Racing Desk.