Arrowfield Stud supremo John Messara won’t know where to look when the crack field of three-year-old sprinters come charging to the finish in the Listed $150,000 The Rosebud (1100m) at Royal Randwick on Saturday.
Messara’s allegiances are obviously with Remarque, the brilliant colt he bred and owns.
But Messara will also be keeping a close eye on Mazu, and Maotai, and In The Congo.
The quartet are all by Arrowfield-based stallions – super sire Snitzel is represented by Remarque and In The Congo, Maurice is the sire of Mazu and the recently retired Not A Single Doubt is the sire of Maotai.
John Messara’s home-bred colt, Remarque is favourite for the Listed Rosebud at Randwick. Picture: Grant GuySource:The Daily Telegraph
“It’s great to see the Arrowfield stallions so well represented,” Messara said. “I’m hoping Remarque can win but I’ll be very interested in how the others go, too.
“This is an important race because we will get a guide on how they have all come back as three-year-olds.”
Remarque, trained by Michael, Wayne and John Hawkes, has only been to the races twice for a debut win at Rosehill back in January then his fifth placing in the Todman Stakes during the autumn carnival.
But such is the lofty opinion for Remarque he is the $3.30 favourite to make a winning return to racing in The Rosebud.
Team Hawkes has given Remarque two barrier trials in recent weeks to prepare for his comeback with the colt winning both impressively.
“I am looking forward to watching what Remarque can do in The Rosebud,” said Messara, who was awarded Hall of Fame honours in the Associates category earlier this year.
“We do know this colt has a very strong turn of foot that can get him out of trouble in his races.
Mazu (left), a son of Arrowfield Stud’s Maurice, finishing third to Shaquero in the Pago Pago Stakes. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
“He has barrier one but that doesn’t mean he has to get out at a particular time.
“At some stage in the straight, as long as he can see a bit of an opening, he can go ‘whoosh’ through it.”
Remarque was early Golden Slipper favourite after his stunning debut win last summer but he contracted a virus soon afterwards and wasn’t at his best when unplaced in the Todman Stakes.
But Messara pointed out that despite the setback in training, Remarque still ran a close fifth, only a neck behind subsequent Golden Slipper winner Stay Inside.
Anamoe won the Todman Stakes then trained on to finish second in the Golden Slipper before winning the ATC Sires Produce Stakes.
Todman Stakes minor placegetters Profiteer (seventh) and Home Affairs (eighth) also ran competitive races in the Golden Slipper.
“Remarque probably wasn’t himself in the Todman as it turns out but he still finished right alongside Stay Inside and the form from of that race is outstanding,” Messara said.
Maotai heads to the Rosebud after a close second in the Oxlade Stakes at Eagle Farm. Picture: Trackside PhotographySource:Supplied
Remarque is a superbly-bred colt by Snitzel out of Response and is a full-brother to 2018 Golden Slipper winner Estijaab, also trained by Team Hawkes.
Messara said Response, herself a dual Group 1 winner, has also produced a Snitzel yearling colt and is due to foal another sibling by the same sire in October.
“Response will be going back to Snitzel this spring – why would you send her to any other stallion as together they have already produced a Golden Slipper winner and this colt, Remarque,” Messara said.
Snitzel, who had been the nation’s leading sire for four consecutive years before coming in fourth last season behind Written Tycoon, is also represented by the promising Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained In The Congo.
“We believe Snitzel is in for another great season and could easily regain his crown,” Messara said.
“He’s a remarkable stallion and has some great mares in foal, has yearlings and two-year-olds this season.”
In The Congo (inside) steps up to stakes company for the first time on Saturday. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
Mazu is another young colt held in very high regard. Trained by Peter and Paul Snowden, he also had only two starts as a juvenile, winning on debut at Canterbury then finishing a luckless third to Shaquero and Tiger Of Malay in the Pago Pago Stakes.
The colt is from the first Australian crop of Japanese superhorse Maurice.
“We hold a lot of store in the future of Maurice,” Messara said. “He already has a full book of mares for the spring breeding season.
“Mazu showed a lot of promise as a two-year-old which is a little unexpected for a Maurice as they seem more likely to be Golden Rose and Guineas-type horses as three-year-olds so this colt is set for an exciting spring.”
Maotai, trained by Kacy Fogden, won at Ipswich and was stakes placed at Eagle Farm at his only two starts last season.
But the son of Not A Single Doubt made a lot of people sit up and take notice with a runaway barrier trial win at Rosehill a week ago.
“Not A Single Doubt has been a wonderful sire for Arrowfield,” Messara said.
“He’s been retired now but just had one of his best seasons when he was just pipped at the ‘post’ by Written Tycoon for Champion sire. He will throw many winners like Maotai this season.”
Horse racing: Watch the latest TAB Market Update on the Missile Stakes….
Horse racing: Watch the latest TAB Market Update on the Missile Stakes.
Originally published asRemarque to lead Arrowfield charge
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