Zabisco 'takes flight' to win Woodford Cup

ZABISCO produced a whirlwind effort to snatch victory over Upbeat and Feeling Invincible to take out the $35,000 Woodford Cup at Warrnambool yesterday. 

The six-year-old stallion, which is trained at Darren Weir’s Warrnambool satellite stable, came from a hopeless position at the 500-metre mark under hard riding from top jockey Dean Yendall to score in the 1700-metre race.

Yendall, who rode three winners at the annual meeting, said there was no chance to win at the 500-metre mark.

“I had no hope. I was stuck behind horses and going nowhere,” he said. “I needed an out and the next minute a few horses started rolling around and I found a way out. Zabisco sprouted wings over the final 100 metres,” Yendall said. 

“He really lifted over the last part of the race. Full credit to Weiry and his staff in Warrnambool under Daniel Bowman. 

“I think Zabisco can go back and win a Saturday race in Melbourne after that effort.”

Bowman, who is Weir’s Warrnambool foreman, said Zabisco had thrived over the last two months in his new environment after being trained by Melbourne Cup-winning trainer Michael Moroney at Flemington. 

“The win is a turnaround in form for Zabisco,” he said. “He’s thrived since he came to Warrnambool. 

“We’ve done a lot of work with him at the Killarney and Warrnambool beaches and the sand dunes.

“The horse is fit and well but the victory did surprise me. 

“I thought he would run well but it was a pleasant surprise at this stage of his campaign to get a win with him,” Bowman said.

“It was a perfect ride by Dean Yendall.”

Bowman said plans for Zabisco’s next start would be made after talking to Weir.

“I’m not sure what Darren has got in mind for his next run. We knew Zabisco had a fair bit of ability but he had just browned off being in a city stable,” Bowman said. 

“We’re still learning about the horse. He had no real issues when we got him. 

“He’s a very strong horse who has thrived on hard work.”

Yendall’s other winners were Ruby Road and Clairvaux.

Warrnambool Racing Club CEO John Green said more than 3000 patrons had filed through the gates for the eight-race meeting.

“The crowd numbers are similar to what we had last year,” Green said. 

“It was a great day for local trainers with seven of the eight winners trained in Warrnambool.”

The next race meeting at Warrnambool is next Sunday when the club hosts the Koroit Cup.

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