Darren Weir’s Warrnambool satellite stable notched up another big race win at the elite level when veteran galloper Voodoo Lad won the $1 million group 1 Winterbottom Stakes at Ascot on Saturday.
Voodoo Lad, with champion jockey Damien Oliver in the saddle, came from second last in the 14-horse field on the home turn to defeat Enticing Star and Malaguerra in the feature sprint race over 1200 metres.
The victory is the first for the seven-year-old at group one level. Weir’s Warrnambool foreman Jarrod McLean said the win was well deserved.
“Voodoo Lad’s been a great warrior for the stable,” McLean said. “He’s run against most of the best sprinters in Australia and just failed in some feature races.
“But he deservedly won his first group one in the Winterbottom.
“It was a top ride by Ollie. He was well back in the run but that was the plan. Ollie never panicked at any stage.”
The victory took Voodoo Lad’s stake earnings to more than $1.95 million from 33 starts.
Meanwhile, the Ciaron Maher trained Al Galayel won a $120,000 restricted race at Moonee Valley on Saturday.
Maher, who trains in partnership with David Eustace at Caulfield said with time Al Galayel will make the change from restricted races to open company.
“He’s won three of his nine starts for us,” Maher said.
“We’re still learning about him. We’ve spaced his runs and that seems to suit him. “I’m confident he’ll develop into a handy type of horse.” From his 12 starts – the five-year-old has won five races.
The Maher-Eustace stables’ other runner South Street Boss was unplaced, while Warrnambool trainer Peter Chow saddled up Hostar which ran third.