Size can look forward to a bumper new season with smart youngsters
The chance of a seventh trainer's championship for John Size is slipping away, but he can take comfort in some of the up-and-comers he has for next term and Supreme Jewellery left no doubt on debut that he will be one them.
The three-year-old had trialled impressively in New Zealand and locally and punters knew all about it, sending him out an odds-on favourite for his first start and the gelding never looked like letting them down.
He led all the way over 1,000m as the first part of a Size-trained double, completed by I Smell Money (Jeff Lloyd) in the final event, and both the trainer and jockey Douglas Whyte had a glint in the eye.
'He had trialled very well, travelled very strong and he's a horse you don't dare move on in his trials because you can feel that he will want to respond,' Whyte said. 'Today he showed himself to be a real professional. He began, he let down when I pressed him, he gave me a good feeling. Fingers crossed, he's going to be a nice progressive horse.'
Size said the gelding is unlikely to be seen out again this season, despite the comfortable victory.
'He's got up here and done everything right,' he said. 'He's a quiet horse, a lovely temperament, and nothing seems to faze him, but when it came to the race today, you couldn't have asked for him to do any more than he did. I'll see how he comes through it but I'd say he probably won't run again.'
I Smell Money didn't gather quite the same rave reviews, but the three-year-old has hardly put a foot wrong - with the exception of his last at Happy Valley.
'He was four wide into the first turn, lost his balance on the wet track and then he just didn't want to run,' Size said. 'But today, he had the lightest weight, the perfect run and he won by a head, so that suggests he has his limitations and Class Three might be his future. He's quite mature physically, but there may be some small room for improvement mentally, as he is still reasonably inexperienced.'
I Smell Money's rider, Lloyd also managed a double, having scored for Michael Chang Chun-wai on Fortune Red Pepper 30 minutes earlier in the Pearce Memorial Challenge Cup (1,650m).
Chang is Fortune Red Pepper's third trainer this season, but he seems to have been able to get the flighty six-year-old to settle and Lloyd was able to make a mid-race move forward without worrying the gelding would bolt on him.
'I think Michael running him in those sprint races took the edge off him and it's made him a lot easier to handle in a race,' Lloyd said.