Trainer Ricardo Le Grange was a bit stumped by Cadet’s last start when he returned with breathing issues, but after backing off the Captain Sonador three-year-old, the patience he showed was rewarded manifold two months later.
Lined up in the $60,000 Speedy Cat 2013 Stakes, a Class 4 race over 1000m on Polytrack, Cadet travelled like a winner the moment he was bounced out to the lead by jockey Nooresh Juglall.
Champagne Rein (Gerald Mosse) came eye-balling him from the back, but Juglall was not showing any haste as he waited until the last 300m to finally go for the persuader. Cadet looked headed but rallied strongly under pressure to stick his neck back in front.
Faithfully (John Sundradas) and Dreamweaver (Michael Rodd) were also swooping down and looked like they would have the last say, but Cadet ($14) somehow, held on to scrape home by a head from Champagne Rein with Faithfully third another nose away.
Dreamweaver, who was first-up from his two all-the-way wins, gave another facet of his ability by coming from the clouds to miss a minor spot by a neck. The winning time was 58.96 seconds for the 1000m on the Polytrack.
“He caught us by surprise at his last run when he returned with respiratory distress. He never showed that to us at home,” said Le Grange.
“We had to train him a little bit differently and it’s paid off. He also gets very sore behind and that’s why he doesn’t want to jump at times.
“The physio has done a great job with him and it was a great effort for him to win today.”
Juglall concurred with the trainer that Cadet does have his fair share of issues but ridden the right way, he will give 100%.
“He’s a very gutsy horse but he’s also got a short burst. That was why I waited and waited on him even when Gerald’s horse came next to us, or else he would be gone,” said Juglall.
“He was very brave all the way to the line. A big thank you to the Thai owners for their support.”
Le Grange had another good day at the office when he later rang up a training double with Elusive Emperor ($31) in the $80,000 Beau Brummell 2009 Stakes, a Class 3 race over 1200m.
The Elusive City five-year-old also came through after a hard-fought tussle in a three-way go, defeating Caorunn (Glen Boss) by a head with Lim’s Dashing (Olivier Placais) third another neck away. The winning time was 1min 9.23secs for the 1200m on the Long Course.
Le Grange, who is at his first season after taking over from his mentor Patrick Shaw at the end of last year, is enjoying a great start to his career, having now notched 14 winners to sit in fourth spot on the log, five winners behind leader Mark Walker.