A return trip to the Dubbo races certainly paid dividends for MORE SPICE, a lightly-raced 4-year-old mare by the American bred stallion Moysater, her dam Spice It Up is a daughter of the West Australian based sire Old Spice. He was the sire of Melbourne Cup and Mackinnon Stakes winner, Rogan Josh, also the sire of Old Comrade, a winner of the VRC Australian Cup Gr1, WATC Railway Stakes Gr1 and a multiple WATC Fruit ’N’ Veg Stakes also Gr1. Old Spice was a son of Australian breeding icon, Kaoru Star.
After running home nicely, being beaten just a bit over three lengths over an unsuitable journey (1000m) and ridden by the same jockey, a good performance was expected. Trainer Scott had no hesitation in stepping MORE SPICE up to the 1400 metres distance. The punting public were also confident, with the mare firming from $4.60 early into $3.20 to start as second favourite.
The jockey for the day’s event was Quade Krogh, MORE SPICE would jump from the outside barrier in 11. Considering the dryness of the countryside, the track was rated as an acceptable Good 3, the weather Fine and the rail True.
The start saw MORE SPICE jump cleanly from her wide draw, Quade had his mount positioned where he was able to sum up what the other runners would do. After continuing on out wide for a further 100 metres he realised the runners inside him were also hunting up. This being the case it was time to ease and put his horse where she would be comfortable.
Passing the marker at the 1200 metres, jockey Krogh had eased back to third last and still wide. MORE SPICE was then asked to go forward again with the aim of getting in a bit closer to the rail. Eventually, at the 1000 metres the breaks came and Quade had MORE SPICE on the fence and getting along at a nice tempo.
A few hundred metres later, MORE SPICE was saving ground on the rail and making a move along the inside of runners. Rounding the home turn the duo were gathering momentum and positioned in third, still hugging the fence.
Once into the home straight and balanced up Quade decided it was “serious challenge” time. He extricated his horse away from the rail until he had clear running ahead with two runners in front them, Alaskan Aura and Laino, the leader.
With the winning post in sight, MORE SPICE and her jockey were rallying and drew level with Alaskan Aura 100 metres out. Those two continued their battle for victory while the effort was telling on the tiring Laino.
It was only at the 25 metres mark MORE SPICE, who could possibly be nicknamed “Sporty Spice”, gained the upper hand and went on to win by just over half a length in the time of 1:23.59.
It was wonderful to see “Sporty” break her maiden status and it would have also been a thrill for West Australian owner Peter Bennie. Well Done to Scott and his staff for getting the mare to the winners stall and a big thanks must go to Quade for the ride.