Saturday, 18 August 2012
A stakes double that holds the promise of more to come is reason for Gerald Ryan to be confident coming into the spring.
Golden Slipper runner-up Snitzerland set the tone when she strode to a comfortable win in Saturday's San Domenico Stakes at Rosehill and Mrs Onassis backed up the stable's form with victory in the Listed Starlight Stakes (1100m).
Snitzerland is now bound for Melbourne while Mrs Onassis will remain in Sydney for the time being.
Ryan rated the lightly-raced Mrs Onassis his best chance on the program and her win cemented her place in the stable instead of the breeding barn when she beat Sainthood.
"Gerry Harvey owns her and he rang me the other day and said he was doing his matings for the upcoming breeding season," Ryan said.
"He asked if Mrs Onassis could win a stakes race before she retired and I said she would win one on Saturday.
"This means she will not be going to stud this year.
"I was giggling at the 800 (metres). I could see how well she was travelling."
Mrs Onassis ($4.60) had 1-1/4 lengths to spare over Sainthood ($31) with the favourite Sea The World ($2.80) finishing third.
The six-time winner has had just 13 starts and had problems early on.
"She had X-ray problems early on and didn't go through the sale," Ryan said.
"She came to me as a three-year-old and I have a real soft spot for her.
"She eats all her feed. She's really quiet and anyone can ride her. She is a lovely horse to have around."
Sainthood's performance at his first start for six months thrilled trainer Rick Worthington.
Bone soreness curtailed the gelding's career, with Saturday's race just his second in 15 months.
"I'm thrilled to bits," Worthington said.
"He is pain free which he hasn't been for a long time.
"The important thing is that he pulls up well and we can go on."
Mrs Onassis and Sainthood are headed for another clash in the Concorde Stakes (1100m) in three weeks at Warwick Farm.
See The World's jockey Christian Reith said the Joe Pride-trained sprinter found the track too firm.