No Rest for Cox Plate champ

Newgate acquisition out to add to CV on one of biggest stages of all.

STATE OF REST.
STATE OF REST. Picture: Vince Caligiuri/Getty Images

Newgate Farm will never be accused of resting on its laurels regarding stallion acquisitions, but it has little work to do on its reputation as a source of speed sires.

The Hunter Valley operation boasts one of the most powerful rosters in the country, dominated by the likes of Extreme Choice, Capitalist, Deep Field and Russian Revolution.

Yet the Henry Field-run organisation is determined to evolve and, one day, will stand last year's Cox Plate winner State Of Rest.

The Joseph O'Brien-trained star already has guaranteed appeal to Southern Hemisphere breeders, being a son of Starspangledbanner who won one of the biggest races on the Australian calendar, but the priority since Newgate bought in has been to enhance his appeal.

That continues with Wednesday's Group 1 Prince Of Wales's Stakes (2000m) at Royal Ascot.

"We wanted to get a really good middle-distance horse and we thought that, if we're going to get a middle-distance horse, let's get the Cox Plate winner," Field said.

"When the Cox Plate winner became available we were quick to jump.

"If you're going to try something different you go to the top, you get the best, and the Cox Plate winner is the best and he hasn't let us down since we bought him."

State Of Rest's Cox Plate win was sandwiched between Group 1 wins in the Derby Invitational (1900m) at Saratoga in the US and Prix Ganay (2100m) at Longchamp in France before a third placing, beaten less than a length, in the Tattersalls Gold Cup (2100m) at The Curragh in Ireland.

The four-year-old has showcased his talent in four countries across three continents but his greatest advertisement would be a victory in one of the most prestigious races at arguably the most watched racing carnival of the year.

"He's won a very strong Group 1 in France, he's been beaten a short margin in a Group 1 in Ireland and I think he goes into Ascot one of the key chances," Field said.

"We've great group of owners, a really strong syndicate from Australia and New Zealand behind him. There's a big contingent over there, they've got their top hats and tails ready and I reckon we're going to have a great time."

State Of Rest's Prince Of Wales's Stakes rivals include emerging superstar Bay Bridge, who has won his past five starts, last-start Sheema Classic winner and Japan Cup placegetter Shahryar, multiple Group 1 winner Mishriff and last year's Queen Elizabeth Stakes winner Addeybb.


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