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BLUEBLOOD KEEPS WIDDUP’S WINNING RUN GOING




IT was a phone call out of the blue!

Brad Widdup was asked if he would train a blueblood filly who hadn’t reached her $500,000 reserve at the 2022 Inglis Australian Easter yearling sale.

Of course he said “yes” and the now three-year-old made a successful debut at Goulburn today, giving Hawkesbury’s leading trainer his fourth winner in the past six days – and 30th of the season.

Racing as Audrey’s Lane, the beautifully-bred filly belied her double figure odds ($10) by upsetting $1.30 hotpot Private Legacy in the Maiden Plate (1300m), with Alysha Collett aboard.

She would not be denied despite a strong challenge from the favorite over the last 200m, maintaining her advantage right to the line. Another Hawkesbury representative, Blake Ryan’s Midori Giant ($19), did his best work late to snatch third placing after being the widest runner on the home turn.

Bred at Dr Ian and Linda Duckworth’s Fairview Park Stud at Grose Wold, Audrey’s Lane has a real Golden Slipper pedigree.

Her sire Pierro won the 2012 edition, and her dam, the unraced Snitzel mare Eye For Fun, produced the 2014 winner Mossfun.

Audrey’s Lane, though, was never going to be a Golden Slipper contender last year.

“I remember seeing her at that 2022 Easter sale,” Widdup said this evening. “She was a lovely big filly.

“But she came into the stable and went out again for a few preparations.

“She just wasn’t ready to go to the races.”

Widdup saw a big difference in the filly this time, especially after winning a home track 1000m trial on February 1.

“Audrey’s Lane came on really well after that trial, whereas before that didn’t happen,” he explained.

“I also nominated her for Canterbury tomorrow night and wouldn’t have hesitated to run her there if Goulburn hadn’t raced today.

“I expected her to run well after that good trial, and she did an excellent job after having to work early to get to the front.”

Widdup says his four-win streak – it was nearly five as Tintookie was nudged out in the Royal Randwick closer last Saturday – hasn’t arisen because of any change in training methods.

“I haven’t done anything different,” he said. “But there’s a lot of hard work which goes into getting these horses going, and it’s a great credit to our staff.”

Widdup also pointed out that good rides had also been a contributing factor to his winning run.

“None of the four drew well,” he said. “Dawla started from barrier four in a field of six at Newcastle last Saturday, Troika was the outside (nine) at Hawkesbury on Tuesday, Confess Our Dreams was the same (10) on the Kensington track yesterday, and Audrey’s Lane started from eight in a field of nine today.”

Coincidentally, whereas Tommy Berry was on board with Confess Our Dreams yesterday, he had to play “second fiddle” to Widdup today; Private Legacy being his sole ride at Goulburn.

Audrey’s Lane was the Hawkesbury training base’s 94th winner of the season – and 11th this month.

. HOOFNOTE: Widdup will have to wait a few days before attempting to keep his current “hot” run going, with Noble Tess and Piplup nominated for Tuesday’s Wyong meeting.

Story John Curtis, February 16, 2024 - Pics Bradley Photos

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