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  • Provincial Racing NSW


STABLEMATES Sky Lab and Olympic Gaze are on trial at Royal Randwick on Saturday to both chase the same $1m feature at next month’s Magic Millions carnival at the Gold Coast.

Newcastle’s internationally successful trainer Paul Perry is eyeing the MM Subzero (2200m) on January 13 for the pair.

Sky Lab, who won the Subzero earlier this year, contests the Maroubra Mile (a Benchmark 100 Handicap) at Randwick, and Olympic Gaze lines up in a Benchmark 88 Handicap (2000m).

Aaron Bullock has the Sky Lab mount, and Reece Jones rides Olympic Gaze.

“Both horses will head to the Gold Coast for the Subzero provided they race well on Saturday,” Perry said.

“The weight Sky Lab gets also will have a bearing on him having a crack at winning the race again.

“He had a fair bit of weight (60kg) when successful in January at his first start outside New South Wales.”

Perry paid $48,000 for Sky Lab, a son of Japanese stallion Real Impact and the unraced Flying Spur mare Gold Mission, at Book 2 of the 2019 Magic Millions yearling sale at the Gold Coast.

The now six-year-old is the first foal of his dam, who died in April, 2021.

“Sky Lab was part of the Arrowfield Stud draft and I took a liking to him when I saw him,” Perry said. “He looked a racy type.”

Sky Lab has proven a real bargain, having won five races and been placed seven times from 30 starts, earning nearly $1.28m.

For all that, the gelding’s trainer is adamant his record should be even better.

“He has been an unlucky horse because he gets back in his races,” Perry said. “No doubt he should have won a few more.”

Aside from his Subzero victory, Sky Lab was runner-up in the 2021 Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) and Group 3 Craven Plate (2000m) at Randwick, and Group 3 Cameron Handicap (1500m) at Newcastle.

He was also runner-up in the Group 3 Summer Cup (2000m) at Randwick 12 months ago, and more recently finished third on his home track in The Beauford (2300m) at Newcastle’s metropolitan The Hunter meeting last month.

Perry has freshened Sky Lab since his latest close sixth (beaten only two lengths) to Stockman in the Listed Christmas Cup (2400m) at Rosehill Gardens on December 2.

Olympic Gaze also was part of the Arrowfield consignment at the same MM sale when Perry outlaid $110,000 to secure him.

The gelded son of Irish horse Olympic Glory and the Lonhro mare Wingstack is a six-times winner and has also been placed that many times, for prizemoney of just over $378,000.

Perry’s stable is in good form, having won 29 races in the first five months of the new season, following on from 51 in 2022-23.

Story John Curtis, December 27, 2023 - Pics Bradley Photos

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