Out of the winner’s circle since August 2017, Special Missile led at every call in Friday’s $180,000 Listed Scone Cup (1600m) to credit the newly formed training partnership of Michael and Richard Freedman with its first stakes-winner.
Given a positive ride by Sam Clipperton, Special Missile clung to a desperate nose victory over the favourite Fierce Impact (JPN) (Deep Impact) with Goldstream (ITY) one and a quarter back in third.
“He jumped so well and he loves to roll along at his own tempo, he has his ears pricked and was in a beautiful rhythm,” Clipperton told Sky Racing.
“I was a bit worried about the mile and tried to nurse him for as long as possible and to be honest the second horse came at me that quick I wasn’t sure if he has hung on.”
Michael Freedman said it was a special moment.
“It’s big thrill. It’s probably been 15 or 16 years since Richard and I were in business together so to team up with him and have this horse win the Scone Cup is a big thrill,” Freedman said.
“I knew the horse was in good form but I had the slight query with him over a mile but I said to (bloodstock agent and purchaser) Bill Mitchell before the race that he had only two goes at the mile before, one was on a really heavy track.
“Sam rode him to perfection. He gave him a great ride (when second) at Randwick last start as well. He rated him perfectly and he has been lumping some big weight as he last few starts so getting down in the weights today and given a lovely ride in front worked out really well.”
Purchased by Bill Mitchell for $180,00 out of the Vinery Stud draft at the 2015 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, Special Missile advances his record to 6 wins, 5 seconds and 6 thirds from 27 starts with earnings of $458,850.
Bred by Greg Perry, the 5yo gelding is the best of three winners from as many to race out of the good-class import Quiet Meadow (USA).
A Listed stakes-winner and multiple Grade III-placed daughter of El Prado, Quiet Meadow (USA) has a yearling filly by Deep Field catalogued for Sunday’s Inglis Scone Yearling Sale.
Quiet Meadow (USA) was in the band of 64 mares in More Than Ready’s Australian swansong last spring.
Special Missile becomes the 11th stakes-winner for Twin Hills Stud’s Smart Missile who will cover in 2019 at a fee of $22,000.