Starspangledbanner Wins 2010 Oakleigh Plate

February 22nd, 2010

On Saturday at Caulfield racecourse Leon Corstens’ boom colt Starspangledbanner claimed another prestigious Group 1 win in the $400, 000 Oakleigh Plate (1100m), in one of the closest and most exciting finishes in the race’s history.

Three-year-old Starspangledbanner ($7) won by a short head, holding off the Mark Kavanagh-trained Here De Angles ($6) who dead-heated for second with South Australian roughie Arinos ($51) in a chaotic and tense finish.

The winning son of Choisir was ridden Danny Nikolic, giving the in-form hoop his second Oakleigh Plate win following his success aboard Sports in 2000. It was Starspangledbanner’s first win since he took out the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas last October.

It was a disappointing finish for the $5 favourite, Lucky Secret, finishing eighth with other highly fancied entrants including Peter Moody’s Wanted and the David Hayes-trained Eagle Falls finished fourth and fifth respectively.

The firm track proved too much for a number of the runners, Lucky Secret included, who pulled up lame in the near foreleg.

Weekend Hussler, who took out the 2008 Oakleigh Plate, was another casualty finishing a distant eleventh after pulling up lame in the off foreleg.

Starspangledbanner now boasts an impressive career record of six wins from 11 starts and has amassed over $1.3million in prizemoney.

The champion colt will next run in the $1million Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) on March 6 at Flemington, for which he has been installed as the $7.50 second elect. A win in the Newmarket will go a long way in improving the stocks for his career in stud.

After the Newmarket, Starspangledbanner will head overseas to England where Coolmore Stud’s Aidan O’Brien will prepare him for the Royal Ascot in June, after which he will go to stud.

The other highlight race at the meeting was the $1million Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes, won by the Danny O’Brien-trained Star Witness.

2010 Oakleigh Plate Results:

Position

Horse

Jockey

Trainer

1
STARSPANGLEDBANNER
Danny Nikolic Leon Corstens
2
HERE DE ANGELS
Michael Rodd Mark Kavanagh
2
ARINOS
James Winks David Jolly
4
WANTED
Luke Nolen Peter G Moody
5
EAGLE FALLS
Brett Prebble David Hayes
6
GRAN SASSO
Chris Symons Mick Price
7
HEADWAY
Craig Newitt Peter G Moody
8
LUCKY SECRET
Damien Oliver Tony Vasil
9
TICKETS
Stathi Katsidis Peter G Moody
10
SWIFT ALLIANCE
Steven King Gai Waterhouse
11
WEEKEND HUSSLER
Brad Rawiller Ross McDonald
12
AVENUE
Craig Williams Peter G Moody
13
GRAND DUELS
Daniel Ganderton Byron Cozamanis