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First Australian stakes winner for Spendthrift


Tuesday, September 6, 2016
the following article originally appeared in the Sept. 5, 2016 TDN
by Alan Carasso 

The Australian arm of B. Wayne Hughes's Spendthrift Farm was represented by its first black-type winner down under when Swear (Aus) ran his record to a perfect two-from-two with a battling victory in Saturday's Daily Telegraph Ming Dynasty S. (G3) at Randwick. 

Bred in New South Wales by Dean Fleming, the son of New Zealand highweight Crossyourheart (NZ) was consigned to the 2015 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale by the family's Tyreel Stud and was hammered down to the Spendthrift braintrust for A$725,000. 

Turned over to the John, Michael and Wayne Hawkes, Swear was no better than an 11-1 chance for the A$125,000 Claret S. at Hawkesbury Apr. 30 and finished willingly for a neck success. Swear had been given a couple of easy barrier trials leading into the Ming Dynasty and was the lukewarm 14-5 favorite to maintain his winning ways. First to break the line, the bay eased back into a stalking second for Tommy Berry and was asked to go after the pacesetting filly Starlight Glow (Aus) three deep into the lane. 

Sent into a narrow lead entering the final 300 metres, Swear stayed on well and hit the line a half-length to the good of High Mist (Aus), who was checked for room at a crucial stage and re-rallied to just miss (VIDEO). 

The victory earned high praise from one of Australia's leading jockeys, who believes he may have found a partner for races like the Victoria Derby (G1) in early November.  “He'll definitely stay the trip I think,” Tommy Berry commented. “He's got a beautiful big action and to be honest, I was surprised to see him win so well today over the seven furlongs. He feels like a Derby horse. We feel like, I think that would be his aim.”

For his part, Spendthrift General Manager Ned Toffey hopes Berry's assessment is correct. “That is certainly high praise coming from someone like him,” Toffey commented. “He's done a wonderful job with him. We've been told all along that he'd like more distance and it really looked like he was accelerating at the line. 

Toffey added, “It's our first stakes win in Australia and he is very close to finding a place in our stallion barn, which is what our goal is. We think we have a really nice group of horses and with some luck, we're hoping for a big year. It's certainly moving in the right direction.”

Swear could take a tried path to Melbourne to possibly include the Group 3 Gloaming S. (1800m) at Rosehill Sept. 24 and the Group 1 Spring Champion S. (2000m) at Randwick Oct. 8 ahead of the Derby (2500m) at Flemington Oct. 29. 
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