Fastnet Rock's Awesome Rock Takes the Emirates

7th at FLM, A$2mG1 Emirates S. (2000m)Winner: Awesome Rock (Aus), h, 5 by Fastnet Rock (Aus)

Awesome Rock | Bronwen Healy

The father and son training partnership of Leon and Troy Corstens experienced ecstasy followed by agony in a matter of moments at Flemington back in March when Awesome Rock (Aus) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}) crossed the finish first in the G1 Australian Cup–the first win at the elite level for horse and trainers–only to be stripped of the win in the stewards room. Returning to Flemington 11 months later, Awesome Rock made amends on Saturday when upsetting the G1 Emirates S. on the closing day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival. The dark bay sat second through the opening stages of the 2000-metre event, about two lengths off the pacesetting Vadamos (Fr) (Monsun {Ger}), who raced keenly as he had done when making the running in the G1 Cox Plate Oct. 22. Vadamos pulled about three lengths clear as he raced toward the turn but Awesome Rock kept the frontrunner in his sights, edging a half-length clear of Endless Drama (Ire) (Lope De Vega {Ire}) and Vanbrugh (Aus) (Encosta de Lago {Aus}) on his heels. Vadamos valiantly clung on to his lead for much of the stretch run but his early exploits soon took their toll. He surrendered to Awesome Rock at the 100 metre mark, and the winner had enough left in the tank to hold off late finishers Hauraki (Aus) (Reset {Aus}) and Seaburge (Aus) (Sebring {Aus}), who ultimately deadheated for second. The disappointment of the race was favoured The United States (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), who raced near the rear throughout and made some headway in the lane to get up for fifth.

Saturday, Flemington, Australia
EMIRATES S.-G1, A$2,005,000, VRC, 11-05, 3yo/up, Open Weight For Age, 2000mT, 2:02.49, Good.
1–&AWESOME ROCK, 59.0, h, 5, by Fastnet Rock
1st Dam: Awesome Planet, by Giant's Causeway (USA)
(GSW-Aus, SW & G1SP-NZ, $210,150), by Giant's Causeway (USA)
2nd Dam: Dance on the Moon (IRE), by Fasliyev (USA)
3rd Dam: Band of Angels (IRE), by Alzao (USA)
(A$575,000 Ylg 2013 MM Gold Coast Yearling Sale) O-S Saric,
Mrs J C Saric, A J Olive, W D Birch, Mrs D J Birch, J M Tresize,
Mrs P M Tresize, Emmaroo Bloodstock (Mgr: Mrs C J Murray)
& Newgate S F (Mgr: G D Murphy); B-Mr A Olive WA; T-Leon &
Troy Corstens; J-S Baster; A$1,205,000. Lifetime Record:
25-4-3-4, A$2,028,720. *1/2 to Earth (Redoute's Choice), SP-
Aus. Werk Nick Rating: A+++ *Triple Plus*. Click for the
eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
(DH)2–Hauraki, 59.0, g, 5, Reset–Youthful Presence, by Dehere
(USA). O-Godolphin; B-Darley NSW; T-J A O'Shea; J-J B Mc
Donald; A$270,000.
(DH)2–Seaburge, 51.0, c, 3, Sebring–Polska, by Encosta de Lago.
(A$220,000 Ylg 2015 MM Gold Coast Yearling Sale) O-D A
Hayes, C B & Mrs J M McKenna, Collins St Partners Syndicate
(Mgr: B N Griffith & T J Storey), N S & Mrs G C Psaltis, Mrs A L K
Andrews – Burgio, P J Coish, T F Gurry, Miss J K; B-Mr D
Henderson QLD; T-D & B Hayes & T Dabernig; J-D Yendall;
Margins: 3/4, DH, 1 3/4. Odds: 17.00, 8.50, 16.00.
Also Ran: Vadamos (FR), The United States (IRE), Vanbrugh, Good Standing, Palentino, Happy Clapper, Happy Trails, Tivaci, Endless Drama (IRE).
Click for the Racing Post result.
A A$575,000 yearling purchase, Awesome Rock won a Sandown handicap at second asking at two and finished second in Flemington's G2 Sires' Produce S. He went winless through a 3-year-old campaign in which he raced exclusively at group level, but hit the board in three of his six outings. Awesome Rock at last got back to the winner's enclosure midway through his 4-year-old season when dropped down to listed class in Flemington's Symphony S., and it was two starts later that he was first past the post in the Australian Cup at 25-1. Shelved for the winter after finishing last of 14 in the G1 Queen Elizabeth S. at The Championships, Awesome Rock won the G2 Dato Tan Chin Nam S. going a mile at Moonee Valley Sept. 3 before a succession of fifth-place finishes at the highest level, in the Underwood S. Sept. 24, the Toorak H. Oct. 8 and the Cox Plate Oct. 22.

“It was an amazing run today,” said co-trainer Troy Corstens after collecting his first Group 1 win. “I'm very lost for words, which is unlike me. It was a perfect ride today. He did such a great job, [jockey] Stephen [Baster]. He sat behind Vadamos in the slip stream and kept him out of that wind the whole way. We were confident the whole way through. We always thought he had the Group 1 in him.”

Baster added, “He's been a great horse for me. Obviously losing the Australian Cup was hard. I've got my little daughter at the races today and it's so special to ride a Group 1 winner with her here.”

Pedigree Notes…

Awesome Rock is the first produce of Awesome Planet, who won Australia's G3 Doomben Roses S. and was third in New Zealand's G1 One Thousand Guineas. The third dam, Band Of Angels (Ire) (Alzao), is a half-sister to G1 Epsom Derby winner Dr Devious (Ire); Irish champion sprinter Archway (Ire); top Japanese and Hong Kong performer Shinko King (Ire); as well as the dams of Group 1 winners Dancing Rain (Ire) (Danehill Dancer {Ire}) and Suzuka Phoenix (Jpn) (Sunday Silence). Awesome Planet is also the dam of the stakes-placed Earth (Aus) (Redoute's Choice {Aus}); a 2-year-old daughter of Pierro (Aus) named Chardonnay (Aus) and a filly by Snitzel (Aus) who will be offered at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale in January 2017. Click for the free catalogue-style pedigree.


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