The Everest-bound Mazu proved why he had secured one of the early slots for the $15 million The Everest this October saluting for the punters in the wet in Brisbane’s Group 1 $1 million Doomben 10,000 (1200m).
Well-backed to extend his winning streak to six straight, the son of Maurice was excellent late, digging deep the closing stages to hold off a spirited challenge by fellow three-year-old Paulele in an exciting edition of the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival Group 1 opener.
Taking place at Eagle Farm having been moved from Doomben due to the continued Queensland rainfall, this year’s Doomben 10,000 saw the two gun three-year-olds in the field go stride for stride over the final furlong.
Having run first and third respectively last time out in the mud in Sydney’s Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m), Mazu ($3.30F) and the James Cummings-trained Paulele ($11) franked that form against the older horses running the Doomben 10,000 quinella on a Heavy (8) course with only a short half-head separating them on the line.
After settling last the fence, the Mark Walker-trained Group 1 winning New Zealand mare Entriviere ($7) was huge late, making up all the ground with a rocketing late run down the outside to snare third.
Despite an undefeated record on Heavy tracks, jockey Sam Clipperton said the Doomben 10,000 win by Mazu was even better than it seemed with the horse not really handling the conditions at Eagle Farm.
“He actually didn’t (relish the conditions),” Clipperton said.
“I was thinking at that 600m mark we ‘we’re in strife’.
“We were chasing a hot speed…he really wasn’t sure on the surface. I just tried to pick him up as best I could and get him as far down the straight on the bridle.
“He’s just a star this horse. He knows how to win and we’ve got a great rapport with each other.
“He was always going to pick up, I just had to have faith in the horse. In the end I got to the front too early and had Paulele breaking down my neck. But he’s just a winner.
“You raise the bar and he jumps it and I feel very grateful to be on a horse of his calibre.”
The Doomben 10,000 result saw co-trainer Peter Snowden secure his impressive fourth win in the event following earlier victories with: Beaded (2011), Epaulette (2013) and Redzel (2017) who he also trained in partnership with his son Paul.
Paul Snowden described this year’s Doomben 10,000 victory as “a massive relief” and was emotional describing the terrific campaign of Mazu following the decision to geld the star young sprinter.
“It’s big relief obviously,” he told Sky Thoroughbred.
“There was massive speed here and we used him up to get to a spot. They didn’t back up and he didn’t get a chance to travel as well as he usually does in his races.
“All that pressure and he was still so strong in the end and that’s why we’ve got a spot in The Everest.
“It’s been a very good preparation let me tell you. A lot of work that’s gone into him.
“It’s just really good. It means a lot.”
Mazu is one of four horses to already secure a slot in the upcoming $15 million The Everest (1200m) on October 15 at Randwick, a race Team Snowden famously won the opening two editions of with Redzel (2017, 2018).
All-in The Everest betting at Ladbrokes.com.au has Mazu at $11.
Paulele meanwhile is now the $4.50 all-in favourite for the upcoming Group 1 $700,000 Kingsford-Smith Cup (1300m) back at the track on May 28, with Mazu occupying the second line of betting for the potential rematch at $6.