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Winx v Enable?

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djebel View Drop Down
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    Posted: 09 Oct 2017 at 9:51pm
COMMENT LEE MOTTERSHEAD

If the wonder women met it would be the match of our days

If both sides can be persuaded to sign up in principle to meet, the sport should move heaven and earth to make it happen

On the Saturday just gone in 1973 BBC Grandstand managed to include five races from Haydock within the space of 90 minutes. This was made possible by the second contest being followed only 15 minutes later by the third. It was one of those rarities in racing, a pre-arranged match. There is now good reason for considering another.

On a day when BBC1 viewers also got to enjoy Bruce Forsyth hosting The Generation Game and It's Lulu, which in that particular episode helpfully featured Lulu, Haydock's Brooke Bond Tea Cup Ladies' Stakes (the final ladies' race of the season) and the Crown Decorators' Apprentice Championship Handicap were followed at 1.55pm by "A Match" over a mile and 40 yards.

Explaining what was set to take place, the Radio Times promised: "A brotherly duel between horses from the stables of two of racing's leading trainers. Ian Balding, trainer of Derby winner Mill Reef, saddles Morris Dancer, winner of over £30,000 in stakes. Toby Balding, trainer of Grand National winner Highland Wedding, saddles Scaramander."

Morris Dancer and Scaramander were fine horses, but their showdown almost certainly failed to draw a huge amount of interest, certainly not as much as some of racing's past great matches, including those between The Flying Dutchman and Voltigeur, Seabiscuit and War Admiral or Dawn Run and Buck House.

Perhaps, just perhaps, there could be a new head-to-head that would be spoken about in the same terms as those celebrated scraps.

The northern hemisphere has Enable. The southern hemisphere has Winx.

How wonderful it would be if those two brilliant females clashed in a battle of the hemispheres' heroines at some point in 2018. It is far from an impossible aspiration, but for the horses to meet, the humans behind them, helped by a few others, need to facilitate it.

One prerequisite is Enable, so magnificent all season, never more so than in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, must be kept in training at four. She should be and she surely will be.

John Gosden has spoken regularly about the extent to which thoroughbreds improve as they get older. He could not have been plainer that he would love to see Enable race next year, as would we all. Moreover, as Julian Muscat so eloquently made clear in his latest Wednesday column, it would be hard to defend, and even harder to applaud, the premature retirement of a racehorse who still has so much to give.

Let Winx be the example to Enable.

On Saturday, when crushing the opposition in Flemington's Turnbull Stakes, she extended her unbeaten spree to 21 races. In total, she has now won 25 of her 31 starts. The 32nd start will, all things being well, come on October 28 when a mare regularly saluted on this page seeks to become only the second horse after Kingston Town to win three Cox Plates.

After that, her ambitions will, according to recent indications, be expanded to Europe, with Chris Waller having already gone public on a possible plan for a three-stop tour next year. To see her in this part of the world would be something incredibly special, as it was when Black Caviar came to Royal Ascot, the festival that is bound to be a pivot point in Winx's international adventure.

Waller is keen to showcase his champion's adaptability over a range of distances. Given her very biggest triumphs have come over 1m2f, it is likely she would compete over that trip in Europe, but it is also likely her most obvious Ascot assignment would be in the Queen Anne Stakes, staged over a stiff mile that would play perfectly to her strengths.

All Enable's Group 1 victories have come over 1m4f, although that is not to say the royal meeting's 1m2f Prince of Wales's Stakes might not be a target and therefore also the stage for an encounter with Winx.

If they failed to share the same starting stalls for that race, Sandown could conceivably tempt them to come together in the Coral-Eclipse just a few weeks later. York's Juddmonte International ought to be considered a candidate as well, similarly Leopardstown's Irish Champion Stakes, although those prizes could come too late if the Winx camp are keen to return home for one last Australian spring.

There are, though, only a handful of races in which it is easy to envisage a face-off between Enable and Winx taking place. Any racecourse that believes it possesses such a race should start wooing both sets of connections from the second Winx's latest Australian campaign is closed.

Racecourses, and indeed racing, should also contemplate the alternative option of a match.

Assessed on talent and tactics, no two horses could be more obvious match material.

Winx has twice hit a Racing Post Rating of 130. Enable moved her personal best to 129 when storming home in the Arc. Both have the potential to raise their figures higher still. Enable thrives when racing prominently and happily made all in the Yorkshire Oaks. Winx attacks from behind and to devastating effect.

The fairest trip would be 1m2f or 1m3f. These would be shorter than Enable would ideally like, but while Winx won the Queensland Oaks over 1m3f, she also recorded a RPR of 130 over just 7½f in the George Ryder Stakes this year.

For now, this is nothing more than dream talk, yet remember that in 2000 we seemed set to get a match between Dubai Millennium and Montjeu only for the former to suffer a career-ending injury.

That would have been big. This would be bigger.

If both sides can be persuaded to sign up to meet in principle, the sport should move heaven and earth to make it happen. If it does happen, whether in an open contest or match, many would move heaven and earth to watch the two wonder women race.




STRIKE WHILST THE IRON IS HOT

reductio ad absurdum

The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least.

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djebel View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote djebel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Oct 2017 at 10:30pm


STRIKE WHILST THE IRON IS HOT

reductio ad absurdum

The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tlazolteotl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Oct 2017 at 10:23am
"Waller is keen to showcase his champion's adaptability over a range of distances."

News to me- where did he say that?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tlazolteotl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Oct 2017 at 10:27am
Originally posted by Tlazolteotl Tlazolteotl wrote:

"Waller is keen to showcase his champion's adaptability over a range of distances."

News to me- where did he say that?


Winx is already astonishingly versatile by Enable standards.Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote djebel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Oct 2017 at 12:12pm
When they had the press conference to say they were going to Melbourne he mentioned it.


STRIKE WHILST THE IRON IS HOT

reductio ad absurdum

The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Red Rum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 2017 at 9:10am
Winx Vs Enable would be a great match up.

Timeform rate them both 134.

Doubt connections of Winx want to put her unbeaten run to that much of a test, whatever they might say in public.
value is everything
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote furious Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 2017 at 9:51am
I've just the race for them.  The Queen Elizabeth S at Randwick.  Why should Winx be the one doing the travel.  She's older so has that against her to start with.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Red Rum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2017 at 4:12am
Originally posted by furious furious wrote:

I've just the race for them.  The Queen Elizabeth S at Randwick.  Why should Winx be the one doing the travel.  She's older so has that against her to start with.<div id="UMS_TOOLTIP" style=": ; cursor: pointer; : 2147483647; : transparent; top: -100000px; left: -100000px;">


Why should Winx age be a disadvantage for travelling, Furious? Surely experience should be an advantage moving from country to country?

Problem with British horses going to Australia is the extreme temperature. Easier the other way, going from a hot country to a reasonable one. Although a few horses might be able to go in and out quickly it's generally harder to acclimatise, needing a longer stay. Therefore unlikely to get connections of real top class British horses going to Oz.
value is everything
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carioca Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2017 at 10:58am
Originally posted by Red Rum Red Rum wrote:

Originally posted by furious furious wrote:

I've just the race for them.  The Queen Elizabeth S at Randwick.  Why should Winx be the one doing the travel.  She's older so has that against her to start with.<div id="UMS_TOOLTIP" style=": ; cursor: pointer; : 2147483647; : transparent; top: -100000px; left: -100000px;">


Why should Winx age be a disadvantage for travelling, Furious? Surely experience should be an advantage moving from country to country?

Problem with British horses going to Australia is the extreme temperature. Easier the other way, going from a hot country to a reasonable one. Although a few horses might be able to go in and out quickly it's generally harder to acclimatise, needing a longer stay. Therefore unlikely to get connections of real top class British horses going to Oz.


What makes you think the autumn in Sydney is hot Red Rum? flippers and snorkel maybe but not extreme, April would be perfect for your mare imo.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote furious Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2017 at 1:11pm
Yes by April we are all in coats for the races (well the ones who don't want to be cold).  And yes the one bad thing would be is Enable can't handle a wet course and she would probably get one.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carioca Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2017 at 2:30pm
Originally posted by furious furious wrote:

Yes by April we are all in coats for the races (well the ones who don't want to be cold).  And yes the one bad thing would be is Enable can't handle a wet course and she would probably get one.<div id="UMS_TOOLTIP" style=": ; cursor: pointer; : 2147483647; : transparent; top: -100000px; left: -100000px;">


This is the thing with Winx, she's not a one trick pony, 1100- 2200, on a good track,
24 st. 20 wins, soft 5-3-1, heavy 3-3, Enable .?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Red Rum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 6:28am
British all-weather surface racing goes on all year, but that's of a poorer standard. Turf racing ends in early November and doesn't start again until late March. Doubt Enable will even be in training until April and top older horses don't usually appear until May at the earliest. They won't be ready for April.

One reason I like Australian racing is you're not afraid to run them at different distances. imo Ours would be effective at different distances too. Irish filly of 2016, Minding was fully effective from 1600 to 2400 as a three year old, but she wasn't as good as Winx. I am a great fan of the Aussie mare. But I also rate Enable's form just as highly (backed her @ 12/1 ante-post months before the Arc). Some think she needs 2400, but her sectionals dispell that. Winx is without doubt more adaptable being effective at 1300, but that doesn't make her capable of better form. 2000m will be fine for Enable and she's won (and been equally effective) in Group 1's on both good-firm and very soft. Winx and Enable are imo equals.
value is everything
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shrunk in the Wash Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 7:56am
Enable is a 3yo filly. No comparison needed until she comes back as a mare and wins
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Red Rum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 8:20am
Originally posted by Shrunk in the Wash Shrunk in the Wash wrote:

Enable is a 3yo filly. No comparison needed until she comes back as a mare and wins


Eh?

Form is form.
Form can be compared.
value is everything
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote furious Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 9:04am
Red Rum we watch Enable and wonder at her ability also.  She is a great filly and hopefully comes back next season in the same form.  It's just hard to know if Winx goes to England you get to see her but we don't get to see Enable.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote furious Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 9:08am
I actually went to see Winx earlier in the year (at a postponed meeting which was late due to heavy rain) and sat next to an English couple there just to see her.  We had a ball talking about racing and Winx in general.

I went to see Black Caviar at Royal Ascot and got to see the great Frankel which was a highlight of the trip.  

So we may be along way away but we wish we could see more of your great horses also.  Just greedy I suppose.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tlazolteotl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 9:16am
I don't think Winx will ever race outside Australia.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Red Rum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 12:31pm
Originally posted by furious furious wrote:

I actually went to see Winx earlier in the year (at a postponed meeting which was late due to heavy rain) and sat next to an English couple there just to see her.  We had a ball talking about racing and Winx in general.<div id="UMS_TOOLTIP" style=": ; cursor: pointer; : 2147483647; : transparent; top: -100000px; left: -100000px;">

I went to see Black Caviar at Royal Ascot and got to see the great Frankel which was a highlight of the trip.  

So we may be along way away but we wish we could see more of your great horses also.  Just greedy I suppose.  


Oh yes, the great Frankel. I backed him to win that Queen Anne race, Furious. Although long odds-on just to "win", I took 9/1 for him to win by 10 lengths or more! I saw Frankel three times - Goodwood and Newbury - blown away each time. Can understand you wanting to see the best horses, but as well the heat issue, winning a Group 1 in Australia won't increase stud value of the top European horses. However, I gather Battaash (a gelding) is a possible for next year's Everest. At his best absolutely brilliant, but can lose the race before the start by worrying/awash with sweat. Hope you get to see him at his best. Shame British racegoers didn't see Black Caviar at her best, but we were grateful she came.
value is everything
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote furious Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2017 at 4:02pm
She injured herself three times in races (that I know of) and won each time.  Don't know any other horse who could race through pain like she could.  Wish you could of seen her the day she broke 10s to break Hay List and Buffering.  
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