Redzel at peak of powers for Doomben return
SYNDICATOR Chris Ward concedes there's a world of difference between Redzel's 2017 tilt at the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 and the one confronting the sprinter in Saturday's $700,000 feature.
Redzel was sent out a $9 chance in last year's 10,000 but will start a hot favourite to defend his crown on Saturday, having established himself as the benchmark sprinter in the southern hemisphere since bagging his first Group 1 at Doomben.
Ward and his brother Michael, who run Triple Crown Syndications, put together a team of owners who could not have dreamt what would transpire in the past 12 months.
"They are an excitable bunch. They are enjoying it and so they should. It's an amazing ride they're on," Ward said of Redzel's syndicate of owners.
"There's a lot of ups and downs in racing and you have to enjoy those good times.
"You can't imagine any horse gets to this sort of level, with this sort of consistency.
"When we did come up there to Brisbane last year, we knew he was on an upward spiral and you just don't know where that's going to stop.
"We were excited for the future and he has managed to keep building from that time and set us along a path that's just been amazing for all of us."
There's not many areas Winx has been outpointed in Australian racing in the past three years but Redzel's connections can boast to have won more prizemoney than the great mare this season, having banked $7,497,300 since he won last year's 10,000.
Add in the prizemoney from Redzel's Doomben success, and that figure becomes almost $8 million in his past eight starts.
The $5,800,000 for being first home in The Everest in October helped boost that total but there's hardly been a blemish on Redzel's scorecard in the past year.
"He's been unbelievable," Ward said. "Every company like ours, trainers, syndicators, whatever, you need good flag-bearers as horses and there's been none better than him and the ride he's given our owners.
"Our other owners follow him as well and they share in that experience. Even though they may not have ownership in that horse, they are all just as thrilled.
"He's been a huge boost for the business and also for the industry. It's great seeing a syndicated horse from people of all walks of life all around Australia enjoying that sort of success in races like The Everest and the 10,000 at the top level."
Ward believes Redzel is going better than ever and tipped him to improve on what he did last start in the T.J. Smith Stakes.
"Prior to that race, (trainers) Peter and Paul Snowden were open in saying they didn't think it was the ideal preparation going into that race for him," he said.
"He's up to peak fitness now and around Doomben, I think he will be very hard to beat."
Redzel's race record in the past 12 months.
Placing - Race - Prizemoney
WIN - G1 Doomben 10,000 (May 13, 2017) - $456,000
WIN - G3 Concorde (September 2, 2017) - $85,000
WIN - G2 The Shorts (September 16, 2017) - $115,800
WIN - The Everest (October 14, 2017) - $5,800,000
WIN - G1 Darley Classic (November 11, 2017) - $602,500
2nd - G1 Lightning Hcp (February 17, 2018) - $135,000
WIN - G2 Challenge (March 10, 2018) - $289,000
2nd - G1 T.J. Smith (April 7, 2018) - $470,000
TOTAL - 6 wins, 2 2nds - $7,953,300