Group Double for Toronado

Tara Madgwick – Saturday October 2

Swettenham Stud’s Toronado (IRE) had a hot half hour with brilliant sprinter Masked Crusader confirming his Everest aspirations with a power packed win in the Group II ATC Premiere Stakes at Randwick and then quality mare Still a Star took out the Group II VRC Rose of Kingston Stakes (1600m) at Flemington.

Masked Crusader is still on the improve according to Tommy Berry – image Steve Hart.

Well  turned out by Team Hawkes, Masked Crusader produced his customary late finishing charge to score a long neck win over Standout taking his overall record to seven wins and four placings from 15 starts with prizemoney of $1.4million.

“I let him cut the corner and he sprinted very well, but I think there’s still  improvement in him as he had a good blow when he pulled up, so I think Hawkes’s are just making sure he’s ready on the big day,” said Tommy Berry.

Bred and sold by Gilgai Farm, Masked Crusader was bought by Hawkes Racing / Cameron Cooke Bloodstock for $340,000 at Inglis Premier and was the most expensive yearling from the first crop of his sire.

Masked Crusader is the best of three winners from ill-fated stakes-winning Invincible Spirit (IRE) mare She’s Got Gears, who died tragically at Gilgai Farm earlier this spring.

There are very few mares as consistent as Tasmanian darling Still a Star and the five year-old daughter of Toronado posted her biggest win to date when taking out the Group II VRC Rose of Kingston Stakes.

She came home with a well timed run under Luke Currie to win by a short half head over Pride of Dubau mare Pride of Jenni taking her overall record to an impressive 10 wins and seven placings from 18 starts with prizemoney topping $873,000.

Prepared throughout her career by Tasmanian trainer Bill Ryan, Still a Star was a modest $13,000 Magic Millions Tasmanian Yearling Sale purchase from the Alva Stud draft.

Bred by Alva Stud, Still a Star is the best of two winners from Lita, a winning Casino Prince mare from Group III winner Royal Asscher.

A Group I miler by High Chaparral, Toronado has proven n outstanding source of sprinter milers and stands at Swettenham stud this spring at a fee of $49,500.

Still a Star wins G2 Rose of Kingston Stakes – image Brett Holburt / Racing Photos