Southerners count on Qlders to land Group 1 riches

\"\"Caption: Shima Shine cruises to victory in the Group 1 Garrard’s Gold Bullion (520m) at Albion Park (Photo: Box 1 Photography)

By TERRY WILSON

AS the tune used for an old television advertisement used to say, \’you can count on a Queenslander\’.

Southern trainers Andrea Dailly and Wally Harkins can attest to this after landing some Queensland riches at Albion Park last month.

Because of uncertainty over border closures, Dailly sent Shima Shine and Sunset Bourbski north to Greg Brennan at South Maclean, near Jimboomba, to be prepared for the Listed Garrard’s Gold Cup (710m) and the Group 1 Garrard’s Gold Bullion (520m).

At the same time, out at Tony Brett’s Grandchester complex Sir Truculent was lodged with a trainer whom the owner/trainer (Harkins) had never met in person.

The results were stunning.

Sir Truculent landed the $75,000 first prizemoney for Harkins and Brett, holding off the fast-finishing Sunset Bourbski in a driving dash to the line.

But the Brennan-Dailly combo went one better when classy Shima Shine led all the way to land first prizemoney of $150,000 in the Gold Bullion.

It was the second major race in which Brett had been in temporary care of a star interstater and landed the prize.

Last year he was in charge of Black Opium which won the Group 1 Brisbane Cup after being sent to Queensland by Victorian trainer Jason Thompson.

All of this shows that, like the old TV jingle for the Bank of Queensland used to say, you definitely can count of a Queenslander.

“That’s an interesting take on it,” said Brennan, who had once been travelling foreman for Mick Zammit and handled Brisk Bill when the dog won a G1 Perth Cup.

Unlike Brett, who did the job for South Australian-based Harkins, Brennan had known the Dailly clan for many years.

“I’ve been mates with the Dailly brothers, they’re twins Tom and Greg, for a long time,” said Brennan of the winning combination.

“I’ve looked after dogs for them over the last 10 years since I’ve been here

“When they weren’t always as busy as they are now they’d come up.

“I enjoy it because it gives you responsibility and you try to do your best.

“They’re good friends but they’re always very generous good friends.

“The arrangement suits them. I have a small establishment and I always have a spare kennel or two for them.”

Shima Shine clocked a slick 29.51 seconds for victory over gallant home-state hope Crazy Cool (Robert Jacobsen). Coming in third was the well-performed Tommy Shelby.

Jacobsen did not give his bitch much of a chance drawn in box eight but she ran the race of her life chasing home one of the nation’s premier sprinters and earn $40,000 in stakes for connections.

Originally bought by Jacobsen for her breeding potential, Crazy Cool (Barcia Bale-Crazy Sexy) was once expected not to be able to handle races over 500m but since transferred to Jacobsen’s Moorooka headquarters, has come along in leaps and bounds.

Her effort behind Shima Shine has certainly elevated her value in her future as a brood bitch

The amazing thing behind Tony Brett’s winning of the Gold Cup with Sir Truculent was that he had never met the stayer’s South Australian owner-trainer Wally Harkins.

Up to final night the only contact that Brett had with Harkins was via phone calls.

“It’s funny how things work out,” said Brett. “I’d only spoken to Wally on the phone, and only in the last three weeks.”

The connection between Harkins and Brett came through a close friend of Brett, Damien Bates, who is also a good friend of Harkins.

“Damien is down in Adelaide and he rang me up and asked if I’d be interested in taking Sir Truculent,” Brett added.

“Wally couldn’t travel with him and of course I said yes, I could do it.

“The funny thing is that I’d never met Wally – I wouldn’t know him from a bar of soap.”

‘Go-To Tony’ is starting to make a habit of winning big races for interstate trainers unable to travel to Queensland because of the COVID-19 restrictions.

Last year leading Victorian trainer Jason Thompson had no hesitation in flying Black Opium north to Brisbane to be prepared for the G1 Brisbane Cup (520m).

The star sprinter duly won the event, further strengthening the friendship and bond between Thompson and Brett.

Unfortunately for Brett, his runner in the Gold Bullion, Queensland Derby winner Sentenced, missed the kick and finished down the track.

The dog (by Brett’s dual G1 winner Jury) was subsequently scratched from the Temlee Classic at The Meadows because of a slight metacarpal injury.

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