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Jolly good Vella: Stephan’s biggest fan rewarded keeping the faith

Gratz Vella and Brenton 

Gratz Vella and Brenton Avdulla.Credit:Getty

‘‘Then he had to have 12 months off because he did his fetlock in.

‘‘He has been in the wars. The owner surrendered. She said no way but I said ‘we’ve got to bring him back’.”

Stephan has always been a backmarker but, when he settled on the back of the speed, he was always going to be hard to beat and barged through on the inside.

‘‘He has been a problem horse all his life but he’s giving us the rewards now’’ Vella said.

‘‘I was a bit worried when he got a bit close, but Brenton knew what he was doing.”

Hand it to Hugh

It was a tale of who got the run and who didn’t as Hugh Bowman drove Handspun (pictured) to victory at Rosehill on Saturday.

Bowman had to wait for a gap to come with a lap full of horse and, when it did, the well-supported Handspun did the rest.

Meanwhile, Nash Rawiller on Word For Word, which had been backed into favourite, was not having the same luck.


“She had to fight hard for it. There was plenty of room when I went for the run, but it became neat when I got there,” Bowman said of Handspun’s win, where she came between Lucicello and Pumpkin Pie.

“I was a bit lucky being that pair further back, because I could see what was happening.

“Too her credit, once she balanced up, she took care of the rest. She really made it happen.”

Nash Rawiller had a different story back to the inside of Handspun. He had to switch back further to the inside and charged in the final 50m when she got into the clear.

“She was desperately unlucky, couldn’t get a run when I needed it,” he said.

Happy as Harras

The Harras syndicate has been buying at the Magic Millions looking for a two-year-old for a number of years and might finally have a runner on the big day next month.

Adana saluted in the the aqua blue silks at Rosehill on Saturday over 1800m and he might be in the Magic Millions Handicap.

“It is not one of the million-dollar races but might suit him well,” trainer Chris Waller said. “He liked that [1800m] trip and it is the right level for him.”

Adana led home another Waller trifecta from Stardome and Remuera, who both look to have wins in them soon.

“At this time of year, these horses get their chance and it is a case of getting in the right race at the right time,” Waller said. “There is a lot of racing coming up in the next couple of weeks, and they will get their chance to win a race, which is important.”

As the field spread across the track in the straight, Hugh Bowman took inside runs to get up and win.

“He has been a consistent horse and it was good to see him get a win,” Bowman said “The distance may have helped, but I just think he found the right race.”

Bjorn’s Bobby dazzler

Bjorn Baker was just happy to be walking to the winner’s stall after Bobby Dee broke a week of near misses at Rosehill on Saturday.

The stable had three favourites beaten at Gosford on Wednesday, including Let It Pour at $1.10, and Baker had watched Hinchbeast and Fun Fact get beaten in photos earlier in the day.


“I needed it to get out of an almighty bad week,” Baker said. “It’s a nice change of luck.

“I’ve had a few short-priced favourites and they’ve all been running well, but things just haven’t been going our way.”

A $31 outsider, Bobby Dee (pictured) did nothing for punters as he just got the better of Silent Explorer and Bigboyroy in what was a sprint home, but might be a horse to follow.

“He is going to get better over more ground,” jockey Samantha Clenton said. “We got a nice cheap sectional and he quickened nicely. He is certainly a bit more of a stayer.”

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