Young Duke Smashes Track Record

Young Duke Smashes Track Record

Bruce Stewart

15th December 2021

Winton trainer Lauren Pearson and partner Brent Barclay had a lot of time for quality three year old Duke Of Wellington, but his younger brother is also exciting them.

“I didn’t think he was as good as his brother but he’s starting to get there. This horse has done more at two than Duke (Duke Of Wellington) did,” Pearson said after the Sweet Lou colt broke the track and Southland record for two year olds at Wyndham today.

Duke Of Cornwall winning at Wyndham -Photo Monica Toretto

The two favourites, Hiranya from barrier five and Duke Of Cornwall from six, hit the turbo charge at the mile dispatch with Hiranya and Sam Ottley taking the lead while Matty Williamson and Duke Of Cornwell had to sit parked.

“When he was parked, I thought he was the type that would suit a stronger mile so that’s why we kept them ticking along,” Williamson said.

At the 600 Williamson moved Duke Of Cornwall up and drew level with Hiranya. At the top of the straight Williamson still had plenty of horse and he went down to the line to beat Hiranya by three quarters of a lengt,h running the 1609 metres in 1-52.6.

“He went super good today and probably stepped up another level. 52 sitting parked is a massive run so it’s exciting.”

The last 800 metres was cut out in 56.8 and they ran the last 400 in 27.3.

“I think it’s the easiest he’s won believe it or not. Once he put the leader away at the top of the straight, I just sat on him. He did it very easily which he shouldn’t be able to do for the 1-52 mile,” Williamson said before adding, “In all of his wins so far, he hasn’t been running clear ever. Though he’s had plenty of horsepower left. He’s always kicked after the line when others have come up to him.”

The time was a new track and Southland record for two year olds, bettering War Dan Delight’s time of 1-53.3 recorded in the 2018 Kindergarten Stakes. The national record for this age group is 1-51.9 recorded at Ashburton by Ashley Locaz.

It was Duke Of Cornwall’s third win in eight starts. Williamson only picked up the drive when regular driver Brent Barclay was serving out a suspension.

“I really appreciate them leaving me on. Brent’s a great driver so it’s a buzz having someone like him willing to put you on. Lauren has her horses trained to the minute so it’s exciting to be on,” Williamson said.

With today’s impressive win there will likely to be more pressure on owner Lester Smith from potential buyers.

“Not too sure. We leave that all up to Lester.”

Pearson says the next likely targets will be age group races.

“Brent and I take it day by day. Lester looks ahead and see what he wants to do. I suppose it’ll be Supremacy heats for him.”

The dam of Duke Of Cornwall – Galleons Honour, won her first start for Auckland trainer Gareth Dixon. She finished her 17-start career with Pearson, before heading to stud where she’s fashioned an impressive record.

All of her six foals of racing age have qualified and won races. Dazed And Confused (9), Venice Beach (11), Duke Of Wellington (8), Rise Above This (10), Broadbeach (4) and Duke Of Cornwall (4).

Duke Of Wellington

Pearson says the mare has a rising two-year-old named Duke Of Scotland also by Sweet Lou who is on the big side and likely to make a three-year-old.