Super Saturday undercard

9 March 2024 Written by Racing & Sports

A look at some of the races on the Super Saturday undercard at Flemington.

Von Hauke gets job done in Shaftesbury Avenue

The penny may finally be dropping for Von Hauke who made a leap from restricted company to claim the Group 3 Shaftesbury Avenue Handicap (1400m).

The Cliff Brown stable has always held Von Hauke in high esteem, but the gelding’s racing manners had previously let him down.

Von Hauke was lining up for his 11th race start on Saturday and in his two runs this campaign the gelding had been fitted with a nose roll.

“Today was significant. He was a little keen on the bridle early but then he relaxed,” Brown said.

“It was significant at his last start too, back to the 1100 metres, he wanted to get running, but he came back and had he learnt a lot.

“His sectionals last start were incredible, so you throw them into the deep end for a reason.

“This is a good distance second-up and we’ll go to the mile next time.”

Eternal Flame post important Stakes victory

Mick Kent had hoped to be campaigning Eternal Flame in Sydney by now instead of contesting a Stakes race in Melbourne.

But now the Cranbourne-based horseman is likely to turn the mare out for a spell and prepare her for the spring content that Eternal Flame has Black Type to her name following her victory in the Group 3 Matron Stakes (1600m).

“She’s been very stiff,” Kent said.

“I didn’t want to be here because I thought we’d have Black Type by now and we might have gone to Sydney.

“We were desperate to get it and she possibly should have won three Stakes races by now. We like her a lot and she’s still got a bit more to come.

“We might ease up on her and head to the spring now.

“She’s still got two or three inches to grow, and these mares get better with age.”

Australian Cup next for Young Werther

Young Werther led throughout to claim the Australian Cup Prelude (1800m) and is set to return to Flemington for a shot at an Easter feature in three weeks’ time.

The Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) on March 30 has been Young Werther’s mission since returning to work after a brief break over summer.

Trainer Danny O’Brien said Young Werther had been in tremendous since last year’s spring carnival where he was an unlucky third in the Champions Stakes before running second in the Ballarat Cup.

“Three weeks (to the Australian Cup) is perfect as is getting back to Flemington to the 2000 metres,” O’Brien said.

“We thought he was very stiff here in the Champions Stakes on the final day of the carnival so it would be nice if he could win one of those nice Group 1’s here.

“His third start in a race was a third in the Derby and got beaten a short-half-head in the Australian Derby and here he is still presenting as a six-year-old and running well.”

Mature Hedged scores first-up

Hedged will attempt to follow the deeds of stablemate What You Need when he heads to a Stakes race for his next outing.

The Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr-trained Hedged scored first-up in the Circa Plate (1100m) and will return to Flemington in three weeks’ time for a tilt at the Listed Sunlight Classic (1100m).

It was the same double stablemate What You Need completed last year.

“What You Need was probably showing more at the same stage albeit he was an entire,” Price said.

“But this horse is a bigger, better, stronger gelding and he is set for a really good prep, and I’d say he’ll improve from today.

“We haven’t been too tough on him. We have let me come (along) when he’s been ready to come and he’s a bigger stronger horse with a better brain on him now.”