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Gai Waterhouse | Gai Waterhouse News 57896 Playing By The Rules

Playing By The Rules

Fri, Mar 8, 2024

Playing By The Rules
Our Racing Manager, Emma Reeves, aids us with programming and identifies who she thinks is the best placed horse each weekend.

So United, Canberra, Sunday 10th March, Canberra Cup:

I’m extremely excited about the two-year-olds, the return of Red Resistance and don’t give up on Jon Bon, but I had to go with So United this week. I should start by saying that there might be a percentage of bias in this one though I am trying to bring it back to the black and white facts. Every year around July and August I start to think about some of the less obvious possible Magic Millions contenders that are currently in work. They’re often older, consistent Saturday class horses, whereas the glossy two and three-year-olds aren’t hard to find. In August of last year So United had been in work for a long time was almost always running top four but I felt a spell was on the horizon so after speaking with Gai, Adrian and David Mourad from Blueblood Thoroughbreds, we devised a Magic Millions plan. As I’ve said before, few horses stick to the plan because they’re living, breathing animals and we need to react to each individual but for whatever reason, things seemed to go perfectly to script with him. He won his first Saturday race and the preparation culminated with a win in the $1mil. Magic Millions Subzero. That might not sound as exciting as winning a Golden Slipper but for my role, these are what make it all worthwhile.

So United is one of only four horses in this Canberra Cup field of 11 who’s suitably weighted according to his handicap rating and with these older, exposed stayers, I do think that’s quite relevant. Each of those horses, excluding So United, are also nominated for Randwick the day before so keep an eye on the scratchings at 7.30am Saturday morning. Two of those three finished 1-2.5 lengths behind him in the Parramatta Cup which isn’t a large margin but So United was first up off a freshen in the paddock and only one trial, so I expect there to be more improvement in him. The final one of the three is dropping back from finishing fourth in a Caulfield Cup which is certainly eye catching, but he is first up. So United hasn’t won at this level but we have so much success in this race and I think this is his opportunity.