Gold Front Thoroughbreds claimed its first classic success during a week to remember when Awesome John won the G2 WATC Derby (2400m) at Ascot on Saturday.
Awesome John carries the Gold Front GFB brand and he had been placed in the G2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill before travelling to Perth where he settled in straightaway for trainer John O’Shea. And he looked right at home in running under champion jockey Willie Pike.
“He just went out there and chilled. He didn’t pull, he travelled nice and he was the ultimate professional,” Pike told the West Australian Newspaper following the last-to-first victory over Another Chino (Maschino) and She’s Fit (Pride Of Dubai).
“He’s a lovely type and I was a very fortunate to pick up the ride. I didn’t want to give the others a good horse to follow and to circle them on the bend like that proved he was just too good.”
Awesome John (Photo / Western Racepix) is a son of Gold Front stallion Awesome Rock and was bred by the Breera stud’s owners Alan and Sue Olive. They raced the Fastnet Rock stallion to a Group 1 victory in the Emirates Stakes (2000m) at Flemington alongside Stan Saric in a syndicate with trainers Leon and Troy Corstens.
Saric manages the Awesome John partnership and owns his NZ-bred dam Jayquin Star (O’Reilly).
The Olives added another feature win on Easter Sunday with Said No One Ever in the $100,000 Albany Cup (2100m). They bred the Deep Field gelding after buying his dam Hidden Wonder (Danzero) for $285,000 at the 2014 Magic Millions National Sale on the Gold Coast.
Hidden Wonder won a LR Belle of the Turf Stakes at Gosford and her Awesome Rock yearling colt was purchased by Sharon Miller for $52,500 at this year’s Perth Magic Millions. The mare is back in foal to Awesome Rock off an early cover last September.
The Olives sold a high-priced yearling through Cannon Hayes Stud at the Inglis Easter Sale last Tuesday. Their filly by The Autumn Sun from River Goddess (Northern Meteor) was a $360,000 buy for leading agent John Foote who was acting on behalf of a Queensland client.
Gold Front has $3.30 pre-post favourite Acromantula (Written Tycoon) in $200,000 The Joey (1200m) this Saturday as well as longshots Blue Lagoon (Supido) and Catch the Red Eye (Rubick) in the G2 Karrakatta Plate (1200m).
Their Karrakatta entrants have drawn well and Sue Olive reports they’ve both got the ability and the talent and her team have worked hard with both youngsters going into Perth’s premier 2yo event.