Darling View Thoroughbreds stallion Playing God stretched his lead at the top of the WA sires’ premiership to more than $1 million over Easter with Ex Sport Man and Cobbanco leading the way at Ascot.
Playing God ($3,701,589) has built a healthy margin over Trade Fair ($2,696,768) but it’s too early to celebrate with the small matter of $4 million in prizemoney to be distributed in The Quokka (1200m) next Saturday, April 15.
Western Australian stallions, past and present, with runners engaged are Playing God (Bustler), Trade Fair (Trix Of The Trade), Sessions (Massimo), Gingerbread Man (Red Can Man) and Red Hot Choice (Hot Zed).
Great Southern trainer Steve Wolfe and the owners of Red Can Man locked in a slot with Rapid Equine for The Quokka and many of them are also in the syndicate that race $650,000 earner Ex Sport Man (Photo / Western Racepix).
It had been almost two years since Ex Sport Man won the G2 Karrakatta Plate and RL Magic Millions Classic but Wolfe was sure another victory wasn’t far away going into his sixth run this prep on Easter Saturday.
“It’s been a long time but he’s been racing well without much luck,” Wolfe said after the Vale Julie Cayley Hcp (1600m). “He’s lovely horse and the blinkers helped today. He always tries and enjoys his racing.”
Ex Sport Man (4g Playing God – Buhn Lert by Oratorio) was bred by Don O’Shannassy and was a $40,000 buy for Noel Carter (Commercial Bloodstock) at the 2020 Perth Magic Millions.
He’s one of three Stakes winner for that cross along with Platoon and The Quokka slot-holder Bustler who is owned by Santo Guagliardo. His dam Buhn Lert was an Ascot 2yo winner for trainer Brett Pope and her yearling colt by A Lot (USA) was purchased by Carter for $75,000 from Willaview Park at the Perth Magic Millions in February.
Cobbanco (4g Playing God – Rivotor by Oratorio) is from the same crop as Ex Sport Man and also carries the same potent cross which, apart from three Stakes winners, has provided 22 individual winners at a 71% strike-rate.
Bred by Mungrup Stud, he had won three races at Belmont before breaking his duck at Ascot in the Cool Ridge Hcp (1400m) for West Swan owner-trainer Brian Lucas. “I thought he was only a place chance second-up today,” Lucas confessed. “He’s clean-winded and casual and you can’t take any notice of his trackwork. He just as happy rolling along at evens.
“He’s the quietest horse I’ve ever trained and he can stand under a tree all day at home. Just like a statue. I have a walking-stick so that suits me, too.”