Impressive Racing trainer Darren McAuliffe has hit the ground running with a promising young team at his new stables in Pinjarra.
His Belmont winners earlier this month included Vast Art (Flying Artie) and Chollima (Starspangledbanner) and they were joined by Changing Guard (Impending) on Wednesday.
McAuliffe and his Impressive Racing partner Kevin Berry had scaled back their breeding initiatives with foals, yearlings, broodmares and racehorses being dispersed at recent Inglis Online Sales. He will now focus first and foremost on his training operation.
“The Pinjarra Race Club have been fantastic and it’s what I’m used to,” McAuliffe said. “I didn’t really like it at Ascot and we’ve also sold the farm after more than 10 years at Hopelands.”
Changing Guard won first-up at a rainswept Belmont in the Mogumber Park Open Day Hcp (1000m). “He’s best when fresh and went in without a trial today,” McAuliffe said. “He also loves soft ground and his pedigree suggests he should be a swimmer. The stable is going good and ultimately it’s the results that count.”
Changing Guard had won his maiden at the end of an extended summer prep at York in March. He’s a first-crop son of Darley Victoria stallion Impending (Lonhro) who was a Group 1 Brisbane winter carnival winner of the 2017 Stradbroke Hcp (1400m) and 2018 Kingsford-Smith Cup (1200m).
He’s the first foal of Queen’s Parade (Dalghar) who was bred and sold by Neven Botica for $35,000 at the 2015 Perth Magic Millions. She won a Northam maiden during a five-start career in the Impressive Racing colours before retiring to stud.
Queen’s Parade is a half-sister to Spirit Bird (Savabeel) who also won a Northam maiden before Botica transferred her east where she won a G3 Tibbie Stakes (1400m) at Newcastle. She is the dam of this year’s G1 Queensland Derby runner-up Fame (Manhattan Rain).