Brown gets it straight from the horse’s mouth

Michael Lee
Corey Brown has been Mighty Warrior’s partner from Day 1, but he still labelled the Sunday winner as a “funny horse” who is hard to beat on his day.

The experienced Australian jockey steered the Savabeel four-year-old to his fourth win in the $100,000 Open Benchmark 83 race over 1600m, punching him at the right time for a gutsy three-quarter length win from Rafaello (Barend Vorster) with favourite Squire Osbaldeston (Timothy Bell) third, separated by the same margin.

The winning time was 1min 35.63secs for the 1600m on the Long Course.

It was not a bad time considering you could throw a blanket over the small seven-horse field for most of the muddling-run race, with Rafaello not out to break any records at the head of affairs.

As they bunched up, Mighty Warrior was the one enjoying the best spot, albeit overracing a tad periodically, well smothered up bang in the middle of a congested pack that included Ode To Joy (Alan Munro) on his inside, Squire Osbaldeston and Rafello in front and Blue Danube (Kif Toh) improving three deep to inject more speed midrace.

Turning for the judge, Brown decided it was time to test his mount as he peeled him to the outside. Squire Osbaldeston had every chance but did not accelerate as wanted for Bell, but Mighty Warrior did once he saw daylight.
He did look like he would loaf and pull up on Brown once he was left alone in front 100m out, but luckily for his $18 backers and connections, he kept up his momentum to rally home.
“He’s a funny little horse. He had a problem with his mouth four months ago, and he’s still light-mouthed,” said Brown, who besides the four wins, has never finished out of the placings with Mighty Warrior.
“Today we landed in a good spot and he did the rest. He’s matured back to where he was and I never felt we would get beaten.

“It’s hard to say if he’s still learning as he’s so light-mouthed. For a horse who’s already had nine runs, he feels like he’s at his first gallop at times.

“You can have 100 rides on him and once in a while he will do something funny. It all depends on what you’re gonna get on the day, but once he gets it right, they will have a lot of fun with him.”

Fun was anything that the owners, the Super Team Stable, had on the day before in Flemington, when their star sprinter Super One ran second-last in the Group 1Coolmore Stud Stakes. Trainer Michael Freedman is still in Australia until Melbourne Cup day on Tuesday, but assistant-trainer James Peters was on hand to welcome their 65th winner, no doubt a booster after Super One’s disappointing performance.

“He’s (Mighty Warrior) done a good job in only nine starts. He will become a nice stayer,” said Peters.

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