Star sprinter Buffering sent his earnings soaring past $3 million with a breakthrough Group One win in Friday night’s $1 million Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley.
After a string of excellent placings in Group One events around the country, the two time Queensland Horse of the Year was able to notch his career best win in front of jubilant connections.
Trainer Robert Heathcote was the proudest man on course as his stable star held on to beat international raider Lucky Nine by a short half head.
Darley homebred Sessions was third while Perth Yearling Sale purchase Moment of Change turned in a stunning run to finish fourth, just 0.6 of a length from the winner after missing the start badly. The heavily backed favourite Samaready wound up in eighth place.
While a few of the beaten brigade caught the eye, the night and race belonged to the mighty Buffering.
“What a way to break the drought,” Heathcote said after the thrilling win. “Eighteen goes at a Group One and he gets the job down tonight in a $1 million race.”
“They say this is the place where legends are made and he’s a legend for me.”
The result was a triumph for Queensland. The winner was bred in the Sunshine state by their leading racing administrator and as well as trained by an Eagle Farm based horseman he was ridden to victory by star Brisbane hoop Damian Browne.
“At the furlong he really dug in and gave me a length and you know he’s always going to fight,” Browne said.
“He’s accomplished everything else he can really, but he just needed to win that Group One and for him to do it tonight is just terrific.”
Buffering was purchased for connections by New Zealand based bloodstock agent Paul Willetts for $22,000 at the 2009 Magic Millions Gold Coast March Yearling Sale.
Willetts and Heathcote took a shine to the son of Mossman, offered at the auction by Kevin Dixon’s Racetree nursery in Queensland.
One of 312 winners and 23 stakes winners for Success Express’ Group One winning son Mossman, Buffering is one of four winners for his dam Action Annie.
A Sydney winning daughter of Anabaa, Action Annie is also the dam of multiple winners Hussyanna, Suite Annie and Canny Action.
Action Annie is from a Be My Guest mare and is a half sister to the stakes placed duo Don’t Go Crazy and Instant Strike.
Breeding: Mossman-Action Annie (Anabaa)
Race: MVRC Manikato Stakes G1 (1200m)
Sold for: $22,000
Sale: 2009 Magic Millions Gold Coast March Yearling Sale
Buyer: Paul Willetts
Owner(s): Mrs V Heathcote, S Krslovic, C Moore, R Ciobo, D Merola, C Lord, Crafty Racing Synd, Aspariamo Racing Synd & B Harry
Trainer: Robert Heathcote (Eagle Farm)