Jim Cassidy (left) and Peter Moody teamed up to win the Randwick Guineas with Dissident (see bottom report)PICTURE: AAP Racing
No show from Zoustar behind Appearance
Report: Australia, Saturday
Randwick: Canterbury Stakes (Group 1) 6½f, turf, 3yo+
ANOTHER dominant display by Appearance (Guy Walter/Kerrin McEvoy) in the Canterbury Stakes has given the mare a fourth Group 1 victory and put a question mark over valuable colt Zoustar.
After missing the Chipping Norton Stakes last week because of a mild case of the tying up problem which has dogged her career, Appearance came to Randwick on Saturday.
With Kerrin McEvoy aboard for the first time this campaign, Appearance came from last on the turn with her now signature sprint to beat three-year-old Not Listen'tome by a length and a quarter.
The first two starts of her preparation resulted in Group 2 wins for Appearance in the Expressway and Apollo Stakes.
But that was not enough to take the hype off the return of Zoustar who was sent out the $4.20 favourite but could only manage eighth place.
While the colt's trainer Chris Waller was looking for answers, Appearance's trainer Guy Walter needs no telling how good Appearance is.
"She is an outstanding mare. Her record shows that," Walter said.
"She had a bit of a setback and missed the Chipping Norton but I took her to Kembla Grange for a gallop between races on Monday and I knew she was back on track.
"It is very satisfying."
It was also satisfying for Sheikh Mohammed's Darley Australia to see the mare take her record to nine wins from just 19 starts.
"Guy has done a wonderful job with her. She is one of the best mares in the country. She has beaten all the others," Darley managing director Henry Plumptre said.
Walter believes she is not only one of the best mares in the country but one of the best horses he has trained.
"She is getting up there with Tie The Knot. I didn't wake up in the morning thinking he would win 13 Group 1 races.
"But the good horses love to win and get better and better.
"We won't be backing her up in th e Coolmore next week. It's up to Darley but thoughts are to go to the George Ryder the following week."
The George Ryder would set up a clash with the Waller-trained Chipping Norton winner Boban.
While Waller could offer little explanation for Zoustar's performance immediately after the race, stewards later reported the colt had pulled up a lame in a foreleg.
His next start is scheduled to be the $2.5 million TJ Smith Stakes on April 12.
Also on Saturday
Randwick: Randwick Guineas (Group 1) 1m, turf, 3yo
The New Zealand challenge for the Randwick Guineas has been brought unstuck by one of their own with Jim Cassidy producing a masterful ride on Dissident (Peter Moody) to beat El Roca in the Group 1 feature.
A proud Kiwi but domiciled in Australia for 30 years, Cassidy coaxed everything out of the Peter Moody-trained colt to get him home a short head in front of the favourite at Randwick on Saturday.
Eurozone worked into third, another length away with Atlante and Show The World sixth and 12th respectively for New Zealand trainer Murray Baker.
Dissident's victory put the Moody stable back on the Sydney Group 1 winners' stage, almost a year since Black Caviar won the TJ Smith Stakes.
"They are a couple of warriors together, a young one and an old one," Moody said of his colt and Cassidy.
"He's toughed it out and he's just got that little bit fitter.
"We saw his efforts here in the spring around Zoustar. He was wide, he had a hard run in the Golden Rose, just got nutted and was probably over the top."
Dissident won the Hobartville Stakes in the absence of El Roca who was a raceday scratching and backed up in the Guineas from his second to Terravista in the Liverpool City Cup a week ago.
Backed from $4.80 to $3.20, El Roca edged past Dissident inside the final 100 metres but shifted in noticeably in few metres and running second probably saved a protest hearing.
"He ran well and maybe having to back up told on him," co-trainer Natalie Young said.
"We might have lost on protest. He did shift in and bump the other horse."
Senior steward Greg Rudolph agreed and said it was a noticeable bump.
El Roca is now likely to head to the weight-for-age George Ryder Stakes in two weeks but Moody's sights are firmly on the Rosehill Guineas on the same day.
"We go to the Rosehill Guineas which is the race I've always had earmarked and then it'll be decision time, whether we go into the Derby or the Doncaster," Moody said.
"He deserves the Group 1 win. He's been at the top level his whole way through and it is certainly very fitting on his resume."
Moody paid credit to an emotional Claire Cunningham who looks after the Sydney stable for the Melbourne-based Moody.
"Claire's done a tremendous job," he said. "It's a credit to her and her staff."
Cassidy's availability was a bonus for Moody.
"I was looking for a rider who could stick with him and they don't come any better do they?" he said.
"And no one knows their way around these places better than him. Job done."