'It was a gamble' - Haggas plan pays off as Addeybb runs riot at Randwick
Wiliam Haggas's "gamble" paid off in spectacular style as Addeybb took his Australian earnings to nearly £900,000 by completing a Group 1 double under in-form jockey Tom Marquand on Saturday.
Having rewarded his trainer's enterprise by landing the Ranvet Stakes at Rosehill last month, the six-year-old scored an impressive victory three weeks later in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick – a race won by superstar mare Wiinx for the last three years.
Soft ground suited Ahmed Al Maktoum's mudlark, who has not won above Group 2 company in Britain but finished second in the Champion Stakes at Ascot last October.
"It's been a stroke of luck," Haggas said from his base in Newmarket. "He was the right horse and conditions fell in his favour. It was a gamble and it's paid off, which doesn't happen very often.
"They had quite a bit of rain yesterday and then they had a sunny, breezy day today and it became very holding, it was really hard work. But he doesn't mind that."
Addeybb had looked to have a race on his hands early in the straight but he quickened well when given a squeeze by Marquand about a furlong from home and won by almost three lengths from Verry Elleegant and Japanese raider Danon Premium.
Haggas let his string go out an hour late so that his staff could see the race, which was run at 6.55am BST, and he said afterwards: "That was fantastic. I've only seen it once and I was jumping up and down so I need to reassess it but it looked really good and he looked pretty dominant today."
Outlining possible future plans for Addeybb, the trainer said: "I haven't discussed it with anyone but I would like to get him home. We've minded him for five years now and I'd like to keep doing so. If we can get him home he might have to go out on holiday first but we'll get him here at some stage.
"He has needed a patient owner because he has got a very strong preference for cut in the ground and sometimes that's not possible, even here. Sheikh Ahmed's patience is paying off in spades now."
But stablemate Young Rascal looks unlikely to rejoin Haggas after finishing seventh in the Sydney Cup on Saturday.
"I think we'll leave Young Rascal there," the trainer said. "I think his future will lie in Australia."
Like all trainers, Haggas is itching to get started in Britain, where racing is suspended until at least the end of this month.
"It's very frustrating but you only need to look at the news to see that our little bubble is not really that relevant," he said.
"I hope we'll get going some time in May and it will be pretty frantic to start with but I hope the country can get back to some sort of normality, never mind racing."
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