YEAR: 2012



A good night became a great one for the Barry Purdon stable when Five Card Draw completed a Group One race double in the $180,000 Garrard's Sires' Stakes 2yo Final at Addington last Friday night.

With Bettor Sweet starting the ball rolling by earlier upsetting Mark Purdon with Didjamakem Bolt, who was racing out of his class in 2-3 win company due to the one-win mobile having to be dropped, Five Card Draw also completed a Bettor's Delight treble with Oaks winner Cheer The Lady for Barry with five starters in three races for the evening.

Purdon won the inaugural Sires Stakes in 1984 with Billbob and others in Auckland with Chokin and Montana Vance, along with Matai Mackenzie at Addington at Addington 12 years ago, but Addington has become the stomping ground of younger brother Mark since he moved to Canterbury in the mid 90s. His dominance of age group features at Addington has been such that the All Stars Stable has won the Sires Stakes no less than six times with Il Vicolo, The Court Owl, Light And Sound, Likmesiah, Fiery Falcon and Major Mark. But Purdon's juvenile firepower has been well down this season, partly because he has been buying yearlings in Australia, and only Sir Tosti Mach was eligible and qualified for this final.

The latter was a sound fourth and one of seven starters by Mach Three which filled the second to sixth placings, which would have been some sort of record had Five Card Draw not held such a big hand for Brent Mangos. Cran Dalgety also held a good hand for the race with three starters even without last week's Sales race winner Bit Of A Legend, and for about the first 1700m, it seemed as though Dexter Dunn was going to provide for an action replay. Just as he had done with Bit Of A Legend, Dunn used the electric speed of Abraxas to cross Five Card Draw at the start and then happily hand up and wait for the passing lane. Barry Purdon and Dalgety were both getting feelings of dj vu when Abraxas poked up inside Five Card Draw at the furlong, but Mangos was just kidding and the least concerned of all.

With favourite Alta Christiano out of play early, Five Card Draw had got some easy sectionals before heading down the back and into the stiff southerly, and he had plenty in reserve on the occasion, coming away again near the finish. This was Five Card Draw's fourth win from six starts and having also won the Young Guns, th gelding has already earned $224,000, with another $75,000 awaiting them at the Jewels. Five Card Draw is Breeders Crown eligible, but Purdon will then turn him out and be back for the Sires' Stakes in the spring, "otherwise they don't get a break".

Bought from breeders Wayne and Jay Abernethy for $57,500 from Karaka last year, Five Card Draw was one of just two purchases that Purdon secured and he races the son of Blistering Belle with Auckland's Tyronne Cooke, Charmain Nausbaum and Alan Dormer. Purdon also bought a Grinfromeartoear-Erineyes colt in Los Amante shortly after in Auckland and while he qualified in February an "is going to win a race or two", Purdon is thankful he didn't acquire more at the time. "We couldn't find owners and wound up with shers in both of them as it was," said Purdon. Five Card Draw has "always looked like a nice horse from day one" though and Purdon expects him to improve further as he grows and strengthens into a 3-year-old.

The Paul Kerr camp was bitterly disappointed after Alta Christiano galloped early after being restrained by son Mitchell. "He's over reached and struck himself and what happened was just greenness," said Paul "He's never galloped before and panicked. They do pick the worst times to do these things," he added. If this seemed bad enough, things got worse for junior driver Mitchell. He was going to win the following event with Chianti, but the well-bred filly broke down so badly inside the 200m that she had to be put down.

Credit: Frank Marrion writing in HRWeekly 23May2012

In the event that you cannot find the information you require from the contents, please contact the Racing Department at Addington Raceway.
Phone (03) 338 9094