GODOLPHIN AUSTRALIA head trainer James Cummings was left to console himself with the Listed successes of Kordia and Duca Valentinois on the same card that saw Pohutukawa come agonisingly close in the Group 1 Tiara at Eagle Farm in Brisbane, Australia. Cummings saddled the third as well in that same top tier event over 1400m where Savatiano finished behind his stable companion, who went down by a short head to Invincibella. Victory for either would have helped Cummings to a treble, but it was not meant to be.
Still Kordia and Duca Valentinois did their bit for the young Australian handler when winning the Mumm Stakes and the Winning Edge Presentations Stakes respectively. Duca Valentinois, a 7yo Holy Roman Emperor gelding, was winless since his success in the Group 3 Lord Mayor’s Cup at Doomben on 26 June 2018, but he bounced back under Timothy Clark and took victory by a short head on his 13th outing, beating Take It Intern with Another Dollar finishing third. Cummings was happy with his performance and said: “He’s shot up in the ratings and he’s another great example of an imported horse that’s come over and done exceptionally well for us.
“When they get up in the ratings these horses can sometimes find it a lot harder to win and he’s a horse that’s enjoyed tackling that low hanging fruit in his career and carried weight well in the past.” Clark rode him well during the 1820m contest, pulling out all the stops with only about 50m left to run. “I was mindful of stepping up from the mile to 1800m so I wanted to hold him up that little bit longer and expose him as late as I could,” the rider said. Kordia meanwhile picked up his second win in three starts. The 2yo Epaulette gelding scored under Blake Shinn, who also showed restraint during the 1400m, keeping him well within striking distance and then letting him loose as he took a near half a length victory on the line beating Big Parade into second with Snazz ‘N’ Charm running in third.
Cummings added: “Queensland has the capacity to be a happy hunting ground for us. “Whether it’s a late maturing 2yo like he is or later 3yos, we’ve had the luxury of keeping them back for this carnival. He has relished the 1400m trip today and looks a very progressive 2yo. “We will give him a lot of time out. You probably won’t see him for quite a few months but he’s a class horse and one to keep an eye on.”