(By John Jenkins)
Expect to see Quick Thinker contesting major three-year-old races in Australia next season after the two-year-old colt scored an impressive win in today’s Listed $50,000 Buffalo & Co Champagne Stakes at Ellerslie.
The son of So You Think, trained by the all conquering Cambridge partnership of Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, was having only his second start and belied his lack of racing experience by scoring a strong three-quarter length win in the 1600m event.
The win brought up another milestone for the Baker/Forsman stable as it was their 21st stakes race winner for the season, which is a new New Zealand record.
Quick Thinker is a two-year-old by So You Think out of the Al Maher mare Acouplamas and was a $100,000 purchase from last year’s Sydney autumn sale for Australian company OTI Racing.
The Baker/Forsman stable gave the colt four barrier trials before producing him on race day and he showed a glimpse of his ability when winning the last of them, over 935m at Cambridge last month.
Quick Thinker then made his race debut over 1230m at Rotorua on April 12 where he disputed the pace and battled on well to finish second, beaten 1-1/4 lengths, by Woodcote Lass.
The colt showed he had taken plenty of improvement from that run with an excellent winning performance today. After being fourth last after the jump rider Matthew Cameron let the colt slide around to settle second behind the leader Ranger and then just tracked him into the home straight.
Cameron then asked his mount to sprint and the response was instant with Quick Thinker surging past Ranger for a decisive win.
“He’s going to be a very very good horse,” Cameron said after the win.
“The plan wasn’t to go forward; it was just to see if he could settle somewhere and finish off.
“He pulled himself up (to the pace) and then we got a breather across the top and he was just too strong.
“It was only his second start. It was like a trial last time and he’s learnt a lot from that.”
Co-trainer Murray Baker said Quick Thinker is bred on staying lines and predicted that is where the horse’s future lies.
“He’s a staying horse and that’s what OTI try and secure. They bought him at the Sydney sales last year and we were confident he’d go alright today at a mile,” Baker said.
“He might be a middle distance horse in the spring and we might get him to Melbourne or something like that.”