It was a good weekend for former British-trained horses in Australia with December Draw winning the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes at Flemington 24 hours after My Kingdom Of Fife landed the Group 3 Craven Plate at Randwick.
My Kingdom Of Fife, who was bred by The Queen and raced in England as Kingdom Of Fife, was a former resident of Sir Michael Stoute’s Freemason Lodge and is now trained by Chris Waller for a syndicate which includes Richard Pegum. He has enjoyed a tremendous campaign since setting foot in the southern hemisphere, winning five Group races, including the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick in April, and finishing runner-up in two more.
My Kingdom Of Fife was bought by Kern Lillingston for 60,000gns at last year’s horses-in-training sale at Tattersalls. Chris Waller, who targets this sale each year, has fared particularly well with its graduates, which include his Group 1 winner Stand To Gain, who was bought from the Juddmonte draft for 105,000gns and won the Sydney Cup on the same day as My Kingdom Of Fife’s Group 1 triumph.
Irish-bred December Draw was trained in the UK by William Knight, for whom he won three races on the all-weather before being sold privately to Pegum.
He has now won five of his six starts in Australia, including the Group 3 Naturalism Handicap, in which he beat the former Aidan O’Brien-trained Derby runner-up At First Sight, who is now owned by Lloyd Williams.
December Draw, now in the care of Mark Kavanagh, who trained the 2009 Melbourne Cup winner Shocking, is co-favourite to win Australia’s most famous race on November 1.