A First For Conatus

Mark Smith - Sunday May 22

Baramul Stud supremo Gerry Harvey virtually fought a lone hand in supporting the Danehill stallion Conatus and he was rewarded for his loyalty when his homebred Palazzo Pubblico captured Saturday's $100,000 Listed Bright Shadow Handicap (1200m) at Doomben to become her sire's first stakes-winner.

Ridden by Michael Cahill, the Matthew Smith-trained mare defeated Serenade (Star Witness) by three-quarters of a length with Miss Tenpins (Pins) the same distance back in third.

"She travelled like the winner all the way and finished the race off very well," Cahill told AAP.

"Sometimes you worry they won't finish it off when they travel that strongly but she certainly did."


Smith said he was undecided whether the 4yo mare would make another start in Brisbane or spelled with an eye on a Melbourne campaign in the spring.

"A couple of times in Sydney she's been a bit soft at the end of 1100 metres but she ran the trip right out today," he said.

"When she drew well in this race it was an easy decision to run her and she got a soft run which certainly helped."

Palazzo Pubblico advances her overall record to 6 wins, 1 second and 2 thirds from 17 starts for earnings of $280,840.

She is the second foal and second winner for the unraced General Nediym mare Piazza Del Campo who is a daughter of the grand Tasmanian star My Sienna (Weasel Clause) whose six wins included the Group II Wakeful Stakes and Group II Edward Manifold Stakes and was runner-up in the Group 1 Victorian Oaks.

My Sienna left seven foals for Gerry Harvey before her death in 2012.

She proved to be a disappointment but Palazzo Pubblico becomes her second stakes-winning granddaughter.

My Sienna's first foal, the unraced Danehill mare Pink City, is the dam of the More Than Ready mare Moreish the winner of the Group III Western Australian Oaks and Listed Ascot One Thousand Guineas and runner-up in the Group II Western Australian Derby.

Piazza Del Campo has a yearling filly by Big Brown (USA) and a colt foal by Congrats (USA). She was bred back to Stratum last spring.

Retired to Plaintree Stud in 2004,  Conatus was given a year off last season and is fit and ready to fire again in 2016.

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