Mr Brightside Shines in All-Star Mile

Mark Smith - Saturday March 18

Luke Currie answered the call to ride Mr Brightside in the $5,000,000 The Sharp EIT All-Star Mile (1600m) at Moonee Valley following the fall of Craig Williams the previous week, and the Hong Kong-based jockey gave the five-year-old gelding a pearler.

Mr Brightside what a ripper (image Pat Scala/Racing phots)

The Group 1 Doncaster Mile hero was winning for the first time since capturing the Group II Feehan stakes over the same course and distance last September.

Travelling sweetly just off the speed set by Keats, Mr Brightside moved to a challenging position on the turn.

The 5yo son of Bullbars defeated Godolphin’s grand old warrior Cascadian (New Approach) by a half-length, with Tasmania’s diminutive superstar The Inevitable (Dundeel) with a neck back in third ahead of the favourite Alligator Blood (All Too Hard).

Fourth in the race last year won by Zaaki when held at Flemington, Mr Brightside advances his record to ten wins, two seconds, and two thirds from 22 starts with earnings of $5,802,887.

“It means the world to the family and everyone, the owners, and that was just an experience I’ve never felt before, so I think it’s going to be pretty well celebrated,” JD Hayes said.

“Ben probably wants to get on the first flight home. This means everything.


“Condolences go out to Craig too. He did such a good effort getting this horse ready, and unfortunately, one thing led to another, but that was a 10 out 10 steer from Luke Currie.

Welcome home Luke Currie (image George Sal/Racing Photos)

“The old man (David Hayes) lives three floors up (from Luke Currie) in Hong Kong, so it was pretty easy; we just asked him to knock on the door.

“It was very close between him and Harry Coffey, but he rode that an absolute peach and was so confident going into it.

“We pinch ourselves everyday that we’re able to come to work with such a head start.

He’ll put himself in an elite bracket )if he wins a second Doncaster), but he’s already in an elite bracket in my heart. He’s a beauty.”

“Wayne Ormond found him in New Zealand and he said that he is tenacious and ultra-competitive.

“They’re things in champions you can’t measure, and luckily for us he’s just boasting a lot of those qualities.”

Luke Curry said it was a welcome change of luck.

I’ve had a tough last few years with injuries and things haven’t been going quite my way in Hong Kong for the last few months,” Curry said.

 “I love Hong Kong, and I’d love to stay there as long as I can - but it’s a very hard environment so it’s nice to come here and be able to pick off a big winner.

“David Hayes has been a great supporter of mine in Hong Kong and we haven’t had a whole heap of luck together, but my first ride over there last year, it was for David Hayes and it won, so I have to thank him and his family and JD and the boys here. I can’t thank them enough.”

“I’ve had my falls and missed out on rides.

“I spoke to Craig yesterday and he was happy for me to be riding the horse and gave me all the info. I’m sure a lot of guys would struggle to do that and not give you the insights, but Craig did straight away.

“He rang me without me having to reach out to him, so I wish him all the best and I can’t thank him enough either.”

The other big win was owner ambassador, John Mahedy who picked up $250,000.

“I adore him, 250,000 times. Every time I spend a dollar, I will spend one for him,” Mahedy said.

“I haven’t worked what I will do with it at this stage. There are lots of things that can be done with it. I’m in the twilight years of my life, so I need something to carry me on a bit further.

“It’s an unbelievable day. I knew from the day when I got the phone that I had been selected, I fell on the bed.”

Purchased privately after a luckless fifth at Matamata on debut in February last year, Mr Brightside was a $22,000 purchase for Phill Cataldo Bloodstock (BAFNZ) from the Phoenix Park draft at the 2019 NZB Karaka May Sale. He failed to find a buyer willing to pay his $50,000 reserve when reoffered at the 2019 NZB Ready To Run Sale.

The son of Bullbars is the best of two winners from the Tavistock mare Lilahjay whose dam Keepable (Keeper) is a half-sister to Group 1 New Zealand Two Thousand Guineas and Group 1 WRC Captain Cook Stakes winner Foxwood (Centaine) and Group III AJC Frank Packer Plate winner Rockwood (Rock Of Gibraltar).



Race Result - The Sharp Eit All-Star Mile 1600m

Moonee Valley Track: Good(4) Time: 1:34.47
Mr Brightside
- 5g Bullbars (AUS) x Lilahjay (NZ) (Tavistock (NZ))
Tnr: Ben & J D Hayes Rdr: L Currie 59
- 8g New Approach (IRE) x Falls Of Lora (IRE) (Street Cry (IRE))
Tnr: James Cummings Rdr: B Melham 59
The Inevitable
- 7g Dundeel (NZ) x Gift Bouquet (AUS) (King's High (AUS))
Tnr: Scott Brunton Rdr: D Pires 59
Alligator Blood
- 6g All Too Hard (AUS) x Lake Superior (AUS) (Encosta De Lago (AUS))
Tnr: G Waterhouse & A Bott Rdr: B Shinn 59
- 6g Siyouni (FR) x Gemstone (IRE) (Galileo (IRE))
Tnr: C Maher & D Eustace Rdr: D Oliver 59
- 4g Exceed And Excel (AUS) x Silent Entrance (GB) (Beat Hollow (GB))
Tnr: P G Moody Rdr: L Nolen 59
Gentleman Roy
- 6g So You Think (NZ) x La La Land (AUS) (Last Tycoon (IRE))
Tnr: Ben & J D Hayes Rdr: D W Stackhouse 59
So Si Bon
- 9g So You Think (NZ) x Black Minx (NZ) (Lonhro (AUS))
Tnr: Ben & J D Hayes Rdr: H Coffey 59
- 5g Sacred Falls (NZ) x Toss Up (NZ) (Zabeel (NZ))
Tnr: Andrew Forsman Rdr: B Mc Dougall 59
Laws Of Indices
- 5h Power (GB) x Sampers (IRE) (Exceed And Excel (AUS))
Tnr: Annabel Neasham Rdr: O Murphy 59
I'M Thunderstruck
- 5g Shocking (AUS) x Primadonna Girl (NZ) (Edenwold (CAN))
Tnr: M Price & M Kent Jnr Rdr: D Moor 59
Sheeza Belter
- 3f Gold Standard (AUS) x Saxabelle (AUS) (Saxon (AUS))
Tnr: P & P Snowden Rdr: W Pike 54
- 6g Galileo (IRE) x Airwave (GB) (Air Express (IRE))
Tnr: Gavin Bedggood Rdr: C Newitt 59
My Oberon
- 6g Dubawi (IRE) x My Titania (IRE) (Sea The Stars (IRE))
Tnr: Annabel Neasham Rdr: J Mott 59
- 5h Adlerflug (GER) x Wild Blossom (GER) (Areion (GER))
Tnr: M D Moroney Rdr: Jordan Childs 59
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