He's a Freak - Mr Brightside Pulls it out of the Fire in Orr Stakes

Mark Smith - Saturday February 10

Mr Brightside needed to call on all his champion qualities to snatch victory from the free-running Pride Of Jenni in the $750,000 Group 1 Sportsbet CF Orr Stakes at Caulfield.

Mr Brightside down the outside (image Grant Courtney)

Ridden by Craig Williams for Ben, Will, and JD Hayes, the 6-year-old son of Bullbars enjoyed a trouble-free run but still had plenty to do as Pride Of Jenni was fighting off the challenge of the outsider Buffalo River (USA).

Mr Brightside earned his fifth win at the highest level by a half-head from Pride Of Jenni (Pride Of Dubai), chasing a third consecutive Group 1 win. Buffalo River (Noble Mission) was a head back in third.

With his ninth stakes success, Mr Brightside advanced his record to 15 wins, five seconds, and two thirds from 30 starts with earnings of $11,925,752.

“He’s a great horse; he’s so dear to our hearts,” JD Hayes said.

“He was slowly away, but it worked out perfectly with the pace on. Pride Of Jenni was so brave there, but I was glad that he got there late and that there was so much improvement in him to come. Hopefully, it’s the start of a big autumn.”

“He’s been beaten in the Autumn first up every time, so if history repeats, this is a first for him, and we’re very happy. He’s a seasoned campaigner now, and there was nothing to read into the trials and jump outs; we thought it was nothing for him just being an older horse.”

“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone back home and all the clients supporting us. It’s such a team effort, and a horse like Mr. Brightside is flying the flag gives us a reason to have a sore head in the morning.”

“It’s looking that way (the Futurity, All-Star Mile, Australian Cup), so hopefully, he keeps ticking the boxes. What a horse.”

The ever-growing fan club (image Grant Courtney)

Bred by Ray Johnson in partnership with his late wife Martha, Mr Brightside was sold as a yearling for $22,000 from the Phoenix Park draft at the 2019 New Zealand Bloodstock May Sale. He failed to meet his $50,000 reserve when re-offered at the New Zealand Bloodstock Ready to Run Sale.

Johnson repurchased him on gavelhouse.com for just $7,750 in conjunction with Cambridge trainer Ralph Manning and good friend Shaun Dromgool.

 A luckless fifth at his lone New Zealand start at Matamata, the son of Bullbars was sold privately to clients of the Hayes stable in a deal brokered by Australian agent Wayne Ormond.



Race Result - Sportsbet C.F. Orr Stakes Gr1 1400m

Caulfield Track: Good(3) Time: 1:22.27
Mr Brightside
- 6g Bullbars (AUS) x Lilahjay (NZ) (Tavistock (NZ))
Tnr: Ben, Will & Jd Hayes Rdr: Craig Williams 59
NZB Karaka May Sale $22,000
Seller: Phoenix Park
Buyer: Phill Cataldo Bloodstock (BAFNZ)
Pride Of Jenni
- 6m Pride Of Dubai (AUS) x Sancerre (NZ) (O'reilly (NZ))
Tnr: C Maher Rdr: Declan Bates 57
Pride Of Dubai
Inglis Classic Yearling Sale $100,000
Seller: Segenhoe Stud Australia Pty Ltd, Scone
Buyer: Cape Schanck Stud
Buffalo River
- 8g Noble Mission (GB) x Fashion Insider (USA) (Indian Charlie (USA))
Tnr: M D Moroney Rdr: Celine Gaudray 59
- 3c Grunt (NZ) x Neena Rock (AUS) (Fastnet Rock (AUS))
Tnr: T & C McEvoy Rdr: Damian Lane 55.5
- 6g Iffraaj (GB) x Odessa (NZ) (Falkirk (NZ))
Tnr: M Price & M Kent Jnr Rdr: Jamie Kah 59
- 4g Street Boss (USA) x Accessories (GB) (Singspiel (IRE))
Tnr: James Cummings Rdr: M Zahra 59
- 8g Dark Angel (IRE) x Cadenza (FR) (Dansili (GB))
Tnr: Nick Ryan Rdr: B Shinn 59
- 6m Savabeel (AUS) x Posy (NZ) (No Excuse Needed (GB))
Tnr: C J Waller Rdr: M J Dee 57
- 4g Playing God (AUS) x Cosmah Domination (AUS) (Oratorio (AUS))
Tnr: N D Parnham Rdr: S Parnham 59
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