Call Me Handsome Repaying The Faith

Mark Smith - Sunday September 2

Call Me Handsome (IRE) arrived in Australia off the back of a third behind rising young star Pakistan Star in a Griffin race over 1200 metres at Sha Tin back in July 2016.

Purchased by the Hong Kong Jockey Club for €325,000 at the 2014 Goffs Orby Sale, Call Me Handsome was resold at the 2016 Hong Kong International Sale for HK$5.5 million

After two starts for trainer David Hall, he was sent to Australia to recover from an injury to his suspensory ligament. It was 73 weeks before he was seen on the track again under the training of Peter Gelagotis.

That came at Sandown Hillside on November 29 last year. He finished third that day and has missed a place just once in 13 starts in Australia. He earned a reward for his consistency with a maiden stakes win in Saturday's Listed Heatherlie Handicap (1700m).

Under a front-running ride by Craig Williams, the Irish bred son of Kodia safely held the challenges of Mr Garcia and Sin To Win. (photo Grant Courtney)

It advances his overall record to 6 wins, 3 seconds and 5 thirds from 15 starts with earnings of $365,306.

"He's a popular horse, very honest and has got a big heart," Peter Gelagotis' brother Manny said.

"This horse had serious form behind Pakistan Star and it's just nice to get him back after a little soundness issue.

"Pete's done a good job and it was a great ride by Craig.

"I've been watching Weary (Darren Weir) and I've been following the way he patterns his horses. I like it when they are performing well when they are up in class and down in weight.

"He is a set weights and penalties horse I think so we'll look at some nice options coming up.

"To win a stakes race on the opening day of the Spring Carnival is really important for the stable."

Call Me Handsome becomes the 45th stakes winner for the resounding stud success Kodiac who is a non-stake winning half-brother to Invincible Spirit by Danehill out of the French Oaks winner Rafha.

At a cost of €325,000, Call Me Handsome was the second-most-expensive of the 111 yearlings by Kodiac to sell in 2014.

A half-brother to Listed winner Be Ready (New Approach), Call Me Handsome is one of five winners from as many foals out of the unraced Gone West mare Call Later who is a half-sister to 4-time Grade 1 winner Ventura (Chester House).

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