Australian wonder mare Winx signed off her brilliant career in the best possible fashion when dazzling the crowd in the Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick.
Winning for the 33rd time in succession, and the 25th time at Group One level, Chris Waller’s pride and joy has rightly been afforded superstar status by the Australian media.
The seven-year-old, who survived a scare on Thursday when kicking out at railings and leaving a hole in an advertising board after her final gallop, came with her customary run from half a mile out, as the grandstands began to erupt.
Rounding the bend widest of all, Hugh Bowman pressed the button with a furlong and a half to run and his partner began to hit top gear, sprinting clear to beat Kluger with plenty in hand, scoring by a length and a half.
A tearful Waller told Sky Thoroughbred Central: “It’s hard to explain without getting too emotional. She’s just an amazing horse for everybody to be part of and I’m just a small cog in the wheel.
“My team do an amazing job, it’s rare they get the accolades they deserve.
“I thought about everything except winning – you don’t set yourself up for these big wins, you just do your job.”
Bowman added: “We came here as confident as we’d ever been and what a journey it’s been. It’s hard to believe it’s the end.”
Part-owner Debbie Kepitis said: “This is a fairytale ending, we weren’t sure if we’d get that, but how wonderful is that girl? She is the most amazing, supreme athlete I think I’ve ever seen.”
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As we head into the final three weeks of the show jumping season with the weather heating up, you’ll be able to find a nice getaway in the Sharjah Equestrian & Racing Club’s indoor arena.
Held under the supervision of the UAE Equestrian and Racing Federation (UAEERF), this two-day event will be the first of three nationals held in Sharjah. Witness some awesome riding both indoors and out with competitors jumping fences up to 140cm. Thanks to the cool, air-conditioned stands, you’ll be able to watch two days of the equestrian sport at its finest.
This week’s show will boast of 11 classes to cater to a variety of riders and horses – Advanced riders (Division 1), Amateurs (Division 2 & Novice Division), Juniors (riders between 14 – 18 years old), Children (riders below the age of 14) and Young Horses (4 – 5 & 5 -6 years old). All riders will be competing for their share of a prize purse of AED 140,000.
For more information on the Emirates Longines Show Jumping League or to learn about upcoming shows, visit www.emiratesequestrian.com or call the UAEERF Jumping Department on 02 666 1800 between 9am – 4pm.
What: The Emirates Longines Show Jumping League
Founded in 1982 in the UAE, Barrelhouse Rugby Club was initially formed to compete at the Dubai Rugby 7’s to play. However, such is the popularity of the club, the team now has players from all over the world in the pink jersey.
The club has expanded their academy to realise a vision of teaching young children all the great attributes of rugby, specifically team work, respect and inclusiveness, while coaching the children in the correct techniques and skills needed to play competitive rugby. The club has adopted the All Black philosophy of, ‘hands on ball time’and their sessions ensure that children spend the majority of the time with a ball in hand, learning how it feels, familiarising themselves with how it moves in the air and on the ground, and most importantly constantly growing in confidence with how to play with the ball.
The team play in the unique pink kit in support of breast cancer patients in memory of members of the Barrelhouse family lost to breast cancer and over the years. Club members also don a pink Tilley Hat, which is uniquely embroidered with the member’s club number and name.
Off the field, the Barrelhouse social club has grown to over 400 members, families and children attend events, from pre-season functions, to annual AGM’s. Recently a member’s daughter fell ill and the club raised money for her treatment and provided the family with emotional support. The daughter has beaten her illness and is once again on the sidelines, cheering her dad on at matches.
Over the years, Barrelhouse has gathered a long list of accolades and silverware including winning the AGRFU competition and the Gulf Men’s Social and the Vets division. The club has expanded to play in the Eden Park Rugby 7’s series in the build up to the Dubai Rugby 7’s, various 10’s tournaments and they have embarked on many international tours. Recently Barrelhouse entered the community league of the UAERF, finishing unbeaten in the league stage, they went on to play in the final losing in a hotly contested game with the Jebal Ali Dragons.
Rugby has long been considered a Barbarians game played by Gentlemen, and that is something that the club embrace. Barrelhouse has steadily grown to over 50 active players forming the base of the club. These players are attracted to the Barrelhouse style of play, which is fluid, fast moving, and about avoiding contact and looking for space to exploit the gaps.
For more information and to sign up visit www.barrelhouserugby.club