Stoutly-bred Bobby Dee (NZ) (by Zed) put a marker down for the feature staying events staged in Sydney over the Festive Period when scoring a determined victory in the $125,000 Bisley Workwear Handicap over 1500m at Rosehill Gardens.
Having only his second start as a 4-year-old after a 3YO Classic campaign that saw him contest the NZ Derby in his native New Zealand and the Grand Prix Stakes during a winter campaign in Queensland, Bobby Dee showed a surprising amount of pace to lead in the early stages of the extended sprint distance event before boxing on doggedly over the closing stages to score a narrow success — the fourth of his career, and his first this side of the Tassie.
Running second in the event, after taking up the running late in the back stretch, proved to be Silent Explorer (by Lope de Vega), with Bigboyroy (by Dissident) claiming third after being given every chance.
Formerly trained by the Murray Baker-Andrew Forsman partnership, Bobby Dee was transferred to Bjorn Baker for his 4-year-old season. The Warwick Farm-based trainer admitted after the race that his win was a welcome change of luck for his stable at the end of a torrid few days.
Bobby Dee (NZ) and apprentice Samantha Denton, picture Sportpix.com.au
“Thrilled,” declared Baker after the win. “I needed it to get out of a mightily bad week so far.”
Baker continued: “Really grateful to the Carter family and their friends; he’s a promising horse. Of course Andrew and Murray had him in New Zealand prior. I’m lucky enough to get a ready-made horse.
“He’s by Zed, which is an acronym for Zabeel [and] Emerald Dream, who’s a promising stallion. The Carters had him and Emerald Dream, which was one of the first horses my father had and she won a Group 1, so it’s truly nice.
“I wasn’t confident today. I thought he’d be better over a [longer] trip, but he’s very game.”
As Baker alluded to, the victory proved to be another ‘feather in the cap’ for the unheralded Kiwi stallion Zed, sire also of this year’s Group 1 Australian Oaks winner Verry Eleegant.
Retired to stud on the strength of one solitary maiden race success, the magnificently-bred son of Zabeel and Group 1 winning racemare Emerald Dream (from the famed Eight Carat family) is now an established progenitor of Cup winning stayers and looks to have another in the making in the form of Bobby Dee.
After 18 starts, Bobby Dee is now a four-time winner and five-time placegetter over distances ranging from 1400m to 2200m.
The progressive gelding won his latest assignment by a long-neck and a short-head, recording the time of 1m30.09s (last 600m in 34.89s).
Bobby Dee was returned at the juicy starting price of $31.00, the runner-up Silent Explorer also at $31.00, and the minor placegetter Bigboyroy at $3.60.
Raced by Bjorn Baker Racing (Mgr: B Baker), A R Cheetham, A M Dragicevich, D A Dragicevich, J E Driscoll, S J Glaetzer, R Simons, K M Stocker, A G W Webb & Jomara Bloodstock Ltd (Mgr: M P Carter), Bobby Dee has now amassed $131,514 for his connections.