Mark has just told Olivia who ran 2nd

After CHASE A DREAM’S stunning Sires Stakes win Olivia couldn’t believe one thing and then was even more surprised to be told the next thing.

“There was no way I thought he could win (800m out)” Olivia told Mark in their post race conversation.

“I had to start my own three wide chain when I expected to follow some others but then I got in for a bit. But at the turn the leaders looked just too far away”

Then the pair unleashed  retro rockets and got up to beat stablemate WE WALK BY FAITH in the last stride with MAJOR HOT third. It was All Stars and Purdon Racing”s ninth win in the G1 classic in 10 years.

Having told how it all unfolded Olivia then asked “how did you go ?”

The usual deadpan Purdon reply followed

 “I was beaten a nose”

“Oh!” said Olivia cracking up.  “Sorry. “

It’s been a magic 6 weeks for Olivia Thornley who has grown into the starring role seemingly unaffected, giving honest and entertaining interviews while remaining in charge of the situation. One of her two finest assets beside temperament,her  acute judgment of pace, helped win this race.The other,velvet hands on the reins,has always been the basis of  her success.

She is the first to thank Nathan,Mark and Natalie for their faith in her potential and especially the trust shown in assignments with the elite stable members. In the case of Chance A Dream that also goes for managing owner Brian West whose partnerships continue to chalk up Group 1 performers from their Coes Ford base with ever increasing pace. 

But while Chase a Dream’s win was the obvious pinnacle of Olivia’s driving triumphs to date there was another big thrill. That was the wonderful victory of MILLWOOD NIKE in the Nevele R Final in which she demolished her rivals, pretenders and otherwise, in a dominating performance  in the best time posted in the race since it went to tated a convesation about great fillies of pst years.

“I was more nervous about this race than the Sires Stakes” she quipped about the filly who is in her  care at Rolleston on a day to day basis and also a raceday drive.A special association, doubling the joy of the day.

The stable trifecta was the first since 2019.Nathan noted in his preview that We Walk By Faith was improving rapidly with each start and he went perilously close to winning.In passing Nathan also named Mon Lancome as one of the best on the day for the stable at 4/1.

“I thought I could have won but I wasn’t sure” said Mark as the two were distant across the track. Major Hot uplifted his form by some lengths in the centre.Nathan put that down to the driving skills of Cameron Hart who spoiled the stable parade in the New Zealand Cup.

“I was pleased to get Cameron on some of ours. He’s a wonderful horseman. I think in Australia he had 6 drives for me and won four. He looks the part but he also gets them up on the bit and going and gets the best from them. I mean that horse could have won and ran well above his previous form”

Nathan was stunned by Olivia’s in on Chase A Dream just the same.

“You just don’t see horses winning races of that quality like that. He must have been 10 lengths off the leaders on the turn.It was hard to believe but they got it done”

Nose,nose,head. Major races often come down to such margins.But Olivia was on the right end again this time and confidence can only grow from here

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