Qld’s best trainer Robert Heathcote landed an unexpected double , at least according to punters….on today’s card at Doomben with Saluter for Alannah Fancourt ($6.00) and Sea Red ridden by Robbie Fradd ($14) both scoring somewhat unexpected wins.

Saluter winning for Alannah Fancourt today at Doomben. A Magic Millions run in January on the cards for horse who won 3 year old Guineas in his year.

Both Saluter and Sea Red came into today with more than solid form but their hopes seem dashed after the barriers came out mid-week with Saluter drawing gate 19 of the original 20 drawn. While Sea Red also came up with 19 of 19. Heathcote however resisted any temptations to scratch the runners and that decision proved fruitful.

Saluter was backed from $7.50 to start $6.00 and duly saluted beating home Bushy and Total Authority in race 5 the opening quaddie leg the Matthews Builders Handicap (rs0ty) – over 1350m.

“He’s come back in great form” Heathcote said.

“There was a lot on conjecture whether I run him in the big one (Gr3 George Moore Stakes) after he ran 2nd and beat Architect, one of the fancied runners in today’s race”

“But I said to the guys 1350m is what he wants. There’s a listed 1350m race here (at Doomben) in a fortnight then he’ll go to the 1400m (Magic) Millions race at the Gold Coast”.

“That was the right race today and Lani gave him a beautiful ride”.

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Heathcote and jockey Lani Fancourt share a joke with the winning connections of Saluter.


WATCH. Saluter salutes at Doomben.


sea red
Sea Red was back to her best winning at a big price

Sea Red ensured Heathcote bookended the Brisbane quaddie with with the talented mare, who was unsupported in betting, claiming the Twilight Raceday Handicap (bm75) – over 1615m. Heathcote has long had a big opinion of the Sebring mare, but in previous campaigns niggling little issues surrounding her feet and ankles had prevented her from consistently producing her best. When at her top to 5 year old mare has a terrific sprint finish. Heathcote declared to me personally before the start of her racing preparation this time in work that he had the mare at her top finally this time in, with her previously existing foot issues resolved.  After two solid runs back, she appeared at her top but struck an unsuitable wet track. It looked another case of frustration when Sea red drew so poorly today but Heathcote persisted in running the mare to the owners who leant to scratching the mare. I’m filthy I didn’t back today at big odds but that’s racing. I’ll be sticking solid with her from here on in on dry going though as she’s ready to string together a few on end.


WATCH. Sea Red sizzles at Doomben.


Heathcote’s 2 year old debutant in the first Kubis, who the master trainer has a decent opinion of ability wise ran well on debut finishing top 5 and working home in solid fashion. Heathcote confessed pre-race that he thought the juvenile was still a ‘bit green’ at this stage but with race experience can really develop into a good horse. It’ll pay to follow.