Perfect start to Tassort's stud career
The stud career of Emirates Park bought stallion Tassort commenced in the best possible way when his very first runner, the home-bred Manaal, won the Group 3 Keeneland Gimcrack Stakes (1000m) at Randwick on the Epsom Handicap program.
Trained on behalf of the farm by Michael Freedman and ridden by Tommy Berry, Manaal displayed a liberal amount of tenacity when closing late in the very first juvenile event of the 2023/24 Sydney racing season to claim the coveted black-type feature in the final stride.
One of two first-crop daughters of Tassort in the Gimcrack field, Manaal recorded a winning time of 57.87s, which was virtually identical to that (57.85s) registered by Espionage to land the Group 3 Arrowfield Breeders’ Plate — for colts and geldings — 35 minutes later.
Winning trainer Michael Freedman declared after landing the first two-year-old race of the Sydney season: “It’s a big thrill all round. Emirates [Park] have been very good to me this year, giving me a couple of these Tassorts. Terrific result for them, owning the stallion, and they’ve supported him heavily. ”
Freedman added: “I think there’s better to come [from Manaal]. I said to the owners before the race ‘Whatever she does today it will be great, but I can’t wait to see her in the autumn’.
“She has always shown us a lot at home and the other day in the trial, she ended up having to get down on the rail to make a run and she was very timid in among them. We had a plan today, we wanted to give her plenty of clear galloping room because she worked so well here on Tuesday. It panned out perfectly… ”
Purchased by Emirates Park from Godolphin, Tassort has been in service at Newgate Farm since 2020 and got 99 live foals in his first crop, and 228 from his first two seasons combined.
Emirates Park general manager Bryan Carlson told www.ttrausnz.com.au after the success: “It was just a great result for everyone. From Tommy [Berry] to Keeneland to ourselves and Newgate. It’s just a great story.
“She’ll definitely be treated as a Golden Slipper horse. One of Hussain Lootah’s favourite races is the Slipper, so if we can win it with a home-bred that would be fantastic.
“We have eight Tassorts in the [racing] stable and it has started out very well. Just thinking of some of the Tassorts that we still have to come, it’s only going to be upwards from here.”
A division of the Nasser Abdulla Lootah Group