Gaby’s Lovely debut en route to the Diamond

By Georgie Dennis

A great day for team CMR on Saturday was highlighted by the utmost impressive debut of two-year-old filly Loving Gaby.

The team have always had an opinion of this filly, but she still exceeded expectations with the performance she put in to win the Group 3 Chairman’s Stakes at Caulfield.

The daughter of I Am Invincible was slow to begin and settled last on the fence which is a position that even the best-performed horses would struggle to win from, especially over such a short distance.

But luck was on her side and a gap opened up with 200m to go for jockey Damian Lane to steer her through and she stormed home to win by half a length.

Co-trainer Ciaron Maher was mighty impressed with his now serious Blue Diamond contender.

“This horse has a really bright future,” Maher told Racing.com.

“She sort of put the writing on the wall in her trial the other day.

“You could see when she got out, she still didn’t know how to flatten out.

“She was ultra-impressive, and I couldn’t be more excited really.”

With this win, Loving Gaby will head straight into the Blue Diamond in just under three weeks’ time and will avoid having to have another run to get enough prizemoney under her belt.

“That’s the reason we didn’t run last Friday because if she did run there, she’d probably have to run again so we thought if she showed up today and ran up to expectations she could go straight in and have a nice gap in between,” Maher said.

There is no question over whether she will handle the step up to the 1200m of the Blue Diamond as she is a big, scopey filly with a wonderfully big action.

This was also our first runner (and winner) for Pheonix Thoroughbreds which was an added bonus to an already fantastic win.

Loving Gaby will be joined by stablemate Bella Rosa in the $1.5M feature for two-year-olds.

The Snitzel filly ran a close second to Loving Gaby and will be better suited to the 1200m.

“I thought Bella Rosa was very good also,” Maher said.

“She pinged out and had to make the speed but when Loving Gaby went past her, she really kicked hard for second.”

Earlier in the day, classy mare Naantali finally got the first win of her summer/autumn preparation in a 1400m handicap for fillies and mares.

She had to carry a big weight but drew a beautiful gate and got the job done fairly easily, winning by 1.25 lengths.

She is a nice progressive mare who will continue to go through her grades, but we are hopeful she can match it at stakes level at some point in her career.

Our team in Sydney, headed by Annabel Neasham also landed another winner at Rosehill with All Too Royal saluting for the third time in a row.

It’s safe to say the team up there are doing a fantastic job and we are thrilled to have continued success for Vinery Stud who are terrific supporters of the stable.