Successful trainer Darren Mc Auliffe makes no attempt to hide his admiration for the promising Trade Fair three-year-old Grand Crusade.
“He’s a real nice horse,” said Mc Auliffe after Grand Crusade’s win in the Westspeed 3Y0 Handicap (1200m) at Belmont Park on Wednesday (August 15). “I have a lot of time for him.
“He went chronically shin sore at his only loss and hung off the track the whole way. By the time we got him back to the stalls he was lame in both forelegs.
“We are continuing to nurse him along this preparation. He went into that race without a gallop for three weeks.
“So it was a very impressive effort. We’ll now take him through the classes.”
Grand Crusade, bred by Allan Young’s Kintore Stud, Serpentine, is from the Royal Academy mare, Search.
Search, a half-sister to Spielmeister, has had three named foals, all of whom have raced and won. Search ‘N’ Seek gained four wins and Search Me three wins.
Spielmeister won five times and was second in the Group 3 VRC Ellerston Capital Stakes and Listed Kensington Stakes and was fourth in the Group 1 Australian Guineas.
Grand Crusade was beaten 1 1/2-lengths by Star of The Orient in the Ritz Party Hire Maden (1200m) in his race debut at Pinjarra on April 25. He then won the Rose Maiden (1100m) at Northam on July 19 by 1 1/4-lengths, after being bumped at the start, before Wednesday’s win.
WA racegoers are bound to hear a lot more about Grand Crusade – and a lot more about other emerging stock of Trade Fair, WA’s in-form, best value and most versatile sire.