Arabian Gold takes emotional Nick Moraitis back in time the glory days with Might And Power

• by: Christian Nicolussi
• April 26, 2014 3:36PM

Arabian Gold will now be sent to Brisbane to chase a third stakes race in as many starts. Picture - Simon Bullard Source - Supplied.
Arabian Gold will now be sent to Brisbane to chase a third stakes race in as many starts. Picture - Simon Bullard Source - Supplied.

OWNER Nick Moraitis choked up after Arabian Gold won the Frank Packer Plate — the same Randwick feature his champion Might And Power had won 17 years earlier.

Moraitis’ white and pink colours were made famous by seven-time Group 1 winner Might And Power, and are fast becoming a regular fixture in the winner’s circle with Arabian Gold.

The tough grey was sent out the $2.15 favourite to win by a length-and-a-quarter from Pheidon ($8.50) with a similar margin to Malice ($9).

Arabian Gold, who won the Adrian Knox Stakes a fortnight earlier, will now be sent to Brisbane to chase a third stakes race in as many starts.

“It’s rare you win the same race twice, but we have, and especially after ‘Mighty’ won it, it was terrific,’’ Moraitis said.
“I never come to the races confident ...’’

Moraitis then choked up. Asked why he was so overcome with emotion, Moriaitis said: “When you have a favourite, everyone expects you to win, and I really feel for the people who back her.

“There is a lot of pressure. It was the same with Might And Power. You get to let down after it.’’

Arabian Gold was a chance to run in last weekend’s $4 million Queen Elizabeth Stakes, with trainer David Vandyke admitting the filly was at one stage ‘’a 60 per cent chance’’ of running.

Nick Moraitis’ white and pink colours were made famous by seven-time Group 1 winner Might And Power (above). Source - News Corp Australia.
Nick Moraitis’ white and pink colours were made famous by seven-time Group 1 winner Might And Power (above). Source - News Corp Australia.

The ATC Oaks wasn’t entertained after she failed to see out the 2400m in the Victoria Oaks in the spring.

Vandyke pulled the right rein by waiting a week and sticking to her own age group in the Frank Packer.

Jockey Damien Oliver didn’t panic when he couldn’t get to the outside, and elected to drive the filly home near the rail.

“It’s fantastic, on her first three runs this preparation, we wondered if she had come back this preparation, but now she’s put back to back stakes races together, and you couldn’t ask for much more,’’ Vandyke said.

“We’ll probably go to the Roses at Doomben in three weeks, against the three-year-old fillies, her own sex, and over 2000m. And hopefully it’s wet in Brisbane.’’

Arabian Gold was the only filly in the race, but had way too much class and turn of foot when it mattered.

Vandyke ditched a crack at the ATC Oaks because he didn’t believe Arabian Gold would run a strong 2400m, especially after the Melbourne tour last spring.

Oliver said of Arabian Gold’s triumph: “I was holding a spot a couple back, one off the fence, and got a bit of a hip and shoulder there after 400m or 500m.

“But I was following a nice horse in Pheidon and I knew he would take me everywhere I needed to go. I had to duck back to the fence in the straight. She’s got great acceleration this filly and she was too strong for them.
“She was travelling well, they were going at a pretty leisurely tempo so she had a good kick to offer. She has a good turn of foot, especially off a soft pace like that, she really made use of her acceleration.’’

Damien Oliver hugs the rails with Arabian Gold to claim the Frank Packer Plate. Picture - Simon Bullard Source
Damien Oliver hugs the rails with Arabian Gold to claim the Frank Packer Plate. Picture - Simon Bullard Source