‘Big ED’ lands G2 aged 8

Qatar Racing favourite Endless Drama rolled back the years on Saturday when winning the Gr.2 Foxbridge Plate at Te Rapa in New Zealand.

After finishing placed in the Gr.1 Stradbroke Handicap, Endless Drama was delivered late under an inspired Leith Innes to get up late in the 1200m Foxbridge, winning by a length from the fast-finishing Te Akau Shark.

Trainer Tony Pike had deliberately given Endless Drama (formerly with Chris Waller in Australia) just a short break after his Brisbane exertions as he was mindful of keeping weight off the frame of the imposing Lope de Vega entire.

The decision paid off handsomely as the 8-year-old (he’s actually a 7-year-old in European terms) looked in rude health before the race, with punters making him fourth favourite.

After racing economically near the rail for the first part of the race, Endless Drama was bought angled wide at the 600m marker and really got rolling late on.

Pike was delighted with the result and pinpointed the Gr.1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) at Hastings in a fortnight as Endless Drama’s next target.

“He’s become a real stable pet this horse,” Pike said.

“There was a big query on the track but it was a perfect ride from Leith. The biggest thing is just waiting as he has only got a short, sharp sprint but he waited and waited and got it right today.

“Thanks to Chris Waller for leaving him with me and to Qatar Racing as they are big investors in the industry.”

“1200m is probably a touch short but he was electric late and now we’re looking forward to going to Hawkes Bay over 1400m although I’m hoping he won’t run into Te Akau Shark as hopefully he is heading to Australia and we don’t have to have another crack at him.”

Endless Drama began his career in Ireland and was second to Gleneagles in the 2015 Gr.1 Irish 2,000 Guineas and third to Belardo in the following year’s Gr.1 Lockinge Stakes.

Also over the weekend, Hidden Message finished second in the Gr.1 Del Mar Oaks on her first start since leaving William Haggas in Newmarket and joining Simon Callaghan in California. The daughter of Scat Daddy was a Listed winner at Sandown last month and is a very promising filly.