Amade makes light work of rivals in the Sandown Cup

Amade has carried the topweight to a comfortable victory in the Sandown Cup.

A trip to Brisbane could be on the agenda for Amade after the stayer was better behaved in the barriers before taking out the Listed Sandown Cup.

The Group 2 Brisbane Cup (3200m) at Eagle Farm on June 15 will come under consideration after the Phillip Stokes-trained stayer blitzed his rivals in Sunday’s 3200m contest.

A noted slow beginner, Amade ($4.40) only missed the start by four lengths under Daniel Stackhouse on Sunday before circling the field, racing to a 1-¾ length win first Ferago ($10) with Strawberry Rock ($5) a further 1-½ lengths away third.

“We’ll see how he pulls up, but we were thinking if he ran well today, we may go to the Brisbane Cup, so we’ll play it by ear,” Stokes said.

“A plane trip might do him some good.”

Amade has won 11 of his 34 starts but has been plagued by mishaps throughout his career since arriving from the USA in 2020.

Coupled with injuries and refusing to jump, Amade has still been a good money spinner for the Stokes stable.

“He’s been through a lot this horse,” Stokes said.

“He’s had tendon injuries, pelvis fractures. He came to us from America.

“He’s also left a lot on the bench, like in the Adelaide Cup with the stirrup leathers breaking, then missing the kick in the Sydney Cup.

“He won the Geelong Cup (last spring) and hasn’t been out of work and keeps picking up a cheque.

“I have to give a big thanks to my wife Ayumi. She’s the one that takes him home to the farm, she patches him up and keeps him going.”

Stackhouse was having his first ride on the gelding and attempted to do his best in getting Amade to jump cleanly.

He said it is like Amade ‘freezes’ in the barriers.

“Luckily the speed wasn’t on, and we didn’t have to make up too much ground in the early stages, but he switched off an got into a nice rhythm,” Stackhouse said.

“I was going to make a run through them, but I decided to come out and he really surprised me. He grabbed the bridle and he put it away a long way out.”

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