Ciaron Maher pleased with Magic Millions Classic barrier draw

Magic Millions 2yo Classic favourite Coolangatta has drawn barrier 13 for Saturday’s $2 million event on the Gold Coast.

Should three emergencies be scratched before then, the filly by Written Tycoon could come in to start from barrier 10.

Either way, co-trainer Ciaron Maher is pleased with her draw.

“I’m very happy actually,” Maher said on RSN.

“I was hoping for somewhere in the middle and not on fence where it can get pretty intense and hot early in the race.

“I’m rapt.”

Despite Maher’s reaction, markets have reacted by easing her price out slightlty. At $1.85 with TAB having eased from $1.70 overnight, Coolangatta is still well into short-priced territory, while as much as $2.05 was available elsewhere.

Market 💰: View the Odds for the Magic Millions Classic

With Sydney’s leading jockey James McDonald aboard, as he will be on Saturday, Coolangatta comes off winning the Group 3 Magic Millions B.J. McLachlan Stakes (1200m) at Doomben on 26 December.

“She was very forward in condition after her last run,” Maher adds.

“She’s had the three week gap so she did an easy week and then a nice couple of strong galloped leading in.

“In her work this morning, ‘J-Mac’ was very happy with her and gave her the tick of approval.

“There’s still a few days to go and if hopefully she presents as well as the way she is today, I’ll be very happy.

Despite her short quote, for Maher this isn’t just all about unique Magic Millions-style hype for one horse.

“Adrian Corboy, who does a lot of our breaking in, said from day one that there might be a bit of x-factor here.

“When she came into the stable she was very natural and everything she did was very easy.”

A $280,000 buy at the Gold Coast Magic Millions Yearling Sales in 2021, Coolangatta has so far earned $229,000 with her two wins at Group 3 level in as many starts.

“We were lucky to her considering some of the prices that these horses go for.”

The Maher and Eustace stable could be in for a good day at the Gold Coast on Saturday.

2020 Magic Millions 2yo Classic winner Away Game returns for the third year running and is entered for races Maher notes that the mare’s latest start in the Listed Christmas Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield was a “PB” Snap Dancer was very unlucky last start and I think she’s in great order.

Socialist is rated a $31 chance in the Magic Millions 3yo Guineas (1400m) and comes into the race after placing on heavy ground on the Randwick Kensington course on New Year’s Day.

“There is a bit of timing about her,” Maher said.

“She’s been furnishing and was really solid last start and is one at odds.”

No Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight
1 CUSACK Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young Craig Newitt 6 57kg
2 MISHANI WARFARE Les Ross James Orman 7 57kg
3 STUPENDO Danny O’Brien Craig Williams 19 57kg
4 MISHANI SPARTAN Les Ross Jackson Morris 3 57kg
5 GOLDEN ARTIE Bryan & Daniel Guy Ben Thompson 17 57kg
6 MISHANI PERSUASION Les Ross Ms Rachel King 21 57kg
7 THELWELL Sharryn Livingstone Justin Stanley 5 57kg
8 HEROIC SON Peter & Will Hulbert Adin Thompson (a) 9 57kg
9 COOLANGATTA Ciaron Maher & David Eustace James McDonald 13 55kg
10 SOARING AMBITION Annabel Neasham Tommy Berry 20 55kg
11 RUSSIAN CONQUEST Peter & Paul Snowden Kerrin McEvoy 4 55kg
12 MISS HELLFIRE Peter & Paul Snowden Tim Clark 11 55kg
13 SNEAKY STARTER Mick Mair Ms Tiffani Brooker 10 55kg
14 PERFECT MISSION Michael Costa Andrew Mallyon 14 55kg
15 SNITCAT Gary Portelli Jason Collett 2 55kg
16 BRIGHT BLUE SKY Jamie Richards Brett Prebble 16 55kg
17e SWISS EXILE Annabel Neasham Hugh Bowman 1 57kg
18e SPANISH ANGELS Les Ross 18 55kg
19e REVOLUTIONARY MISS Peter & Paul Snowden 8 55kg
20e WILD BOTANICA Kacy Fogden 15 55kg
21e RUSSIAN WARRIOR Allan Chau 12 55kg

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