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Pierata's potential scares Hickman

By Glenn Davis

He’s not there yet and that’s the scary thing.

That’s how Warwick Farm trainer Greg Hickman summed up Pierata following the colt’s dominant win in the $2 million Magic Millions Guineas (1400m) at the Gold Coast on Saturday.

Ridden by Melbourne Cup winning jockey Corey Brown, Pierata outclassed his rivals by downing Goodfella by 1-1/2 lengths with Calculated third, a further 1-1/4 lengths away.

The win completed the Summer Crown grand slam and a $500,000 bonus following his previous victories in the Winning Rupert Plate and Group 3 Vo Rogue Plate at Doomben last month.

Pierata’s win took his prizemoney haul to $1,481,650 with four wins and two placings from eight starts.

Hickman was emotional after Pierata’s victory but believes the best is yet to come from the son of former star juvenile Pierro.

“Winning this race is everything. It all went to plan and it’s not a bad earn,” Hickman said.

“When he grows up you’ll see a real racehorse.

“He’s not there yet and that’s the scary thing.”

Brown showed just why he is regarded as one of the country’s best jockeys with an ice-cool ride under pressure.

“There’s no use panicking. It is what it is,” Brown said.

“Nothing had come along the fence all day and I was a bit scared but the heavens just opened up for him.

“He’s only going to get better and he’ll be a very good horse next preparation.”

Earlier Invincibella vindicated trainer Chis Waller’s decision to book former South African Robbie Fradd when the four-year-old claimed the Magic Millions Fillies & Mares (1300m).

Carrying the colours of syndicator Denise Martin’s Star Thoroughbreds, Invincibella edged out Eckstein by a nose with My Country, a further ?? away, third.

“You can’t beat local knowledge,” Waller said of his Fradd booking.

“We didn’t have much luck with this horse in the spring and it looked like being the same today until she stuck her nose out on the line.

“Believe it or not, horses are different to people so I sent her up to Brisbane for her last run just to acclimatise when she ran fourth.”

The win was the second leg of a double for Fradd, who earlier won the Maiden Plate on the Gerald Ryan-trained Problem Solver.

Young trainer Matt Dale celebrated his first Magic Millions day with a winner when Zafina claimed the Lexus Magic Millions Country Cup (1200m).

Zafina was having her third attempt at Magic Millions glory after missing a place behind Capitalist in the Magic Millions Classic in 2016 before running eighth in last year’s Magic Millions Maiden when trained by Gary Portelli.

Zafina, who downed Suggan Buggan by a half neck, was sent to stud last year but returned to the racetrack after failing to foal.

Dale is best known in Queensland after winning the Group 1 Victory Stakes at Eagle Far, with Fell Swoop two years ago.

“I’ve only had her for seven runs but she’s now won four times for us,” Dale said.

Racing Queensland webnews   January 13