Rip's Miss Gardenia targets black type this Spring


Darren Weir has trained more than 3500 winners but landed a career-first when Mrs Gardenia and Bellaria dead-heated at Caulfield on Saturday.

The Weir-trained pair shared the spoils in Saturday's Hocking Stuart Handicap, the first time the trainer has had two horses from his stable dead-heat a race.

"It's a good way to keep the owners happy I suppose.," Weir said. "Both horses were in good shape for the race and I'd like to say I couldn't split them."

Dean Yendall who partnered Mrs Gardenia, a daughter of Rip Van Winkle thought he had won the race outright.

Weir has spring hopes for Mrs Gardenia. "I think Mrs Gardenia has a good win in her, especially as she steps out in trip," Weir said. "It would be great to win a stakes race with her this Spring.

The win of Miss Gardenia capped off a wonderful day for her sire Rip Van Winkle (Galileo), who celebrated four winners Australasian wide.

Rip Van Winkle’s other winners included the devastating return of Te Akau Shark at Hastings in New Zealand and the highly promising Belle Roc who has her legendary trainer Brian Smith excited after she made it back to back wins when she powered home from last to win the QTIS Three-Year-Old Handicap on Saturday.