Murray Bridge trainer Michael Hickmott is kicking goals on and off the track, with a running double at Morphettville last Saturday his latest triumph.
Hickmott and wife Jade recently acquired the Lakewood Stud property, around 20 kilometres from Murray Bridge, complete with two training tracks, more than 50 boxes and irrigated spelling paddocks.
Last Saturday’s double took Hickmott’s tally for 2020/21 to 13 winners from 28 starters at the remarkable strike rate of 46.4, led by Sky Punch in the listed Leon Macdonald Stakes.
Hickmott brought up the first of last Saturday’s winners when the four-year-old Fastnet Rock gelding Pindaric ($7) led all the way under Eran Boyd to win a 1200-metre benchmark 58 handicap by 1¾ lengths, remaining unbeaten after two starts.
Hickmott landed the second leg of his running double when the former New Zealander Lord Vladivostok ($4) registered his first Australian win in a benchmark 68 handicap over 1600 metres, with Todd Pannell aboard.
Lord Vladivostok was well placed throughout the race and Hickmott believes the four-year-old Tavistock entire could be a prospect for next March’s Adelaide Cup.
Hickmott’s winners completed riding doubles for both Boyd and Pannell.
Boyd earlier scored an on-pace win on the Luke O’Connor-trained Waikato Express ($26) in an 1800-metre benchmark 58 handicap.
Pannell brought up the first leg of his double when The Multiplier ($3.60) took out the 1100-metre benchmark 64 for Will Clarken at just his second start.
By The Factor out of the Danerich mare Nullarbor Nymph, The Multiplier could soon be sold to Hong Kong interests.
Boyd finished the weekend off well when she guided Pale Ale to victory for trainer Danielle Wilson in 0-58 company over 1100 metres at Oakbank on Sunday.
Trainer Phillip Stokes looks to have a strong contender in next month’s Group 1 Thousand Guineas over 1600 metres after the impressive win of unbeaten filly Instant Celebrity ($1.75 favourite) in the 1100-metre benchmark 72 at Morphettville.
Stretching her winning streak to three, Instant Celebrity stormed home from midfield under Jake Toeroek.
After the win of Pretty Brazen in the Group 2 Let’s Elope Stakes (1400m) at Flemington last Saturday, Tony and Calvin McEvoy celebrated another win 10 minutes later at Morphettville when the Barend Vorster-guided Frankie Pinot ($1.70 favourite) scored from on the pace in a 1200-metre maiden plate.
Team McEvoy made it three wins for the weekend and Vorster two when Gede won in 0-58 company at Oakbank on Sunday.
Anna in form
Murray Bridge co-trainers Daniel Clarken and Oopy MacGillivray combined with jockey Anna Jordsjo to take the points in front of a pleasing 500-strong crowd at Oakbank last Sunday with a double.
Their winners were Like a Heartbeat, bred and part-owned by Racing.com Adelaide form analyst James Jordan, in a Class 2 and first-starter Lucky Dog, who was backed in from $7 to start $3.60 favourite in an 1100-metre maiden.
Partner picks up cup
Tony McEvoy landed his third Balaklava Cup winner and second in partnership with his son Calvin when Winning Partner ($4.60 favourite) won the 1600-metre listed race on Wednesday.
Giving jockey Barend Vorster and the McEvoys their third winner for the day, Winning Partner came from worse than midfield.
He is now likely to take his place in the Murray Bridge Gold Cup over the same distance next month.
The McEvoys and Vorster brought up their first two wins in a running double when Vancity Gem ($2.80) won a 1050-metre maiden plate and Victoria Quay ($2.20 favourite) took out a 1600-metre maiden plate.
Apprentice Jessica Eaton, who joined forces with Gordon Richards when Champagne Affair ($7.50) won a Class 1 handicap of 1050 metres, has decided to stay in SA until she completes her apprenticeship next March.