Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Phenomenal Debut Sets Scene

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Phenomenal Debut Sets Scene

Article excerpt

Horse Racing

Tony McMahon

ROCKHAMPTON racing's latest rising star, the late bloomer Mr Phenomenal faces his acid test today when he takes on the "big boys'' making his open company debut at Rockhampton's Callaghan Park racecourse.

The Darryl Gardiner, Bundaberg trained Mr Phenomenal will contest the opening race on the eight event TAB card and is listed as TAB 5 and will be ridden by leading apprentice Elyce Smith.

Mr Phenomenal (b g 5 Phenomenons-Forewarning x Octagonal) arrived at Gardiner's Bundaberg stables in the spring of last year from Victoria. Although he had failed at all six of his Victorian appearances, Mr Phenomenal hit the ground running at Bundaberg winning on debut for Gardiner there on November 6 last year.

In fact, he won his Maiden (850m) on the Bundaberg sand track by a phenomenal margin -- some 11 lengths.

Since then Gardiner has been shrewd and patient in his placement of Mr Phenomenal producing him on nine occasions for six wins as well as two seconds and just the once unplaced.

All of those races have been at Callaghan Park where given his record, Mr Phenomenal has built up quite a following.

His father Phenomenons was a son of the great producer Giant's Causeway and won twice in LR company in West Australia.

A versatile horse, Phenomenons won from 1100 metres to 2200 metres in a rather lightly raced career which produced five wins in Perth.

While little is seen of the progeny of Phenomenons in the eastern states, it is factual that the stallion was a top-class performer thereby it being no surprise that his son Mr Phenomenal is a galloper of some promise.

Today's performance at Callaghan Park will go a long way as a measuring stick towards Mr Phenomenal's future.

While his older rivals aren't many in number, the five are fairly well proven in top provincial and middle-class metropolitan grade.

While they are all older and, in some cases, much older than Mr Phenomenal the youngest combatant of the 1300 metres field, they have won 42 races between them. …

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