The physical similarities between Denman and his father Lonhro are obvious and the signs are he has also inherited a fair share of his sire’s ability.
Denman won the leadup, the Run To The Rose (1300m) at Rosehill on Saturday with style, beating More Than Great by 1-1/4 lengths after conceding his rival 2-1/2 kilograms.
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“He is a really nice horse and is very similar to his father,” Snowden said.
“He’s the same colour, black, and his whole demeanour is very like him.
“It’s too soon to say he has the same ability but he is a lovely, tractable horse.”
Denman’s previous four starts had been in Melbourne where he recorded three wins but Snowden was still surprised he was forced to carry 58kg in Saturday’s Group Three race.
“I thought he was a bit harshly treated because I don’t think he had done more than the runner-up or Hus Der Lieften,” Snowden said.
“Going back to the set weights in the Golden Rose will be a help for him.”
Denman’s mother is Vain mare Peach and the colt gets his name from the fruit called the Denman Peach, not the area where his birthplace, Woodlands Stud, is situated in the Hunter Valley.
“It’s a coincidence that his name is the same as the place he was born but it’s appropriate,” Snowden said.
Many of the Golden Rose contenders were in action in the Run To The Rose with the notable exception of Phelan Ready who ran third against the older horses in the Premiere Stakes.
The Golden Rose was recently elevated to Group One status and is now the first elite race of the 2009-10 season and also the richest of the Sydney spring.
As an early three-year-old, Lonhro contested the weight-for-age Missile Stakes a couple of weeks before claiming the 2001 Warwick Stakes.
His first of 11 Group One victories came in the Caulfield Guineas 2009 which is also a possible target for Denman.
Lonhro’s sire Octagonal ran third in the Caulfield Guineas before recording a stirring victory over Mahogany in the Cox Plate.
Both Octagonal and Lonhro were trained at Crown Lodge in Sydney by John Hawkes for the Ingham family.
Snowden was Crown Lodge foreman before taking over from Hawkes in late 2007 and was closely associated with both champion racehorses.
He was retained as trainer by Sheikh Mohammed when he bought the Ingham empire last year.
Article by Caryl Williamson Aapracing