Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Bigger things in store for Play Master

Benalla trainer Peter Smith will set the bar higher in the future with his talented galloper Play Master after he won his seventh race at Flemington on Saturday.

GREGOR MACTAGGART August 11, 2014 3:05am

Better things are in store for talented Benalla galloper Play Master following his impressive win at Flemington on Saturday.

The six-year-old relished the straight six to take his career record to seven wins from 15 starts in the $40000 Philip Hogan & Olga Nield Rating 78 Handicap (1200m).

Rated to perfection by emerging apprentice hoop Jye McNeil, Play Master ($10 into $9) defeated Marwood by three-quarters of a length, with Taddei Tondo a further half-length away in third.

Trainer Peter Smith was always confident his charge would measure up with his second run in the space of a week following an encouraging third at Moonee Valley just seven days prior.

‘‘He was his own worst enemy last week, he was on the wrong leg the whole way around the Valley,’’ Smith said.

‘‘Without a doubt if he raced tractably, he would have won the race. I couldn’t believe he was 10-1 today. We had a good piece of it.’’

Noted Victorian form analyst Deane Lester suggested Play Master could be a player in a race such as the Group Three Standish Handicap, usually run on New Year’s Day.

Smith is certainly eyeing that level of race with his charge, who has now banked $116025 in prizemoney.

‘‘He’s a stakes class horse,’’ he said.

‘‘He’s a very, very tough horse.

‘‘He’ll have a break now and we’re not going to go with big plans because he still has a lot to learn, but he can run.’’

Making Saturday’s success even sweeter for Smith is the fact he stands Masterprint, the sire of Play Master, at his home property.

The deeds of his progeny has seen the unraced stallion attract some commercial attention for the coming season, much to Smith’s delight.

“We’re over 60 confirmed bookings (for the season), that’s nearly his limit,” he said.

“I’ve got 25 mares that have gone to him, he’s (Masterprint) like my superannuation fund.”

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