It might have been 21 starts and two years between wins, but Godolphin Australia’s Managing Director, Henry Plumptre, never lost faith in Saturday’s Listed ATC Cup (2000m) winner, Malice.
“He (Malice) is seldom out of the top three and is a very tough horse,” Plumptre points out. “Since winning the same race in 2014, he’s run second in the Doncaster Prelude, second in the Newcastle Cameron, finished second in the Cup Day Plate at Flemington, third in a Tatt’s Cup at Eagle Farm, and third in the Ladies Day Cup at Hawkesbury.
“That was a great run on Saturday and he appears well suited to Rosehill but he’s also got form over a mile at Randwick so the Villiers in a fortnight could be on the agenda.”
Bred at Darley – Godolphin’s breeding arm – Malice is by the Galileo stallion, Teofilo, who returned to Darley Kelvinside this spring after a three year absence.
Winner of the Dewhurst Stakes and National Stakes in Ireland as a 2YO in 2006, Darley had purchased the colt just prior to him being injured and then Teofilo shuttled between Europe and Australia for five seasons.
“With Group One winners like Havana Gold, Loch Garman, Voleuse de Couers and Trading Leather over there, it was determined that he’d be better off staying in Europe, but in the last couple of years he’s done so well in Australia too with Palentino a dual Group One winner this season, Kermadec winning the Doncaster, Happy Clapper taking out the Villiers last year, Sonntag winning the Queensland Derby and of course, Malice. They’re doing much better than a lot of people expected.
“He (Teofilo) has covered a good quality book of mares this spring … they’re tough horses and outstanding athletes.
“Kermadec joined our roster this year and he’s just a beautiful horse. Really typical of the Teofilos.”
Malice is the first foal of the winning Encosta de Lago mare, Aforethought, who has the good fortune to be closely related to Criterion who was retired to Newgate Farm this season as the highest money earner to stand at stud in Australia.
HOOFNOTE: Bred and raced by Jim Bolger, Teofilo is named after the famous Cuban boxer Teofilo Stevenson who won gold in the heavyweight boxing division at the Munich (1972), Montreal (1976) and Moscow (1980) Olympic Games.