Fri | Aug 18, 2017

Nuclear Affair scores big

Published:Sunday | March 20, 2016 | 3:00 AMOrville Clarke
Trainer Gary Subratie (left) and Easton Bennett lead NUCLEAR AFFAIR (Dane Nelson) to the winners' enclosure after the filly captured the Thornbird Stakes at Caymanas Park yesterday.

NUCLEAR AFFAIR established herself as the hot ante-post favourite for the April 9 1000 Guineas following her emphatic victory in the $1.1 million Thornbird Stakes over 1400 metres for native bred three-year-old fillies at Caymanas Park yesterday

Installed a 1-2 favourite with three-time champion Dane Nelson riding for trainer Gary Subratie and owner Michros, NUCLEAR AFFAIR stormed through from well off the pace set by DREAMING THE CODE (5-1) to win by just over four lengths from BIRD CATCHER (9-1), who in turn was 5-1/2 lengths clear of 13-1 chance BUBBLING KITTEN in third.

Michael Bernard (Michros), the elated owner/breeder was very happy with the filly's win.

"She can do anything and this is only a prelude of what to expect in the fillies Guineas in three weeks time."

Subratie said that with NUCLEAR AFFAIR having to come from the number one post position in a field of 10, he did had some concerns over the draw. But Nelson rode a patient race as instructed and the filly fell on them like a ton of bricks early in the last furlong when getting racing room between horses," said the second generation trainer.

"She has really trained on from two to three and the sky's the limit for her," added Subratie who disclosed that NUCLEAR AFFAIR will be joined by her improving stable-companions CLASSY AVIATOR and GOLDEN GLORY in the Guineas.

Nelson said the pace was fast, but this suited him as she is most effective when coming from off the pace.

"She's a very talented filly and I am looking forward to riding her again in the Guineas," he said.

NUCLEAR AFFAIR is a three-year-old chestnut filly by Nuclear Wayne out of Commandra Affair.

Meanwhile, CHACE THE GREAT (9-2), ridden by Aaron Chatrie for trainer Dwight Chen and owner Robb George, closed strongly along the rails in mid-stretch to beat 2-1 favourite ORHEUS by 1-3/4 lengths in the Prince Consort Stakes for colts and geldings over 1400 metres.

The highly fancied JAMAI RAJA (5-2) could only manage sixth but missed the services of Dane Nelson who left the park in a huff prior to this race after he was summoned by the stewards for his riding of highly fancied COMMANDING CHIEF in the seventh race, won by 6-5 favourite HOVER CRAFT - one of three winners for jockey Omar Walker and champion trainer Wayne DaCosta on the card.