Better luck with Brilliant Action

Lindsay de Souza was back in a winning mood at Rotorua yesterday.

Melbourne owner Lindsay de Souza had no joy in the Australian Derby last weekend, but he had something to celebrate at yesterday’s Rotorua meeting.

De Souza, whose highlights include multiple Group One success with Turn Me Loose, had two starters in the Gr.1 $A2 million Australian Derby at Randwick last Saturday with the Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman-trained Weather With You and Mission Hill. Both were expected to show up but didn’t live up to expectations.

Weather With You finished ninth, 10 and a quarter lengths behind the winner Levendi, while Mission Hill disappointed when finishing 13th, just over five lengths further afield.

However, lesser-known stablemate Brilliant Action did the job for de Souza and his fellow owner Willie Leung when taking the Functions at Arawa Park Highweight yesterday, thanks to a fine ride by Jonathan Riddell.

Riddell urged Brilliant Action across from his number eight draw to lead and had him bowling along nicely in front for most of the 1950-metre journey. He then put pressure on the opposition across the top bend and angled him out into the centre of the course.

Brilliant Action (Jonathan Riddell) keeping up a strong gallop to win at Rotorua.

Though the good winter handicapper Storming The Tower came with a spirited finish along the inner and loomed as a serious threat, Riddell kept Brilliant Action going to win by a length.

“The ride won the race,” agreed Forsman. “He rated him perfectly in front and it was a good strong win. The key was also probably the pull in the weights.”

Brilliant Action carried 67kgs compared to the 74.5kg lumped by Storming The Tower.

A four-year-old son of Jimmy Choux, Brilliant Action has needed time to mature and has rewarded his connections’ patience with two wins and a second from eight starts.

He was trialled as an autumn two-year-old without showing up, then improved gradually in his second campaign when placed in three trials.

He was seventh in his raceday debut in June last year then second at Waverley later the same month before clearing maiden ranks in his next appearance, over 1650 metres at Hastings on a heavy10 track last July.

He has had four runs this year and showed his appreciation of the softer track (slow7) at Rotorua yesterday, suggesting he could be in for a profitable winter.