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Horror draws for Victorian pair in Tatt's Tiara

Tue 21 June 2022

By Glenn Davis

The training partnership of Ciaron Maher and David Eustace were dealt a cruel blow with horror barriers for stable mates Snapdancer and Away Game in the Tatt’s Tiara at Eagle Farm on Saturday.

Snapdancer drew the outside gate of 21 but will  come into 17 if the five emergencies don’t obtain runs in the final Group 1 of the season.

Away Game drew gate 17 and will jump from 12 without the emergencies.

Snapdancer snared her first win at the highest level when she decisively beat Away Game in the Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes at Morphettville last month.

The five-year-old hasn’t raced since the May 7 feature, which provided her rider, Ethan Brown, with his first Group 1 winner.

Co-trainer Eustace was disappointed with the draws but remained hopeful the pair can overcome their barrier set backs.

“It’s not ideal but it is what it is,” co-trainer Eustace said.

“Snapdancer did a great job to win the Robert Sangster when she beat Away Game and she’s trained on well.”

Snapdancer won the Magic Millions Fillies and Mares race at the Gold Coast in January before claiming the Group 3 Triscay Stakes at Randwick in February.

The daughter of Choisir was then given her chance in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap at Flemington in March but she only beat two home on that occasion.

“They went very quick in the Newmarket that day and she wasn’t on the best part of the track,” Eustace said.

“Since she ran in the Robert Sangster, she won a barrier trial at Deagon, which was a good effort, and we couldn’t be any happier with her.”

Snapdancer is a rising six-year-old with six wins and as many placings from 18 starts with prize money of almost $1.34 million.

Eustace said Snapdancer would race on for another season and will be directed towards the Group 1 Darley Classic on Derby Day at Flemington in November.

She will then be prepared for another tilt at the Magic Millions in the New Year while Away Game’s future is still undecided.

Away Game, a William Pike mount, was sold for $4 million at the Magic Millions Broodmare Sale earlier this month after being purchased for $425,000 as a yearling at the Magic Millions sales.

With five wins and 11 placings in 24 starts including the Magic Millions Classic in 2020, Away Game will be looking for her maiden Group 1 win in the Tatt’s Tiara to add her to her prize money haul of $3.74m.

She has competed nine times in Group 1’s, finishing second in both the Oakleigh Plate at Caulfield in February before Robert Sangster in May.

Away Game failed to fire for her new owners when unplaced in the Group I BRC Kingsford Smith Stakes at Eagle Farm last month.