The achievement of a well executed plan is certainly cause to celebrate so there was little wonder that Aucklander John Carter was feeling a little worse for wear less than 24 hours after enjoying his first group one win on Australian soil.
Carter, who along with brother Mark and sister Rachael comprise the Jomara Bloodstock team, was on hand at Flemington on Saturday to cheer home Humidor, the horse they bred and still share in the ownership of, as he stormed to victory in the group one Australian Cup.
Touted as a group one performer of the future after just a handful of starts in New Zealand, Humidor overcame a strong on-pace bias on the day to down a quality line-up and notch his first elite level victory. Notorious for some wayward tendencies during his races Humidor put his best foot forward as he downed last year's Caulfield Cup winner Jameka in a thrilling finish.
The result was another feather in the cap of master trainer Darren Weir who had Humidor enter his team in November last year after the Carters sold a 50 per cent share in the horse to a group of Weir's stable clients. Weir has played a patient game with the four-year-old Teofilo gelding who now looks as if he could become a major player at the upcoming Sydney autumn carnival.
Not that Carter and his siblings are looking too far ahead, content to let Weir work his magic as they enjoy the ride.
"To be fair I'm feeling a little dusty this morning," admitted Carter as he made his way to the airport to catch a flight back to New Zealand yesterday morning.
"It's not often in this game you get to celebrate like that so I think we made the most of it. It was just a magical moment and fantastic to be a part of. We've been lucky enough to win a group one in New Zealand with Luna Rossa but to get a big one like this on Australian soil is just at another level."
Carter, who flew to Melbourne on the morning of the race, admitted he hadn't really enjoyed the build-up to the race during the day.
"While it's a great feeling when you win, the nerve-wracking wait for the race during the day isn't something I really enjoy. It didn't help that the early races were mostly won off the front as we knew our guy needs the rail and time to settle in his races so he was going to get back and make it hard for himself.
"To Darren and Damian's [Lane] credit they stuck to the tactics that work best for the horse. I think in the end he was the only horse to win from the back all day so that makes it a pretty special performance."
While Carter and his family are delighted with the performances of Humidor they are also mindful of the positive effect the victory will have on future progeny of his dam Zalika.
"Zalika currently has a Makfi colt at foot who is a grouse little fella," he said.
"She is back in Cambridge and is currently in foal to Shooting To Win."
Carter advised that Weir would be making the decision on where Humidor would be seen next but a tilt at the BMW Stakes later this month is a distinct possibility.
- NZ Racing Desk