Paddy’s Flame ($2.60) aptly named after shocking fires that ravaged his home region of Gippsland during his birth, lit up the track on Saturday night to take out the Group 1 Hudson Pacific Maturity Classic at The Meadows.
Jumping from box 6, Paddy’s Flame began well but could not hold out second favourite Lochinui ($3.80) who exploded from the boxes and lead until the home turn, where the eventual winner reeled him in and ran away to win by 1.75 lengths in 30.03.
The beaten brigade were gallant in defeat with Lochinui losing no friends through his gutsy effort, and Keeko Bale ($4.70) again putting in a huge run finishing just 1.8 lengths from the winner back in third.
Irish owner Paddy Toewig was ecstatic following his dogs Group 1 victory and given the huge roar from the crowd who braved the freezing Melbourne weather, it was not just Paddy who was thrilled with the great win.
After the placings the field finished in the following order 4th Pure Grunt ($11.50), 5th Granitoid ($35.30), 6th Make You Happy ($7.60) 7th Mentera Bale ($45.90) and Dee Riddler ($18.20).
Paddy’s Flame’s trainer Peter Giles is not sure what is next on the agenda for his star sprinter. “He is not entered for the Mosman and I’m tossing up whether to give him some time off and a couple of city starts in Melbourne before contesting the Wang Cup or head to Perth for the WA Derby. I was delighted with the win when they went around the first turn I was going to be happy with running a place. He proved to be the best dog in the series and he is racing extremely well, his owner Paddy Toewig is a tremendous fella and it was great to have this success for him”. Giles said.
It was the Moe maestro second Maturity success having won the 2000 race with white brindle sprinter Acacia Dee that Maturity was the first conducted at the Meadows and he beat Connemara Lad and Brooklyn Doll in 30.28 from box four.
Paddy’s Flame is a Black dog whelped January 2006 by Larkhill Jo from Miss Holly (Awesome Assassin x Ashlee Jeannine). He raced by Paddy Toewig and trained by Peter Giles at Moe in Victoria. He has now won 20 races and been placed on 10 occasions from his 34 starts. The Maturity final was his fifth win from 10 starts at MGRA’s headquarters. The Maturity Classic first prize of $50,000 brings Paddy’s Flame’s overall prizemoney to $107,130.
The Maturity Classic was first held at Olympic Park in 1970 when won by talented sprinter Phantom’s Heir first prize at that time was $1250. The prizemoney increased marginally until 1975 when it went to $3,500. In 77 it was $5,600 and jumped to $7000 in 79 before going to $10,000 from 1980 until 1987 the year the mighty New Tears won the race. First prize went to $15,000 for seven years then to $20,000 for two years and reached $30,000 in the year 2000. In 2001 it was worth $40,000 and the Classic was won by AGRA Hall Of Famer Brett Lee. It was elevated the next year to the current amount of $50,000.
Listed below is the Maturity Classic Honour roll highlighted by some of the many stars that enjoyed outstanding careers after winning the feature :
1970 Phantom’s Heir, 1971 Linden Lad, 1972 Nulla’s Call, 1973 Shan’s Tempest, 1974 Temlee, 1975 Warranwood Girl, 1976 Aaron King, 1977 Overflow Love, 1978 Satan’s Legend, 1979 Marajax, 1980 Worthy Weston, 1981 Murchison Champ, 1982 Rocky Pyramid, 1982 Wynlee Spirit, 1983 “Not Held” 1984 Broken Cup, 1985 Storm Glade, 1986 Pharaoh’s Mask, 1987 New Tears, 1988 Hay Dinney, 1989 Best Of Blue, 1990 Eureka Man, 1991 Enfield, 1992 Executive Class, 1993 Keystone, 1994 Refur, 1995 Northern Legend, 1996 Royal Honcho, 1997 Running Gold, 1998 Adrenalin Storm, 1999 Coriole, 2000 Acacia Dee, 2001 Brett Lee, 2002 Rocka Cockatoo, 2003 Hall’s Northern, 2004 Hallucinate, 2005 Poetic Magic 2006 Train A Journey and 2007 Run’s House.