Johnstone Has High Hopes In Vince Curry

DARREN Johnstone has plumped for promising Oxley Surround as his best chance when taking on the Vince Curry Maiden series at Ipswich for the first time.

David Brasch

22 January 2021

HARRISVILLE trainer Darren Johnstone has plumped for promising Oxley Surround as his best chance when taking on the Group 3 Vince Curry Maiden series (520m) at Ipswich for the first time.

“Yes,” said Johnstone. “It is the first time I have had runners in the series and this bitch is certainly my best hope.”

The daughter of Zambora Brockie-Oxley Flamingo was bred and is owned by “Snow” Watts from Telegraph Point near Port Macquarie.

FIELDS AND FORM IPSWICH SATURDAY NIGHT

“Snow has been in hospital for eight days,” said Darren.

Johnstone also has three members of a My Bro Fabio-Star Warm litter, Stay Warm Clyde, Stay Warm Bear and Stay Warm Daniel engaged in the heats.

“I very much like Warm Bear who is a big, leggy youngster who is just a little bitch ahead of Clyde at this stage,” he said.

“But, Bear is one of those pups who is all legs and at this stage doesn’t know where to put them. Once he works it out with maturity I think he will make a good dog.”

But Johnstone admits Oxley Surround is his best chance.

“I like her from the three box as well and she trialled well at Ipswich just the other day,” he said. “She lacks a length early, but she is strong.

“The three week series will suit her as well. She is certainly more mature than my other three.”

Bear, Clyde and Daniel’s dam Stay Warm was a speedster which won 17 races all over sprints.

She is the dam of speedster Daisy Dreams (24 wins) but also the promising staying bitch Maggie Moo Moo (9 wins).

“I don’t know where Maggie Moo Moo picked up her stamina but I’m glad she has,” said Johnstone. 

In a bid to repeat that stamina influence he put Stay Warm to that great source of stamina in My Bro Fabio.

The Mary and Ray Burman kennel will be chasing their first Vince Curry when they produce royally bred litter sisters Brockie Magic and Mere Magic (Zambora Brockie-Magic Hornet) in their respective heats. 

By leading stud dog Zambora Brockie, their dam Magic Hornet won 25 races and $122,000 and was a finalist in the G1 Hume Cup, G1 Superstayers, G2 Qld Futurity and twice in the G3 Qld Cup.

By Barcia Bale-Bizarre Barbie, Magic Hornet is a litter sister to multiple track record breaker and Group star Champagne Sally (27 wins, $234,000).

“We finished third with Blue Diva a couple of years ago,” said Mary of the closest the kennel has come to winning the Vince Curry.

“These bitches were going okay early,” she said.

Three of the litter were reared and are to be trained by Andrew Monaghan on the Northern Rivers.