Career change forces Niblick to head east
Gai Waterhouse. Pic: Sharon Smith/WA News

NSW country trainer Brett Cavanough will prepare WA-owned sprinter Niblick for his maiden assault on Sydney autumn racing.

Perth businessman Emile Panossian bought Niblick for $200,000 at a dispersal sale of Melbourne Cup-winning owner Lloyd Williams in Melbourne last year.

Niblick had won the Listed Sofitel Stakes (1400m) and was third to Viking Hero in the Group 3 Eclipse Stakes (1800m) for trainer Robert Hickmott.

Niblick raced at the top level in his five Ascot starts for trainer Trevor Andrews, with his best effort being second to Maschino in the RJ Peters Stakes (1500m), qualifying the gelding for the Railway Stakes (1600m), where he ran 10th to Mr Moet last November.

Panossian believes firm Ascot surfaces did not suit his horse.

Niblick has raced primarily in Victoria and South Australia.

"The tracks are too firm here for him," Panossian said.

"Also there was the problem of him pulling too hard in his races and I don't think myself that he handled the tighter Ascot circuit."

Meanwhile, a colt by boom stallion Fastnet Rock fetched $1.35 million at the second session of the Magic Millions Yearling Sale on the Gold Coast.

The yearling, out of Mister C mare Smart Company, was the first lot to break through the $1 million barrier.

Offered by Lomar Park Stud, he was knocked down to Irish racing and breeding conglomerate Coolmore Stud, who stand his sire.

Gai Waterhouse was named as his trainer.

"We know how well the stallion is doing and the colt is a lovely individual," Coolmore's Tom Magnier said. "I hope he is lucky, but he is by the right stallion."

Waterhouse and bloodstock agent James Harron bought four yearlings by Fastnet Rock at Wednesday's opening session of the sale, including a filly for $500,000.

But the pair were in opposite corners yesterday, with Harron, representing prominent owner Dr Edmund Bateman, the underbidder on the $1.35 million colt.

WA owner Craig Thompson yesterday paid $175,000 for a Flying Spur filly out of Show A Heart mare Shoboard. Dion Luciani, who co-trains at Ascot with his father Lou, secured a Stratum colt out of Weekend Gossip for $160,000.

with Australian Associated Press

The West Australian

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