Master Shuhood wins at local debut

The future looks bright for Master Shuhood in Australia after the European import surprised many in making a successful debut at Mornington on Saturday.

Trained by Chris Waller, Master Shuhood ($21) settled in the second half of the field under Michael Dee with North Afrika ($6) rolling along in the lead.

Dee and Master Shuhood then sliced their way between runners to win the $75,000 Peninsula Essence BM78 Handicap (1600m) by a long neck.

Pria Eclipse ($11) was runner-up, finishing ahead of the Pat Carey-trained pair of Maclairey ($7) and North Afrika.

“The mile and having those three jumpouts … we were quite confident coming here today that he’d perform well,” said Waller’s Melbourne stable representative Johanne Taylor.

“He’ll continue to take improvement from this, hopefully getting to 2000 metres and possibly 2400 metres.”

Master Shuhood, who raced under the name Shuhood in England, ended his three-year-old season by finishing third, beaten a length, in a maiden hurdle over 3200m at Ludlow. His two wins as a three-year-old came over 2400m.

Master Shuhood is closely related to Waller’s seven-time winner Estikhraaj, who was purchased from the 2015 Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training sale for 30,000 guineas ($59,000).

Shadwell Stud offered Master Shuhood at the 2017 Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training sale after winning one of two juvenile starts.

Trainer Ian Williams bought Master Shuhood for £30,000 ($53,000), won nearly as much on the track over the next 12 months and then put him through the 2018 sale, where Waller then acquired him for 60,000 guineas ($118,000).

The stable used last year’s Mornington Cup meeting to unveil Brimham Rocks.

Brimham Rocks cost 340,000 guineas ($670,000) from the 2017 Autumn Horses in Training sale, Waller’s most expensive purchase from the sale since 2006.

The son of Fastnet Rock was runner-up in his 2000-metre Benchmark 90 race at Mornington and whilst winless in Australia has been placed in eight of 11 starts since relocating, including runner-up in last year’s G1 Metropolitan Handicap (2400m) at Randwick. –