Impending bidding for top sprinting honours at Flemington

Mike Hedge

Godolphin’s G1 Stradbroke Handicap winner Impending can join the ranks of Australia’s best sprinters when he runs in the G1 Darley Classic at Flemington on Saturday.

In a race rated the premier sprint of the Melbourne Spring Carnival, if not the entire Australian season, Impending is confronted by some outstanding horses such as the international G1 star Chautauqua, Redzel, the winner of the world’s richest turf race, The Everest and the runner-up in the same race, Vega Magic.

Impending (Hugh Bowman) has raced only once since defeating In Her Time in the Stradbroke last June, finishing a stunning second to the same filly when first-up at Randwick last month.

“We were very impressed by the way he performed first up against In Her Time who has not only beaten some of the best sprinters in Sydney, but was luckless in the Manikato Stakes down here in Melbourne,” said trainer James Cummings.

“He’s trained on beautifully since his first up run and comes into this race in as good a condition as we can get him.”

Impending is yet to race down the Flemington straight 1,200m course, but Cummings is satisfied he will handle it after a recent trial.

“Although he wasn’t out there to win the trial, he was able to do so, just coasting to the line,” the trainer said.

“He gave Hugh Bowman the sort of feel that told us we’re really in business for the Darley Classic.”

While Impending has plenty to recommend him in his own right, a further endorsement of his Darley Classic prospects emerged in the week leading up to the race when his younger sister Epidemic scored an outstanding win at Randwick.

Impending is a son of Darley stallion and former Australian Horse of the Year Lonhro, from the multiple G1 winner Mnemosyne, and as such is one of the country’s most valuable colts.

Not surprisingly, his trainer regards it as an honour to have him in his stable.

“We’re not just looking forward to this race, we’re privileged to have a horse as good as Impending,” he said.