Palmetto bags another prize for Ghibellines

Ghibellines’ son Palmetto prevails in a thrilling finish to the A$1 million Five Diamonds Prelude

Ghibellines' star son Palmetto took home another big purse when prevailing in a thrilling finish to the A$1 million Five Diamonds Prelude (1500m) at Randwick recently.

The multiple-stakes-winning five-year-old stuck his neck out at the right time for rider Kathy O'Hara to claim his biggest payday and push his career earnings past $1 million.

Trained by John Sargent, Palmetto (Ghibellines-Carolina Island-Darci Brahma) was an outstanding performer for Southern trainer Sally McKay, winning both the Listed Dunedin Guineas (1500m) and Southland Guineas (1600m) before crossing the Tasman.

Though the majority of the horse's ownership headed overseas, Palmetto's original owners retained shares in the classy galloper, and they were at Randwick to cheer their horse home in the most thrilling of finishes.

“They're from the South Island – they can't believe it,” a delighted John Sargent said.

“It's a lot of money for them, and he has been a great horse since he has finally acclimatized.”

“I thought Kathy would suit him, and she is riding the crest of a wave.”

“I said to Kathy to hide him away, he has got a good finish, and don't get there too soon, and she just timed it perfectly.”

“It is a fantastic result and great for the owners from New Zealand.”

Palmetto's victory earned him a start in the A$2 million Five Diamonds (1800m) at Rosehill on November 11.

O'Hara was thrilled to seal a start in the feature event for Palmetto, who dug deep under her urgings.

“He really wanted to win. He was all out late and needed to find a little more, and he did,” the jockey said.

“He is a lovely horse to ride, and I am really happy for Sarge and the team, and the owners seem like a great bunch of people. It is really nice when the good guys win.”

With his million-dollar win, Palmetto became the second richest among the progeny of Ghibellines.

Group One winner Smokin Romans (Ghibellines-Inferno-Yamanin Vital) holds top billing with his A$1,711,865 in career earnings.

Ghibellines produced another million-dollar earner recently, though his deeds aren't quite up with Smokin Romans and Palmetto just yet.

The White Robe Lodge bred Jubilation (Ghibellines-Cherry Creek-Monashee Mountain) ran to his third career win at Sha Tin last month when scoring over 1800m.

Sold at the Karaka Book 1 Sale by White Robe Lodge, the galloper has now earned HK $1,741,450 in stakes.