Ramornie winner nearly on way out before remarkable turnaround

Ranges on his way to victory
Ranges is set to carry on where he left off when he resumes. Photo: Mark Evans/Getty Images.

Randwick trainer Paul Snowden didn’t mince his words when talking what he thought the future held just over 12 months ago for this year’s Ramornie winner Ranges.

The six-year-old son of Shooting To Win has been one of the real surprise packets in Australian racing over the past year, after Snowden revealed he was close to being listed on the Inglis Digital sale platform.

“He was threatened to get the sack,” Snowden, who trains in partnership with his father Peter, said.

“He was gone, running around in Benchmark 64s at Kembla and then all of a sudden, he came good.

“Maybe he’s like Mister Ed and understands English and heard the report saying, ‘this is it. If he doesn’t start pulling his finger out he’s gone’.

“He was deadset gone then he resumed at The Gong meeting last year and since then, different horse. That was the turning point.

“Now he’s won two Listed races and you wouldn’t find a more consistent horse.

“You don’t often see them turn it around as five-year-olds like he did.

“He’s a real head scratcher but in the best way possible.

To give some perspective to the change in fortunes for the owners of Ranges, the gelding had 25 starts and earned just over $160,000 in his first 25 starts from June 2019 until the end of the 2020/21 season.

Since then he’s had another two campaigns, 12 starts later he’s a two-time stakes winner and he’s earned just sky of another $430,000.

“Now he’s that confident he carries on now like he’s Black Caviar,” Snowden said. 

“He gets the tail up and he’s as confident as they get.

“The way he’s been carrying on around the stables tells me he’s ready to carry on from where he left off.”

Ranges is set to kick off his latest campaign in a 900m barrier trial at Canterbury on Tuesday with the Magic Millions Raceday on the Gold Coast on January 14 his main target.

“I think he’s down to resume in the Razor Sharp but the Gold Coast is where it’s at for him,” Snowden said.

“He’s going up there for the new Syndication race, 1200m, weight-for-age and worth a million.

Meanwhile, this year’s Magic Millions 3YO Guineas winner King Of Sparta is also set to trial on Tuesday and again bounce for the Gold Coast in January.

“He’s had a good break and come back well,” Snowden said.

“He’ll go first-up in the Razor Sharp then depending on how he looks and how he runs there will determine if he has another run before Magic Millions Day.

“We’re looking at nominating him for both, the Cup (1400m) and the Snippets (1200m) and then decide which way we go closer to the day.”

By Clinton Payne