Cordina’s champion has reached new high with Shirley Turnbull Memorial win

SPECIAL HORSE: Winning owner Daniel Cordina (second from left) is thrilled with Charlaval's progress. Photo: ALEXANDER GRANT

SPECIAL HORSE: Winning owner Daniel Cordina (second from left) is thrilled with Charlaval's progress. Photo: ALEXANDER GRANT

DANIEL Cordina always knew he had something special on his hands when he purchased Charlaval.

The Four Starzzz Shark x Our Thelma gelding showed what he was capable of in a strong Group 2 Shirley Turnbull Memorial win at Bathurst Paceway on Tuesday night.

Prior to the Boxing Day triumph winning owner Cordina had watched his star win a Group 1 Breeders Challenge Final and a Group 3 Simpson Memorial, but this time he showed his talent against a red hot open class field.

The horse Charlaval took down at Bathurst was none other than Bling It On – the runner who had bested him by just a matter of inches in his previous start.

“We predominantly had him trained for this night, not unbeknown that we would be up against horses like Bling It On and horses of that calibre,” Cordina said.

“His Group 1 win is obviously his best win. This definitely has to be his second best race though given the class of horses he’s beaten tonight.

“I believe he’s the real deal now. I think he’ll go on to bigger and better things. This year will be a different kettle of fish.

“People will know that he’s in a race, which is good.”  

The Shirley Turnbull Memorial win has taken Charlaval’s record to 17 wins from 50 starts.

Cordina said the journey for his gelding his been a great experience to be a part of.

“I bought him as a two-year-old out at the Bathurst yearling sale. I bought him specifically to win the Bathurst sale race, which we did, and then he progressed on as a three-year-old,” he said.

“We won the Simpson Sprint with him and he was the type of horse who was always there or thereabouts the whole time. He had a stellar season, won a Group 1 for me.

“He had a great three-year-old season with 18 starts with eight wins and eight seconds.

“We gave him a break and he’s come back racing, hitting the open class racing and thriving.”

Charlaval’s win his pushed his career earnings beyond the $300,000 mark.

The previous attempt for Charlaval anywhere near Tuesday’s 2,780 metre test also came at a Group 2 level, in the 2016 Queensland Derby (2,680m).

On that occasion he finished in 11th place.

Charlaval came to Bathurst having rate at the mile distance in his three previous starts but showed off his stunning stamina in a three metre revenge win over Bling It On.

Cordina and winning trainer KerryAnn Turner now have their sights set on a possible Miracle Mile campaign.