Don’t Stop Dreaming (NZ) Prevails in Sensational Edition of the G1 Flying Stakes
14 October 2023
Class prevailed in what has been described as one of the races of the year as Don’t Stop Dreaming (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight) took out a thrilling edition of the $113,000 Group One Airpark Canterbury Flying Stakes (1980m) at Addington on Friday night.
In one of the strongest three-year-old fields seen in recent seasons, in which 13 of 14 runners were NZB Standardbred graduates, horses were spread across the track in a hotly contested finish.
Amid that thrilling finish, it was the classy favourite Don’t Stop Dreaming who took out the Flying Stakes in a scene that had the whole of Addington Raceway talking.
Don’t Stop Dreaming was purchased by the All Stars Racing Stables for $250,000 out of Studholme Bloodstock’s draft at the 2021 National Yearling Sale in Christchurch.
The brilliant three-year-old’s victory wasn’t without drama.
Don’t Stop Dreaming was involved in an incident before the home turn, but it wasn’t enough to stop him from sealing a sensational victory.
“There was a bit of a skirmish, and I had to check him quite quickly,” Mark Purdon said.
“But once he balanced up he really sprinted and he tried hard.”
Don’t Stop Dreaming is raced by Ian Dobson and Mark and Dennis Dunford, following his purchase at the 2021 National Yearling Sale in Christchurch.
Dobson claimed a winning double with the Mark and Nathan Purdon stable, with NZB Standardbred graduate Akuta (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight) taking out Friday night’s fast-class pace as he works towards the Group One New Zealand Cup (3200m).
Don’t Stop Dreaming overcame a draw some thought would be impossible to conquer in Friday night’s Group One feature.
A strong early speed helped horses further back work into the race on the home turn, which set up the thrilling finish to the race.
Jolimont (NZ) (Sweet Lou) also powered home out of the pack, running an excellent second placing in the Flying Stakes.
After being hemmed away on the inner throughout, Merlin (NZ) (Art Major) charged through the middle of the field to secure a fast-finishing third placing.
After setting up a strong pace in front, Coney Island Lou (NZ) (Sweet Lou) ran a meritorious fifth ahead of fellow NZB Standardbred graduates Sooner The Bettor (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight), Alta Meteor (NZ) (Art Major), Charlie Brown (NZ) (Art Major), Who’s Delight (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight), Captain Tom (NZ) (Captaintreacherous), Sinbad (NZ) (Downbytheseaside), and Watermelon Sugar (NZ) (Sweet Lou).