Bletchley Park Aiming for the Pearl

Astute Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed has Bletchley Park at the top of his game and is confident the stylish black colt will set the pace and win the $18,000 Quayside Transport Pace over 1730m at Gloucester Park on Friday night.

He has high expectations that the Victorian-bred Bletchley Park will maintain his excellent form and win the $100,000 Princi Butchers Pearl Classic the following Friday night.

Bletchley Park, purchased for $95,000 by West Australian businessman Albert Walmsley at the 2017 APG yearling sale in Melbourne, warmed up for Friday night’s event with a most impressive victory in a 2130m event at Gloucester Park on Tuesday evening when he finished powerfully from seventh at the bell to hit the front 300m from home and beat the pacemaker Babyface Adda by a length, with final quarters of 29sec. and 28.4sec.

Reed considers that Bletchley Park faces no problem in having three starts in the space of 11 days, culminating with his appearance in the Pearl Classic.

“He’s a good doer and the 2130m of the Pearl will suit him down to the ground,” said Reed, who admitted that he was pleasantly surprised at the ease of the colt’s win on Tuesday evening.

Mark Reed restrained Bletchley Park from the No. 6 barrier and was content to keep him at the rear before sending him forward 700m from home.

“They didn’t go that hard early (with a slow lead time of 39.1sec. and an opening quarter in 31.1sec.) and I thought we might have been in a bit of pain,” said Mike Reed.

“I think that Bletchley Park is at his best when driven as a sit-and-kick horse, but on Friday night he has drawn barrier one over the short journey of 1730m and Shannon Suvaljko will be out to take advantage of the perfect draw by setting the pace.”

Bletchley Park, who has won at three of his four starts, is unlikely to have an easy time because he will clash with Soho Thunderstruck, an Art Major colt blessed with great ability.

Soho Thunderstruck, bred and owned by Rob Watson, will be making his first appearance in Western Australia after having had eight starts in Victoria for trainer-reinsman Michael Stanley for one win and six placings.

Soho Thunderstruck will be driven by his new trainer Kyle Harper from the No. 3 barrier and will have many admirers after a brilliant performance in scoring an effortless victory in a 2150m trial at Byford on Sunday morning.

Handled by former leading reinsman Lindsay Harper, Soho Thunderstruck began from barrier five and surged to the front after 100m and after an opening quarter of 30.8sec., he reeled of his next three sections in 28.7sec., 28.7sec. and 29.6sec. to win untouched and unextended by just under seven lengths from Robbie Easton.

Soho Thunderstruck’s most recent appearance was in the group 3 consolation of the APG Classic for two-year-old colts and geldings over 1720m at Melton on May 5 when he was a 10/1 chance from the outside (No. 7) of the front line.

He was not bustled early and raced three wide for the first 300m before moving to the breeze. He then burst to the front about 450m from home and opened up a four-length lead on the home turn before being overhauled in the final couple of strides by the fast-finishing Arggghhh, who rated 1.55.1.

Kyle Harper said that he was very pleased with Soho Thunderstruck’s trial on Sunday and was looking forward keenly to the colt contesting the Pearl Classic and the Golden Slipper on July 13.

“He likes to roll along, so over the mile this week I’ll probably drive him pretty confidently,” he said.

Soho Thunderstruck is by Art Major and is out of the New Zealand-bred mare Hear No Secret, who had 113 starts for 11 wins, 33 placings and $96,464 in prizemoney. Hear No Secret won once at Gloucester Park, four times at Northam and twice at Narrogin, Pinjarra and Kellerberrin.

Bletchley Park is by American Ideal and is out of the unraced Caprock mare Alldatglittersisgold, the dam of seven winners, including Bling It On (85 starts for 45 wins, 20 placings and $1,656,056) and Baby Bling (55 starts for 21 wins, ten placings and $854,490).