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By Graham Potter | Monday, July 31, 2023

The win of Fast Talking on July 29 ... the David Vandyke stable’s final winner of the 2022/23 season ... arguably summed up the core strength of the stable’s mission statement and their first and foremost aim ... namely that of keeping their horses happy and healthy.

Winning like Fast Talking did, just three days short of turning nine years of age, stands a testament to Vandyke’s inherent expertise in being able to meet those honourable goals, not to mention the obvious pleasure it gives to the stable staff to see a horse like Fast Talking still loving what he does enough to stay as competitive as he is as he heads towards the final stage of his career.

Overall, 2022/23 was a good season for Vandyke Racing.

Vandyke finished sixth on the Brisbane Metropolitan Trainers’ Premiership with a winning strike-rate 0f 15.5 percent, a strike-rate which was only bettered amongst the top twenty trainers in town by the Premiership winner Tony Gollan.

That was twenty-five winners from only sixty-one metropolitan starts.

In January 2023, Vandyke lost his highly decorated stable star Gypsy Goddess to retirement. The Group 1 Queensland Oaks winner and Australian Three-Year-Old Filly of the Year award winner of the previous season ... signed off with a third placing in the $10 000 Golden Eagle in her only start as a four-year-old, an effort which brought her connections a $1 million pay cheque.

Money and memories ... a perfect return for any racehorse owner, although not necessarily in that order.

Weona Smartone finished third in the $2 million, Group 3 Sydney Stakes and in The Archer in Rockhampton ... getting the once much-vaunted Orbisyn through his troubles and issues and bringing him back to winning form ... working with Landsborough Lad, whose journey was fraught with misfortune, to ultimately help him earn his way into the winner’s enclosure ... it didn’t matter whether it was top-tier racing or chasing a humble maiden win ... there were plenty of moments to cherish for the Vandyke stable.

As with most training establishments, it takes a lot of hard work by the whole team to achieve even a satisfactory set of results. let alone saddle thirty-five individual winners as the Vandyke stable did over the 2022/23 season.

The reward for doing that ... to get right on with it and try and do it all over again next season.

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Gypsy Goddess
Gypsy Goddess
Weona Smartone
Weona Smartone

Photos: Graham Potter

Photos: Graham Potter
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