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Patience pays off for Cadre Du Noir team.

Patience pays off for Cadre Du Noir team.

There’s a quote by a famous French philosopher that goes, Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet”, and he could have easily been speaking about Cadre Du Noir.

Cadre Du Noir outbattles So United at Randwick to win for the first time in nearly two years // Credit: Ashlea Brennan

The War Front gelding won for the first time in two years when scoring at Randwick on Saturday (August 6). For much of the intervening time between salutes, the six-year-old was off the track with injury and it’s a great testament to the Ciaron Maher Racing team that they have not only nursed him back to health but got him back in among the winners. Credit too must go to owners Phoenix Thoroughbreds for keeping faith with the horse and his excellent training team. 

Although 59 weeks passed between the stayer’s last run and his return to the trials, there had always been some confidence he could return as good as ever. His first hit out at Randwick gave cause for optimism and although he took a couple of runs to regain his form, he was always hinting there was still plenty to work with. And so it proved.

James McDonald produced a superb ride on board Cadre Du Noir // Credit: Ashlea Brennan

While praise must be thrown at the feet of the trainers and owner for their part in this success, much of that adulation must also go the way of James McDonald. The New Zealander proved why he is one of the best hoops in the world as he produced a ride right out of the top draw. Drawn outside of the nine-strong field, the pace mapped suggested that Cadre Du Noir would be up with the pace. However, despite breaking well, McDonald was forced wide towards the first turn and decided to slot in back in sixth place with a better position against the rail. The pace was pedestrian through much of the race, but that didn’t phase the jockey, who slowly moved closer to the leaders down the back straight. Seemly travelling the best rounding the turn for home, McDonald pulled his mount wide to set up his run to victory. Cadre Du Noir moved through the gears and settled down for a head-to-head dual with So United. That rival didn’t go down without a fight, but the winner always seemed to have the upper hand and claimed the $150,000 contest.