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Gunsynd
The Goondiwindi Grey
Foaled October 4 1967
By Sunset Hue from Woodie Wonder

First up as a 3yo on August 1 Gunsynd won an Encourage Hcp over 6 furlongs at Doomben and 11 days later lined up at Eagle Farm.  Over 1400m the grey was favourite but Prince Charmer raced away in the straight as Gunsynd gave chase.  In the shadows of the post Gunsynd overhauled the runaway leader to win by a head with five lengths back to Jolly Smoke third.

It was then back to Sydney for the three year old triple crown.  The star of Sydney racing at the time was Golden Slipper winner Baguette who was undefeated as both headed to the Canterbury Guineas.  It was a torrid race with plenty of tales of woe afterwards.  Gunsynd finished on terms with Baguette but it was Royal Show who crossed the line first from Red God by a nose with Baguette just grabbing third from the grey.  A week later Gunsynd took on the older horses in the Chelmsford Stakes.  The sentimental favourite was Roman Consul who was going for his fourth successive win in the event.  However with a weight pull of 10.5 kg Gunsynd was sent out the punters choice and by the 250m Gunsynd raced up to take the lead as Roman Consul tried to chase.  Gunsynd had too much in reserve to the line and won by 1 1/2 lengths from Roman Consul with Planet Kingdom third.

The 3yo colts clashed again in the Rosehill Guineas where the leaders scorched the turf as Gunsynd found himself in 7th around the turn.  Soon after he couldn't escape suffering interference and although he regathered momentum and gave chase to Royal Show and Baguette he couldn't quite make up the leeway.  Royal Show went on to win from Baguette with Gunsynd in third.  Next in the AJC Derby Gunsynd was with the leaders passing the 200m but Silver Sharpe and Planet Kingdom proved stronger stayers running the quinella with Gunsynd a close third.

Three weeks later Gunsynd ran in the Cox Plate where fellow 3yo Abdul won from Tails with Rough and Tumble third with Gunsynd unplaced.  He was again unplaced in the VRC Derby as Silver Sharpe took the second of the big treble before heading home to Queensland for the Derby then run in the spring.  On a heavy track he was third less than two lengths of the winning Silver Sharpe with Sunset Gem between them in second place.  Gunsynd was then spelled for the autumn.

     First up at Eagle Farm Gunsynd easily won a 6 furlong Highweight before heading back to Sydney for the Autumn carnival.  In the weight for age Rawson Stakes Planet Kingdom was the odds on favourite as Gunsynd started at 4-1.  In the straight Larry Olsen on Gunsynd held Planet Kingdom in a pocket before storming home to win by a half neck from Rough n Tumble with Planet Kingdom nearly two lengths away third.  Two weeks later he again clashed with Baguette in the Railway Quality.  After getting well back early Gunsynd was still with the tailenders by the 800m.  In the straight he ran on but raced greenly as Baguette raced on to victory from Rough n Tumble with Glen Beau third and Gunsynd fourth.

Back to 3yo company in the 1 1/4 mile Australiasian Champion Stakes and passing the 250m Gay Icarus hit the front from Panzer Chief as Baguette and Gunsynd tried to gather him in.  But there was no stopping the future cup winner and as favourite Gay Icarus won by two lengths from Baguette with Gunsynd third.

Gunsynd was then aimed at the Winter carnival with the Grand Prix being his main target.  After a hard fought win over Earlmark in the Labour Day Cup it was on to the Moreton Hcp.  Gunsynd was expected to win easily but disappointed in finishing fourth but blood was flowing from his offside nostril.  Despite mixed opinions whether he bled from the lungs or if the blood was due to a blow to his head Gunsynd was deemed a bleeder after being examination by the official vet who found evidence of internal bleeding.  Gunsynd was banned for 3 months.

After three searching barrier trials Gunsynd proved he was fit to return to racing.  His comeback race was to be a Flying Hcp over 7 furlongs at Doomben.  It would be his last race start in Queensland.  Gunsynd's record now stood at 12 wins from 22 starts and his connections decided that it would be in the horse's best interests to be transferred to a stable in the Southern States.  It was felt that due to rising weights in handicaps that he would have a limited future in Queensland so the grey headed to the Randwick stables of Tommy Smith.

Gunsynd won his return race narrowly from Prince Medes with Intrepid Clipper third.  Two weeks later in Sydney he was racing in the Arcadia Flying at Rosehill.  Gunsynd ranged up to challenge in the straight but Crown Law stormed home to win by 1 1/2 lengths from Gunsynd with Magnus third.  A week later Gunsynd appeared in the 1971 Epsom Hcp his first start over a mile since winning the Fernhill Hcp as a 2yo.  Around the turn Gunsynd was ninth and wide but right on the heels of public elect Baguette.  Storming down the outside Gunsynd gave nothing else a chance as he hit the front by the 200m and went on to win as he liked from lightweight Genty's Pride and Welsh Prince but the unplaced included Cox Plate winner Rajah Sahib, Ricochet, Baguette, Romantic Son to name a few.

A week later Gunsynd was in Melbourne for the Toorak Hcp also over the mile.  Despite Gunsynds impressive Epsom victory Tauto was sent out as favourite.  In the run Gunsynd was seventh and behind a wall of horses around the turn.  By the 200m Tauto had hit the front from Sky Call with Gunsynd still three lengths off the lead and wide on the track.  50m out Sky Call led but Gunsynd was powering home down the outside.  In the final bounds Gunsynd grabbed the lead to win going away by 1 1/2 lengths from Sky Call with Tauto third.

Seven days after his impressive victory Gunsynd lined up in the Caulfield Cup and despite being pocketed on the inside and under pressure by the 800m his gallantly fought hard to pass the post in fourth place behind Gay Icarus, Igloo and Big Philou.  No rest for Gunsynd as he then went on to the Cox Plate where he was again fourth meeting interference in the run as Tauto led throughout to win.

Two weeks later Gunsynd lined up another big mile race this time the George Adams at Flemington on the final day of the carnival.  The race was run on a heavy track and turning for home Gunsynd was outside Welsh Prince as Tauto led them both.  By the 300m Eleanzar led Tauto with Gunsynd starting to storm home out wider.  By the 200m Gunsynd had hit the lead and raced away to win by five lengths from Tauto with Sky Call third.

A week later Gunsynd was at Sandown for the Sandown Cup over 1 1/2 miles.  As the field turned for home Gunsynd was just behind the leaders followed by Fileur and Big Philou.  On straightening Gunsynd was sent to the front by Roy Higgins and raced away under hands and heels as Raad tried to make ground from Big Philou.  Ridden out in the final stages Gunsynd easily held the opposition to win by two lengths from lightweight Raad with Better Talk third.  In winning Gunsynd passed the $100,000 in stakes earnings and headed for a spell to prepare for the autumn.

 Gunsynd returned to racing in the Frederick Clissold Hcp in February and was allotted 60.5kg.  Lowland Luck led most of the way as Gunsynd was well back early being 8th by the 800m  Around the turn he had made up some ground to be in fourth place and in the straight it was clear the champ was back as he stormed to the front by the 250m to win going away by 2 1/4 lengths from Lowland Luck with 3 1/2 lengths to Mr Sound third.  A trip to Melbourne followed and a month later Gunsynd lined up carrying 63kg against a classy field in the Futurity Stakes at Caulfield.  Passing the 800m Gunsynd was in front of only 3 other runners but moved out and started to make ground to be with the leading group around the home turn but very wide.  Abdul and Rajah Sahib led on straightening but Gunsynd started to hit top speed on the outside.  By the 200m Gunsynd joined Abdul who fought back strongly from Rajah Sahib with Eastern Court running on late.  Over the final 100m Gunsynd drew away to win by over two lengths under hands and heels from Abdul with Eastern Court third.

A week later the grey was sent out as the odds on favourite against 3 rivals in the Queen's Plate over 1 1/4 miles at Flemington.  Surrender was in front as they straightened but Gunsynd soon ranged up under a hold with Gossiper behind them.  Asked to go by the 300m Gunsynd began to stretch out going on to win easily by two lengths from Gossiper with five lengths to Surrender third.  He backed up for the third week running for the Queen Elizabeth Stakes  over 1 1/2 miles and again it was a procession as Gunsynd won with ease by six lengths from Stop the Show with eight lengths to Surrender in third.

Two weeks later Gunsynd was in Sydney and dropping back 800m in distance to the Doncaster Hcp at Randwick.  Despite carrying 60.5kg Gunsynd was the odds on favourite for the race in the 20 horse field.  The field bunched in the run for home and by the 250m Gunsynd was sixth.  Jan's Beau led in the heavy conditions by the 300m but by the 200m Triton was clear as Gunsynd was storming home out wide and Jan's Beau tried to battle on.  The racecaller uttered 'and here somes the GOONDIWINDI GREY' and Gunsynd gained the upper hand to race past Triton to win by 3/4 length from Big Butch running on late for third.  Gunsynd had won his fourth straight big mile for the season and would from then be known as the Goondiwindi Grey.

Amazingly two days later Tommy Smith was confident he could win the 2 mile Sydney Cup with Gunsynd.  Carrying 59kg Gunsynd was the fans favourite but the bog track proved his biggest hurdle.  Turning for home Gunsynd ranged up and the crowd roared but the combination of the very heavy track and the big weight wilted his finishing burst and Gunsynd passed the post in 5th position behind Dark Suit.

Proving his great constitution Gunsynd lined up again on the following Saturday for his third run that week in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes.  It was publicised as the 'match race of a decade' as Gunsynd clashed with fellow Queenslander the classy stayer Tails.  Only five ran and by the 800m Gunsynd was position ahead of Tails but around the home turn Tails made a run to be in front halfway down the straight.  Gunsynd chased in earnest but Tails proved the better stayer over the 1 3/4 mile distance (2800m) to win by 3/4 length with 3 lengths back to Royal Shah third.  Gunsynd was then spelled for what was to be a memorable spring.


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