Brown Mare, Oncidium - Lei - Inducted in 2016
Australian Racing Museum collection
TRAINER: Bart Cummings
OWNERS: Andrew Peacock and Ian Price
RACE RECORD/STAKE MONEY: 28 starts: 14 wins, 6 seconds, 6 thirds/ $271,105
Leilani was not a robust filly, and trainer Bart Cummings did not race her until she was three. As a late three-year-old in the autumn of 1974 she showed her class in winning the AJC Oaks by a commanding five lengths. In the process, however, she fractured a bone in a hock, which required her to spend six weeks in plaster. It was just one of the many injuries she had to contend with during her racing career.
Returning to the track in the spring of 1974, Leilani won 9 of her 14 starts as a four-year-old, eight of which were at Group 1 or 2 level. Following success in the VRC Turnbull Stakes and VATC Toorak Handicap, she won the Caulfield Cup in effortless style by two and a quarter lengths. Then followed victory in the L.K.S. Mackinnon Stakes, and a gallant second behind stablemate Think Big in the Melbourne Cup. On the final day of the spring carnival she took out the VRC Queen’s Cup.
Injuries in 1975 and 1976 curtailed Leilani’s career, but did not prevent her from winning the 1975 VRC Australian Cup and Queen’s Plate, and being named Australian Racehorse of the Year. Her career came to an end when she broke down in the 1976 STC Tancred Cup. In her 29 starts she had only twice been unplaced, and recorded 14 wins and 13 placings.
"The New Zealand-bred brown mare never knew how to run a bad race, and was so popular that one jockey was reluctant to hit her with the whip" (Mark Taylor).
Image Source: Copyright: Fairfax Syndication
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