The Chris Waller-prepared six-year-old was too strong at the finish for stablemate Bonny Ezra ($5.50) by half a neck with Alakahan ($5) a short head back in third. Race favourite Military Mission ($1.95F) disappointed a further two and a half lengths back in fourth place.
After settling mid-field one off the fence in the run, jockey Jay Ford sat back smoking the peace pipe before getting going at the 600m mark and showing plenty of intestinal fortitude over the final stages. Stable representative Damien Fitton was pleased with the steer and was grateful for his hoop’s ability to time the run to perfection.
“That’s what Jay’s best at. That was a very patient ride and it was a big effort from the horse as well,” Fitton said.
“It was good to see the leader come under pressure before the turn and that just allowed Jay to continue to creep up and once he let him go he really let down well.
“He’s been up for a while and back onto a better track today, he really relished that.
“The 2400m was a bit of a query today, he’s never run the trip before, but he saw that out quite well.”
Although happy with his position in the early stages, Ford thought he has missed the boat upon approaching the turn with his mount taking a while to get going to set out after them. It took all of the Rosehill straight for him to wind in the leading pair.
“He travelled quite strong (and) when they quickened at the 600m there I rued the fact that I didn’t get on my bike a bit earlier, because they sort of got away from him a little bit,” Ford said.
“He just kept grinding away at them and was strong late.
“He’s a good staying prospect, bar his last start he’s been very consistent all preparation. It was a good breakthrough for him back in form.”
The victory brought up the second win of the campaign for the son of Invincible Spirit, and Fitton will leave the next step up to his boss.
“He’s had a very good prep, he’s been up for a while and he probably deserves a bit of a break now,” Fitton said.
“But if he comes through the run well I’m sure Chris might find something else for him.”
– RAS NewsWire