The Bart Cummings-trained Rock Classic secured his third career win on Saturday at Flemington in the $750, 000 Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m).
Cummings originally had Cox Plate winner So You Think aimed at the Australian Crown Guineas, but abandoned the High Chaparral colt’s autumn campaign last month leaving him to rely on his problematic but promising Fastnet Rock gelding Rock Classic.
It proved a wise move as Rock Classic gave Cummings his maiden win in the Crown Guineas and his 258th Group 1 triumph.
After settling mid-field behind pacemaker Guru Bob, Rock Classic ($18) and jockey Michael Rodd blasted to the front on the home straight to easily win one and a quarter lengths ahead of Peter Moody’s impressive filly Set For Fame ($5.50) with emerging star Linton ($5.50) a further three quarters of a length in third.
Peter Snowden was visibly disappointed with the efforts of his clear pre-race favourite Denman ($1.60), who missed the start by more than a length before finding second position, failed over the final 200m to finish a well beaten fourth. Denman, winner of nine of his 12 career starts, was having only his second try over 1600m after previously placing seventh to Starspangledbanner back in 2008.
It was a bumper day or racing at Flemington on Saturday as the full race card included both of the rescheduled Group 1 features following last week’s washed out meeting. Aside from the Australian Crown Guineas, the Australian Cup was also run where eight-year-old Zipping finally claimed his first Group 1 glory.
2010 Crown Guineas Results:
|Bart Cummings||Michael Rodd|
SET FOR FAME
|Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen|
|Robert Hickmott||Nicholas Hall|
|Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy|
|Tony Vasil||Craig Williams|
|M, W & J Hawkes||Steven King|
CHEIF OF STAFF
|Mark Minervini||Dwayne Dunn|
GURU BOB (NZ)
|L & S Hope||Danny Nikolic|