Classy gelding Ihtsahymn could be given an opportunity in the eastern states of Australia after defeating the best horses in Western Australia to win the Group 1 2013 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot on Saturday.
Ihtsahymn was well backed in the lead-up to the Kingston Town Classic after winning the Group 2 Western Australian Guineas (1600m) in impressive fashion a fortnight ago and justified trainer Fred Kersley’s decision to step him up in class by holding on to win the Group 1 event.
Ihtsahymn hit the lead with 400 metres left to run, after being positioned just off the speed by jockey Steven Parnham, and the three-year-old battled home bravely to hold off a fast-finishing Luckygray and Rohan.
Parnham made the tough decision to accept the ride on Ihtsahymn rather than partner his regular mount Playing God, who he steered to victory in the 2010 and 2011 Kingston Town Classic, and was delighted that his choice to not ride his father’s horse had paid off.
“It was great effort by the horse,” Parnham said after the race.
“He has taken a bit to mature and the blinkers switched him on.
“I’m very proud to win two Kingston Towns for Dad and one for Mr Kersley.
“It was an extremely tough decision and in the end I went for youth.”
Trainer Fred Kersley was quick to pay credit to the ride of Parnham but took nothing away for Ihtsahymn who delivered him his first win at Group 1 level since Shirazamatazz took out the 2003 W.A.T.C. Derby (2400m).
The veteran trainer has taken out some of the biggest races in Melbourne, winning two Cox Plates (2001 and 2002), two Australian Cups (2001 and 2003) and a Caulfield Cup (2002) with equine superstar Northerly, and believes that Ihtsahymn may have the quality to compete at the highest level of racing in the Eastern states.
“I’m tempted; I have fond memories of some races in Melbourne,” Kersley said when asked about a potential tilt in Sydney or Melbourne.
“He’s entered for the Cox Stakes but he’s no guarantee.
“I’m very grateful to the Parnham family because it was a hard decision for Steve.”
The 2013 Perth Summer Racing Carnival continues at Ascot on December 21 with the running of the Group 2 Cox Stakes (2100m) and concludes with the Group 2 Perth Cup (2400m) on New Year’s Day.
Whether or not Ihtsahymn takes his place in the Cox Stakes field you are sure to find the best odds for the race at Ladbrokes.com.au.
The leading online bookie offered punters who backed Luckygray in the Kingston Town Classic their money back and are running similar promotions every single weekend.
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2013 Kingston Town Classic Results
|1||11||IHTSAHYMN||Fred Kersley||Steven Parnham||–||2||52kg||$4.20|
|2||1||LUCKYGRAY||Trevor Andrews||Shaun O’Donnell||0.35L||7||59kg||$3|
|3||6||ROHAN||Vaughn Sigley||Glenn Smith||0.75L||4||59kg||$21|
|4||2||PLAYING GOD||Neville Parnham||Paul Harvey||1L||10||59kg||$8|
|5||3||MR MOET||Adam Durrant||Peter Hall||2L||11||59kg||$5.50|
|6||10||ELITE BELLE||Grant Williams||William Pike||2L||6||57kg||$10|
|7||7||BLACK TYCOON||Justin Warwick||Daniel Staeck||3L||1||59kg||$21|
|8||9||MOONLIGHT BAY||Grant Williams||Chris Parnham (a)||4.5L||8||57kg||$41|
|9||8||TALENT SHOW||Graeme Ballantyne||Mitchell Pateman (a)||5L||9||57kg||$101|
|10||5||RANGER||Grant Williams||Jarrad Noske||5.5L||5||59kg||$18|
|11||4||GOD HAS SPOKEN||Neville Parnham||Brad Parnham||5.5L||3||59kg||$26|