Outside chance Kingdoms has produced an exceptional final straight sprint to win the card-ending Listed Mercedes Benz Centenary Mile (1600m) at Brisbane’s Eagle Farm Racecourse this afternoon ahead of Hi Son and Belle De Coeur.
Jumping from the gates only fairly, the High Chaparral gelding settled well and truly off the pace of early leaders Travolta, Perfect Punch and Transporter over the back straight, around ten lengths off the lead.
When Fillydelphia took the lead approaching the bend and upping the tempo, jockey Larry Cassidy moved Kingdoms off the fence and began picking up places, finding a clear racing line when hitting the final straight and producing a great final straight sprint to find the line a full length in the clear.
Trainer Brian Smith was understandably pleased with Kingdoms’ performance in the Mercedes Benz Centenary Mile, particularly in what was the four-year-old’s first competitive start since the Group 3 Lexus Stakes on November 2nd.
“Larry rode him well – he kept a straight line in the straight today after being out wide and that was our main concern because in the past he hasn’t,” Smith said after the triumph.
“He’s only a little horse but he’s very much like It’s A Dundeel; a light framed stayer.
“He was cruisy there in the birdcage today, went out there with nothing wrong and as a trainer when you see them do that, they’re ready to do what they’ve got to do.
“He’ll run in the Tatt’s Mile and go from there. I want to run him in the Newcastle Cup and then The Metropolitan.”
Cassidy delivered a typically strong ride on Kingdoms in the 2014 Mercedes Benz Centenary Mile, and will quick to lay the praise on Smith and his team’s preparation.
“He caught us all by surprise – riding in track work he still wants to lean out a bit but we couldn’t get a true line on him and then when I rode him at a trial all he wanted to do was run off,” Cassidy said.
“There’s been an enormous amount of work go into him, not so much by me but by everyone else concerned.
“BJ (Brian Smith) is very good at getting them to win first-up no matter what the distance is. I rode this horse in work about three months ago and I don’t know what it was but I said he was a very good horse.”
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2014 Mercedes Benz Centenary Mile Results
|1||5||KINGDOMS (NZ)||Brian Smith||Larry Cassidy||–||12||54.5kg||$21|
|2||7||HI SON||David Kelly||Tegan Harrison (a)||1.3L||4||54kg||$21|
|3||8||BELLE DE COEUR||Luke Price||Glen Boss||1.4L||5||54kg||$6|
|4||10||ELMANTOSH||Bruce W Hill||Michael Cahill||2.4L||11||54kg||$18|
|5||6||QUEENSTOWN||Gai Waterhouse||Tommy Berry||2.6L||2||54kg||$4.60|
|6||2||FIRE UP FIFI||Robert Heathcote||Timothy Bell||3.9L||7||57.5kg||$12|
|7||1||TRAVOLTA (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||Nash Rawiller||5.2L||8||60kg||$9|
|8||4||FILLYDELPHIA||Robert Heathcote||Damian Browne||5.3L||10||56kg||$20|
|9||3||TRANSPORTER||John P Thompson||Jim Byrne||7.3L||1||57.5kg||$3.50F|
|10||11||QUEEN’S ELECT||Joseph Pride||Tim Clark||9.6L||3||54kg||$19|
|11||9||BOREHOLE||David J Lawlor||Jason Taylor||11.1L||6||54kg||$101|
|12||12||PERFECT PUNCH||Maryann Brosnan||Ric McMahon||14.1L||9||54kg||$101|