Pike Makes Surprise Switch in 2014 Kingston Town Classic

Local jockey William Pike had a tough decision to make when it came to picking his ride in this Saturday’s Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot.

The hoop rode local favourite Elite Belle in 12 of her 13 past starts, half of which were wins. They won last year’s Kingston Town Classic together as well as the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) last time out on November 22.

However Pike has also ridden Disposition in all but one of his five career starts, which included a win in the Listed Fairetha Stakes (1400m) and second placing in the Group 2 WA Guineas (1600m) last time out.

You would think Pike would continue his partnership with Elite Belle, who was the $5 second favourite in the Ladbrokes.com.au early betting market (the market has briefly closed while the final field and barrier draw is announced throughout Wednesday) yet he has decided to switch to Disposition instead due to the weights.

“We discussed it and William’s thinking is the weight difference will help Disposition,” the horses’ co-owner Bob Peters told Perth Racing.

“But under weight-for-age the horses carry the weight they should be carrying for their age.

“It was hard for William and he thought it would worry us, but we were quite happy for him to make his own choice.”

Elite Belle is set to carry 57kg in the race while Disposition has been allocated the minimum of 52kg alongside Rommel.

The $7.50 hopeful will also ride with blinkers for the first time in the 2014 Kingston Town Classic.

“He worked in the blinkers this week, but it made no difference,” Peters said.

“He has got very laid back in his races and we just thought he needed the blinkers to wake him up.”

Confirming Disposition’s run in the Kingston Town Classic means the three-year-old gelding will no longer tackle the Group 2 WATC Derby (2400m) on April 11.

“We were hesitant about going into the Classic, but then we thought we’d forget about the derby,” Peters said.

“There is just too short a time between the two races.”

Peter Hall has picked up the ride on Elite Belle.

Betting markets for the Kingston Town Classic will open at Ladbrokes.com.au shortly after the barrier draw on Wednesday afternoon. Make sure your online betting account is ready to go for then.


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