Sydney’s leading lady of racing Gai Waterhouse was not keen to confirm a Doncaster Mile 2015 run Saturday week for her smart import Excess Knowledge who could be set for a different next-up autumn target following his Doncaster Prelude win at Rosehill Gardens.
The former British-trained Monsun stallion came off a brave win over an unsuitably short 1300m at Kembla Grange from March 13 and proved his ability in better company taking out the $150,000 Group 3 Doncaster Prelude (1500m) thanks to a gun ride by the in-form Kerrin McEvoy.
A leader soon after the jump, McEvoy eventually had the striking looking stayer settled into third behind Leebaz and Snippets Land who was caught wide but moved up to sit outside the leader.
Excess Knowledge ($9) took until the final 100m to wind up in the Prelude but was too fit, too strong and on the line too good snaring a narrow victory over the returning John O’Shea-trained ATC Cup winner Malice ($18), who came from fifth, after a two horse battle over the closing furlong.
In third was the beaten favourite Leebaz ($2.60) for Team Hawkes, Tommy Berry letting the Zabeel gelding roll along in front before the galloper was beaten over the closing stages by the Doncaster Prelude quinella.
Hitting a flat spot on the turn, Leebaz rallied again late but wasn’t able to regain the lead and could be looking for further now.
Bought over for a Spring Cups campaign at the end of the year, Excess Knowledge impressed his connections including Round Table’s Bruce Slade with his win over the 1500m today where the light weight put him right into the race allowing him to keep his good second-up record intact.
“He’s got a ton of ability and we like to think he’s the best looking horse in training in Australia,” Slade said post-win.
“He’s just such a beauty…we really did buy him for the Cups, that’s our objective with him so to see him win over the mile (sic) like that is very encouraging.”
Slade was also quick to credit the ride by McEvoy saying he “rode him a peach”, McEvoy also full of post-raise praise for the horse.
“He’s a nice horse, I’ve always liked him since he landed in the country but I’ve only been able to ride him once before today in a race so I was looking forward to riding him today,” McEvoy said.
“He was a nice winner last time coming from back in the field, which gave him a great chance today.”
The victory gives Excess Knowledge a ballot exemption into next weekend’s $2 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) on Day 1 of The Championships at Randwick, a race Waterhouse has won six times.
She wasn’t confirming a run for him in that, despite the fact he would get in on just 50kg with no re-handicap.
“He’s not particularly well-weighted (for the Doncaster), which might sound funny but I can assure you he’s not,” Waterhouse said.
“He may go to Japan Racing Plate, I just want the dust to settle.
“He’s a drop dead gorgeous looking horse.
“He really won the race (today) in last 100 metres, it took him till then because he’s bred to be a two mile horse.”
The $150,000 Group 3 Japan Racing Association Plate (2000m) runs at Randwick on Champagne Stakes Day, April 18.
To back your favourites on the rest of the Rosehill card for The BMW Stakes Day and to check out the upcoming feature race markets on The Championships including the Doncaster Mile, visit Ladbrokes.com.au now!
2015 Doncaster Prelude Results
Rosehill Race 3 – 28/03/2015
|1||6||EXCESS KNOWLEDGE (GB)||Gai Waterhouse||Kerrin McEvoy||–||7||55.5kg||$9|
|2||5||MALICE||John O’Shea||Sam Clipperton||0.2L||6||55.5kg||$18|
|3||2||LEEBAZ (NZ)||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Tommy Berry||1L||4||57.5kg||$2.50F|
|4||8||SNIPPETS LAND||Peter & Paul Snowden||Blake Shinn||1.2L||8||55.5kg||$12|
|5||3||BULL POINT||Chris Waller||Damien Oliver||2L||3||57kg||$10|
|6||4||MALAVIO||Steve Englebrecht||Jason Collett||2.2L||5||57kg||$12|
|7||7||SAN DIEGO||John O’Shea||James McDonald||2.3L||2||55.5kg||$6|
|8||1||RUDY||Helen Page||Luke Tarrant (a)||2.6L||9||58kg||$13|
|9||10||SPY DECODER (NZ)||Anthony Cummings||Craig Williams||4.7L||1||55.5kg||$12|
|–||9||ANY DAY WILL DO||David Vandyke||Ms Kathy O’Hara||–||0||–||–|