Gai Waterhouse’s in-form favourite Frespanol scored a narrow but still convincing win in the Spear Chief Handicap 2015 in Brisbane on Queensland Oaks Day for the galloper’s first win this time in.
The money was strong for the four-year-old Choisir gelding who was last seen running second to Tales Of Grimm in the Listed Scone Cup (1600m) on May 15.
At Doomben Racecourse for the first time, the Scone Cup form stacked up through Frespanol who was ridden by Kerrin McEvoy in the $100,000 Listed James Boag’s Premium Spear Chief Handicap (1630m).
McEvoy didn’t panic early on the favourite who was worse than midfield trying to slip in towards the back as Tony Gollan’s on-pace Snitzel mare Tornado Miss led them round trying to lead all the way in the handicap clash.
Also right up on the speed was the Andrew Williamson-trained six-year-old Darci Be Good who was quick away from a gun barrier two draw with top Queensland hoop Damian Browne in the saddle.
Browne settled the last start Sunshine Coast runner-up over 1800m in behind Tornado Miss while Billy Aucash raced third on the inside ahead of the Brian Wakefield-trained Grayson Square who had Glen Colless in the saddle.
The runners in the Spear Chief held their positions right into the straight when Frespanol began his run down the outside picking up those in front after cantering up to join Tornado Miss and Darci Be Good in a line of three as they ran towards the finish close together.
It was a nice patient ride by McEvoy and there was nothing in the winning margin.
On the line the favourite Frespanol ($2.20), who never showed any real cause for concern, held on by the skin of his teeth to salute at the short price finishing over the top of the long-priced Tornado Miss ($26) with Darci Be Good ($9.50) in third in the centre.
Tornado Miss fought back right till the final stride but didn’t have the class of the solid Spear Chief Handicap winner who the bookies and punters had picked out right from the start.
A possible next-up target for the top runners in the Spear Chief Handicap should connections wish to back-up their horses is Saturday week’s $100,000 Listed Wayne Wilson Mile (1600m) back at Doomben on Stradbroke Handicap Day.
The race, formerly known as the Strawberry Road Handicap, was contested last year by the Spear Chief Handicap third placed Choice Bro who was runner-up to Transporter before a trip up north when third to Vandalised in the Rockhampton Cup.
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2015 Spear Chief Handicap Results & Finishing Order
Doomben Race 3 – 30/05/2015
|1||6||FRESPANOL||Gai Waterhouse||Kerrin McEvoy||–||9||54kg||$2.05F|
|2||12||TORNADO MISS||Tony Gollan||Timothy Bell||0.1L||5||54kg||$26|
|3||2||DARCI BE GOOD (NZ)||Andrew Williamson||Damian Browne||0.2L||2||56kg||$9.50|
|4||7||TRAKSTAR||Tony Gollan||Jim Byrne||1.2L||6||54kg||$8|
|5||9||ELUSIVE STORM (NZ)||Brian Smith||Larry Cassidy||2.2L||8||54kg||$41|
|6||8||BILLY AUCASH||Brian Smith||Samuel Payne (a)||2.4L||1||54kg||$26|
|7||5||GRAYSON SQUARE (NZ)||Brian Wakefield||Glen Colless||2.6L||3||54kg||$11|
|8||3||CHOICE BRO||Tony Sears||Paul Hammersley||3.4L||10||54kg||$11|
|9||4||BLACK JET||Liam Birchley||Jeff Lloyd||3.7L||7||54kg||$8|
|10||1||BANCA MO||Bevan Laming||Michael Cahill||5.7L||4||59kg||$16|
|–||10||ZOOMANIA (NZ)||Tony Gollan||–||–||0||–||–|
|–||11||GREAT ESTEEM||Peter & Paul Snowden||Tommy Berry||–||0||–||–|