Three-year-old Guard Of Honour has produced a career-best performance to win the Listed Heritage Stakes (1100m) at Royal Randwick this afternoon.
Guard Of Honour drifted in Heritage Stakes betting markets in the hours leading up to jump, but did his chances of success no harm whatsoever when immediately taking a position on the heels of early leaders Tango Rain and Legerity.
Offered a clear racing line upon arriving at the final straight, jockey Hugh Bowman allowed the colt plenty of time to balance before he asked for an extra effort.
Guard Of Honour produced a typically smart turn of foot with 200m to run, and while fading somewhat at the line, sustained a strong-enough sprint to beat outsider Flash Fibian in a photo; Hair Trigger boxing on for third.
Trainer Kris Lees was on hand for Guard Of Honour’s impressive performance to win the Heritage Stakes and was pleased the horse was able to hang on for a maiden black type win.
“He looked like he had plenty of horse underneath him, but it was very tight at the finish,” Lees said after the race.
“He’ll definitely improve off the run and he’ll probably need to, to keep going forward but I’m very pleased because it was a very solid race.”
Lees is yet to confirm a major target for the Northern Meteor colt this time, but revealed that the Group 2 Roman Consul Stakes (1200m) on Epsom Handicap Day may figure as his next point of call.
“We’ll see how he comes through it,” he said.
“I think that there’s another stakes race in two weeks’ time at 1200m. Whether he’s up to that, we’ll just see how he comes through today.
“He’s a smart horse.”
Guard Of Honour failed to beat a single runner home in the Group 3 Canonbury Stakes (1100m) on debut in January, but returned in June for an impressive win in the TAB.com.au Maiden Plate (1000m) at Warwick Farm, in what was his only other race start prior to the Heritage Stakes.
Punters who backed Guard Of Honour to win the Heritage Stakes with Ladbrokes.com.au have been paid out on $4.80 odds!
2016 Heritage Stakes Results
|1||8||GUARD OF HONOUR||Kris Lees||Hugh Bowman||–||1||56kg||$4.80|
|2||5||FLASH FIBIAN||Paul Murray||Tye Angland||0.1L||11||56kg||$61|
|3||10||HAIR TRIGGER||James Cummings||Glyn Schofield||0.3L||4||56kg||$7|
|4||11||ON THE SPOT||Clarry Conners||Rory Hutchings||1.3L||8||56kg||$101|
|5||7||GENERALISSIMO||Garry White||Craig Williams||2L||6||56kg||$21|
|6||2||TANGO RAIN||Gerald Ryan||Kerrin McEvoy||3.2L||10||56kg||$2.90F|
|7||6||ECHO EFFECT||Kristen Buchanan||Paul King||3.8L||9||56kg||$15|
|8||4||LEGERITY||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Christian Reith||4L||7||56kg||$21|
|9||12||MOUNT PANORAMA||Gary Moore||Tim Clark||5.5L||5||56kg||$17|
|10||9||SPIRIT AND FIRE||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Tommy Berry||5.9L||3||56kg||$12|
|11||3||JERICHO||Peter & Paul Snowden||James McDonald||7L||2||56kg||$6|