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Next month’s Caloundra Cup is on the cards for the shock Chairman’s Handicap winner on Doomben 10,000 Day, the Stephen Lee-trained Anton En Avant scoring an upset at $151 odds in the Group 3.
The eight-year-old son of Dubawi showed huge improvement in the Group 3 $125,000 Chairman’s Handicap (2000m) after a lead-up 13th in the Listed Tails Stakes (1600m) at the Doomben track on April 21.
Enjoying his first win since October last year, the gallant old stayer posted his fourth win at the course from 21 starts on way to a shot at the Listed $175,000 Caloundra Cup (2400m) over the mile and a half at the Sunshine Coast on June 30.
Lee was full of post-race praise for his galloper who ducked back to the inside late on the home straight to run home ahead of the better fancied Lovani ($12) and Rising Red ($7) who ran second and third respectively.
“He’s plain, he’s small, he’s exactly like me but he’s got a lot of heart,” an excited Lee said.
“I was fairly confident…this horse has just improved out of sight since moving to the [Gold] Coast on a bigger track.
“I was just trying to get some miles under his legs ahead of the Caloundra Cup cause he’ll run 2600m.
“We’re over the moon…we’ll take this!”
Anton En Avant was ridden to victory by Matthew McGillivray who made it a double on 10,000 Day having also guided the Toby Edmonds-trained Havasay to victory in the first, the young hoop breaking a 62 day winning drought.
“We had a bit of luck with him today,” McGillivray said of the dream ride he enjoyed on Anton En Avant, all the gaps opening up late for the eventual winner in the Chairman’s Handicap.
“He was strong to the finish.
“He’ll run 3000m. He’ll run all day.”
Hard luck story in the Chairman’s Handicap was the Kim Waugh-trained favourite Goathland.
The last start ANZAC Cup (1800m) winner at Randwick on ANZAC Day got posted three and four wide throughout working very hard the entire run before eventually crossing second last.
The two placegetters in the Chairman’s Handicap results however enjoyed dream runs up on the speed set by the Edmonds-trained Mr Epic who was revved up from out wide to go forward early.
Mr Epic led the field around from the Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young-trained Redwood four-year-old Rising Red, runner-up in last year’s NZ Derby behind Gingernuts in March of 2017.
Eventual runner-up Lovani meanwhile travelled third throughout on the outside, the Brad Widdup-trained Lonhro mare coming off a Hawkesbury Cup fifth before her second to Anton En Avant.
To back Anton En Avant next race and access the best Caloundra Cup 2018 odds next month head to Ladbrokes.com.au.
2018 Chairman’s Handicap Results & Finishing Order
Doomben Race 4 – 12/05/2018
|1||13||ANTON EN AVANT||Stephen Lee||Matthew McGillivray||–||8||54kg||$151|
|2||14||LOVANI||Brad Widdup||Tim Clark||0.5L||2||54kg||$12|
|3||6||RISING RED (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Corey Brown||0.6L||13||55.5kg||$7|
|4||11||XEBEC (USA)||Chris Waller||Jeff Lloyd||0.8L||3||54kg||$5.50|
|5||2||INTERLOCUTER (USA)||James Cummings||Damian Browne||2.3L||7||58.5kg||$7.50|
|6||1||MEGABLAST (NZ)||Nigel Tiley||Michael Coleman||3.3L||12||59kg||$17|
|7||15||MISS DUBOIS (NZ)||Matthew Dunn||Kathy O’Hara||3.4L||15||54kg||$51|
|8||7||TUMULTUOUS||Chris Waller||Glen Colless||5.65L||4||55.5kg||$31|
|9||16||QUEEN OF WANDS||Bryan & Daniel Guy||Jim Byrne||5.75L||11||54kg||$101|
|10||3||JUMBO PRINCE||Michael Nolan||Ron Stewart||6.25L||5||57.5kg||$13|
|11||9||ALL IN VOGUE (NZ)||Barry Lockwood||Michael Cahill||10L||6||54kg||$61|
|12||5||ARTICUS (FR)||Kris Lees||Glyn Schofield||14L||9||55.5kg||$31|
|13||4||KAHARAU||Kenny Rae||Craig Williams||19L||1||57kg||$21|
|14||8||MR EPIC||Toby Edmonds||James Orman||19.5L||14||55kg||$31|
|15||12||GOATHLAND (IRE)||Kim Waugh||Kerrin McEvoy||19.7L||10||54kg||$3.60F|
|SB||10||MY DIAMANTINE (NZ)||Brian Smith||Sean Cormack||–||0||54kg||–|
|–||17e||EXILIA MISS (NZ)||Stirling Osland||–||–||0||–||–|
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