The weekend’s feature race favourite Big Duke...
Make it two wins in six days for Aristia.
After winning the Wakeful Stakes on Saturday, the Matthew Ellerton & Simon Zahra trained three-year old enjoyed a gun run in Thursday’s Kennedy Oaks (2500m), jumping cleanly from barrier four to sit three off the pace and run home strongly down the straight.
The daughter of Lonhro originally opened at $4.60 odds with Ladbrokes before drifting out to $5.50 hours before the race. Backing up in such a short turnaround seemed to keep the punters at bay, but after cruising along nicely at the turn, Aristia kicked home up the middle to win by three quarters of a length.
“This is easily my biggest thrill in racing,” winning jockey Damian Lane said after the race.
Aristia was equally as impressive at the weekend, but enjoyed having something to chase down on Thursday. Greysful Glamour, who led from the barrier to finish runner-up, was the perfect target over the final furlong.
“I hate to say forgone conclusion, but it was a good watch early on” Ellerton said.
Aristia is the 36th filly to complete the Wakeful-Kennedy Oaks double, in large part thanks to a 10/10 ride from Lane.
“He come (sic) over from Perth, he took a while to find his feet, but he’s gone to another level and helped us along the way” co-trainer Simon Zahra said.
“We’re not known as long distance trainers, but we’ve proven we can do it if we get the right horses.”
The win was equally sweet considering leading Victorian trainer Darren Weir had three runners in the race. The decision to place a nose roll on Verry Ellegant, who entered the race as the $5.00 second-elect, looked to be a smart decision. But once again the filly was seen throwing her head around to finish a disappointing fifth.
As for Amphitrite, jockey Craig Williams felt something was off with the $3.00 favourite, and made the decision to ease her out of the race.
“I had her welfare in mind, I didn’t want to push her when she didn’t feel right” Williams told Racing.com.
Miner’s Miss, who entered the race at 100-1 odds, claimed third, while the win for Aristia marked Ellerton and Zahra’s first Oaks win, as well as their first Group 1 win since 2011.
2018 Kennedy Oaks Results
|1||2||ARISTIA||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Damian Lane||–||4||55.5kg|
|2||5||GREYSFUL GLAMOUR||Mark Newnham||Tim Clark||0.75L||1||55.5kg|
|3||14||MINER’S MISS||Paddy Payne||Ms Michelle Payne||1.5L||2||55.5kg|
|4||9||MARACAIBO||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Stephen Baster||2L||8||55.5kg|
|5||3||QAFILA||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Jim Crowley||2.2L||10||55.5kg|
|6||6||SIZZLEME Super Vobis Bonus Scheme||Cindy Alderson||Luke Currie||3.45L||14||55.5kg|
|7||4||VERRY ELLEEGANT (NZ)||Darren Weir||John Allen||5.95L||13||55.5kg|
|8||10||SCAMPER||Leon & Troy Corstens||Kerrin McEvoy||6.7L||12||55.5kg|
|9||8||MISS MOANA (NZ)||John Sargent||Mark Zahra||7.45L||9||55.5kg|
|10||12||COLLECTABLE Super Vobis Bonus Scheme||Robbie Griffiths||James McDonald||8.45L||11||55.5kg|
|11||13||EXCLUSIVELY OURS||Matthew Brown||Ben Thompson||11.7L||6||55.5kg|
|12||7||DARK CONFIDANT||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Regan Bayliss||16.7L||15||55.5kg|
|13||11||ZAPURLER||Darren Weir||Hugh Bowman||18.2L||3||55.5kg|
|14||15||LESEDI||Robbie Laing||Noel Callow||21.7L||7||55.5kg|
|15||1||AMPHITRITE||Darren Weir||Craig Williams||27.7L||5||55.5kg|
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