Veteran 10-year-old Ihtsahymn entered the...
Fierce Impact is now a back-to-back Group 1 winner after claiming the Kennedy Cantala Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Three weeks removed from a comfortable Toorak Handicap win, the Japanese import dazzled once again by beating home a tightly packed field down the straight. It came down to nothing more than a head bob, but it was enough to gift Fierce Impact a win over a field of proven milers.
Streets Of Avalon led from the gates before last week’s Crystal Mile winner Chief Ironside took over at the final turn. Jockey Craig Williams got in behind them before moving up on the outside of Fifty Stars to hit the line strongly.
Punters on board the $8.00 chance were left cheering, but there were plenty of question marks heading into the race. The soft track threw a spanner into the works, but with form on his side and Williams in the saddle, it all turned into a winning combination.
“When he went to the gates it felt like the track really deteriorated. In the race he was good, he got a little bit cheeky today and I was just mindful” Williams said after the race.
Williams took over from Nash Rawiller ahead of the Toorak and retained the ride. He said after the race he spoke to former jockey Corey Brown about the ideal strategy on Saturday.
“The other day I didn’t have my persuader with me and today I was very reluctant about doing certain things with him. Corey Brown, who was his rider before his injury, spoke to me a little bit about the horse, but wow, good, gallant, tough, today was a cracking race and it was really good competition, so to come out on top I was really proud of my horse.”
Fierce Impact is the sixth horse to complete the Toorak Handicap-Cantala Stakes double and the first to do so since Magari in 1982. The win was particularly special for trainer Matthew Smith, who touched on the journey leading up to this point.
“It’s been a bit of a long journey with him, it’s taken us a while to get to this stage with him in this preparation
“I was concerned. I was pretty happy at the 100m but I was a little bit concerned at the 50m, I thought he might get run down” Smith went on to say.
Fifty Stars was unlucky not to win but still finished strongly for second.
2019 Kennedy Cantala Stakes Results & Finishing Order
|1||6||FIERCE IMPACT (JPN)||Matthew Smith||Craig Williams||–||14||56kg||$8|
|2||3||FIFTY STARS (IRE)||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Mark Zahra||0.1L||3||56.5kg||$10|
|3||12||CASCADIAN (GB)||James Cummings||Dean Yendall||0.3L||16||53.5kg||$12|
|4||9||SO SI BON||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Luke Nolen||1.55L||12||55.5kg||$31|
|5||1||BEST OF DAYS (GB)||James Cummings||James Doyle||3.3L||11||57kg||$26|
|6||8||NIGHT’S WATCH (NZ)||Chris Waller||Damien Oliver||3.4L||7||55.5kg||$7EF|
|7||4||LIFE LESS ORDINARY (IRE)||Chris Waller||Hugh Bowman||4.15L||15||56.5kg||$21|
|8||10||STREETS OF AVALON||Shane Nichols||Zac Spain||4.9L||8||55.5kg||$61|
|9||14||STAR OF THE SEAS (NZ)||Chris Waller||Michael Walker||5.1L||4||53.5kg (cd 54kg)||$7EF|
|10||11||SIKANDARABAD (IRE)||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Jye McNeil||5.3L||9||54.5kg||$21|
|11||16||MAHAMEDEIS||Nick Ryan||Brett Prebble||5.6L||5||53kg||$21|
|12||13||ROCK||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Tim Clark||6.85L||10||53.5kg||$10|
|13||2||LAND OF PLENTY||Peter & Paul Snowden||Ben Allen||10.1L||1||57kg||$41|
|14||7||CLIFF’S EDGE||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||John Allen||22.1L||2||55.5kg||$21|
|15||15||CHIEF IRONSIDE (GB)||David Menuisier||Stephen Baster||22.3L||6||53kg||$14|
|16||5||ROYAL MEETING (IRE)||Saeed Bin Suroor||Dwayne Dunn||25.05L||13||56.5kg||$12|
|–||20e||ICONOCLASM||Danny O’Brien||Stephen Baster||–||0||–||–|
|–||17e||NOIRE||Chris Waller||Craig Newitt||–||0||–||–|
|–||18e||ADMIRAL’S JOKER||Kylie Vella||Ben Thompson||–||0||–||–|
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