Veteran 10-year-old Ihtsahymn entered the...
Trainer Archie Alexander was over the moon with the surprise 2019 Ballarat Cup result by the defending local champion Kiwia in Victoria on Saturday.
Twelve months ago, under the preparation of the now disqualified Darren Weir, Reset gelding Kiwia enjoyed a hometown win in the Ballarat Cup over 2200m.
A year on and the now six-year-old returned to make it a perfect three-from-three record at the track with a thrilling narrow win in the Listed $500,000 Ballarat Cup (2000m) at big odds.
Without a win since his success in 2018, Kiwia jumped a $16 outsider in the half-a-million-dollar feature and reunited with last year’s winning hoop John Allen.
Alexander was not exactly brimming with confidence pre-race, believing his horse had a big task to enjoy back-to-back Ballarat Cup wins off the winning drought.
Kiwia came into the race on the back of a mid-field sixth at Flemington on the first Tuesday of November in the Listed Cup Day Plate (1800m), but was back to his best at his pet track at Ballarat.
“Very, very special,” the popular trainer said post-win.
“Obviously it’s the hometown cup.
“Amazing, he honestly came here today…he was bouncing. He knew what it was about. I don’t know why he peaked on this day, but he was absolutely flying.
“We aimed this horse at this race, this isn’t an afterthought. This has been the plan.”
It was a good line out in the Ballarat Cup with Runaway taking up the lead.
Kiwia was posted midfield three deep the trip before making up the ground down the outside once on the home straight.
It was an intriguing finish as the well-supported favourite Dr Drill, away well from the inside alley to settle third the inside, looked like he got out at the right time to win.
In the end however the top fancy had to settle for fifth just a length beaten in a tight finish.
On the line Kiwia had only a short half-head to spare over the fast-finishing runner-up Double You Tee ($9.50) who launched late out wide but didn’t quite get there.
In third to round out the Ballarat Cup trifecta a half-length further back was another outside chance, the Chris Waller-trained Another Dollar ($20), only a few minutes after the stable enjoyed the big feature race win at Kembla Grange with Mister Sea Wolf winning The Gong.
There were a host of winning chances late in the Ballarat Cup with punters not knowing where to look, but it was the tough effort from Kiwia who got going at the right time in a nice effort.
“Big effort by Archie and his team to get the horse up and ready for the race again,” Allen, who was originally committed to ride the scratched second-emergency Harbour Views, said.
“It looked a bit of a hotter race this time round .
“He was in great order, had a great run in transit…put his head down and tried hard.
“Great to win last year and good to win this year again.”
See below for the official Ballarat Cup 2019 results and finishing order.
|1||4||KIWIA||Archie Alexander||John Allen||–||10||56.5kg||$16|
|2||12||DOUBLE YOU TEE||Patrick Payne||Billy Egan||0.1L||9||54kg||$9.50|
|3||10||ANOTHER DOLLAR (NZ)||Chris Waller||Ms Linda Meech||0.6L||7||54kg||$20|
|4||3||CARZOFF (FR)||Chris Waller||Mark Zahra||0.9L||8||58.5kg||$26|
|5||5||DR DRILL (GB)||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||Craig Williams||1L||1||56kg||$2.60F|
|6||1||FIFTY STARS (IRE)||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Jye McNeil||1.1L||4||60.5kg||$5.50|
|7||16||ARISTOCRATIC MISS||Tony & Calvin McEvoy||Luke Currie||1.3L||6||54kg||$19|
|8||6||RUNAWAY||Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott||Zac Spain||2.55L||13||56kg||$41|
|9||9||ALFARRIS (FR)||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Daniel Stackhouse||2.95L||5||54.5kg||$41|
|10||2||SUZUKA DEVIOUS (JPN)||Mitsuru Hashida||Michael Dee||3.25L||11||59kg||$11|
|11||13||HANG MAN (IRE)||Michael Moroney||James Winks||3.35L||14||54kg||$12|
|12||11||SECOND BULLET||Danny O’Brien||Damien Thornton||4.35L||15||54kg||$101|
|13||7||PLEIN CIEL (GER)||Anthony Freedman||Ben Allen||4.65L||12||55.5kg||$19|
|14||20e||MELI MELO||Barry Brook||Cory Parish||5.15L||3||54kg||$151|
|15||15||GUNDOWN||Michael Moroney||Dwayne Dunn||5.35L||16||54kg||$61|
|16||14||RED ALTO||Brent Stanley||Harry Coffey||8.1L||2||54kg||$81|
|–||19e||SAVAHEAT (NZ)||Mick Price & Michael Kent (Jnr)||Beau Mertens||–||0||–||–|
|–||17e||ETANA||Ciaron Maher & David Eustace||–||–||0||–||–|
|–||8||THE LORD MAYOR (NZ)||Chris Waller||–||–||0||–||–|
|–||18e||HARBOUR VIEWS (FR)||Matthew Williams||John Allen||–||0||–||–|
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