Group 1-winning trainer Rhys Radford may have unearthed an up and coming stayer after Twentythreered made the big jump from a Northam maiden victory last month to a clear-cut win at Belmont on Wednesday.
A $56,000 purchase at the 2016 Perth Yearling sale, Twentythreered, sent out a $9.30 chance on tote, defied all challengers with a powerful front-running display to win the James Boag’s Premium Handicap (2000m).
Jumping quickly from barrier seven for jockey Craig Staples, Twentythreered put the race beyond doubt at the 200m, dashing clear to defeat Young Thor by a dominant 3 ¼ lengths with Ashalily close up in third place.
Radford, who prepared Great Shot to win the Railway Stakes (1600m) last year, believes Twentythreered, a four-year-old son of Savabeel, has a bright future ahead of him.
“He is a handful, but is getting better with race experience,” Radford said.
“He was really good today and I think he can keep it going.
“I don’t know how far, but I was a bit surprised how easily he won.”
Staples admitted he was caught by surprise when Twentythreered led and also by the margin of the gelding’s victory.
“It wasn’t my intention to find the front, but he was happy being there,” Staples said.
“He was far too good and I was surprised he was so far in front of the other horses.”
Meanwhile champion hoop Paul Harvey is back in the winner’s list after a three-month absence.
The 48-year-old, a winner of a record 12 Perth Jockey Premierships, partnered Watch Me Ney Ney in the Rentokil Initial Handicap (1200m).
Despite racing wide, The David Harrison-trained four-year-old displayed grit to defeat American Joy by a short half-head.
Watch Me Ney Ney gave Harvey his first win since breaking a rib in a barrier mishap last July.
And later M’Lady made a winning debut for trainer Anne King in the Glenroy Chaff Handicap (1200m).
The former South Australia galloper sped out of the gates for William Pike and couldn’t be caught in front.