I’m sure if trainer Justin Warwick was asked to define “versatility”, he would answer with two simple works – Black Tycoon.
And one could not argue, for we have seen a phenomenal rise to the top for his Blackfriars 7yo gelding, who yet again took all before it in landing today’s Belmont feature – the Group 3 WFA Hyperion Stakes 1600m.
Black Tycoon has simply amazed – winning races between 1400m and 2100m, at times with consummate ease, and in doing so has formed a reputation of being a “giant killer” as it cruised through the classes. Six of its nine career victories have come this preparation, highlighted by the five length hiding handed out in the Geraldton Cup 2100m against open class company. But today’s Hyperion task on paper looked a “mission and a half”, with punters unable to find enough “ticked boxes” to warrant a confident investment on the gelding – oh the beauty of hindsight.
Senior hoop Troy Turner set about the challenge, sitting Black Tycoon ($9.50) midfield with cover from barrier rise, while the “Brother’s God” – God Has Spoken ($51.00) and Playing God ($7.00) – took up the running. With the field stacked up swinging the final bend, the front runners failed to kick, as Belmont Sprint victor Kerrific ($6.50) shot to the lead inside the final furlong. It was time for Turner to prove the critics wrong – the star silk shooting Black Tycoon between horses late as a required opening presented itself – powering to the line to grab Kerrific in the shadows of the post by a mere short neck.
Race favourite Ranger ($3.30 fav) again worked home late when it was all over – securing a late rails run to capture third a further quarter length adrift.
Eclipsing $250,000 in prize money, and passing the ultimate WFA test, Warwick and connections will now debate whether to set Black Tycoon for the Kalgoorlie Cup or rest up and plan for an Ascot feature race assault this summer.