Top apprentice jockey Ben Paterson and trainer Adam Durrant could not have asked for a finer end to the Belmont Park season, with a convincing double in the last two races of the day.
Aboard multiple winner Ora Dare ($2.70) in the Itmsoil Pty Ltd HCP 2000m, Paterson capitalised on a dream run in transit to storm forward inside the straight and race away with a dominant 3 ¼ length triumph.
It was the fourth victory for Ora Dare this preparation – its recent winning “picket fence” blemished by a close second last start to Hel Cool when going down a neck.
In the Racing Returning To Ascot Next Saturday BM66+ 1600m, Paterson pushed forward with notorious leader Sail Maker ($2.70 fav) but was unable to secure front position.
Forced to sit patiently behind Terminado ($10.00) and Tilly’s Touch ($51.00), Paterson released the brakes at the 600m mark and zipped past Terminado at the top of the turn. Hale Boy ($6.50) put in a last ditch effort inside the final furlong, but the King Of Danes 7yo had done enough – saluting comfortably by 1 ¼ lengths.
Like its penultimate winning stable mate, Sail Maker had also had its colours lowered last start following a string of successes – its half-length second to Magna Cat late last month tarnishing an otherwise stellar preparation.