Like a scene out of “Underbelly”, the finale at Belmont saw arguably “the hardest horse of all time to find” – The Underworld – come out of hiding to blow away rivals in the LD Total HCP 1600m.

The High Chaparral 5yo had gone 490 days without saluting despite being extremely competitive in all of its recent starts. Renown for doing everything but win, today was the day for the Chris Gangemi trained gelding who put it all together in the face of grave adversity. Drawing widest of the thirteen runners, silk Campbell McCallum allowed his mount to “sleep with the fishes” at the rear of the field, before unleashing hell inside the final 400m, mowing down opponents where they seemingly stood, until The Underworld ($7.00) was the “last man standing” – the volatile finish producing a 1 ¼ length victory.

Stompin ($19.00) limped to the line to claim second, a quarter length ahead of Monumental ($8.00) in third.

Having nursed its own fair share of war wounds, the lightly raced gelding now tallies four successful hits from eighteen attempts – pursing nearly $150,000 in non-sequential bills.

Chris Blackwell