Star five-year-old Luckygray scored his second Group 1 win in brilliant style when taking out the $500,000 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot.
Backed into $2.25 favouritism, Luckygray answered his critics to win over the unsuitable distance of 1800m and confirm his status as WA’s best sprinter-miler.
Jockey Shaun O’Donnell settled Luckygray in a perfect position – midfield and one off the fence – and he loomed large at the top of the straight.
He swooped on the lead 100m from the finish en route to a superb 1¼ length win.
Mr Moet ($13), who held off Luckygray to win the Railway Stakes (1600m) a fortnight ago, charged home impressively to finish third.
God Has Spoken ($26) was held up momentarily in the straight and ran into third when he got clear running.
Luckygray, who won last year’s Railway on protest, will now be spelled and another Eastern States campaign is on the agenda.
Trainer Gino Poletti was in a rush to have his stable star ready for the Railway and Kingston Town after a virus thwarted his Melbourne campaign in September.
“As the day went on with the cooler weather and his good barrier, our hopes got higher and higher,” Poletti said.
“Shaun capped it off with a gem of a ride.
“He’s got nothing to prove. He’s such a good horse.
“Tomorrow morning he’ll be at Balmoral Park for a spell.
“It will be two or three weeks before I decide where he goes next.
“He’ll have to put on weight and thrive and all those things I harp on about, but if he does all that obviously we’ll be targeting the East.
“There are some nice races there for him.”
O’Donnell said Luckygray proved his quality in the victory.
“The Railway’s gone but he showed his class to win this great Group 1,” O’Donnell said.
“He switched off nice and I was quite surprised how well he switched off.
“I knew when he came around the corner they’d have to be good to get him.”
Stewards will inquire into raceday medications given to Chester Road (eighth) and Maschino (10th).
Chester Road was given an anti-ulcer treatment and Maschino was given a combination of vitamins and minerals.
There were no prohibited substances in the medications.
Under the rules of racing, medications can not be administered to horses on raceday.
Stewards are given discretion to allow or disallow horses to start in this race. They allowed both horses to start.
Trainers Adam Durrant and Graham Yuill will face stewards' inquiries into the matters at a time and date to be advised.
Stewards adjourned an inquiry into interference to Excelorada from Beach Express from race two until Wednesday.
Jockey Steven Parnham lodged a successful protest against apprentice Ben Paterson regarding interference at the 700m. Parnham's mount Excelorada was promoted to first place over Beach Express.