Classique Legend blitzes Randwick sprint

Classique Legend under Kerrin McEvoy blitzed the $1m, Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) at Randwick on Saturday in such a manner that surely the Not A Single Doubt gelding will take on higher and off-shore levels.

Classique Legend and Kerrin McEvoy storm home in the Arrowfield Sprint, photo

Randwick trainer Les Bridge has used his own legendary skill to develop Classique Legend in four races from a maiden win over 1100m on the Kensington track at Randwick on February 20th to Group 2 honours on Saturday and the Hong Kong owned grey will surely head towards Sha Tin.

The win was progressive from the start with McEvoy having Classique Legend out well and in seventh inside the $5.80 third favourite Encryption and Hugh Bowman. Up front Damien Lane and Sherriff went out a to 2L lead at the 600m with the pace strong .

Classique Legend was five wide on the turn and McEvoy started a smooth run towards the leaders. They were 4L in arrears at the 400m , 2L at the 300m and leading at the 200m. From that point Classique Legend went away with ease to win with a comprehensive 1 1/4L margin.

Jonker (Spirit Of Boom) and Sam Clipperton were second with Avantage (Fastnet Rock) and Opie Bossom third, the margin a long neck. Encryption was fourth.

The time was 1.09.18 on the Soft 5 track that was upgraded to a Good 4 after the race. The final 600m was covered in  34.69. Classique Legend paid $3.70 on fixed odds and the tote.

“I have been lucky. I can find a good football team too,” declared Bridge, a strong South Sydney league supporter.

“There was never any question about the way he rode the horse (McEvoy in the Darby Munro). The other jockeys didn’t help him much in that.”

“I have not scratched the surface with him yet. I am going to lock him up in the stables so he can’t leave”

McEvoy salutes on Classique Legend, photo

“It was a stellar line up. Les was as cautious as anyone all of the way through. The last couple of weeks however he has gotten bullish as well,” said McEvoy.

“It all went wrong there last start at Rosehill but Les backed off him and gave him an easy ten days.

“There was a fair of talk between going to this race and the South Pacific. I am glad we chose this race. It was going to be a solid test and it is very pleasing to have him come out on top. He is a gelding with a huge future.

“We are still yet to work out what his best trip is. I think he would stay a little further. There are some good sprint races here like the Golden Eagle or those other good sprint races. We will keep working to try and keep him here a little longer.

“It is only for one year so it would be great to have him here for a bit longer. He has a great demeanour about him. He is a pleasure to ride and I knew with a drying track he was going to be able to produce a finish like that and that is what he was able to do,” he said.

Classique Legend, out of the Encosta de Lago mare Pinocchio, was a $400,000 yearling and Bridge and owner Mr KK Ho were patient with him before unleashing him in February. That patience has been richly rewarded with three wins from his four starts and a last start third in the listed Darby Munro Stakes on March 23rd. Stakes earnings are now $773,500.

Arrowfield 3YO Sprint, photo finish picture ATC

What the beaten jockeys said:

Hugh Bowman (Encryption): “He might prefer firmer ground.”

Michael Walker (Lean Mean Machine): “He got back from the awkward draw. I was actually happy with the run, he just wants further.”

Brett Prebble (Legend Of Condor): “Wet tracks are not suiting him at all.”

Sam Clipperton (Jonker): “Lovely run. Beaten by a good horse.”

Mark Zahra (Baller): “No good.”

Damian Lane (Sheriff): “Travelled really well, just might not be up to them at this stage.”

Tommy Berry (Trope): “Disappointing.”

Opie Bosson (Avantage): “She went well. She’s probably looking for 1400m.”

Craig Williams (Spanish Whisper): “I thought she backed up really well but when we needed acceleration we didn’t have it today. Followed the winner, just didn’t have the acceleration in the straight to go with it.”

Jason Collett (Prophet's Thumb): “Raced keen. Just took away from her finish.”

Damien Oliver (Causeway Girl): “Good run. A little bit wide from her wide draw but stuck to her task really well.”