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By Graham Potter | Sunday, August 1, 2021

In his first start of his four-year-old campaign, the Melissa Taylor trained Kudu underlined the very promising form he had showed in his last five starts as a three-year-old by taking out a BM68 Handicap over 1200m at the Sunshine Coast on August 1.

In those five starts dating from February 19 until July 21 inclusive, Kudo won two races and finished second on another two occasions.

The first of those results was a second place in a Maiden Plate over 1400m when only going down by 0.20 lengths and the son of Spill The Beans then wasted little time in going one better when he saluted in a Three-Year-Old Handicap over 1000m at the Sunshine Coast on June 18, in which every one of the seven runners who finished behind him were already winners.

An unplaced run followed that win, but Kudu then won again at his next start, this time in town in a BM65 Handicap over 1200m at Eagle Farm on July 7.

Franking that form is the fact that Princess Tenko, who finished second a length behind Kudo on that occasion, came out and won her next start.

Kudu’s last start as a three-year-old produced another highly credible second place finish in a BM65 over 1200m at Eagle Farm on July 21, when he finished less than a length behind Levi’s Storm, who was winning for the third time in a row.

In the race on the opening day of the new season, Kudu only had four rivals. At $1.90 he was backed like he was the best horse in the race and jockey Ryan Maloney certainly ride him that way, taking Kudu to an immediate lead before rolling along at a comfortable gallop.

The field was relatively tightly packed coming to the home turn and Kudu’s rivals fanned out across the track behind him, shuffling positions as they readied themselves to stake their claim for the honours, but Kudu was never going to let then into the race, striding away with some authority to win well by a clear-cut 1.30 lengths from Aquajak ($9.50) who was the only runner to show Kudu any real cheek.

This was Kudu’s third win in his last five starts, highlighting the good work the Melissa Taylor stable is going in keeping the four-year-old at his competitive best.

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Ryan Maloney brought the $1.90 favourite home with his usual calm precision

Photo: Graham Potter
Ryan Maloney brought the $1.90 favourite home with his usual calm precision

Photo: Graham Potter
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