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By Graham Potter | Friday, June 3, 2022

Jasmine Cornish gets on very well with the Greg Cornish trained Lemon Duchess.

When Lemon Duchess, the four-year-old daughter of Tycoon Ruler, came to the Sunshine Coast for her engagement in a Filles And Mares BM60 Handicap over 1400m on June 3, she had already won two out her last three starts.

Those wins came in a Fillies And Mares BM58 Handicap on a Heavy 10 track over 1150m at Ipswich (by the narrowest of margins) on March 31 … and in a BM65 Handicap over 1400m on the Sunshine Coast Poly Track (by just under half-a-length) on May 15.

That winning form, plus the commitment she showed in both of those finishes, were huge plusses going into the race where she was seeking to earn back-to-back wins (just seven days apart) for the first time in her career … but punters turned elsewhere, allowing Lemon Duchess to start at $10.

The courage that Lemon Duchess showed in those previous successes obviously again played a big part in her run here, but it was arguably the ten out of ten ride by Cornish that played the bigger part in getting the mare home here.

It was the type of ride you could, quite ironically, show to apprentices at apprentice school so they could learn from it. (Go and look at the video and judge for yourself).

Cornish jumped Lemon Duchess straight into the lead before immediately taking hold and running the race to suit herself. Approaching the home turn, Cornish was holding her nerve as she kept Lemon Duchess on a tight rein with the field starting to stack up behind her.

And she still held her nerve on straightening, to the point that when Devillain ($12) and Sea Ripple ($2.50) loomed to the outside of Lemon Duchess, they must have thought they had Lemon Duchess stone cold.

Cornish had merely been biding her time though, waiting for the right moment to ask Lemon Duchess to extend … and the result of the race would show that Cornish chose exactly the right moment to do that.

The extra pressure that was then being applied by Lemon Duchess proved too much for Devillain who fell away quickly as the leaders approached the 200m mark. Sea Ripple kept coming though. Red Light Roxanne ($12) was snapping at the heels of Lemon Duchess … and, all the while, Goldschlager ($7) and Rose of Duporth ($4.20) were beginning to charge late down the centre of the straight.

If Lemon Duchess was applying pressure, so too was she also coming under severe pressure herself, particularly from Goldschlager and Rose Of Duporth who were both sustaining a strong finishing effort which saw them closing very quickly on Lemon Duchess with every passing stride over the closing stages.

It became a simple equation. If the post came soon enough, Cornish had got her timing spot on!

As the first three runners flashed through the line with less than 0,25 lengths between them, it was Lemon Duchess who carried the day by the narrowest of margins.

Talk about inch-prefect.

Lemon Duchess and Cornish had been left with no room for error … and no error had been made. A very good ride had got the reward it deserved.

Overall, Lemon Duchess has now won six from twenty-six starts and has banked $120 170 in prize-money … and Jasmine Cornish has partnered the mare in the last five of those victories dating all of the way back to her win in a BM 50 Handicap at Gympie on July 17, 2021.

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Photos: Graham Potter
Photos: Graham Potter
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