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By Graham Potter | Friday, April 14, 2023

Wins don’t come much narrower ... or tougher ... than the 0.10 lengths victory achieved by the David Vandyke trained Ruinart in a BM58 Handicap over 1200m at the Sunshine Coast on April 14.

Ruinart had previously won first-up for the Vandyke stable on November 1, 2022 ... in Maiden company ... after transferring from trainer John O’Shea, after which she was rested before kicking off his latest preparation in a BM65 contest on February 26 in which she finished unplaced.

Both of those runs for her new stable were over 1000m and she had a third crack at that distance in her second-up start, showing the fitness benefit taken from her pervious run to post a runner-up finish in a BM68 Handicap on March 26, finishing 2.30 lengths behind Highland Son (who would win again next time out).

Next, Vandyke raised the distance bar to 1200m for her third-up run in another BM68 Handicap on April 14, again at the Sunshine Coast where all of her runs for Vandyke to date had taken place.

Ruinart, with Nikita Beriman in the saddle, wasn’t really able to take any advantage from the number two barrier draw as a fairly hectic chase went on early with four runners vying for the early lead.

That scenario initially left Ruinart some four lengths off the lead ... and that deficit increased to all of six lengths as the pace of the frontrunners stayed strong down the back stretch as the seemingly aptly named Control Freak ($4.40) insisted on taking up the running and setting a lively target.

The positive though, was that Beriman had Ruinart travelling at a comfortable gallop, saving ground along the rail throughout, with patience being the name of the game mid-race ... that was until Beriman had to get urgent in the saddle approaching the home turn, for a couple of reasons.

Firstly, there was the no small matter of the still four lengths to make up on the free running Control Freak and, secondly, that early inside run was now presenting a challenge as Ruinart was trapped in-between runners with Beriman having to search for a way out.

It was time for the very experienced Group 1 winning jockey to show her talent and, with a deft flick of the wrists buoyed by a very determined sense of purpose, Beriman shifted Ruinart out wider on the point of the turn and then had to had to balance up briefly again, still racing in close quarters on straightening, before muscling her way inbetween runners and setting sail after Control Freak, who was still trying to make every post a winning one.

Approaching the 100m mark, Ruinart was ranging up to take the measure of Control Freak, but her race was still not won as she now had the $5.50 chance Wegobam closing strongly from behind, after also encountering some traffic problems.

Wegobam simply flew up late along the inside of Ruinart over the concluding stages to within a hairs breadth of taking the honours away from Ruinart, but the latter had done enough to snare the result herself to claim her second career win.

Wegobam would frank the merit in Ruinart’s effort by winning at her next start.

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Photos: Graham Potter
Photos: Graham Potter
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