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By Graham Potter | Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Doomben, March 27, 2010.
Track - Good 3. Rail - out 4.5m.
QTIS 3yo Handicap - 1350m. Time: 1-18.37. (Carrying 50kg).
1 Lochiel; 2 Dienekes; 3 Public Holiday.

The Gerald Ryan trained Lochiel overcome the odds here to score a measured win in impressive style.

The five-year-old went into this lucrative 3yo QTIS Handicap as the only Maiden in a line-up where the opposition included the likes of Listen Son who is a four-time winner.

The weight factor was crucial to the placement of Lochiel in this sort of race. While the top weight Listen Son carried 55.5kg with the claim of Skye Bogenhuber, Lochiel, with a similar 3kg claim for the services of Justin Wood, went out with only 50kg on his back giving him a competitive chance in the contest.

In experience was a worry though. This was Lochiel’s fifth career start.

Wood positioned Lochiel just worse than midfield in the early running as Listen Son and Night Escort disputed the lead. As Listen Son got away from Night Escort on the turn, Lochiel was now well out of his ground. The chestnut cornered third last and, with runners spread right across the track in front of him as the field quickened, finding a path to victory looked to be a complex puzzle.

Wood was unfazed by the dilemma but matters were to get worse before they got better. Wood angled Lochiel out marginally to try to find clear running, but he had to sit up and check his mount off the heels of Dienekes at a vital stage of the running with 220m left to run.

With a horse of less mental commitment, that could well have been the end the race, but Lochiel was not about to give up. When he came back down after Wood had been forced to take hold of him, Lochiel landed in the gap he had been looking for and he hit the ground at full speed.

He improved quickly to be within 2.50 lengths of the lead with 200m left to run. Lochiel was flying now and there was simply no stopping him as he produced a strong, measured finish which carried him to a 0,75 length win over Dienekes.

This was one for the bookmakers. Lochiel ($12.00) beat Dienekes ($17.00) while the third placed Public Holiday started at $15.00.

Matthew Dunn (Foreman for the Gerald Ryan stable at Murwillumbah): “That was very satisfying. He is pretty handy.

“He just over-raced a little bit mid-race last start, so we thought we’d just drop him back in distance. He’ll probably spell now, but we just wanted him to relax again before we put him out.

“He is a nice horse and he is going places. He really is.”

Apprentice jockey Justin Wood: “I rode him two runs back (when fourth to Just A Piccolo). He was only beaten a length. I thought it was a really good run. I thought he’d be right on the money next time.

“Then Jimmy Byrne rode it (when the gelding finished fifth behind Fantastic Blue). I had a bit of a talk to Jimmy. He said his run was very good ... a little bit unlucky.

“Today I really came out with a positive attitude, you know. He had 3kg off ... he was only carrying 50kg. There was a lot of pace in the race. I was going to be three deep if I was any more forward, so I sort of got back a bit further than I wanted to.

“Then we just weaved a nice passage through the middle ... saved some lengths.

“I was sort of in two minds as to whether I was going to get held up going up the inside, but he got the split at the right time and ran through. Once he got in the clear he just strode away from them.”

Winner (Lochiel): 10.00 out to 12.00.
Favourite (Listen Son): 3.50 out to 3.70. Finished fourth.

Connections of Rotate informed stewards that they intended to have the horse ridden back in the field from the wide gate today. The horse was ridden accordingly.

Glacial Miss (J. Taylor) was slow to jump.

Approaching the 1000m, Troopingthecolour (B. El-Issa) and Benefaction (L. Rolls) were severely crowded and raced in restricted room inside of Show A Lion Heart (L. Cassidy), which was tightened for room by What Happenedhenry (J. Byrne) when that horse had a tendency to lay in and away from Listen Son (S. Bogenhuber), which shifted in away from Night Escort (J. Holder).

Bearing in mind the racing manners of Listen Son and What Happenedhenry, stewards took no further action other than to remind J. Byrne and S. Bogenhuber of their obligations to make every endeavour to ensure their fellow riders are provided with the racing room to which they are entitled.

Approaching the first turn, Glacial Miss (J. Taylor) got its head up when racing in restricted room inside Lochiel, which was inclined to lay in.

Zanzi (M. Palmer), Show A Lion Heart (L. Cassidy) and What Happenedhenry (J. Byrne) all raced wide in the middle stages.

L. Rolls, rider of Benefaction, pleaded guilty to a charge of careless riding, in that near the 200m he permitted his mount to shift out when insufficiently clear of Night Escort, which in turn was taken out on to Zanzi (M. Palmer), resulting in both horses being cramped for room between Lochiel (J. Wood) and Benefaction and consequently having to be checked. L. Rolls was suspended from riding in races for a period covered by 8 meetings, to commence at midnight, 31 March and to expire at midnight, 14 April 2010.

Glacial Miss was held up for clear running rounding the home turn and did not get clear until approaching the 100m and when clear ran home well.

Leaving the 300m, Lochiel (J. Wood), which had been held up on the heels of Zanzi (M. Palmer), shifted out to improve and made contact with Dienekes (P. Hammersley).

When questioned regarding the disappointing performance of Show A Lion Heart, L. Cassidy explained that the horse seemed to resent being crowded in the early stages of the race and despite racing three wide with cover near the 700m, the horse was inclined to lay in and did not finish the race off as expected.

Trainer S. Lee stated that the horse had pleased him in its preparation for today's race and despite not having a run for over a month, he was confident that Show A Lion Heart would race well. A post-race veterinary examination of Show A Lion Heart failed to reveal any significant abnormalities.

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