Kiamichi excites as Exhilarates fails to take breath away
“BREATHTAKING’’ is hardly the way to describe the run of the highly regarded Exhilarates in the opener at Rosehill Gardens but it was apparently the main factor in her defeat.
The Godolphin filly was never really a factor, finishing a clear last in the small field, making no impression up the straight to finish 3¼ lengths be- hind stablemate Kiamichi ($7.50).
Exhilarates’ rider Rachel King was quizzed by stewards immediately after the race and felt the filly’s “nervousness’’ may have played a role in her lacklustre performance.
“The only thing I can say is that right on the line she let out a big gasp of air,’’ King said. “For the first half of the race, she was a little bit tense but I thought from the 700m onwards she got into a bit more of a rhythm and was breathing properly but up the straight she’s just taken that big gasp of air.’’
Exhilarates, a $600,000 Magic Millions buy, by Snitzel out of Blue Diamond winner Samaready, was overshadowed by a home-bred Kiamichi who held on for the narrowest of wins from the Brad Widduptrained Chia ($4.80) with interstate visitor Sebrakate ($2.70) close up in third.
Godolphin clearly pulled the right rein electing to scratch Kiamichi from her scheduled Newcastle engagement yesterday to race at Rosehill.
Despite the price disparity between the Godolphin fillies, the team’s Darren Beadman felt a surge of confidence as the race drew nearer.
“She has really come on since her trial,’’ he said. “She didn’t jump with blistering speed but she gained momen- tum nicely. I thought she was going to overdo it for the first 100m but once Jay (Ford) was able to bring her back underneath him, she travelled sweet.
“She went straight as a gun barrel and it was very professional. She was very determined.
“Full credit to the team at Crown Lodge, this is our first two-year-old winner this season and hopefully there is bigger things in store for her.’’
Jay Ford gets home first on Kiamichi.