Sir arises af­ter 18 months

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - RACING - RAY THOMAS

SIR Bac­chus, his ca­reer punc­tu­ated by a mys­tery ail­ment, ended an 18-month los­ing streak yes­ter­day.

Trainer Chris Waller com­pleted a tre­ble on his home track, Rose­hill Gar­dens, when grey geld­ing Sir Bac­chus led home a sta­ble tri­fecta in the Octagonal Hand­i­cap (1400m).

It was Sir Bac­chus’s first win since the day he scored at Moonee Val­ley dur­ing the 2016 spring car­ni­val, beat­ing sub­se­quent mul­ti­ple Group 1 win­ners, Royal Ascot-bound Red­kirk War­rior (sec­ond) and Santa Ana Lane (fourth).

But Waller said there were valid rea­sons why Sir Bac­chus had man­aged just one plac­ing in nine starts since his last win while Red­kirk War­rior and Santa Ana Lane de­vel­oped into top-class sprint­ers.

“Sir Bac­chus had some­thing, he had an is­sue we couldn’t work out,’’ Waller said.

“He was never lame but he kept los­ing weight in his hindquar­ter — and quite badly.

“That is of­ten a sign of pain but we couldn’t iden­tify any lame­ness. So, we gave him a com­plete break for six months and got him back.

“He is a dif­fer­ent horse now. That was the Sir Bac­chus of old.’’

Sir Bac­chus ($18) charged through the field to run down New Uni­verse ($9) and In­vin­z­abeel ($31) in a three-way fin­ish.

Spe­cial Mis­sile ($3.60 equal favourite) tried to lead through­out but fin­ished fourth, while an­other Waller run­ner Mis­ter Wolf fin­ished an eye-catch­ing fifth.

“He was never go­ing to win un­til the last 20m,’’ Waller said. “But Tim Clark drove him through those gaps and the horse at­tacked the line.

“This horse had put the writ­ing on the wall last start and it is good to see him back in form. Hope­fully, he can go on with it from here.’’

Crafty Cop (equal favourite) fin­ished 10th.

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