Popular gelding Lightinthenite has justified his resounding favouritism in the nation’s top-end on Monday evening; producing a monumental turn of foot to take out the 2015 Darwin Cup (2000m) by an incredible nine lengths.
Jumping from the gates well, leading Sydney-based jockey Hugh Bowman settled Lightinthenite in prime position on the heels of the races early leaders who set a reasonable tempo over the back straight and approaching the bend at Fannie Bay.
Pressing forward upon rounding onto the final straight, the Galileo gelding immediately responded when asked for an extra effort by Bowman; never appearing troubled when continuing to open the gap and savaging the line; taking the race comfortably ahead of Royal Request and 2014 champion Pretty Blonde.
Bowman delivered a typically polished ride for success in the Darwin Cup on Lightinthenite and was quick to lay the praise on both his talented mount and the training efforts of Gary Clarke in the success.
“I was on the superior horse, all credit to Gary Clarke for turning him out in such magnificent fashion,” Bowman said after the race.
“He was a class horse in Sydney, I rode him a little bit as a young horse for the John O’Shea stable.
“He’s always had a high cruising speed and it actually brought him undone a little bit on the grass but he’s a lovely dirt horse.
“I’m a country boy at heart and to come up here really does top off a wonderful season for me.”
Clarke was understandably thrilled with Lightinthenite’s performance for success in the 2015 Darwin Cup but revealed he was slightly worried when the gelding took the lead a long way from the post.
“It’s pretty tricky to get a horse ready first-up for a mile and then second-up to 2000,” Clarke said.
“You’re always nervous when you see them hit the front like that so far out but when you looked behind them and nothing else is chasing, he’s just got to maintain to win but he didn’t just maintain he hit the line full of running.”
In taking out the 2015 Darwin Cup, Lightinthenite has now posted an impressive eight wins and six minors through 33 competitive starts; undefeated in two appearances this time.
Punters who backed Lightinthenite with leading online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au have been paid out on generous $3.10 odds for success!
2015 Darwin Cup Results
|1||3||LIGHTINTHENITE||Gary Clarke||Hugh Bowman||–||7||60kg||$3F|
|2||10||ROYAL REQUEST||Neil Dyer||Raymond Vigar (a)||9L||9||54kg||$6|
|3||7||PRETTY BLONDE||Kym Healy||Justin Potter||9.5L||10||54kg||$21|
|4||4||BOLTON (NZ)||Neil Dyer||Wayne Kerford||11L||3||54.5kg||$31|
|5||6||THE RUFFIAN||Sheila Arnold||Carl Spry||13.5L||5||54.5kg||$10|
|6||13e||KAYNO||Kerry Petrick||Ms Felicia Bergstrand (a)||13.7L||6||54kg||$31|
|7||2||TRAVOLTA (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||Paul Shiers||14.2L||2||60.5kg||$11|
|8||11||PROVERB||Neil Dyer||Dean Holland||16L||4||54kg||$21|
|9||14e||STORM APPROACH||Gary Clarke||Brendon Davis||21L||1||54kg||$13|
|10||9||POST D’FRANCE (NZ)||Stephen Brown||Stephen Baster||31L||8||54kg||$6|
|11||5||PAYTEEVEE||Richard Laming||Paul Denton||32.3L||11||54.5kg||$41|
|12||1||GRIS CARO (GB)||Chris Nash||Andrew Mallyon||35.3L||12||61.5kg||$20|