With a gutsy run in Friday’s Broadley & Haydon Benchmark 58 Handicap (2100 metres) Lauri Wray’s big grey Go One More ($3.60) delighted punters at Towac Park, holding off a fast-finishing Prospector’s Helmet ($18) to score a third career win.
Wray’s five-year-old, who even she admits “wasn’t blessed with the most ability”, pushed to the front of the field rounding the turn for home and showed plenty of courage in the straight, finding an extra effort late to edge out Peter Green’s outsider by less than half a length.
“He’s a stable favourite,” Wray, based at Warwick Farm, said of the grey.
“He’s like the old pony around the stables. He’s massive, but he’s quiet as a lamb.
“[Jockey Shaun Guymer] rode him a treat, he gave him every chance to win because we thought he might be a bit soft going in [on Friday].
“We’ll have a look and see what’s around for him, we’ll just see how he gets over [this win]. I’ve always wanted to try him over one of those 2800-metre races at Canterbury though.”
Dar Lunn’s Duoro ($7) did well to finish third and the two Orange hopes in Lee Van Den Bos’ Cat Walk Queen and Michael Plummer’s Le Boss ran fifth and seventh respectively, with Greg Hook’s Ophaeo Rose finishing a distant last.
The Rylstone trainer confirmed after the race that Friday’s run is set to be his seven-year-old’s penultimate race, before she’s retired.
The mare’s developed into somewhat of a cult hero in recent times thanks to her battler status, she’s now had 41 starts for just one placing and zero wins.
She was far from disgraced on Friday though despite finishing five lengths back from Le Boss because, as Hook said, she just needs more distance.
Love a big grey. Lauri Wray's Go One More scores a gutsy win in @RacingOrange1's fifth... but for me it's overshadowed by the announcement of last-placed Ophaeo Rose's pending retirement. Her 42nd start - for one placing and zero wins - will be her last. #TheBattlersPrincesspic.twitter.com/kgWLr2grZy— Matt Findlay (@MRFindlay24) November 9, 2018
Ophaeo Rose put some pace into the contest and pushed to the front at the 600 mark, but fell off the pace in the straight.
“Normally she sits back but we thought we’d try something different [on Friday] and try and get a bit of a head start, but really, she’s a 2700-3000 horse,” Hook said.
“There just isn’t enough long races for her out here. You look at the placing she ran (at Gunnedah in October), she was beaten by two lengths there and looked really good over 2700.
“So, you know, at the end of the day what do you with them at the end of the day? I bred this little mare and she’s never been a drama at all, she’s never had any issues so I’m thinking I’ll try and get a foal out of her.
“I wasn’t actually going to bring her [to Orange], we were going to finish up after her last start at Scone but I had this and one more planned, so she’ll have that run and then we’ll put her out to stud.”
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