Class pacer Pachacuti overcame a 40-metre handicap to smash the track record while winning the $40,000 Easter Cup at Mowbray on Sunday night.
The Todd Rattray-trained gelding rated 1:59.6 for the 2698m to take 0.4 seconds off the old record shared by Ohoka Utah (2009) and Star Chamber (2014).
Rattray described the win as the highlight of his career.
“It’s a good feeling – I’ve always wanted to win this race,” he said.
“I can’t believe it, really.
“The horse went terrific.”
It’s a good feeling – I’ve always wanted to win this racePachacuti's trainer-driver Todd Rattray
Rattray worked around the field early to settle outside leader Black Centurian with 1-½ laps to go.
“Once he got to the death, he really wanted to run – that’s the first time he’s done that,” the driver said.
“I couldn’t hold him slow enough and he proved too strong.”
Rattray said Pachacuti would more than likely head to Sydney in the next few weeks.
“I’m not sure when; I’ll see how he pulls up,” the trainer said.
“But I think this is the best he’s been so now is probably the right time to go.”
Rattray said he hopes to take the horse himself, rather than send him to his Sydney-based brother James.
Pachacuti scored by almost three metres from outsider Isaac with another long-priced runner, Remember Joe, a short half head away third.
The winner is raced by his breeders Lyndon and Simon Dakin.
THE DRIVER of Master Paige thought he’d won and the driver of Punchinello asked to view the photo-finish print, so close was the finish to the Luxbet Racing Centre Stakes.
But they were both wrong. The race went to Animi Sub Ignis, driven by Rohan Hillier, by a short half head from Master Paige with Punchinello a half head away third.
The win continued a good weekend for Brighton trainer Brad Walters who also took out Saturday’s St Marys Cup with Le Premiere.
WESLEY VALE trainer Paul Ashwood produced another smart two-year-old to win the Island Block Pace – but not the one that most punters wanted.
Ashwood’s first-starter Miracle Marcus ($4.50) led all the way to easily beat his more-fancied stablemate Krafty Boy ($2 fav).
Miracle Marcus is a full brother to WhereIbylong, a winner of 20 races and $448,000.
PUNTERS were soon back on track, thanks to Gareth Rattray.
The leading reinsman landed a confident plunge when he led all the way on Tiz A Jamane ($2.50 into $1.80) in the Mitavite Stakes.
He then stormed home from near-last to narrowly win the Longford Equine Pace on Jaccka Len who paid $3.30 on the tote but was backed into $2.60 in fixed-odds markets.