Yulong Prince bounced back to the winner’s circle on Saturday, much to the delight of punters that backed him at $11.00 to win the Group 1 Kennedy Cantala (1600m) at Flemington.
After winning the Coolmore two races prior, Chris Waller earned himself a double with the South African import, largely thanks to a well-timed ride from Damian Lane.
In what turned out to be a fast run race, Lane chose to track Nonconformist into the final turn before daylight opened up down the middle of the straight.
Yulong Prince’s last win came at Flemington this time last year in the Listed Derby Day Plate (1800m), but with two strong runs to his name to begin his prep, Lane always thought he was a chance.
“His first two runs this prep were brilliant and he looked like he was peaking for the third-up 1600m today” Lane told racing.com.
The hot tempo set by Buffalo River suited Yulong Prince perfectly in the end as the pair managed to hold off a late charge from Cascadian over the final goings.
“I didn’t step that great, so from there I really needed some tempo and got a nice track into it and he really let rip off that tempo” Lane added.
“I got the to the front quite early and I could hear Olly’s yelling, it’s a very distinguishing voice coming from behind me and normally when you hear it he gets you. It was good that he knuckled down for the win.”
Yulong Prince was a Group 1 winner in South Africa before venturing to Australia last year and may have been well over the odds in Saturday’s market considering.
Waller chose to race with the blinkers on in his last start when fourth in the Epsom Handicap, while his first-up run when second in the Chelmsford was just as encouraging.
Cascadian did well for second in the end, while Rock once again turned in another brave effort for third.
The complete Kennedy Cantala finishing order can be viewed by clicking here.