Talented gelding Amorino has continued his competitive run in 2015 at Flemington this afternoon; displaying a keen turn of foot late to take out the Group 3 TAB Rewards Stakes (1400m) by half a length.
Jumping from the gates well, jockey Craig Williams elected to settle Amorino at the tail of the small field of six; allowing early leaders Hard Stride, Gracious Prospect and Tougher Than Ever to set the pace.
Finding the final straight with plenty to do, the son of Snitzel steadily worked forward before exploding over the final 200m; locking in a late sprint battle with Aeronautical before hitting the line in the clear; Gracious Prospect running on for third.
Williams delivered a typically strong ride on Amorino for success in the TAB Rewards Stakes and was quick to lay the praise on trainer Archie Alexander.
“It’s nearly a day to the year since he won his last race,” Williams said.
“Credit to the trainer – Archie’s done a great job and he’s only just kicked off.
“He really got to know this horse after only a few runs with him.
“It was nice to get this old boy over and he won a really nice handicap race today.”
Alexander was understandably pleased with Amorino’s success in the TAB Rewards Stakes; a result which figures as both his first Group-level success as a trainer and win on the Flemington course.
“I thought he’d run really well, he’s just been showing all the right signs at home,” Alexander said.
“He’s very fresh, we’ve jumped him a bit, kept him sweet and I think just a great ride from Craig; just took his time and did exactly what we wanted him to.
“He’s a bit of a timid horse, he likes to come out wide and he’s just done it perfectly.
“We’ve got 30 in work and just nice to break my Flemington duck and Group duck, so just waiting for it.”
Given little chance of success despite the small field, Amorino was rated an outside $11 chance to win the TAB Rewards Stakes.