In-form miler Fierce Impact made it back to back Group 1 victories with his win in the $2m Kennedy Cantala (1600m) at Flemington today.
Fierce Impact was coming off a last start win in the Group 1 $500,000 Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield three weeks ago and today’s win gave Warwick Farm trained Mat Smith his third Group 1 winning trophy.
“The horse did a super job. I am proud of my staff. So much work has gone into him and it is good to get some pay back for some great owners that have supported us throughout the years and it is so good to give them a Group 1 on Derby Day,” Smith said.
“I was sitting on one (Group 1 win) for a while and now I have a couple in a couple of weeks against my name and it is fantastic.”
Winning jockey Craig Williams did a terrific job to get Fierce Impact into a trailing position form a wide barrier and then found space through the middle before shooting to the from at the 150m mark.
Fierce Impact ($8) had to fight hard over the concluding stages to hold off the challenges of Fifty Stars ($10) and Cascadian ($12) with less than half a length separating the first three.
Fierce Impact got the judge’s decision by a nose over Fifty Stars with Cascadian was a head away in third place.
The Lindsay Park trained Fifty Stars and stablemate and fourth placegetter So Si Bon ($31) are set to clash again next week at Flemington in the Group 1 $2m Seppelt Mackinnon Stakes (2000m).
“He (Fifty Stars) had his chance, and the winner just kept kicking back, ” Lindsay Park’s head trainer David Hayes said.
“And So Si ran a great race too. Luke (Nolen) thought he might have pressed the button a fraction early and I think they both night head towards the Mackinnon.”