Petrology took advantage of a quick early tempo to storm home late and record an upset win from Stratum Star and Berisha in the 2014 Sandown Guineas this afternoon.
Jockey Nick Hall settled Petrology at the tail of the field in the early stages of the Sandown Guineas, while the likes of Lord Aspen and Stratum Star were caught in an early speed battle, and the patient ride paid dividends; with the Fastnet Rock colt showing an impressive turn-of-foot to run away from his rivals in the final stages of the race.
Hall admitted after the race that he was unsure whether Petrology was good enough to defeat the strong field in the Sandown Guineas, but he was thrilled with the acceleration shown by the three-year-old in the final stages of the race.
“He has a great turn-of-foot,” Hall said.
“He had to step-up in grade today and I didn’t know if he had it in him, but he has taken it to a new level.”
David Hayes said before the Sandown Guineas that the performance of Petrology would decide whether he remains a colt or is gelding and he confirmed after the race that the colt would not undergo the ultimate gear change.
The leading Melbourne trainer could not have been more impressed with the performance of Petrology in the Sandown Guineas and he believes that the $200,000 yearling is capable of competing at the highest level of racing during the 2015 Melbourne Festival Of Racing; with the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) a possible target.
“That was a win of a very good horse and a weight-for-age horse going forward,” Hayes said.
“He is certainly not getting gelded, but he was still a bit of a handful.
“Ollie rode him as a two-year-old and said that he felt like a Group 1 horse two years ago and recommended a few of his friends to go in the horse; he is not a bad horse old Ollie.
“I am really excited about him, we will put him aside now.
“He has stepped up on the biggest stage twice and he may be an Australian Guineas horse.”
Hayes and training partner Tom Dabernig have been locked in an epic battle with Darren Weir for the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival Trainers Premiership and the leading trainer was thrilled that the Sandown Guineas winner of Petrology should secure him the title.
“He (Darren Weir) just beat me the race before and I saw him in my rear vision mirror again there.
“It is not over, but it makes life a bit easier.”