While jockey Hugh Bowman won four races at Warwick Farm today, his win on Monton in the $175,000 Villiers Stakes (1600m) flattered the horse more than the hoop.
Monton from the disastrous barrier 18, travelled four wide without cover throughout but powered to the line to pick up the second Group 2 victory of his career.
He won the 2010 Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill before his form tapered off in early and mid 2011 before a turnaround in the past month.
The Ron Quinton-trained gelding was coming an impressive win in the Listed Festival Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill when ridden by apprentice Sam Clipperton but the draw had punters looking elsewhere.
Erewhon led the Villiers field from Zara Dancer with Viva Las three wide without cover.
Camped behind them was Miss Keepsake with Josh Adams aboard.
Adams pushed Miss Keepsake from the 600m and hit the front before the turn.
Bowman urged Monton along with Kontiki Park, a length away, widest at the turn after being last.
At the 100m, Monton joined Miss Keepsake and went to the line to beat Kontiki Park still that length away.
Nash Rawiller on King Lionheart was blocked for a run in the straight and finished well in the final 100m to snatch third.
Favoured runners Lightinthenite was close enough but outsprinted while Victorian Shadowfax was always well back.
“The horse has gone the right way, paraded well today and remained calm and cool,” Quinton said about Monton.
“He didn’t have a lot of joy in the run but overcame it.
“He might have turned the corner again this horse.
“Hughie was an apprentice to me when he came down (from Dunedoo, NSW) and we have remained very close friends.”
Bowman earlier in the day had ridden Straight Albert to win the Jim Beam Hcp (1600m) and News Alert to win the Listed Razor Sharp Hcp (1200m) and the last race on $31 chance Eight Bills in the Big 6 Hcp (1000m) – he now leads the Sydney premiership with 31 winners.
Bowman spoke of the horror many believe when a horse is caught wide.
“It throws all that garbage out the window doesn’t it,” he said with a smile.
“What do you do, go back to last or try and get a spot.
“I got caught wide with no cover.
” I had the punters in one ear saying you should have left the kid on (Clipperton) and Ronnie in the other ear saying just do what you think is right son.
“I just rated the horse and he gave a great kick, it was a great effort.
“I held onto him until I had to go.
“I felt I had a couple of lengths in hand and that was enough.
“To be honest, it is just great to win a race for Ronnie.
“He has been the most important part (of my life) of anyone in the racing industry.
“Not only a great mentor but a great friend.
“He (Monton) deserves a chance at a Group 1.”
Quinton will spell Monton and bring him back for the 2012 $1m Doncaster Hcp (1600m) on April 21.
|1||2||MONTON||Ron Quinton||Hugh Bowman||15||58kg||$12|
|2||12||KONTIKI PARK (NZ)||Gai Waterhouse||Brenton Avdulla||1.3L||13||52kg||$14|
|3||1||KING LIONHEART||Gai Waterhouse||Nash Rawiller||1.4L||2||58kg||$14|
|4||11||MISS KEEPSAKE (NZ)||Joseph Pride||Josh Adams (a)||1.7L||11||52kg||$31|
|5||14||LIGHTINTHENITE||John O’Shea||Christian Reith||2.1L||7||52kg||$5F|
|6||5||ALEXANDER OF HALES (USA)||Chris Waller||Peter Robl||2.9L||14||54kg||$61|
|7||10||FIBRILLATION||Tim Martin||Corey Brown||4.6L||10||52kg||$7.50|
|8||8||NEW DAY RISING||Gary Portelli||Chad Schofield (a)||4.7L||5||53kg||$6.50|
|9||4||ALTERED BOY||Chris Waller||Danny Nikolic||6.4L||12||54.5kg||$26|
|10||6||EREWHON||Peter Snowden||Tommy Berry||6.9L||8||54kg||$14|
|11||13||TINDAL||Wendy Roche||Sam Clipperton (a)||7.4L||3||52kg||$101|
|12||3||SHADOWFAX (NZ)||Mark Kavanagh||Glyn Schofield||10.5L||6||55kg||$6|
|13||15||VIVA LAS||Neville & Christopher Voigt||Daniel Ganderton||11L||16||52kg||$26|
|14||9||LEBRECHAUN||Matthew Dale||Brendan Ward||12.8L||4||52.5kg||$41|
|15||16||WITHOUT COMPROMISE||Kevin Moses||Ms Kathy O’Hara||13L||1||52kg||$41|
|16||7||ZARA DANCER (NZ)||Jim & Greg Lee||Adam Hyeronimus (a)||28.5L||9||54kg||$15|
|19||STRAIGHT ALBERT||Guy Walter||Scr||0|
|18||CODE WORD||John Marzol||Scr||0|
|17||MY DESTINY||Con Karakatsanis||Scr||0|