Talented sprinter General Truce will be set for a Group 1 campaign during the 2014 Melbourne Festival Of Racing after winning the Listed Kensington Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on Saturday.
General Truce was returning to the races for the first time since he finished ninth in the Group 2 Caulfield Sprint (1100m) during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival and survived a protest from Damien Oliver on Pocket Rockets to score a brave win in the $120,000 race.
The Brief Truce gelding has now recorded four wins from seven starts on the 1000 metre course down the famous Flemington straight and trainer Ricky Maund said that he was confident his star galloper would win the Kensington Stakes – despite starting the race at the lucrative odds of $16.
“We just keep him happy and fresh and he loves the straight here at Flemington so I though he had a pretty good chance,” Maund said after the race.
“He is a good horse and he is always under the radar.
“The barrier was a query but Andrew Mallyon rode him perfectly.”
General Truce is yet to have any success in five starts at Group 1 level, with his eighth place finishes in both the 2010 Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) and the 2011 Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) his best performances, but Maund plans on giving the six-year-old another opportunity at the highest level of racing in both the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on February 15 and the Oakleigh Plate at Caulfield a week later.
“I’ll set him for the Lightning Stakes and Oakleigh Plate, keep him fresh,” Maund said.
“Then we may go back for another crack at the Group 3 McKay Stakes (1100m) and Group 1 Goodwood Handicap (1200m) in Adelaide.”
General Truce has now recorded four wins at black type level following his victories in the 2009 Group 3 Maribyrnong Plate (1000m), 2012 Listed 50 Years Fashions On The Field (1000m), 2013 McKay Stakes before his Kensington Stakes win on Saturday.
Maund is chasing his first win at Group 1 level since star mare Gold Edition scored a narrow victory in the 2007 edition of the Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley.