In-form sprinter Heart Testa has continued his impressive campaign at Royal Randwick this afternoon; kicking well in the final straight to beat a talented field to the line in the Group 3 Southern Cross Stakes (1200m).
Jumping from the gates well, Heart Testa was immediately pushed towards the front of the pack by jockey Jason Collett, setting a scintillatingly-fast pace away from the barriers alongside noted pacers Driefontein, Territory and Happy Galaxy.
Settling on the heels of Happy Galaxy rounding onto the final straight, the Testa Rossa gelding displayed an exceptional turn of foot when offered a clear line; hitting the front with 200m to run an extending to comfortably beat home Driefontein; Territory maintaining position for third.
Trainer Chris Waller was understandably pleased with Heart Testa’s performance for victory in the 2015 Southern Cross Stakes and immediately credited Collett with finding an ideal racing line for the five-year-old.
“A bit of residual fitness there,” Waller said.
“He covered a bit of ground but I’m just a bit concerned that might be the place to be.
“He (Jason Collett) just kept him balanced and kept the horse interested and he strode up. When the horse if going for it, let him go for it. He put the winning break on them and held them off.
“Even going back to Canterbury a few starts ago it was a good race and he got back and ran home. Both races were 1200m and very similar, so I think that’s the key to him.”
Collett delivered an exceptional performance on Heart Testa for success in the 2015 Southern Cross Stakes, but revealed his plan was not always to settle where he did from jump.
“I would have been comfortable down there on the inside but we just couldn’t get across,” Collett said immediately after dismounting.
“He was comfortable and relaxed and it was a good win.
“Its been a bit of a topsy-turvy sort of prep, he’s shown really good runs but good to put one on him here today.”
Heart Testa has now claimed an impressive eight wins and seven minor place finishes over his 23 competitive start career.