Talented sprinter Chautauqua has produced a typically scintillating late turn of foot at Flemington Racecourse this afternoon to continue his unbeaten Spring Carnival campaign in the Group 2 Gilgai Stakes (1200m).
Chautauqua was rated clear favourite to beat the talented field of ten in the 2015 Gilgai Stakes and did his chances of success no harm whatsoever when jumping from the gates well and settling into a good tempo.
Allowing early leaders Earthly Tiger, Scarlet Billows and Thermal Current a healthy start through the early stages of the race, jockey Dwayne Dunn remained patient on the classy son of Encosta De Lago almost to the point where the horse appeared to be blocked for a run and with too much to do.
In what has become the standard through recent seasons however, Dunn weaved the five-year-old between runners before asking for an extra effort; Chautauqua immediately responding and producing a huge late effort to hit the line comfortably ahead of Delectation; Knoydart boxing on for third.
Dunn delivered another perfectly-timed performance aboard Chautauqua for success in the 2015 Gilgai Stakes and was quick to lay all the praise on the horse after crossing the line.
“I was just looking to come in behind Churchill Dancer and get some cover and he switched off well, but then mid-race they sort of steadied up a bit,” Dunn said.
“I half thought about coming back another half-length and going to his outside and getting clean air.
“I thought if I came back a length, they get away from me a length and we probably get beaten so to his credit I had to smash him in between them.
“I know what he can do and we know how good he’s going. Although today wasn’t very pretty we go the job done.”
Co-trainer Wayne Hawkes has on hand for Chautauqua’s win in the 2015 Gilgai Stakes and confirmed a trip abroad for the 2015 Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) in December remains the major target for the grey this time.
“It was all pretty good,” Hawkes said after the race.
“Chautauqua is Chautauqua and once he gets a clear run he runs home in probably some pretty silly times that not many horses can do.
“He can sit and sprint. The good horses have a great turn of foot and he’s just got a ridiculously good turn of foot.
“There’s obviously the Darley Classic and the race at Moonee Valley (Manikato Stakes) in a couple of weeks, but we’re trying to get to Hong Kong for the big one so whatever fits in going really well for that.”
In taking out the 2015 Gilgai Stakes, Chautauqua has now posted an impressive eight wins and six minors through only sixteen competitive starts.