The 2014 T J Smith Stakes results is a winner for Lankan Rupee who scored a runaway win in the Group 1 $2.5m weight for age sprint at Randwick today.
Trainer Mick Price’s new sprinting sensation Lankan Rupee gave nothing else a chance and had the race under his control from the time the gates flew back.
Today’s win was Lankan Rupee’s third successive Group 1 victory this Autumn after taking out the 1 $400,000 Sportingbet Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield and the $1m Lexus Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington.
Craig Newitt was back aboard Lankan Rupee today after missing the winning ride in the Newmarket when he elected to ride stablemate Samaready but repeated their Oakleigh Plate performance with a clear cut two lengths win.
Newitt had Lankan Rupee on the bit coming to the home turn with multiple Group 1 winner Buffering laying down the challenge but when the top Melbourne jockey left the giant gelding go at the top of the rise then the winning cheque was already in the mail.
Lankan Rupee ($3.80 favourite) rolled back to the inside fence but was still able to race away from Rebel Dane ($9) who made ground late to knock out Buffering ($10) for second.
Price said that he was a little bit worried after drawing barrier one on the heavy track but in the end he had nothing to worry about.
“I just left it up to Craig,” Price said.
“It was not our plan to lead Buffering, but that’s what the good jockeys do, they make their own decisions in the Group 1s, that’s what he did and he had the horse underneath him.”
“Craig backs himself now. I think he has come of age, the horse has come of age.”
Today’s win in the T J Smith Stakes has cemented Lankan Rupee’s position as the number one sprinter in the world and Newitt believes that the four year old could go anywhere in the world to defend his title.
“I truly believe that he could go anywhere in the world now and be dominant,” Newitt said.
Newitt said that Lankan Rupee didn’t feel all that comfortable on the very heavy track but he was a class about the rest of the field on a very gloomy wet day at Randwick on the first day of “The Championships’.