The win of longshot Talent Show in the Group 2 $500,000 Golden River Developments Perth Cup (2400m) at Ascot yesterday might have surprised most, but didn’t surprise trainer Graeme Ballantyne.
Talent Show started at the juicy odds of $31 only after gaining a start when race fancy Chester Road was forced out with a leg injury, allowing the first emergency into the field.
The six year old had been out of the winner’s stall for almost twelve months, but Ballantyne was more than happy with the mares last start fourth to Mr Moet at weight for age in the Group 2 $225,000 LD Total – C.B. Cox Stakes (2100m) at Ascot on December 22.
“It was a really good run at weight-for-age, which is not her caper,” Ballantyne said.
“Earlier in her campaign she had bad draws and was caught wide in running.”
Ballantyne and winning jockey Jarrad Noske both celebrated their biggest win with Talent Show’s Perth Cup victory with the mare appreciating the step up to the 2400m.
Being by Melbourne Cup winner Jeune, Talent Show was bred to handle a staying trip and Noske wasn’t that surprised when the six year old let down in the straight after having a good run mid race.
“Everything was just working out so good. She got a bit cluttered up but I just couldn’t believe she was travelling so well going into it,” Noske said.
“I didn’t know she was going to let down that well but she had such a good turn of foot.”
Noske brought Talent Show from fourth last on the home and weaved his way through the field to overhaul $3.50 favourite Mr Moet who started to labour under the 59kg to score by three quarters of a length with $11 chance Global Flirt a further three quarters of a length back in third spot.
Noske regards the Perth Cup win on his home soil a bigger thrill than riding super mare Black Caviar to her first two wins at the beginning of her illustrious career.
“It’s a bigger thrill winning a hometown cup than winning on Black Caviar,” Noske said
Noske was permitted to ride Talent Show 1kg over weight at 54kg and was glad he didn’t waste to take off the extra kilo.
“It wasn’t that bad making the weight,” Noske said.
“I just wanted to be strong. On 53 I wouldn’t have been as strong and it worked out anyway.”
The top Western Australian jockey will have plenty of time to celebrate the win after stewards suspended him for careless riding after causing interference to Moonlight Bay at the 225m in the Perth Cup and handed him an eighteen day suspension to commence after riding at Pinjarra on January 6 and to expire at midnight on January 24.