An outstanding ride from Damian Browne helped Tinto record an emotional victory in the 2016 Magic Millions Trophy at the Gold Coast this afternoon.
Tim Bell, who tragically passed away in Singapore in November, was the regular rider of Tinto and he steered the classy mare to victory in the Magic Millions Trophy last year and Browne was desperate to pay tribute to his departed friend with a victory in the $1 million race.
Browne elected to settle Tinto on the rail just behind the leading group in the early stages of the Magic Millions Trophy, but it was his decision to take the Queensland Oaks winner off the rail at the top of the straight that proved to be the winning move.
Feltre charged at Tinto late and Browne was unsure whether Tinto had held on, but the emotional jockey felt that Bell may have played a part in getting the Red Dazzler mare the victory.
“I wasn’t sure if I got there or not and I certainly got some help from above from Tinker,” Browne said.
“Timmy had a long association with this mare and it was just great to get it for him.
“Hopefully we will be able to share some memories over the next few minutes.
“I got a great run throughout, but I hit the front a little too soon and Feltre really came at me hard.
“I think it was the big fella upstairs that got me over the line in the last bit.”
Trainer Rex Lipp was quick to pay credit to the ride of Browne and he agreed that Bell had played some role in the final stages of the Magic Millions Trophy.
Tinto performed credibly in two race starts during the 2015 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival and Lipp confirmed that she would head south again for another autumn campaign.
“I sent him out there and said ‘look, you know the mare, you have ridden her and you know what to do’ and he couldn’t have rode her any better,” Lipp said.
“It was a perfect ride – 10 out of 10.
“As Damian said, this one is for Timmy and I am sure Tim was up there helping us.
“She got a terrific run, a terrific ride and she is a great mare.
“She never knows when to lie down, she is just a big trier and it was just a great effort.
“Autumn is coming up.”
Feltre started the race as a massive outsider, but was almost able to get the job done, while Centre Pivot was blocked for a run at the top of the straight before he made up ground late to finish third.