Leading Sydney hoop Hugh Bowman steered Sebring Sun in the Tab.Com.Au Handicap (1200m) at Canterbury this afternoon to secure his third Sydney Jockey’s Premiership.
Sebring Sun was returning to the races for the first time since he finished fifth behind Exosphere in the Group 2 Skyline Stakes (1200m) at Warwick Farm on February 28 and he was settled towards the tail of the field by Bowman in the early stages of the race.
The Sebring colt was sent to the extreme outside of the Canterbury track coming around the final bend and he showed impressive acceleration to storm home late and finish over the top of the Chris Waller-trained duo of Montauk and Metallic Crown.
Bowman was confident that Sebring Sun had a clear class edge over his rivals heading into the event at Canterbury this afternoon and he was happy that the rising three-year-old had been able to get the job done.
“I could have pressed forward on him, but he reacted really well in a recent barrier trial when he was ridden quietly and even from the wide draw I thought I would be further back than I would have been from a better draw, but I just wanted to get him relaxed and in a rhythm,” Bowman said.
“He had an obvious class edge on his rivals here today and he didn’t let anybody down.
Sebring Sun was sent for the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) at the start of his 2015 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival campaign, but he was unable to make it to the race after failing to win in the Place Multi Plate (1000m) at Royal Randwick on January 24 and the Listed Lonhro Plate (1100m) at Royal Randwick on February 14.
Bowman believes that Sebring Sun still has the talent to compete at Group level and he feels that a race like the Group 1 Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill Gardens on September 12 is not beyond the Gary Portelli-trained colt.
“He has proven that he is up to that level and it is more about getting him on track than anything else,” Bowman said.
“Gary and the team identified this race as a starting point and I am sure that they will be very pleased.”
The win was Bowman’s 95th metropolitan victory of the season and that put him four and a half wins clear of rival Blake Shinn in the race for the Sydney Jockey’s Premiership while the other contender James McDonald was stood down from the rest of his rides at Canterbury due to the flu.
The premiership is Bowman’s third after previously taking out the title in 2008/2009 and 2011/2012.