Stratum Star overcame the top weight of 61 kilograms to take out the 2017 Magic Millions Trophy at the Gold Coast this afternoon.
There was little doubt that Stratum Star was the best horse in the Magic Millions Trophy field, but he was easy in betting as punters had concerns about both the big weight and the distance.
Damien Lane got Stratum Star into a lovely rhythm in the early stages of the race and got the son of Stratum off the rail to make his run at the top of the straight.
Stratum Star hit the front at the top of the straight when asked for an extra effort from Lane and he proved that 2200 metres was not an issue when he held-off the fast-finishing Feltre in the final stages of the race.
Trainer Darren Weir admitted after the race that he was concerned whether Stratum Star would be able to carry the 61 kilograms to victory and he was quick to pay credit to the magnificent ride from Lane as well as toughness of the two-time Group 1 winner.
“He got the right ride to overcome both of the concerns,” Weir said.
“He switched off nicely down the back and when he got to the outside at the top of the straight I knew that he would tough it up.
“The boys down at Warrnambool have done a great job and this horse is in great shape.
“Since Perth he has done a lot of work – he had three trials in a week there not long ago to get him up to the mark.
“He had two trials in one day and six days later another trial.
“We really had him in the right shape to be able to win this trip.”
Stratum Star looked like a horse that was past his best when he failed to fire in the Group 1 Cantala Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on October 29, but he returned to a semblance of his best form when he finished second in the Group 3 Sandown Stakes (1500m) on November 12 before he stormed home late to win the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot on December 3.
The connections of Feltre lodged a protest at the conclusion of the race and alleged that Stratum Star shifted out at the top of the straight and cost their horse momentum.
Racing Queensland stewards quickly dismissed the protest.