Kiwi stayer Sir Charles Road put himself into Sydney Cup contention with a tough win in the Group 2 $300,000 Schweppes Chairman’s Quality (2600m) on day one of The Championships at Randwick today.
The Lance O’Sullivan and Andrew Scott trained Sir Charles Road was solid in the betting at $7 and thanks to a gem of a ride from Blake Shinn was able to outstay runner up Ventura Storm ($11) in the run to the line.
The John O’Shea trained Peribsen ($11) was also strong to the line to fill third spot.
Shinn settled Sir Charles Road in the middle of the pack and found a passage though the field to find the front coming down the rise and then the four year old showed his good staying qualities by fighting off the challenge of the runner up Ventura Storm.
Former champion Kiwi jockey Lance O’Sullivan was at Randwick and said that today’s win gave him a heap of confidence heading to next week’s Group 1 $2m Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m) at Randwick.
“What a super ride,” O’Sullivan said.
“It was just ten out of ten.”
“(The Sydney Cup) that’s the plan. It was sort of after he ran in the Auckland Cup, he ran particularly well that day so we thought let’s have a crack. He certainly showed that he was up to having a go.”
“He is fortunate he is one of those of fast staying types, he puts himself into a good posy and he has a kick.”
“Doing what he did today we would be very keen to push on for next week.”
The Chris Waller trained Alward was sent out as the $4.80 favourite for the Chairman’s Quality but never threatened to finish in sixth place.
Sir Charles Road has firmed into $9 from $51 for the Sydney Cup with Ladbrokes.com.au while Chairman’s Quality runner up Ventura Storm is now a $16 Sydney Cup chance.