The outsider of the field Anton En Avant scored a huge boilover in winning the Group 3 $125,000 Ascot Green Chairman’s Handicap (2000m) at Doomben today.
The Stephen Lee trained Anton En Avant was sent out at the long odds of $151 but that didn’t affect his performance or the effort of winning jockey Matt McGillivray who drove the eight year old up along the inside to knock off the more fancied runners.
Runner up Lovani ($12) loomed up to be called the winner but was nutted on the line by Anton En Avant with Rising Red ($7) also running on for third.
The $3.60 favourite Goathland had a horror run and was never closer than three wide for the entire trip and failed to figure in the finish and tailed off last.
Anton En Avant was stepping up in distance following his last start thirteenth over 1600m in the Listed $100,000 Tails Stakes at Doomben on April 21 and Lee said that the longer journey helped him today but he will still be better suited over more ground and will be set for the Listed $175,000 Scott McMahon Electrical Caloundra Cup over 2400m at the Sunshine Coast on June 30.
“He is plain, he is small, he is exactly like me, he has a lot of heart,” Lee said.
“You probably think I am a mug but I was fairly confident when Matt put a couple on him. Since I have been at the Coast this horse has just improved out of sight training him there on a bigger track.”
“I was just trying to get miles into his legs for the Caloundra Cup because he will run 2600m. Doomben is probably not his track, but he won a few here so we will take this.”