Peaceful (Matt Cameron) proves too strong for Cyber Attack and Sol Invictus in the Auckland Futurity Stakes.
From the time last month that the Ssangyong Auckland Futurity Stakes was first carded, horses from the Murray Baker/Andrew Forsman stable have dominated discussions.
The Listed 1400-metre two-year-old race is normally contested at Ellerslie but with track renovations at northern headquarters it was initially transferred to Pukekohe on May 26. A week of wet weather forced a further transfer to the Auckland Racing Club meeting at Te Rapa last Sunday, but with that meeting being abandoned after just two races, it was a case of third time lucky under sunny skies at the same venue today.
The one constant has been the Baker/Forsman factor, and so it proved at the business end of today’s race as Savabeel filly Peaceful proved too strong with a two-length win over Cyber Attack and Sol Invictus.
The only factor that did change was that the Baker/Forsman-trained Ole Ole, who had been pre-post favourite for the two postponed races, was able to finish fourth. Punters got it right, however, backing Peaceful into $2.40 favouritism.
Peaceful had shown promise in her first preparation and returned from a break to put together a brace of seconds, the most recent of them behind Secret Allure in the Listed Berkley Stud Champagne Stakes at Riccarton five weeks ago.
She paraded today looking very bright despite being one of several candidates to have fronted up fruitlessly in recent weeks and capitalised on a clever ride from Matt Cameron.
From gate five in the eight-horse field, Cameron settled Peaceful in the body of the field and kept her away from the inside while maintaining a close eye on his rivals. He sent her forward approaching the home turn and had her in a challenging position as the field balanced up.
Sol Invictus had taken the lead after 300 metres and was still right in the frame, as was Cyber Attack, but the filly carrying the JML Bloodstock colours was too strong. At the line Peaceful held a two-length margin over Cyber Attack, with another half-length to Sol Invictus.
Ole Ole, who had been forced to position on the rail from his inside barrier, was a well beaten fourth eight lengths from his stablemate.
“Across the top I could see Ole Ole back on the inside and I knew I had the advantage,” said Cameron after yet another feature win for the country’s champion stable.
Two races later Baker and Forsman took their record tally to 126 wins when last-start maiden winner Rippin made the step up to Rating 65 grade with a photo-finish win over stablemate Not Usual Prince.