Habibi Inta and Blair Orange take the 4YO Ruby. Photo: Trish Dunell.
You have to bring your best manners to win a trotting race, especially at the Harness Jewels, and that rung true in the 4YO at Cambridge when hot favourite Enghien gave punters a blood nose.
The even-money favourite gave punters a scare when he galloped in the score-up, only to be saved by a false start when Australian visitor Dance Craze was adversely affected.
Driver Ricky May opted to go to the outside for the re-run, but the horse ‘sold the farm’ once again, spoiling his chances.
Second favourite Habibi Inta was the benefactor, receiving an uninterrupted run in the lead position for driver Blair Orange.
He held nicely in the run to the line, stopping the clock in 1.56.5 from a gallant Izmok, who trailed, and an unlucky Dance Craze, who flashed home for third after being held up.
Master trainer of trotters, Paul Nairn, prepares Habibi Inta and says a lot of the credit has to go to Orange for the horse’s resurgence this season after a flat three-year-old campaign.
“He was just sort of goofing around last season and wasn’t really trying too hard.
“But Blair has never knocked him around and has always looked after the horse.
“It’s paid dividends today; I’m over the moon, this is fantastic.”
Even when Enghien galloped, Nairn wasn’t too confident, despite his horse drawing one and having won its last three in a row.
“Im not a person that gets really confident. I always worry about this and that.
“But the horse was generally eating well and seemed well, so I was hoping for the best.”