Cambridge trainer Stephen Marsh maintained the winning roll he has been on of late when he produced the quinella in the feature race at Te Rapa on Saturday, the Listed Legacy Lodge Sprint (1200m).
Punters had expected Run To Perfection to be the leading light for Marsh however it was stablemate Raposa Rapida who threw everyone a curveball when he sat wide throughout before holding out the late charge of Run To Perfection to take out the event.
The seven-year-old was having his first run since finishing sixth behind Run To Perfection at the venue back in May and showed plenty of fight to record his seventh career victory.
Marsh, who had expected a good run from both horses, admitted he was a little surprised at the final result.
“I just thought Raposa might need it a bit, while Run To Perfection had two runs under his belt,” he said.
“I was very happy with them both but when we drew wide with Raposa I did think that Run To Perfection was most likely my best chance.
“As it turned out the winner just refused to flinch off a wide run, whereas the other guy didn’t quite get all the breaks in the run home when he needed them.”
Marsh originally had three horses nominated for the race with the thinking it may not attract a strong field.
“I did think there may not be that many that nominate for the race, so I was surprised to see such a strong field assembled in the end,” he said.
“We scratched Loose Cannon and kept the two boys in and got a terrific result.”
Marsh is undecided about the next targets for both the winner and runner-up and will allow them both to get over the race before making any plans.
“Given Raposa Rapida had such a tough trip I think a few days on the easy list will be good for him,” he said.
“I hadn’t thought too far ahead with him so will need to have a look around at what is coming up.
“He has run some ripping races throughout his career and this could be his best campaign.
“Run To Perfection is looking for 1400m now so that is where he will go for his next run, although I’m not sure where that will be just yet.”
Raced by the Go Racing Foxy Syndicate, Raposa Rapida is a son of Foxwedge and Barathea mare Bardego, which makes him a full brother to Group 1 Railway Stakes (1200m) winner Volpe Veloce.
He has now won seven of his 34 starts and over NZD$185,000 in prizemoney.