Beethoven has stormed into Karrakatta Plate calculations, winning an epic Perth Stakes (1100m) at Ascot this afternoon.
The Dan Morton-trained gelding overcame the previously unbeaten Jericho Missile in a titanic struggle between the pair down the Ascot straight.
Jericho Missile was an easing favourite for today's Listed event, while Beethoven was the best backed runner in the race.
Jockey Shaun O'Donnell sent Jericho Missile straight to the lead from barrier five, while Beethoven settled to his outside.
It took all of the home straight, but Beethoven was able to wear down Jericho Missile by a 1/2 head.
Divide The Sea and Dig Deep fought on gamely, but were well beaten in third and fourth respectively.
Morton said he was relieved to get a blacktype win, after what had been a trying period.
"I've been a little bit out of form of late," he said.
"Halfway down the straight I thought 'don't tell me it's going to kick back and get us again'.
"He's an above average horse.
"Two weeks time we've got a live chance in the Karrakatta, so it's exciting."
The traditional lead-up to the Karrakatta Plate is the Perth Stakes which was taken out by Beethoven - hear from today’s beaten brigade here... #TheRacesWA @PerthRacing #Ascot pic.twitter.com/hSWa1uZqXK— The Races WA (@theracesWA) March 23, 2019