Five-year-old stayer Couleur Bizarre has finally broken through for a win, at his 17th start this campaign.
The son of So Secret’s campaign started at Belmont in September, and has had no more than two weeks between his runs, and the patience of trainer Chris Stelmach paid dividends today.
With regular jockey Steven Parnham in Melbourne riding Malibu Style, Shaun Mc Gruddy was the beneficiary, and his ride was spot on.
Mc Gruddy allowed Couleur Bizarre to settle third on the fence, behind the leader Cappo D’Oro, who set a solid tempo in front.
The in-form jockey then peeled off the heels of Cappo D’Oro, and wore him down in the run to the finish, making it his fifth win from 47 starts.
Sandalwood was supported into even money favourite, but was under pressure from jockey Lucy Warwick a long way from home, and could only finish sixth.
At The Ready was a drifter in betting markets, after opening under $3 earlier in the week, and did his best work late in the race to finish fifth.
Part-owner Jerry Stelmach said the gelding was enjoying his racing, despite being so deep into a preparation.
“That was delightful,” he said.
“We changed his routine after Christmas and the new year, where we trained him out of a paddock.
“The owners kept saying ‘when is he going to the paddock’ and I said he is in the paddock.
“He’s a happy horse he’s thriving at home.”