New Zealand bred gelding Rox The Castle provided Mornington trainer Kerry Edwards with her first Flemington winner after an easy two and three quarter lengths victory in the VRC Member Michael Nicolson Handicap (1400m) at headquarters on Saturday.
Ridden by apprentice Jack Martin, Rox The Castle was prominent throughout and sprinted too well for his rivals.
“He is by Castledale and he is a similar horse to my mate Moss ‘N’ Dale and Kerry’s instructions were to just ride him like you do Mossy,” Martin said.
“We drew a nice gate and once he flew the lids, you don’t want to be dragging them back, so I was able to control the race and with the cruisy run we had, he was going to be the winner a long way out.
“Kerry is a lovely lady. She is a hard worker and she is down at Mornington, which is even better for us to come to Flemington and get a result.”
Edwards has now won four races from six starts with the four-year-old and A$109,000 in prizemoney.
“My owner was confident about the horse being suited at this distance and I thought he should be able to do it,” Edwards said.
“It was a bit of a step-up from his last run and he had had the four weeks between runs, however he is a horse that you need to keep fairly fresh.
“We had a jump-out at Sandown Wednesday week ago, with Jack on, and that was his gallop leading into this, which is a bit unconventional but with this horse it works.”
Rox The Castle is bred and raced by Tim Di Mattina and Louie Yet Ying and the gelding started his career in New Zealand, where he trialed twice and finished seventh in his only raceday start for Peter and Dawn Williams. – NZ Racing Desk