A sizzling-run race saw talented sprinter Skywalk (NZ) (Battle Paint) bounce back in record-breaking time in the $100,000 Class 1 race over 1100m on the Polytrack on Friday night.
After beginning from a good barrier in three, the five-year-old, who was returning from a five-month spell, slotted into a perfect rails-hugging trail while a quartet of speed squibs went helter-skelter upfront.
On the rails, Special King would not give up his spot as he kicked up from a bunched-up trio made up of Super Fortune, Super Winner and Webster, who instead of easing off, skipped alongside him to inject even more speed into the already blazing hot pace.
Skywalk bettered Filibuster’s record of 1min 4.16secs by 0.07 second, incidentally tallying up his eighth win (only two were won on turf) from 21 starts for prizemoney that has now hit around the $565,000 mark for the China Horse Club.
Trainer James Peters was delighted one of his better horses at the stable has bounced back first-up since his unplaced run to Constant Justice (beaten in seventh on Friday) in the Group 3 New Year Cup (1200m) on January 1.
“It’s worked out perfect tonight. From the good draw, he settled just behind the speed,” said the English trainer.
“He was in a perfect position, tracking up the speed without doing any work. He’s a very good horse fresh.
“It was good to see him win again as his last couple of runs had been disappointing.”
Thompson, who was also bringing up his own double, having saluted earlier aboard Clarton Star for his first win for Kiwi trainer Mark Walker in the $30,000 Class 5 race over 1700m, said he had a good hunch he was on a winner one week before the race.
“I won on him at the barrier trials last week and also galloped him this week. He gave me a very good feel,” said the young Australian jockey.
“Once I checked his form, I had a good feeling I was on a winner. During the race, when I saw Webster caught four wide, I knew he would keep the pressure in front.
“James has got a nice horse, and I would certainly like to stay on.” -STC