Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott turned back the international challenge in Wednesday’s $350,000 Group 3 Bet365 Geelong Cup (2400m) as the front-running Runaway held the challenge of his stablemate Northwest Passage.
Carrying the colours of Anthony Mithen’s Rosemont Stud, Runaway won the Listed VRC St Leger back in April before finishing third in the Group 1 S.A. Derby. Taking up his favoured front-running role under Stephen Baster, the son of Manhattan Rain fought bravely down the straight to defeat the 5yo So You Think gelding Northwest Passage by three-quarters of a length with Juddmonte Farms Frankel entire Finche (GB) the same distance back in third.
Runaway advances his record to 4 wins, 3 seconds and 3 thirds from 17 starts with earnings of $520,285.
“I’ve ridden this horse a fair bit and the owners have been great to me, it’s their hometown cup so it’s a dream come true for everybody,” Baster said.
“He showed he was a good horse in the St Leger, I thought he was a good chance as long as he was not annoyed too much in front. He’s only third up so it was an amazing training effort.”
Connections will be hoping the handicapper was impressed enough by the effort to give him Runaway a penalty in the Melbourne Cup as he is well down in the order of entries.
Purchased by Gai Waterhouse Racing / J Blaxland for $150,000 out of the Rosemont Stud draft the 2016 Australian Easter Yearling Sale, Runaway is a half-brother to the 2011 Group 1 AJC Australian Oaks winner Absolutely and the 2016 Group 1 SAJC Schweppes Oaks winner Abbey Marie.
He is the seventh winner from as many foals out of the Catrail mare Catshaan who Rosemont Stud purchased for $160,000 at the Teeeley Assets dispersal in 2014 when she was carrying the St Leger winner.
Her 3yo Redoute’s Choice colt named Zaahed was purchased by Shadwell Stud Australasia for $550,000 at the 2017 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale and was exported to South Africa.
A half-sister to the Champion Sprinter/Miler in Japan in 2010, Kinshasa No Kiseki, Catshaan has a 2yo filly by Zoustar and a yearling filly by Fastnet Rock.