Gatewood (white): won the Geelong Cup for John GosdenPICTURE: Martin Lynch (racingpost.com/photos)
Gatewood lands Geelong Cup for Gosden
Report: Australia, Wednesday
Geelong: Centrebet Geelong Cup (Group 3 hcap) 1m4f, turf, 3yo+
GATEWOOD (John Gosden/Glen Boss) got the best of a sprint finish to take the Geelong Cup - the race won in the last two years by Americain and Dunaden, who both went on to land the Emirates Melbourne Cup 13 days later.
The Andre Fabre-trained Brigantin finished a close third in the A$300,000 (£193,000) contest, just beaten for second by Chateau Margaux.
Sent off 11-5 favourite after his luckless recent run in the Group 2 Herbert Power, Gatewood tracked the longshot Back In Black, who lolloped along in front before being easily mastered in the straight.
Gatewood showed the better turn of foot to claim the race by three-quarters of a length in the colours of the Australian-based OTI Racing syndicate featuring former Test cricketer Simon O'Donnell.
"He was quick to the line - I knew I was breaking 33 [seconds] in the last 600m," said jockey Glen Boss.
"These horses have six months of groundwork underneath them," added Boss, best known for partnering Makybe Diva to her three Melbourne Cup wins in 2003-05.
"This horse was straight on top of the speed very quickly when it come on. He is very good on his feet, he is very nimble.
"He had no chance the other day, so he's got here on fresh legs and he was able to reproduce the sprint. Step him up over distance I reckon he'll be able to reproduce that."
Unusually, the Gatewood team will be hoping the four-year-old son of Galileo receives a hefty penalty after this victory or he runs the risk of missing the cut for the Melbourne Cup as he is only 41st on the list of eliminations with 51.5kg.
"I hope it is more than a 1kg penalty," said OTI Racing's Terry Henderson. "It is a little unusual for European horses to run three times in five weeks but it looks as though it might happen."
Team Valor's Brigantin posted a highly promising display in third given that the race wasn't exactly run to suit such a sound stayer, who was third in last year's Ascot Gold Cup.
The stewards threw out a protest from his jockey Umberto Rispoli against the runner-up over alleged interference in the straight.