Star colt Anamoe resumed as a winner on Saturday, defeating In The Congo by half a length to take out the Run to the Rose at Kembla Grange.
The James Cummings runner opened as a short favourite for the 1200m Group 2 but drifted significantly to $3.80 prior to the jump, yet he was still too good for his rivals.
After winning the Group 1 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes in April over 1400m, Anamoe was sent for a spell in preparation for a three-year-old season which will see him targeted at the Golden Rose Stakes, the Caulfield Guineas and potentially the Cox Plate.
James McDonald once again partnered the son of Street Boss on the weekend, and after getting a fair way back in the run off a hot tempo, the star jockey bullocked his way into the clear at the top of the straight and allowed his mount to quicken stride perfectly to arrive in time.
“He was the real deal as a two-year-old, and it’s remarkable how well he’s come back off one trial and a setback,” McDonald said on Sky Racing.
“I was very mindful of getting through today, and to come away with the win is a great testament to his ability.”
While In The Congo had a fitness edge on Anamoe, McDonald said his horse’s appetite for victory was what got him home over the top of the leader very late.
“He’s got a tremendous will to win, this horse, and I knew once he (In The Congo) was in his eyesight, he would get him,” he said.
“It actually took a lot of work to get there.
“He’s going to jump out of the ground and hopefully a nice two weeks ahead of him and he’ll be peaked up for the next one.”
Cummings was full of praise for his “athlete”, who overcame a few issues early in his campaign to resume as a winner.
“He’s a supreme athlete,” Cummings said.
“The onus is on us to try to get him back to the races and be in the same sort of winning form that he left.
“We felt like we really rewarded him by putting him in the paddock off such a high.
“Champion two-year-olds like him need to come back and be going just as good when you want to go on with him with the sort of goals that we’ve got.
“He’s really pleased us in the last sort of 10 days – he’s just got his act really together.”
Although Anamoe suffered a slight setback which delayed the start of his preparation by a week, Cummings was over the moon with his colt’s ability to reel in In The Congo and put his rivals to bed.
Online bookmakers took hold of Anamoe’s win, winding the horse into $2.25 favouritism for the Golden Rose at Royal Randwick on September 25.