Ciaron Maher & David Eustace have combined with Declan Bates to claim another of the Victorian Spring features, as Bates piloted Charterhouse (+1700) to victory in the $500,000 Cranbourne Cup on Saturday afternoon.
After combining for two emotional wins with Pride Of Jenni during the Melbourne Cup Carnival, the Maher & Eustace stable and Bates have continued on their winning ways, with the five-year-old gelding charging home to claim victory in the feature race at Cranbourne.
The winner’s stablemate Ascension bounced well from the barriers to find the front and set up a frantic tempo, with Just Folk (+550) sitting at his girth for most of the 1600m contest.
As the leaders hit the home bend, Ascension kicked clear and appeared as though he was going to run away with the race, but by the 200m mark the leader began to paddle and the likes of Charterhouse, Just Folk and Foxy Cleopatra (+320) let down with their runs.
Just Folk began to weaken at the 100m mark, leaving Foxy Cleopatra and Charterhouse to fight out the finish and the son of Charming Thought was able to hold off the challenge of the mare on his inside.
2023 Cranbourne Cup Replay – Charterhouse | T: Ciaron Maher & David Eustace | J: Declan Bates
With Ciaron Maher in New South Wales, Jack Turnbull spoke on behalf of the stable post-race.
“A massive team effort. The horse has been in good form, but he’s had a checkered prep, to say the least,” Turnbull said.
“He’s had a bad blood, he stepped on a plate, so we’ve been pushing and persevering saying the horse is going well, but at the end of the day, you need the results and we got that.
“The rain came, and he relished the mile.
“We knew he was doing what we wanted him to do at home.
“He went from running over six (furlongs) down the straight and running admirably but probably found that too sharp and then fitness wise, second time at the mile, we were right up to the mark today.”
After taking out another Victorian feature, Declan Bates was very happy to get another win for the stable.
“It’s super to win a feature race like this under the belt again,” Bates said.
“A special thanks to Ciaron Maher and David Eustace and the team and I’m very lucky to get the rides on some good horses.
“It’s nice to get the win for the team.
“I was hoping to land midfield with a bit of cover, but he came out travelling a bit strong so I wanted to make sure I got cover to make sure he dropped the bit.
“I probably had to come back further than ideal to do that, but the tempo was good enough and he just travelled so well wherever I went.
“He made that nice, sustained run, he built nicely around the bend and once he straightened up he went again.
“From where we were in the field, it was a good win.”