Vinland bounces back in brilliant style

Vinland
Vinland ridden by Andrew Mallyon wins the Spicer Thoroughbreds Handicap at Sandown on Saturday for trainer Tony McEvoy. Photo: Racing.com

VINLAND has bounced back from its disappointing run in the Sandown Guineas in style by taking out a benchmark 70 race at Sandown on Saturday.

Settling in midfield, the $3 favourite at Sportsbet ambled up nicely on the outside as the field entered the straight and quickly streaked away from the pack to win untouched.

Atone was the next-best, claiming second to return $2 at Crownbet while Grand Casino rounded out the placings at $3 via William Hill.

The race was all about Vinalnd, which was looking for just the second win of its career from four starts. Punters were unsure about how the horse would return after its fifth placed Guineas finish, but the class factor shone through.

Tony McEvoy’s stable representative Michael Shepherdson said it was a smart win for the promising colt.

“That was great,” Shepherdson said.

“It’s made a bit of a wet and miserable day pretty exciting.”

Sheperdson paid tribute to the brilliant ride by jockey Andrew Mallyon, which helped Vinland win the race with consummate ease.

“Andrew was really good on him,” he said.

“We probably expected him to be a little bit closer in the run without putting any pressure on him to be anywhere. Andrew didn’t panic and he was nice and smooth.

“Gee he went through his gears good.”

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The horse finished fifth, three and a half lengths of the winner Villermont in just its third-ever career start, and while Saturday was a significant drop in class from that group two event, the team still believes the horse is a top-tier performer.

“For sure, and Tony has thought that all the way through,” Sheperdson said when asked if the Vinland is capable of winning at group level.

“He’s a real impressive type of colt, (he’s) had a little bit more time to mature and we saw the real Vinland today.”

Without any real group prospects on the horizon for Vinland, there is a possibility we have seen the last of the colt for 2017.

Sherperdson said if it is Vinland’s last run of 2017 it will not be out of action for too long.

“If he doesn’t stay in work he won’t be too far away with autumn in mind, and that

“With him doing that today it makes it a bit easier going forward.”