The step-up to the mile was the key to Succession winning on Sunday, the Rip Van Winkle three-year-old has been one of the most consistent newcomers in trainer Michael Freedman’s yard, never finishing out of the placings in five runs between 1200m and 1400m.
Succession ($15) was again ridden cold in the $65,000 Initiation race over 1600m, taking a trail behind even-money favourite Laughing Buffalo (Corey Brown) in eighth spot before asserting his superiority at the 300m mark.
Laughing Buffalo knuckled down to the task as best as he could but Freedman’s ward was clearly the superior individual as he comfortably held off the hotpot by a length with Gold Reserve (Kanichiro Fujii) third another 2 ½ lengths away. The winning time was 1min 36.96secs for the 1600m on the Long Course.
Peters said there were no two ways about Succession’s maiden win, just a natural progression to what he had been through at his first few runs.
“He was looking for the step-up to the mile at all his starts. He ran outpaced most of the time though he drew awkwardish barriers at times, but didn’t quite get there ,” said the Englishman who will take over as full-fledged trainer from Freedman on April 1.
“We’ve always ridden him quiet and he’s been consistently running on late. At his last start, he came from near last with Michael Rodd.
“Alan gave him a good ride, he followed the favourite patiently, and it’s also true that we were helped by the three kilos we got off Cliffy’s (Brown) horse (Laughing Buffalo).”
Raced by the Red Cosmos Stable, an offshoot of the China Horse Club, Succession has amazingly already collected close to $90,000 in stakes, largely due to his previous three seconds and two placings.
“I rode him before and he’s a much better horse now,” said Munro.
“He was travelling very well and he was very strong to the line.”
As for Corey Brown, he said he gave Laughing Buffalo every chance but they were just beaten by a better horse.