SCONE trainer Brett Cavanough wasn’t sure if he had squared up for his run of Highway Handicap placings, but he was confident the owners of Another Sin had recovered their share after his thrilling win at Rosehill on Saturday.
Another Sin gave Cavanough his maiden Highway Handicap win while also becoming the first horse to take out the weekly feature for country-trained gallopers in their race debut.
Another Sin becomes the first debutant to win a TAB Highway Handicap, fighting off Lifesaver after an epic battle in the straight. pic.twitter.com/ykgCtXwAwY— Sky Racing (@SkyRacingAU) August 12, 2017
The three-year-old gelding, a Magic Millions purchase by Cavanough, produced a bold front-running performance to narrowly hold out Matt Dunn’s Lifesaver in an exciting match race up the straight of the 1100-metre event before also surviving a protest.
The win landed a huge plunge for Another Sin’s owners, who forced bookmakers to wind him in from $14 to a starting price of $3.20.
Cavanough, who moved from Albury to Scone this year, said it was an “old fashioned plunge” and “a good reward for all the owners involved” after a long wait to get him to the races.
“It was just a matter of where I was going to let him go,” Cavanough said. “I bought him to Scone to be a bit of ammo, but he went shin sore and had a few issues early when we first got here three or four months ago
“Since then he’s just gone forward in leaps and bounds.
“I had him wound up and we had him educated as a two-year-old, and that’s when we noticed how sharp he was.
“We knew his level of ability, it was just a matter of timing and producing him at the right time and getting him to the races.
“He was educated at Albury but the work we can get into them at Scone is second to none. It’s a great facility here with a great curator and a good surface. You can wind one up out of here.”
The victory was a relief for Cavanough, who had “five or six” seconds in the Highway Handicaps.
“I'd run out of ammunition and they kept running second, so I had to produce him," Cavanough said.
“Today was the day.
“You can hide them and think they're good, but as soon as you go to the races you've got to empty them out.
“He got emptied out today with a big horse laying all over him in the straight. It's probably good because it will clean his windpipes up and showed him how to hit the line.”
Cavanough said Another Sin “might go back to another Highway. We’ll just see how he pulls up and recovers.”
Stewards dismissed a protest from Lifesaver’s jockey Tye Angland about contact made when Another Sin and hoop Corey Brown shifted out over the closing stages.
Chief stipe Marc van Gestel said Brown's contact was slight and he also took into account a clash early in the straight when Lifesaver shifted in.
At Newcastle on Saturday, Princess Pattern and Darbies Blugirl recorded home wins.
Princess Pattern, for Newcastle trainer Paul Perry and jockey Andrew Gibbons, won the class two handicap (1600m). The Barry Lawrence-trained Darbies Blugirl took out the benchmark 66 handicap (1300m).