Sports

Coronet Peak can go the distance

Connections still believe CORONET PEAK has what it takes to win over a longer trip one day, even after he scored coming back in distance in Race 8 yesterday.

By landing the $100,000 Open Benchmark 83 race over 1,200m, the South African-bred (No. 4) by Kahal has now brought up his fifth win at Kranji - his fourth over the distance.

But assistant trainer Samantha Hill, standing in for her father David, maintained a future over more ground had not been ruled out.

Hill had a former runner of theirs to back up their theory in Desert Links, a former South African Canon Gold Cup (3,200m) winner who is by the same sire.

But an inclination to reef and tear has not been conducive to a career charted over similar distances for Coronet Peak, unless he mends his ways one day.

"Before his long break (almost two years), he ran second in a 1,800m race. The winner, Joyful Heart Man, went on to race in Group races," recalled Hill.

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"If only he could relax in his races, he would have run better over a distance, he would have stayed the distance better.

"We raced him over a mile at his last start and Corey (Brown) said he got all revved up when that horse (Manoel) Nunes was on (Holy Warrior) came along on his shoulder.

"He pulls so hard. Even Alan (Munro) said it feels like he is riding in three races when he rides him.

"Today, Tim went too fast and that suited the backmarkers and Alan rode him well."

Hill revealed his father was in New Zealand to witness a momentous occasion for their stable - the first foal of their former juvenile champion Onceuponatime going on sale.

Munro said Coronet Peak, with whom he reeled off a four-in-a-row in the last four months of the 2013 season, had talent in abundance, but his keenness has been his Achilles' heel.

"We didn't really have a tactic going into the race. He can be keen, but I was able to place him and get a soft run with him," said the English hoop.

"There was a good pace to the race and we were able to follow Flash Gift in the race, and we got to the outside, he finished off really well.

"He's got talent for sure. I know he lost over 1,600m at his last run but, historically, he can stay and I think he can get 1,800m.

"He just needs to learn to settle better."

While the plan ahead may lie in middle-distance races for the Lady Luck No 2 Stable-owned gelding, he has already carved out an impressive record of five wins between 1,100m and 1,200m for more than $240,000 in prize money.