Heracles storms home for a brace
Visibility was so ordinary in a rain-affected Race 3 on Sunday that jockey Craig Grylls had to drop his goggles midrace, but his mount Heracles sure had a clear sight of the winning post when he let down on the outside to win back-to-back.
The Kiwi jockey said he could not see where he was going in the $60,000 Class 4 race over 1,400m at one stage. With Heracles hugging the rails at the rear and copping flying clods of mud over the chopped up track, Grylls wished he had a pair of wipers at the 800m mark.
Doing away with his goggles, he could see better in the second half of the race, and certainly that gap which appeared to the outside upon straightening up. His $138 outsider ride responded brilliantly when asked and got up to beat another last-start winner Athena by a head.
"I couldn't see a thing down the back," said a mud-splattered Grylls.
"The horse jumped okay but he didn't quite hit the ground running. He was a little flat-footed coming to the 700m. At the top of the straight, he started to lengthen up once I peeled him to the outside, but at the 100m, I still thought I'd run third.
"He just grew another leg and got there right in time."