Gandalf became the first three-year-old of his crop to beat older horses yesterday when he sailed away with the featured Sale Graduates’ Vase Handicap over 1 800 metres at the Garrison Savannah. So convincing was the Bills Inc gelding’s victory that it prompted one rail bird to say it was nothing more than a public workout.
Jockey Rickey Walcott’s four rivals never caused any alarms compared to him trying to navigate a flying Gandalf through the paddock bend as he drifted slightly to the left, having sliced through the half mile in 49.2. From there on he would gallop each quarter mile at 25 seconds to each quarter.
Oberoi got within a length at the start until he retreated off the solid fractions and was eventually replaced in the pursuit by Butterfly having just cleared the three furlong marker. As Gandalf turned for home, Butterfly’s chase became futile with the winner still lengthening strides. (LY)
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