Lane provides treat for all
There were plenty of factors conspiring against Geoff Lane's talented stayer-in-the-making All For You, but he took them all in his stride to record back-to-back victories in yesterday's eighth event and keep his unbeaten record for the season intact.
The muscular three-year-old son of Grosvenor was green when recording a facile success on his seasonal debut over course and distance a month ago and, lugging topweight of 135 pounds on a yielding track, there were reasons to take a set against him.
However, he put those knockers straight with a brilliant victory under another cool ride from New Zealand-born ace Shane Dye and will now have to take on Class Three company.
Trainer Lane had voiced concern over the gelding's chances prior to the start: 'He's got a big weight and there's no guarantee that he'll go on the ground, but he's a very nice young horse.'
Those fears were promptly allayed as All For You settled second last before Dye angled out to issue his challenge from the top of the straight. Once clear he stretched out and had the measure of his rivals at the furlong marker.
Again, he had a tendency to hang in once clear of the field but Dye, who is at his best on young horses with attitude, did a sterling job keeping All For You's mind on the race, pulling 1.5 lengths clear of wet-track specialist Po On Power with Winning Years sticking on from a prominent position for third.
All For You has staying lines throughout his pedigree and the way he races points to him being even more effective when moved up in trip.
Elsewhere, leading jockey Douglas Whyte extended his lead at the head of the standings with an intelligent display astride veteran handicapper Diamond King for Alex Wong Yu-on. The South African ace has a marvellous record on the eight-year-old and knew what was required to rack up consecutive wins as he waited until late in the straight to get to work.
They fought on strongly all the way to the line and got there by a neck from Winning Luck, with King's Glamour sticking on nearer the inside to complete a popular tierce.
Whyte's fellow South African Weichong Marwing got off on a winning start to the day when Storm Boy broke through for his maiden success in the Class Five opener over 2,000 metres. The six-year-old had gone around 27 times without success but found the winning thread in his first crack at the longer journey.
Marwing set Storm Boy alight at the 800-metre mark and held on to score by a neck from veteran handicapper Lifo for Eric Legrix and trainer Peter Ng. Champion Ranger held down third under improving claimer Cliff Lai.