Khaya can stay all day, says trainer John Size
It was not quite the Dream Team of old, but Douglas Whyte and John Size still had a day out with three and two wins respectively - their only win together coming with promising young stayer Khaya.
Size had earlier scored with Teofilo Calva - with Joao Moreira aboard - and Whyte had won with Gold-Fun for Richard Gibson and later on Paul O'Sullivan-trained Santa Fe Sun.
Khaya's connections had their Derby dreams dashed when he was an unlucky last-start second, but the tough front-runner was able to overcome gate 14 in a brave display and keep the possibility of a late-season Group race appearance alive.
"He is as dour as the day is long and he is going to make a great stayer," Whyte said.
Size had already floated the idea of a Group Three Queen Mother Memorial Cup (2,400m) start, and now with a rating in the 80s, he is well on his way to securing a start. The master trainer feels the gelding's running pattern may make him even more effective.
"He is an on-pace stayer, which is a bit of a rarity and probably a bonus for him," Size said. "He keeps bowling along and today's win was nothing but positive. We will just keep going forward with him, get his rating up and then see what happens."
Teofilo Calva scored what might have been the toughest win of the day, stepping up into Class Three and sitting three deep with no cover to remain unbeaten in two runs this season.
Moreira had hunted forward from gate nine on the four-year-old and despite "doing it the hard way", as the Brazilian put it, Teofilo Calva was able to win by a comfortable one and a quarter lengths.
"I was worried in the run," Moreira said. "And while I was not necessarily surprised it won, I was surprised at how easily he won. Usually even if you win after a hard run like that, you only just win - but he kicked away and won easily, which tells you he is too good for that class."
Whyte's win in the last on Santa Fe Sun revealed a new level of sturdiness not seen previously, according to O'Sullivan.
"Six months ago, he wouldn't have been able to sit that handy and still finish off like that, he just wasn't strong enough," O'Sullivan said.
Whyte added: "What I liked is that when I pressed the button he just put two or three lengths on them. This horse is not done yet."