Touching moment sees Sultan Of Swing triumphant8 Jul 2019

A touching moment saw Sultan Of Swing triumphant in the $35,000 U S Navy Flag Foxbridge Plate 17 Aug (OHcp) over 1600 metres on Saturday.

Winning rider Taiki Yanagida wore a black armband over the blue, black and green colours of owner-breeder Dominic Li, whose long-time New Zealand racing manager and friend Maryanne Simon lost her father Jim Mead this week.
The six-year-old kept his unbeaten record here at Te Rapa in three starts after winning the Group Three J Swap Contractors Sprint (1400m) last December in his first start at the track and scoring a last-start win over 1600 metres early last month.
On Saturday, Yanagida dropped the gelding back to last in the early stages of the race, coasting around the field steadily from the 600m mark to hit the front with 250 metres to record a comfortable win over Andoyas (C.Grylls) by half a length. Athena Baby (T.Thornton) was a length back in third.
“He jumped really well and then relaxed and was sleeping for the first 400 metres but once I gave him a squeeze he turned the engine on and ran home really well,” jockey Taiki Yanagida said.
“He concentrated the whole way and he did what he had to do.”
“I galloped Andoyas the other day and he went quite well, so I was keeping an eye on him, but luckily my horse was better this time,” Yanagida added.

Sultan of Swing’s winning time 1:39.67 (last 600m in 36.76) on a Heavy 10 track.

“It’s a tough time for Maryanne, but I’m pleased the horse could deliver for everybody,” winning trainer Shaune Ritchie said.
“He was detached early, so we don’t like to see that but he got to the right part of the track.”
“He’s turning into a bit of an iron horse. He’s been up for a long time, but we’re still waiting for him to hit the brick wall. We keep spacing his races out, running every three or four weeks, which helps.”
The son of Bachelor Duke has won 10 of 35 starts including eight placings lifting his career earnings to $290,914. - Mark Nowell