Racing: Kawi chases Perth double

By Mike Dillon

In a tough slog Kawi (centre) beats Mime (rails) and Rasa Lila to win the Windsor Park Plate. Photo / Trish Dunell
In a tough slog Kawi (centre) beats Mime (rails) and Rasa Lila to win the Windsor Park Plate. Photo / Trish Dunell

Kawi will definitely not run in the $250,000 Livamol Classic at Hastings next Saturday week.

That was a decision trainer Allan Sharrock set in concrete yesterday morning.

He will instead definitely run in the pair of one million-dollar races in Perth, the 1600m Railway on November 19 and the 1800m weight-for-age on December 3.

Kawi's win in Saturday's $200,000 Windsor Park Plate was his career-best victory, sitting three wide without cover, looking beaten only to grit it out in a three-way tough finish.

Sharrock summed it up: "Horses can't do what he did, they just can't."

No, horses can't, but exceptional horses can - win when they can't win. It's one of the measures of greatness in racehorses.

Even those who do not back Kawi in the Railway in Perth will be cheering him home after the disgraceful episode around New Zealand's He's Remarkable's winning the race in 2011.

Strictly speaking, that is not an accurate sentence; officially, He's Remarkable is shown in record books as finishing second, but he won the race fair and square and in almost certainly the most disgraceful judicial decision in this part of the world, he lost the group one event in the inquiry room.

Even more disgraceful, trainer Roger James appealed under common law and lost the case. And that was for the right to appeal, not in an appeal itself. It's not called the wild west for nothing. Ask Roger James.

This column has always referred to He's Remarkable winning Perth's Railway, and always will. Kawi will be running for the connections of He's Remarkable, as well as the Kawi camp.

Allan Sharrock knew running Kawi in the Livamol on Saturday week would be the wrong option after he came back on Saturday. "It's the first time I've seen him physically spent. He was half-pie distressed. He just blew and blew. He'd given it everything and he was entitled to be all-out. I was so proud of him."

The flight to Perth involves a 2-hour Melbourne stopover and Kawi will arrive in the West with 10 days to prepare for the Railway.

"He'll handle it well," predicts Sharrock.

Impossible to make excuses when the favourite sits three wide through and wins after racing fiercely, but Mime and Rasa Lila were good in picking up the minors and El Pescado (5th) and Julinsky Prince (6th) were excellent with little luck.

An inquiry was held on whether fourth-placed Battle Time should hold his placing. The Judicial Report said: "Following the race a Request for a Ruling was filed with the Judicial Committee under the provisions of Rule 632(2) as to whether Battle Time may have gained an unfair advantage at the start. Film footage showed that whilst the starter was in the process of effecting a start Battle Time had lunged forward forcing the front gates on its barrier stall to open slightly ahead of the remainder of field. After hearing submissions and assessing race footage in its entirety the Judicial Committee ruled that Battle Time should retain its fourth placing and not be declared a non-starter.

"Battle Time made first turn awkwardly and commenced to over-race badly becoming awkwardly placed on the heels of Mime for a distance having to be firmly restrained near the 1000m. Became awkwardly placed on the heels of Kawi near the 250m when crowded by Bohemian Lily, which was forced outwards by El Pescado which shifted outwards."

El Pescado's rider Cameron Lammas copped a six race-day suspension for the interference.

Hasselhoof's co-trainer Donna Logan was delighted to be told yesterday Kawi would not be running in the Livamol. The stable withdrew Hasselhoof from yesterday's $50,000 Haunui Farm Karaka Classic at Counties yesterday when the track came up a heavy (10).

"We couldn't afford to run him on a track like that," said Logan. "The rail is going back in for the Livamol day, so horses will need to be sharp. If he'd run in that he'd have been too dour in the Livamol and that wouldn't be the way to go.

"I'm sure we can get him ready on the track."

Courageous display

• The Livamol Classic is now wide open with the defection of pre-post favourite Kawi.

• The Perth-bound gelding dug deep to win at Hastings on Saturday.

• Hasselhoof will go into the third-day feature without another race after being scratched yesterday.

- NZ Herald

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