The Kiwis again stunned Australia when Roch ‘N’ Horse shocked punters with her win in Saturday’s Group 1 Newmarket Handicap.
Those that backed Roch ‘N’ Horse might be able to buy themselves a full tank of petrol after returning a massive $95.90 dividend on the Victorian TAB while she paid $121.30 for the win in NSW.
The shocks continued in the minor placings. The $61 chance The Astrologist grabbed second ahead of September Run, who started at $26.
The trio combined to produce a trifecta dividend of $44,694 in Victoria while another Kiwi, Levante ($18) finished fourth, contributing to a massive first four dividend of $205,657.
While the dividends were massive, the Newmarket Handicap was a life-changer for jockey Patrick Moloney, who notched his maiden Group 1 win aboard the five-year-old mare.
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Moloney hails from the famous Victorian Moloney racing family.
His great-grandfather Jeremiah was a trainer as was his grandfather Jim Moloney. His father Gerard and uncle John are current trainers.
Gerard Moloney was unable to be at Flemington on Saturday after recently undergoing knee replacement surgery.
“(They’ve) put a lot of effort behind me, getting me where I am today,” Patrick Moloney said.
“Whether it was mum carting me around the shows early doors and Dad, this one is just as much for Dad as it is for me. My biggest supporter, biggest critic but he’s my best mate.”
Roch ‘N’ Horse was narrowly beaten in the Group 1 Telegraph Stakes in New Zealand at her last start before crossing the Tasman to take on the Australian sprinters.
However, trainer Mike Moroney said he and New Zealand training partner Pam Gerard were convinced Roch ‘N’ Horse could measure up to the locals.
Newmarket Handicap placegetters Roch ‘N’ Horse, The Astrologist and September Run all raced on the inside section of the track. Picture: Racing Photos via Getty Images
“I thought the New Zealand sprinters were up to it,” Moroney said.
“A lot of people didn’t think they were but I was pretty sure with what I’ve seen there that they were.
“We were always going to get to Australia, it was just a matter of which carnival. We thought this was the right place for her.”
The three placegetters raced on the inside section of the Flemington straight course while those on the outside section were always under pressure to keep pace.
The $4.20 favorite Lost And Running was one of those in the outside brigade, struggling down the straight to finish 14th.
“The pressure was just too much today,” Lost And Running’s jockey Hugh Bowman said.
Lightning Stakes winner Home Affairs started as the $4.40 second pick but weakened to finish midfield with the 56kg equal topweight.
Jockey James McDonald said the Chris Waller-trained colt was far from disgraced.
“He ran great under the big weight. He tried his heart out,” McDonald said.