IT’S lost the official status as a result of Harness Racing Australia’s shake up, but last night’s Western Regional Championship “still feels like a Group One” according to Isobel Ross.
Previously listed as black type event, the $100,000 feature’s ranking was removed this season when the qualifications for Group One were updated.
But that hasn’t prevented Ross from celebrating her biggest success in the cart after she captured the TAB-sponsored decider behind Australian Pacing Gold purchase, Iam The Captain.
“This is my biggest win and I am thrilled to do it with one of Amanda’s (Turnbull, trainer) horses,” Ross said. “I have won some Group Three races, and although it isn’t counted as one anymore, last night still feels like a Group One to me.
“It’s not often you get to win a $100,000 race, so this is special.”
Showing little speed from barrier three, Iam The Captain was settled two-back in the running line as Modern Power led from the pole.
Sustaining a three-wide sprint from the back straight, Iam The Captain completed a four-metre win from his stablemate, Alta Billy.
He Aint Fakin was a head away third.
Rating 1:57.8 over 2260 metres, the Australian Pacing Gold purchase provided Turnbull with consecutive victories, having secured last season’s Final with Lyrical Genius.
“He had been working well and was ready to run a big race,” Ross said.
“At the top of the home straight I became very confident as I knew I had them covered.”