The unbeaten son of Zacinto controlled Saturday’s El Roca 3YO Sprint from the front and he was a willing player in the straight to take major honours in his first run for three months.
“He hadn’t had a trial and he’s still rough in the coat so I’m very happy,” trainer Stephen Marsh said.
“He’s the sort of horse that I thought would win without being pumped up – he’s the real deal and I would have been disappointed if he didn’t win.
“That was a pretty good field and you can follow a few out of it.”
Successful in both of his juvenile starts including the Listed Hamilton Vets Equine Stakes, Ugo Foscolo will return to Hastings on October 1 for his next start in the Gr.2 Sacred Falls Hawke’s Bay Guineas.
That will be his final appearance before he heads south for the Gr.1 Sothys New Zealand 2000 Guineas at Riccarton on November 5.
“That’s always been the plan and at this stage we’re sticking to it,” Marsh said.
Rider Michael Coleman made use of Ugo Foscolo’s ace draw to hold the lead and the gelding wasn’t overly troubled to maintain his advantage in the closing 300 metres.
“We wanted to ride him positively from the number one gate and take bad luck out of play,” he said.
“He came off the bridle at the half mile and it was hard work into the straight with the head wind, but he found a nice kick. There’s plenty of improvement in him.”
Te Akau colt Hall Of Fame raced on the pace and he chased valiantly to finish runner-up ahead of the Gr.1 VRC Derby hope Mongolian Falcon, who found the line well.
G1 - The Bet365 Celebration Steeple Chase (class 1)
G3 - The Bet365 Gold Cup Steeple Chase (handicap) (class 1)
G1 - Aes Champion 4yo Hdle
Grade B - Setanta Sport H'cap Hdle
Grade B - Palmerstown House Pat Taaffe H'cap Chase