Queensland sprinter Temple Of Boom has maintained his love of Flemington with a rocket-like finish to land the Group Two Gilgai Stakes.
Ridden by premier New Zealand jockey James McDonald on Sunday, the five-year-old posted his third win in four starts on the straight course and will now be aimed at the Group Two Salinger Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on October 29.
“He loves it here at Flemington and I’m glad he does because it’s a pretty good place to enjoy,” Toowoomba trainer Tony Gollan said.
Temple Of Boom won the Listed Swisse Vitamins Stakes (1100m) at Flemington on Oaks Day last year and the Group Three Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) at the track on August 6.
He blotted his record last start when sixth to Lone Rock after being too exposed in the run and over-racing in the Group Three Bobbie Lewis (1200m) on September 3.
McDonald was mindful of ensuring Temple Of Boom got plenty of cover on Sunday and had him placed behind a wall of horses most of the way.
He was 14th at the 400 metres but he unleashed an explosive sprint in the last 200 metres after McDonald switched him around the heels of horses ahead of him.
In the final 50 metres he hit the front and won running away by 1-1/4 lengths from Group Two winner Sistine Angel, who was resuming, and dual Group One winner Response.
Gollan said Temple Of Boom also appreciated the dead track although he feared he may have given away too big a start.
“At one stage I thought he was back a little bit too far but when he got out he really let down,” Gollan said.
McDonald said Temple Of Boom was always travelling and was confident he would finish off strongly.
“I saved him for one last run at the furlong and he did it today,” McDonald said.
Temple Of Boom will spearhead a small spring team for Gollan in Melbourne this spring.
Temple Of Boom’s four-year-old half brother Spirit of Boom, along with Listen Son and Cariad will join him later this month.