The association of Gai Waterhouse and Stephen Baster may not be one of the most successful in Australian racing, but it has been enduring.
Baster combined with training partners Waterhouse and Adrian Bott in guiding Cismontane to victory in the McMahon’s Dairy Handicap (2500m) at Moonee Valley on Saturday.
Baster estimates he’s been riding for Waterhouse for at least 15 years and the pair combined for Group One success with Aqua D’Amour a decade ago.
“I’ve been riding for her for a long time and it’s great that we get these rewards along the way,” Baster said.
Sent off the $3.50 equal favourite, Cismontane fought back to score by a short-head from Super Haze ($4.60) with Loresho ($3.80) 3-1/4 lengths away third.
Waterhouse took Cismontane to Moonee Valley on Tuesday for a gallop in which he was ridden Baster.
The jockey said the gallop was decisive.
“He shied at everything here the other day and had a good look around,” Baster said.
“He had the rail today and it wasn’t wet, and it’s turned out to be his day.”
The Waterhouse and Bott stable’s Melbourne foreman Roger Elliot said he wasn’t sure what the team had in store for the stayer.
“He keeps improving and tries very hard,” Elliot said.
“Gai and Adrian will no doubt sit down and have a talk about him.”
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