Veteran sprinter Excellantes provided trainer Robert Heathcote with some timely funds for a holiday when he won Saturday’s Hinkler Handicap at Doomben.
Ridden by Michael Cahill, Excellantes ($12) scored by a neck from the favourite Kaepernick ($3.80) with Into The Red ($4.60) a long head away third.
Heathcote heads to Europe on Monday for a three-week holiday.
“We’re going on a bike-riding tour through Switzerland then onto Prague and finishing up in a beer hall somewhere in Munich so it should be a fun few weeks,” Heathcote said.
Excellantes has been a stalwart of the Heathcote stable since his two-year-old days and notched his 12th win on Saturday.
“My wife and I race him and we own the dam as well so to win on our biggest raceday is a real thrill,” Heathcote said.
“Some people thought he just battled last start but there was a lot of speed in the race that day and I thought he would be much better suited today.”
Cahill had Excellantes travelling comfortably outside the leader Whiskey Allround and was always confident the gelding would prove too strong.
“If you exclude his run in the Weetwood at Toowoomba his form this campaign has been strong,” Cahill said.
“He likes the 1200 metres at Doomben and the good draw today assisted him.”
Jockey Tommy Berry said the slow early tempo made it difficult for Kaepernick but he was still pleased with the three-year-old’s effort to finish second.