Canberra sprinter Fell Swoop’s tenacity to continue a winning streak in the Testa Rossa Stakes has earned high praise from trainer Matthew Dale.
Fell Swoop needed to be reshod before claiming Saturday’s Listed 1200m sprint at Caulfield.
Dale was adamant the work carried out on Fell Swoop behind the barrier was a distraction for the promising sprinter.
And he thought his fears were going to be confirmed when Fell Swoop was trapped wide before losing his balance on the turn.
But Fell Swoop wasn’t to be denied and with a fitness advantage he fought back to beat Charlie Boy by a neck with Java a half length away third.
“He was clearly in trouble at the top of the straight,” Dale said.
“He had done all the work, exposed and pulling. To get back up off the canvas like that and win was just the sign of a real winner.
“It showed a real will to win which you don’t find in too many horses.”
Fell Swoop landed his fourth win in a row and second-straight Listed victory to take his record to eight wins and a second from 10 starts.
Dale said he would see how Fell Swoop comes through the race before deciding what to do next.
The Gilgai Stakes is still an option, while long term the Oakleigh Plate is a race that Dale believes would suit.
Group winner and Group One placegetter Charlie Boy carried 5.5kg more than the winner and sprinted between runners in the straight to challenge strongly.
“He got to the front and I thought he was going to win but with 60 kilos first-up, he just peaked about 50 metres from home,” jockey Steven Arnold said.