A year after showing his potential, Furrion has returned to Warrnambool to claim a first stakes race victory.
Furrion won on the final day of last year’s three-day carnival for now-disqualified trainer Darren Weir while on Thursday he took out the Listed Warrnambool Cup for Lindsay Park.
Co-trainer Ben Hayes said the UK-bred galloper, who was bought as a yearling by John Foote for owner Gerry Ryan and brought to Australia unraced, would now be spelled and set for a spring campaign.
Giving John Allen back-to-back wins in the Cup (2350m) after Gallic Chieftain for Weir, Furrion scored by three-quarters of a length from Sheezdashing with Makybe Diva’s daughter Divanation a long neck away third.
“I think he’s one of the more exciting horses going into the spring,” Hayes said.
“We’ll give him five or six weeks out now and set him on a Caulfield Cup path.
“That will get his rating up a bit which will take a bit of pressure off us as trainers.”
Allen is not a regular rider for the Lindsay Park stable and Hayes praised the Irishman for his ride.
“John rides a lot for Gerry Ryan who has been a supporter of ours for a long time,” Hayes said.
“He rode him perfectly and no-one knows the Bool better.
“It was a 10 out of 10 ride and I’m absolutely thrilled.”
Allen said Furrion had been highly regarded by Weir and it was exciting to see the gelding fulfilling his potential.
“He had good credentials coming into the race and was the horse with the most upside,” Allen said.
“He’s still a progressive horse and there’s a bit more improvement there.
“He’s a momentum horse and he wandered a bit up the straight but he would have picked up again if something came at him.”
Tony McEvoy’s Melbourne foreman Michael Shepherdson said the stable was delighted with the the third placing of Divanation who was having her sixth start on Thursday.
He said the stable would assess how the mare pulls up before considering options including racing for a ballot free start into the Melbourne Cup in The Andrew Ramsden at Flemington on May 25.
“Whether she’s seasoned enough I don’t know but she ticks a lot of boxes,” Shepherdson said.
“Her attitude will help her get to a good level.”