Kencella has reaffirmed an affinity for the 1100-metre circuit at Rosehill with an all-the-way win in the Maurice McCarten Stakes.
In a race that changed complexion when favourite and noted leader That’s A Good Idea bungled the start, Kencella ($4.20) made the most of his rival’s misfortune.
He sustained his speed to set a race record of 1min03.75secs and score by 1-1/4 lengths from three-year-old Va Pensiero ($7.50).
That’s A Good Idea ($2.90) powered home for third, another half length away.
Kencella is undefeated in three 1100-metre starts at Rosehill but Saturday’s race is his first victory at stakes level.
“He had a bit of luck with the favourite missing the kick but we’ll take it,” trainer John O’Shea said.
“He’s got an affiliation with the track and distance so we tried to wait to get a race like this.
“He’s been in work for quite a long time and he’s got the job done now.”
That’s A Good Idea’s trainer Joe Pride lamented a missed opportunity for the sprinter who he hopes can make amends when he returns to Rosehill in two weeks for the Sebring Stakes.
“It gets back to missing the start, you can’t do it,” Pride said.
Nash Rawiller rode That’s A Good Idea and gave Pride some consolation when he coaxed a victory out of the trainer’s perennial placegetter Earnest Ernest in the next race.