Classy performer Boban gave a reminder of his quality when producing a dashing turn of foot to take out the $750,000 Group I Doomben 10,000 (1350m) at Doomben on Saturday.
The multiple Group I winner hasn’t tasted victory since claiming the Group I Chipping Norton Stakes in March last year.
Trainer Chris Waller hadn’t produced the five-year-old son of Bernardini since he finished down the track in this year’s Chipping Norton Stakes and with freshness on his side he came from well back and exploded past his rivals in the straight.
“To win first-up like he has today, tremendous performance,” winning jockey Glyn Schofield told Sky Thoroughbred Central. “He was full of courage.
“He had to take a really narrow run after we’d straightened and I felt like if I can get him through the run, which he’s sometimes reluctant to take, he’d take a lot of running down because he had a lot of running in him.
“He fought really, really strongly to the line.”
Boban ($17) defeated the Peter and Paul Snowden-trained Charlie Boy ($18) by a short-neck with a nose back to John O’Shea’s Generalife ($8.50) in third. The $6 favourite Srikandi finished sixth.
“Great horse, he’s been very good to us,” Waller said. “We thought it (being fresh) was the best way to attack a Group I race and you just work back from that.
“He was a serious horse and it’s probably hard to say he’s back to his best but he’s winning Group Is.”
Waller was non-committal on the prospect of Boban having another start in Queensland’s feature race – the $2 million Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) at the same venue in two weeks.
“It’s a shame the weights aren’t already out because he’s going to get topweight and that makes it hard,” he said. “I don’t know. I’ll take to the owners.
“He’s only five. It’s not as if to say he has to run in two weeks time and then he has to be retired so I don’t know.
“I’d be leaning towards giving him a good proper spell and same again in the spring.
“Pick off the right race and continue having some fun.”
The victory was Boban’s 10th from 31 starts and took his earnings to more than $2.1 million.
The $7.50 favourite Our Boy Malachi finished last however returned to scale having bled from both nostrils and is now banned from racing for the mandatory period of three months.