The Iron Jack Kalgoorlie Cup (2200m) had a silver lining for trainer Vaughn Sigley after Missile Launch outgunned his rivals to win the iconic Listed race today.
Starting at double figure odds and handing jockey Pat Carbery his second Kalgoorlie Cup victory, Missile Launch outgunned race favourites, Divine Shadow and Friar Fox.
After last year’s breakout Ascot summer carnival, Sigley had ambitions of travelling to Melbourne with Missile Launch, but Covid-19 restrictions halted his plans.
Sigley seriously entertained an eastern states campaign after Missile Launch performed strongly in stakes races including his first major victory in the Tattersall’s Cup (2100m).
The son of Smart Missile also ran second in the Perth Cup (2400m) and placed third in the Ascot Gold Cup (1800m) and the Towton Cup (2200m).
After Melbourne plans came unstuck, Sigley said targeting the Kalgoorlie Cup was the right decision.
“After his runs last year, we decided we would go across and have a crack at some races in Melbourne,” Sigley said.
“But it all became too difficult with Covid-19 and in the end, we thought we may as well settle for Kalgoorlie.
“It was great to see him do it, he was right for today.”
Simone Altieri shot across from barrier eleven on Gloryland and slowed the pace once she found the front.
Carbery, who won the Kalgoorlie Cup on Lottila Bay (2000), tracked into the race behind Friar Fox.
He said after the first 200 metres he was able to settle Missile Launch into a comfortable rhythm and was surprised how quickly he sprinted in the straight.
“The first furlong I couldn’t keep up, but then they backed off,” Carbery said.
“I’ve ridden this horse many times and I know what he likes.
“He was happy and flowing and in a good rhythm.
“I was surprised by how well he let down.
“I’m so pleased for Vaughn and his partner, Emily.
“Vaughn had him peaking for this run.”
Missile Launch’s half-length victory improved his record to nine wins from 31 starts and boosted prizemoney to a touch over half a million dollars.
Brett Pope’s Divine Shadow had to settle for another minor prize after placings in the Coolgardie Cup (1760m) and Boulder Cup (2105m).
Friar Fox raced wide throughout and lost no admirers in her ¾ length third.
Ihtsahymn, in his final race, ran a slashing fourth.