Rising Perth star Showmanship, with the help of a masterful ride from Willie Pike, took his record to seven wins from eight starts with an easy victory at The Valley.
Pike had the 1200 metre Listed event under control throughout as he stalked the other fancied runner, Age Of Chivalry, and sailed past him on turning for home.
Co-trainer Grant Williams was effusive in his praise of Showmanship and also Pike’s ride.
Williams said Showmanship was “an absolute ripper” who was an easy horse to train.
“He’s pretty easy to do anything with. He’s come over here and settled in really well,” Williams said.
Williams said he would speak to the horse’s owner Bob Peters about his next start, although they had brought him across to tackle the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield.
“Winning today keeps our options open,” Williams said.
Williams described Pike’s ride as “a peach”, giving the horse every chance.
Pike said he was slightly concerned that Showmanship was dropping back to 1200 metres after winning at Caulfield over 1400 metres first up, only because he was riding at an unfamiliar track.
“That’s because I’m a fish out of water here. If I was at home I’d probably have thought, ‘nah, no worries’,” Pike said.
“It was more something to think about but after the race I’m not sure what I was worried about.”
He said although he hadn’t ridden at Moonee Valley for a while he didn’t have to worry about that in the run as the horse travelled so well.
Showmanship ($2.35 fav) defeated Felicia ($6.50) by 1-1/4 lengths with Age Of Chivalry ($3.20) another length away third.
Peters sent six horses to Melbourne for the spring carnival but one of his stars, Regal Power, had to return home this week after he suffered a lung infection.