“The Ride of the Century.”
It is what the pundits and racing fraternity are labelling this famous Nash Rawiller ride, helping Think It Over grab his second career Group 1 victory.
The audacity to do what he did was remarkable.
To pull it off? Even more stunning.
Gates crash back and we’re racing
The field of nine in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes pinged their way out of the barriers.
Many would have had their hard-earned dosh on Verry Elleegant, Anamoe or Zaaki.
Those were the three superstar gallopers the market had honed in on and the ones those in the racing public would have had their eyes on when the gates opened.
Sent out as a $34 shot, Think It Over was trying to recapture some of the early form he showed this preparation when winning the Group 2 Apollo Stakes and running fourth in the Group 1 Chipping Norton.
He jumped cleanly, as he almost always does, settled in the first four and was set for glory.
Nash makes his first move
After jumping as well as they did from the middle barrier, the pace drawn inside Nash Rawiller and Think It Over really started to heat up.
There was a risk Rawiller would be a posted three and four wide with no cover.
But Rawiller realised his mount was travelling too strongly to reef back and try to find cover.
He pressed on to sit outside the lead and on the flank of Zaaki who was high-balling out in front.
It was the closest the pair has settled to the lead in any of their runs together this preparation.
With the Randwick track in the heavy range, finding the best ground is exactly what each jockey is thinking.
As the field charged towards the home bend, the runs behind began to occur.
Verry Elleegant flushed out three wide to commence her move and Montefilia was poised to lay down a challenge in behind Think It Over.
The pundits said Think It Over would be out of contention early in the piece.
But Rawiller had other ideas.
He had made up his mind at the top of the straight.
The ace he had up his sleeve was outrageous.
The Grandstand Rail
Rawiller made his move.
He yanked on the left reign at the 400-metre mark and angled straight towards the grandstand rail.
“Think It Over is coming to the stands rail, this is interesting,’ race-caller Darren Flindell exclaimed as the field hurtled up the home straight.
Rawiller would end up being the widest runner in an attempt to find faster going.
Zaaki looked the winner at this point in the race.
There was 200 metres left and Rawiller was running out of time to bridge the gap.
Winner, winner, Rawiller’s paying for dinner.
Below the 150-metre mark they go.
Zaaki is in front, but Rawiller and Think It Over are bearing down.
With Rawiller pummelling away at the reins and keeping his mount out as far wide on the track as humanly possibly, the finish post loomed.
Zaaki would begin to tire.
Think It Over and Rawiller strode level in the last 50 metres, hit the lead and drew clear to win by half-a-length.
Jaws dropped, tickets were torn up, people looked at each other in shock.
The almighty win did not come without controversy.
Rawiller paid the ultimate price his desperate attempt at victory.
Racing NSW stewards fined him a whopping $40,000 and suspended him for two weeks for excessive use of the whip.
The stewards deemed Rawiller had struck Think It Over eight times prior to the 100-metre mark and on 20 occasions throughout the race.
But as time goes on, those facts will end up being buried under pile filed ‘not important.’
The only thing we will remember this race for is jockey, horse and win.