Perhaps the greater chapter thus far was etched in the fairy-tale story of the season when Pantzup added a Group 1 to her stunning blitz of the trotting ranks.
Trainer-driver Gavin Lang’s pacing-bred mare savaged the line to outpoint a game Aldebaran Kiri and clinch the $50,000 Lyn McPherson Memorial Breed For Speed Gold Final, Pantzup’s finest moment after previously winning the Group 2 Vicbred Platinum crown and running second in the Vicbred four-year-old trot.
“She’s a freak of nature really,” said Lang. “Bought her as a 14-start maiden pacer and she just goes from strength to strength.”
That strength had Pantzup well positioned to take care of the race’s happenings, beginning with favourite Into The Unknown going off stride early and Aldebaran Kiri shooting through off the back row, first trailing up Princess Mila and then carrying on to lead.
“I expected that Aldebaran Kiri may do that, she has great speed and one of my plans was that she may do that and when I saw her poking through, all of a sudden I was out in no man’s land but was lucky to slot back in … one off the fence,” Lang said.
“Aldebaran Kiri made it a genuine race which was good – suits this one because she, at this stage of her career, probably a nice horse that doesn’t have the point-to-point speed of a lot of the other trotters at this stage. While they were trucking it really suited her good.”
And she showed that, advancing from the running line to mow down all challengers in the straight and record a 2.3m win from Aldebaran Kiri, with Moonshine Linda a close third.
“The honour roll of this race, she doesn’t really deserve a place amongst them I wouldn’t have thought but you can’t do any more than she has done,” Lang said.
“It’s hard to know, going forward, whether she can get any better, but she probably doesn’t have too and I don’t care if she does because she’s done a great job.”
Earlier the Lyn McPherson Memorial Breed For Speed Silver Series Final saw Amore De Frere all-powerful in an impressive all-the-way win ahead of stablemate Parisian Amore, with the placings filled out by a fast-finishing Fatouche for Donna Castles.
“She’s probably still not doing everything right, but the team at home are working hard,” winning reinsman Jason Lee said.
“I know (owner) Pat Driscoll and (trainer) Anton Golino have got a pretty big opinion of her. She’s not doing every right at the moment but she’s still winning, she’s a pretty smart horse.”