WAR FRONT’s Homesman took home his second career Group 1 race in Australia on Saturday with a win in the Australian Cup (G1) at Flemington.
The U.S.-bred 7-year-old gelding was making his second start of this campaign after finishing third in the Peter Young Stakes (G2) two weeks ago.
Racing over 1 ¼ miles on the famed Flemington turf course, Homesman was facing a tough field of 16 others and was happy to let some of the main contenders battle it out in front for much of the race as he raced in midpack. Steadily moving up with four furlongs left to run, Homesman came into the stretch widest of all and just behind the leaders.
The gelding had a target to run down in Group 1 winner Best Of Days and used nearly every inch of the stretch to get there. Showing the determination that has become Homesman’s signature trait, he collared the Godolphin runner and stuck his head in front under Jye McNeil to come home the winner.
“It was a great tough performance by the horse, well prepared, great tactics by mainly (owner) Lloyd (Williams) to come up with this, there was a plan of attack today and it all came off,” McNeil told Racing.com. “On the line I thought he was giving me everything he had. I felt he was starting to peak on his run and start to lay in a touch but he put it all on the track today and I’m super happy to get the win.”
It was the seventh win for the Anthony and Sam Freedman-trained Homesman, who has finished top three in 12 stakes races in three different countries.
Owned by a group that includes the Williams family, Homesman was bred by Joseph Allen . He is a three-quarter brother to Irish Champion U S Ranger and a full brother to stakes-placed War Cabinet. His dam My Annette is a three-quarter sister to Dynaformer and a daughter of Grade 1 winner Andover Way.
Other stakes winners under Homesman’s second dam include Grade 1 winner Offlee Wild and WAR FRONT’s Grade 1 winning trio of Lines of Battle, War Flag, and Civil Union.