The ominous sound of the protest siren sounding shortly after the runners crossed the line in the Gr.2 First Global Logistics Eclipse Stakes (1200m) at Ellerslie threw shudders through the supporters of first past the post Pacific Dragon.
The Tony Pike-trained daughter of Charm Spirit had shifted out significantly in the final 150m of the contest, hampering the finishing burst of the unbeaten Wolverine who had ranged up alongside Pacific Dragon for rider Danielle Johnson halfway down the straight.
The final margin to Pacific Dragon was a bare nose and after deliberations in the enquiry room, the judicial committee reversed the placings in favour of the Roydon Bergerson-trained Wolverine.
The victory made it three wins a row for Wolverine, who had started the $2.40 second favourite in the contest behind I Choose You ($2.20) and was having her first look around the Ellerslie track as she prepares for the $1million Doubletree by Hilton Karaka Million 2YO (1200m) at the venue on January 22.
Bergerson was a happy man as he pumped his fist leaving the enquiry room before being greeted by the filly’s ecstatic connections.
“I was pretty certain when we saw the replay that the decision would go our way,” he said.
“Danielle said the way she was finishing it probably cost her a length in the end as she was closing very strongly.
“It’s great to have the decision go our way as today was an important race for her breeding career further down the track, while it also gave her a really good look around Ellerslie before the Karaka Million in three weeks.”
Bergerson will now take the daughter of Tivaci home for an easy time before returning to Ellerslie for the Karaka Million.
“We haven’t really wound her up yet, so she should be spot on for the big one later in the month,” he said.
“She has been staying with Richard Collett up here and has really enjoyed it there, so she can go home for a few easy days now.
“The good thing about her is that her shins are like concrete so hopefully that takes some of the worries away about getting her ready for the Karaka Million.”
Purchased by Bergerson and Chris Rutten for $50,000 out of the Waikato Stud draft during the Book 1 sale at Karaka earlier this year, Wolverine had a 50 percent holding in her sold to Australian Bloodstock following her winning debut performance, with Bergerson and Rutten remaining involved in her.
Out of the O’Reilly mare Knew It, Wolverine descends from a female line that includes multiple Group One winner Ocean Park, who also stands at Waikato Stud along with her sire Tivaci.
TAB Bookmakers confirmed Wolverine at the head of the Karaka Million 2YO market at $3 with Pacific Dragon now sitting equal second favourite with Grace ‘N’ Grey at $6.