New Zealand four year old Ocean Park rewarded jockey Glen Boss’ faith with a memorable win in the Group 1 $3m Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley today.
Boss has been singing the ability of Ocean Park since the Autumn and produced a near perfect ride to secure his third Cox Plate victory after winning on the might Makybe Diva in 2005 and international Group 1 winner So You Think in 2009.
“It feels like my greatest achievement in this sport so far,” Boss said.
“I know I’ve done some wonderful things but I’ve been in this colt’s corner for a long time and there’s been doubters but I’ve kept saying he’s a winner.”
“He just wants to win. He just wants to beat what’s ever in front of him. Full credit to Johnny Hawkes’ colt, he gave me a real good race today. He was a great horse on the day but my horse, he doesn’t care what time they run, he doesn’t care what’s in front of him, he just wants to beat them.”
Chris Munce on runner up All Too Hard gave his colt the best of runs, third on the fence for most of the way and just failed to hold off the powerful finish of Ocean Park by a neck.
Boss was able to nurse Ocean Park in the early stages of the race and find a nice spot before making his move coming to the home turn and put the four year old into the clear and was able to run down All Too Hard to score by a neck on the line.
Kiwi trainer Gary Hennessy has been blessed with a faultless preparation that has seen Ocean Park win his fourth Group 1 this preparation with the Cox Place win.
“You set a plan way back in last Autumn, just a thing hasn’t gone wrong with the horse and today was huge,” Hennessy said.
“Today he’s proved to be the best weight for age horse in Australasia.”
Hennessy was full of praise for Boss leading up to the race and the brilliant winning ride and is thinking of backing up Ocean Park in the Group 1 $1m Longines Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) at Flemington next Saturday.
Ocean Park was always solid in the betting and ended up starting at $6 with runner-up All Too Hard at $9 and the Gai Waterhouse three year old Pierro filling third spot at $5.50.
Favourite Green Moon ($5) was never in the hunt and More Joyous lost any chance she had when caught wide in the early and middle stages.