Jay Ford ‘Steels’ victory in The Coast

Rustic Steel has proven his credentials over a mile with an all-the-way win in The Coast.

RUSTIC STEEL winning the The Coast at Gosford in Australia.
RUSTIC STEEL winning the The Coast at Gosford in Australia. Picture: Steve Hart

He wasn't able to win the race named in honour of champion sprinter Takeover Target, but Jay Ford did manage to snare a coveted feature at the stand-alone Gosford meeting. 

The regular rider of the multiple Group 1 winner, Ford turned back the clock with a well-rated frontrunning ride aboard Rustic Steel to claim the biggest prizemoney purse of the afternoon in Saturday's $500,000 The Coast (1600m). 

There was a distance query over the Kris Lees-trained four-year-old going into the race but after enjoying an uncontested lead, Rustic Steel ($7.50) kicked strongly to hold out O'President ($8.50) by a long neck with Old Flame ($8.50) another 1-1/2 lengths away third. 

"We didn't expect to lead," Ford said. 

"He jumped straight on the bridle and no-one wanted it, so I took it. 

"From the half-mile in I just built the revs because Kris said he was a horse that liked to get in a rhythm and just blend into his races. 

"When we were able to do as we pleased from the front, I always thought it was going to take something good to get over the top of me late." 

Rustic Steel is building a promising record and has now won half of his 12 starts. 

Lees said the horse may back-up in Friday's Scone Cup (1600m) in an attempt to qualify for a start in The Big Dance on Melbourne Cup day at Randwick. 

"Until they are tried at 1600 metres you don't really know how they will go but he has run it out strongly," Lees said. 

"I'm considering backing him up in the Scone Cup next week. 

"With the opportunity to get into The Big Dance, you have to look at it." 

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