A determined performance by Gatting caused a major upset in the G3 Hyperion Stakes at Belmont (WA) and at the same time took him a step closer to a Melbourne spring campaign.
As impressive as his record is, the well-performed son of Hard Spun had appeared out of his depth in a race dominated by the eventual runner-up Galaxy Star.
But after having the run of the race behind the leader, Gatting outgunned the favourite in the run to the line, scoring a clear and decisive win.
The Hyperion win was Gatting’s 10th from 34 starts and the fifth at Stakes level for a horse who won the G2 WA Derby in 2017.
Gatting, the first foal of the Lonhro mare Stubborn, is one of Hard Spun’s 13 Australian-bred Stakes winners, a group led by the South African G1 winner Ertijaal.
Trainer Darren McAuliffe is hoping to tackle the G1 WS Cox Plate with Gatting next October.
“It’s a way off yet and he’ll be stepping up in class, but he’s a very honest horse and a great tryer, so why not give him his chance,” McAuliffe said.
The former shuttler stood at Jonabell Farm, Kentucky in the last northern hemisphere breeding season.