Ihts Closing Inn headlines red letter day for Oakland Park Stud

Oakland Park Stud had an incredible day to remember at Belmont Park yesterday with 4 winners for the stable, headlined by the win of Ihts Closing Inn in the Listed Montague Partners – Belmont Classic (2200m).

Extending her winning sequence to five, Sessions filly Ihts Closing Inn was joined in the winner’s circle by stablemates Sapphire Street, Galactic Storm and Top Of The Pops.

Speaking after the race, Ihts Closing Inn’s trainer Adam Durrant was full of praise for the tough filly, who has now had 14 starts this campaign since January.

“It’s hard to know how good she is. She just keeps lifting the bar. I’ve got a lot of respect for the second horse, he’s already been placed at stakes level over the carnival so he’s no slouch.” Durrant said.

“I had a chat with Willie [Pike] before the race and basically [barrier] eight of eight was his problem. He wanted to sit quietly on her and I said do what you want, play it how you feel, and that’s why he is as good as he is.”

He almost put her to sleep a little too much!” Durrant commented on the patient ride by jockey William Pike.

Out of the barriers, Pike indeed let his ride find her feet at the rear of the field throughout, until approaching the home bend making his move, and within a blink of an eye under hands and heals riding, extended away for a brilliant 2 length victory.

The win continues a remarkable winning partnership for Pike on the filly, with 6 rides for 6 wins.

“This is clearly her best win of the campaign. I love riding her and she’s a little pocket rocket, not a lot to look at but on race day she shows them what she’s got,” Pike said after the race.

“I rode her to get the trip and with the sticky barrier [eight] I didn’t have many options. She is tactically versatile, but I do think being held up is the best version of her.”

The stable will now look at the major black type events for fillies and mares in the Perth Racing Summer Carnival, with a possible tilt at the 1 Million Dollar Perth Cup.

The incredible day for Oakland Park began with the maiden win of Sapphire Street in race 2 for trainer Danny Morton, and first of three winning rides by William Pike for the stable on the day.

Racing first up following an unlucky initial campaign earlier in the season, the 2YO Street Boss filly broke through for a deserved victory over 1000 meters.

In race 5, the Celebrating Racehorse Owner Summa Taylor Handicap over 1300m, Street Boss gelding Galactic Storm made it 2 wins from as many starts this campaign for trainer Adam Durrant and apprentice jockey Brayden Gaerth.

It was a fantastic ride from Gaerth, who had to bustle his mount along following tardy start, and holding out a desperate challenge from a fast finishing Extra Secret on the line.

The following race the day got even better for Oakland Park, with the win of Top Of The Pops in the Free Entry To Belmont Park Handicap over 1650m.

Coming from last, jockey William Pike come down the outside to gun down boom horse Vast Art right on the line for trainer Danny Morton.

An honourable mention to Exceltrain (Spirit Of Boom) who tried his heart out for a gallant 3rd in race 7 the Happy 30th Luke Marinelli Handicap.

It was a truly incredible day for our stable and congratulation to all our connections.