Holymanz books NZ trip with a Coastal Classic win

With the Coastal Classic in the bag, attention now turns to the rich Aotearoa Classic with Holymanz as Ciaron Maher and David Eustace look to put an exclamation mark on a successful campaign with the gelding.

The four-year-old son of Almanzor justified a strong raceday betting move to claim the inaugural edition of the $300,000 event that is the headline race of the new feature meeting.

It was the second win from his past three starts for the Cambridge Stud-owned miler, following a Flemington win on Oaks Day, and assistant trainer Jack Turnbull said Holymanz was now likely to head to the NZ$1 million event for four-year-olds at a Karaka festival on January 27.

“Henry (Plumptre) and Cambridge have always been of the mindset that he’s a Group horse and he had a tumble in the (Australian) Guineas and was travelling into it at that point,” Turnbull said.

“Even for a horse to come back and get back to winning form is fantastic.

“It’s really good for Cambridge, we’ve set the horse for this race, it’s very good prizemoney, and it leads into a nice option at the Karaka Million Sales in three weeks’ time.”

Holymanz ($3.20 fav) took his record to four wins from 12 starts in the 1700m Coastal Classic when he held off Bermadez ($4.40) to score by three quarters of a length with the fast-finishing Don’t Doubt Dory ($71) a head away third.

The race was run at a slow tempo early, which allowed Michael Deegan to take up a position just behind the speed and the jockey said his confidence rose once he was able to stay one off the fence.

“We wanted to stay off the fence because we feel he’s a better horse ridden outside horses with a bit of room,” Dee said.

“He really towed me into it coming down the hill and he made pretty easy work of it.”

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