Rustic Steel wins Newcastle Stakes as Jimmysstar beaten again

Kris Lees continued his recent dominance of the Group 3 Newcastle Stakes as Rustic Steel provided the local trainer with his fifth win in the 1400-metre feature in the past six editions.

Ridden by Sam Clipperton , the six-year-old speared to the lead in the early stages to overcome being posted out wide having started from barrier nine.

It was from that point and into the straight that the race was in Clipperton’s keeping as Rustic Steel ($12) dashed away from his rivals.

Race favourite Jimmysstar ($1.85) finished outside of the placings after being caught four-back on the rails after which jockey Tyler Schiller was unable to find a gap for the hyped four-year-old to make an impression.

“On paper it didn’t look like a fast run race,” Lees said.

“He’s won before winning The Coast (1600m) on speed but when he got across and was able to show a good turn-of-foot at the top of the straight, he was always going to be hard to run down.”

First-up since finishing eighth in the Group 2 The Ingham (1600m) at Randwick on December 9, a run which Lees described as flat.

“He’s got that residual fitness and ran a couple of nice trials.”

Rustic Steel won be more than three-lengths over Sharp Shock ($201) with Imatruestar ($101) in third with the winner’s stablemate Ucalledit ($18) in third.

Pre-race, trainer Ciaron Maher had indicated that the Group 3 Doncaster Prelude (1500m) at Rosehill on March 30 would be Jimmysstar’s next assignment.

Jimmysstar is rated a $26 chance with betting apps for the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) in April with Rustic Steel at $101.

Doncaster Mile favourite Think About It takes on the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes at Randwick on Saturday.

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