Not An Option wins the Chester Manifold Stakes

Michael Dee’s knack for landing race day features continued into the new year with victory aboard Not An Option in the Listed Chester Manifold Stakes (1400m) at Flemington.

Notching a third win in eight outings at the track, the gelding broke a run of outs this preparation to win the $175,000 event.

Not An Option ($11) won by a short-head margin over Who Dares ($7.50) with South Australian visitor Struck By ($6.50) 2¾-lengths away in third.

“Lucky my horse had the real will to win because at the end Jye (McNeil aboard Who Dares) would have outridden me there,” Dee said.

“At the top of the straight I could see Jye coming through quite quickly and I was a bit slow to get across and shut the gate.

“When you’re in that position you’re in two minds whether to keep your horse balanced or really shut the gate.

“I sort of half did both.”

Trained locally by Mike Moroney,Not An Options last win was at Flemington over 1420-metres on June 17.

Settling in the first four through the run, the son of Not A Single Doubt is showing a liking to the track and distance.

“I rode him a Caulfield a couple of starts ago and he was behind the pace,” Dee added.

“He just doesn’t have a strong turn-of-foot where today, and other times, he has been able to find his gears at the top of the straight and go through them without having to sit-and-sprint.”

Race favourite with leading betting sites Unusual Culture ($3.50) finished outside of the placings in seventh.

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