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Xtravagant completes rich double for stud

Rich Hill Stud's golden Group One run continued at Riccarton where their home-bred Xtravagant produced an extraordinary performance to demolish his classic rivals.

The handsome colt raced right up to his looks with a breath-taking victory in Saturday's Sothys New Zealand 2000 Guineas.

Rich Hill celebrated an historic Gr.1 Melbourne Cup victory with Pentire's son Prince Of Penzance and Xtravagant completed a memorable double for the Walton, near Matamata, farm's foundation stallion.

The three-year-old jumped smartly from a wide gate to lead and at the top of the straight rider Matt Cameron was sitting pretty.

"I had to use him a bit to get across, but he was just cantering and when I gave him one or two behind the saddle his acceleration was just amazing," he said.

Battle Time was left eight and a half lengths in Xtravagant's wake with the filly Serena Miss third and Brighton best of the rest.

Cameron has been close to winning the 2000 Guineas several times previously, including a runner-up finish on Xtravagant's brother He's Remarkable in 2010, and his time came in outstanding style.

"He was just humming along and he was way too good for them," he said. "It was incredible."

Xtravagant is prepared by Group One-winning trainer Stephen Autridge, but for his younger training partner Jamie Richards it was a first at the elite level.

"It's a massive buzz and we didn't expect him to do it like that," Richards said. "We thought he had improved since Wellington and the Te Akau model of getting them down here early has worked again – he's an outstanding colt."

It was a fifth 2000 Guineas victory for the Te Akau operation, whose principal David Ellis purchased Xtravagant from Rich Hill's 2014 Premier Sale consignment for $375,000.

They had previously won the classic with King's Chapel (2003), Darci Brahma (2005), Tell A Tale (2008) and Rock 'N' Pop (2011), whose combined winning margins were less than half of the distance Xtravagant put on his Riccarton rivals. – NZ Racing Desk.


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