A determined ride and a great comeback from a beaten position was the highlight of Dawn Assault’s thrilling R250 000 Gr3 London News Stakes win on Sunday.
St John Gray’s 5yo entire had shown what he is made up of when pushing Tilbury Fort all the way to the wire in the Gr1 Summer Cup last month.
And on Sunday he was in his usual competitive mood as he set a decent gallop in the 1800m event under Karl Zechner.
Into the straight the pressure started presenting itself from all sides and Dawn Assault was swamped by the mare Al Danza and the Mike de Kock gelding Pietro Mascagni going into the 400m.
Al Danza and Pietro Mascagni were duelling it out in front with the mare appearing to hold the upper hand.
But Zechner had other ideas and he inspired some deep reserve power from Dawn Assault who rallied right back to spoil the party and beat Al Danza by a short head in a time of 112,19 secs.
Al Danza is in fine form and she must surely win soon based on her last three efforts.
Pietro Mascagni just surrendered late but held on for third a further 0,25 lengths back.
Dawn Assault was bred by Graystone Stud and is a son of Call To Combat (Announce) out of the two-time winner Cayman Ridge (Al Mufti)
He went through the ring at the 2015 KZN Yearling Sale but was bought back by Hadlow Stud.
Dawn Assault has won 8 races with 15 places from 38 starts for stakes of R1 231 675.
Gr3 London News Stakes (SAf-Gr3)
Turffontein, South Africa, January 6, R250k, 1800m, turf, good, 1.52.19
1 – DAWN ASSAULT (SAF), 57.0, b h 5, Call To Combat (SAF) – Cayman Ridge (SAF) by Al Mufti (USA). Owner Mr St John D Gray; Breeder Graystone Stud; trainer SD Gray; jockey K Zechner
2 – Al Danza (SAF), 55.5, b m 5, Captain Al (SAF) – Jet Danza (SAF) by Jet Master (SAF)
3 – Pietro Mascagni (SAF), 56.5, b g 4, Silvano (GER) – Jodie (SAF) by Western Winter (USA)
Margins: 0.10, 0.25, 0.50