So Swift provided Bill and Symon Wilde with Group 2 success in the Sandown Guineas.
Warrnambool father-son training combination Bill and Symon Wilde upstaged two of racing’s biggest players when So Swift won Saturday’s $350,000 Betfair Sandown Guineas at Betfair Park Sandown.
The gelding, who was coming off a Hamilton maiden win, poked his head out at the right time under the urgings of jockey-of-the-day Craig Williams to deny the Coolmore-raced Niagara and Darley’s Galah in a thrilling three-way photo finish to the Group 2 event.
Symon Wilde said he and his father had always had a strong opinion of the son of Barely A Moment and felt they had nothing to lose by having a crack at the Guineas.
“There was a bit of depth to the race this year, in past years it probably hasn’t been as deep as this year, but when we drew a good gate and got Craig Williams’ services we thought we’d have a throw at the stumps and we’ve hit middle (stump),” Wilde Jnr said.
“He was probably the one on the way up, some of these have had busy springs, and this was always the aim so it’s great to pull it off.”
So Swift provided Williams with his third of four wins for the day when he overcame inexperience to weave a passage to victory in the straight.
He lobbed in a handy position from his good barrier but got shuffled back to midfield on the fence after the Gai Waterhouse-trained Niagara found the front and ran the field along.
Niagara shifting way from the fence turning for home paved the way for those trailing him to get into the clear and while So Swift was the first to seriously challenge, both he and Niagara had to hold off a late challenge from Galah, who powered home along the fence the final 50m.
So Swift ($19) bobbed at the right time, scoring by a nose from Niagara ($7) with the Peter Snowden-trained Galah ($3.60) just a short half head away third.
Williams said it was an outstanding effort from So Swift at just his fifth trip to the races and predicted bigger things could be in store.
“We’ve seen in his previous races, he’s been a little awkward and still learning his trade and today he just raced really well and comfortable for me but you did see up the straight that he’ll gain more experience and confidence from today,” Williams said.
“It was a great training effort. Well done to the Wildes.”
Williams, who won the Caulfield Cup and Cox Plate before missing the Melbourne Cup-winning ride on Dunaden through suspension, earlier won the Group 3 Alannah and Madeline Foundation Stakes aboard hot favourite Under The Eiffel, having also won the opening race on the card – the Written Tycoon Champion Sire Stakes – with Maximus Moonard.
He bookended the program when he combined with Hi Belle to win the final race, giving him four wins for four different trainers.