Never Again wins the Chester Manifold Stakes (Image: Racing Photos/Natasha Morello)
Clinton McDonald hailed the win of Never Again in the $140,000 Listed Chester Manifold Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on Saturday as a 'great result for the family'.
The six-year-old son of High Chaparral ended a 13-month losing sequence when winning at Caulfield on Boxing Day and then made it consecutive victories with a well-timed swooping run, once again profiting from a fast-early pace.
“We own the horse and there’s $84,000 reasons to be clapping," McDonald said.
Ridden by Michael Walker, Never Again defeated Vassilator by a neck with Brave Song a similar margin away in third.
Guizot ran fourth while Riding The Wave was challenged for the lead early and raced keen through the middle stages which diluted his finish before finishing fifth, under two lengths from the winner.
Never Again's victory on Boxing Day was viewed by connections as a bonus ahead of the Chester Manifold as his Caulfield record prior to his final run for 2020 was six unplaced efforts from as many attempts.
Whilst Never Again notched his first Flemington win in the Chester Manifold, consistent with the past six winners of the race, he has performed well over 1400 metres at Flemington.
“He’s a nice horse, he’s always shown good ability," McDonald said. "Over the 1400 metres here he’s always raced well. He’s always needed the tempo on and he got that today which was good to see.
"Michael (Walker) rode him beautifully. He hits a flat spot and Michael knew about that. He got him through that and then once he got him into the clear I thought he’d be hard to beat.”
Walker, who has ridden ten Melbourne winners this season, said he was pleased to bring joy to the McDonald family.
“When I first came over as a kid, Clint, Ross and Margaret supported me hugely, I think Margaret is in the ownership too. It was good for her and Ross isn’t here anymore but he’d be looking down and happy for everyone," Walker said.