SUPPLY And Demand might have been out on his legs but he still carried enough fortitude to win the $160,000 McKimms Real Estate Grafton Cup (2350m) at Clarence River Jockey Club on Thursday.
The four-year-old gelding son of Sebring collected his fourth race in succession when he outstayed Get On The Grange by a short neck, with Montauk another length and a quarter away in third.
Josh Parr was on emotional young jockey after partnering Supply and Demand to a seventh career win, in the feature race of the July racing carnival.
Parr rode him when he won the Caloundra Cup at his previous start.
“He travelled a lot better in the Caloundra Cup,” he said.
“Today he didn’t travel from the 700m to the top of the straight. He was out on his legs. Toughness got him home today.”
It was Parr’s first Grafton Cup win.
“I was desperate to win this race,” he said.
“My grandfather used to come here annually and brought me with him.
“So it was very, very special to win and such a brave run.”
Supply and Demand’s trainers Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott shared their first joint Grafton Cup triumph, although Waterhouse has won three previous Cups with Rocking On (2006), Queenstown (2014) and Bonfire (2015).
Neither Waterhouse nor Bott was in Grafton on Thursday, with stable representative Neil Paine in charge.
Paine said a lot of the credit has to go to Bott, with Waterhouse away on holidays but in constant contact.
“Adrian deserves a lot of the credit because he planned this horse’s races,” he said.
“While Gai has been away he’s put him through his paces.
“He had to work to get across and was going up three kilograms too.
“Had 58.5kg today too, so that was a real good effort.
“There was always a query whether he’d stay but he showed that at Caloundra and topped it off today.”
In an earlier race at Grafton, Victorem’s talent and heart were there for all to see when the Port Macquarie juvenile won the NBN Springboard To Fame 2YO Plate (1200m).
The Jenny Graham-trained son of I Am Invincible was three and four deep for the majority of the race but still found a way to win, surging to a half length success over Runaway, with Imperial Eagle two lengths away third.
Ben Looker rode the gelding and jumped from barrier 12. They expected to go back and wait for the straight before launching.
“They jumped too well,” Graham said.
“We were three and four deep but had cover,” he said.