They were there to make up the numbers.
That was the message of the Caulfield Cup betting market which gave Boom Time and Single Gaze almost no chance of making the frame.
But at the business end of the $3 million race, it was the never-say-die son of Flying Spur and the bottomlessly brave daughter of Not A Single Doubt who fought out the finish.
Boom Time, previously a Group-placed dual Listed winner, was given a near-perfect run by Cory Parish who took advantage of gate 3 to slot the 6YO gelding in on the rail, behind the leading bunch, as Sir Isaac Newton took off in front. It took a little work to ease him into space at the top of the straight but when the break came, Boom Time sprinted to the lead.
Single Gaze and Kathy O’Hara had a trickier task from gate 12 and took the make-your-own-luck route, spearing forward to lead the chase after Sir Isaac Newton, settling beautifully mid-race and responding heartily when the pressure came on. Boom Time just had a little more left at the end of the 2400-metre contest, and won by 1.25 lengths in 2:27.66, with Johannes Vermeer third.
Boom Time was bred and raced with good success by Western Australian businessman Kim Loxton, until his sale earlier this year to champion trainer David Hayes, who celebrated three generations of Caulfield Cup success with his co-trainers, son Ben and nephew Tom Dabernig. Colin Hayes won the race with How Now in 1976, while David already had two victories on his record, with Fraar (1993) and Tawqeet (2006).
It’s not uncommon for horses to out-run their pedigrees, but in Boom Time’s case, the disconnect is more than usually significant.
Yes, Golden Slipper winner Flying Spur took his brilliance out to 1600 metres in the Australian Guineas and All Aged Stakes. Yes, Boom Time’s damsire Snippets was a top-class 2YO and sprinter who sired winners of the Doomben Cup G1 and MacKinnon Stakes G1. However, neither stallion could be called a reliable source of stayers!
Boom Time’s female family is almost entirely dedicated to short-course speed. His dam Bit Of A Ride won seven races up to 1400 metres, and under his third dam Love Song sit the names of Magnus (AJC The Galaxy G1), Champion 3YO Colt All Too Hard and – the very definition of unrivalled speed in 21st century Australian racing – Black Caviar.
Boom Time is the 13th Group 1 winner for 2007 Champion Sire Flying Spur, still in good health at the age of 25 and very happily enjoying his retirement at Arrowfield, on the farm he did so much to help build.
Flying Spur’s tally of stakeswinners is 99 and with his final crop now five-year-olds, time is running out to complete his century. Boom Time will get the chance to add a much bigger prize to Flying Spur’s CV by taking his place in the field for the $6 million Melbourne Cup G1 on 7 November.