Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators
Former New Zealand trainer-reinsman Brian Ferguson (53) celebrated his first Friday night metropolitan-class winner when his 24-year-old son Micheal drove a patient race to land $8.20 chance Lethal Edition a smart winner of the $20,250 Hoist Torque Australia Pace for two-year-olds at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
The win was also a notable occasion for Micheal Ferguson. It was his first metro-class driving double in a burgeoning career of 194 winners. He was successful at his only other drive at the meeting — behind Rockaball in the opening event.
Lethal Edition began from the outside barrier in the field of five, and Ferguson was content to race in last position while Soho Firestone ($2.50) set a fast pace as he defied a spirited challenge for the lead from the $1.95 favourite Major Overs.
A fast opening 400m section of 28.2sec. was followed by 29.1sec. and 29.9sec. quarters, leaving the two frontrunners susceptible to a late challenge.
Chris Lewis eventually got to the front with Major Overs 300m from the finish, and Lethal Edition was still last on the home turn where Lethal Edition was winding up, three wide, for a late charge. Lethal Edition overhauled Major Overs about 15m from the post and he scored an impressive victory, rating 1.57.9 over 1730m. After the hectic tempo, the final 400m was covered in a slow 31.7sec.
“From barrier five, I didn’t think we could get across early, so I decided to stay out of it,” said Micheal Ferguson. “Lethal Edition will now go to the paddock before coming back to be prepared for the big races, the Pearl, Golden Slipper and Westbred Classic.”
Brian Ferguson trained and drove a group feature event for two-year-olds at Auckland’s Alexandra Park as well as driving winners at Cambridge, Manawatu, Waikato, Hawera and Morrinsvle.
Lethal Edition, bred and owned by Denise Trobe and Adrian Staltari, is by former Victorian-bred star pacer Bling It On and is the sixth foal out of the Safely Kept mare Hindu Sitara (42 starts for nine wins, 12 placings and $97,607), who produced Deluxe Edition, who earned $129,095 from 11 wins and 23 placings from 61 starts.
Bling It On earned $1,882,957 from 49 wins and 24 placings from 100 starts. He was a brilliant youngster, having 14 starts as a two-year-old for nine wins and five placings in New South Wales. Later, he went on to win group 1 feature events, the Queensland Derby in July 2014, the 2017 Hunter Cup at Melton and the 2019 Victoria Cup at Melton.