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Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators

Part-owner and trainer Katja Warwick is a realist. She admits that her smart colt Machnificent is far from being the best three-year-old in the State. But she admires his competitive spirit and has a long-range plan for him to contest the rich Golden Nugget late next year.

Machnificent, the $3.70 second favourite, notched the ninth win of his 34-start career when he rated a smart 1.55 in defeating the fast-finishing $10 chance Heez Our Perseus by a nose in the 2130m Pastrami Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.

Former South Australian performer Hesashark ($4.40) set a solid pace, with the $2.40 favourite Know When To Run in the breeze after making an unsuccessful bid for the early lead. Machnificent, who also battled for the early lead, enjoyed a perfect trail behind the pacemaker until Shannon Suvaljko eased the colt off the pegs with a lap to travel and forced Know When To Run three wide.

Machnificent, the only three-year-old in the event, forged to the front 470m from home and he just held on to beat Heez Our Perseus, who was seventh at the bell before unleashing a terrific finishing burst.

“There was no race for three-year-old colts and geldings tonight, so Machnificent had to race against Older horses,” said Warwick.

“We thought that the Nugget would be held early next year but having the race at the end of the year is what it is. Machnificent is a dangerous little horse. His strength is his sprint, and his willingness. He loves being a racehorse. He always tries.

“He is not the best of his age, but he is hard to run down if he is drawn to lead, and he’s dangerous with a sit and if he is within range.”

Warwick purchased the Mach Three colt for $20,000 at the 2019 APG Perth yearling sale. He now has earned $90,961 from nine wins and 11 placings for Warwick, Ross Waddell and a Pacing WA syndicate.

Machnificent is the fifth and by far the best foal out of the Northern Luck mare Honourable Daughter, who failed to be placed from six starts in 2010. Perhaps Machnificent has inherited some of his ability from his maternal great granddam Chaangerr, who won six times from 30 starts in New Zealand and is the dam of star performers Changeover (66 starts for 29 wins, 16 placings and $2,321,676) and Change Stride (184 starts for 33 wins, 55 placings and $505,133).