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Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators

An unfortunate incident in the home straight when the $1.50 favourite In The Spotlight locked spider wheels with the $10 pacemaker The Hope Diamond knocked those fillies out of contention in the Hoist Torque Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night and played into the hands of $7.90 chance Jay Elle.

Jay Elle, trained by Justin Prentice and driven by Gary Hall jnr, was racing first-up for nine months and looked likely to finish third after enjoying the perfect one-out, one-back trail. But after the mishap Hall seized the opportunity and dashed Jay Elle to the front 50m from the post on her way to winning narrowly from Catch the Red Eye and Follow The Ark.

“She was lucky, with those horses locking wheels,” said Hall. “But she still got home in 28.2sec. and got the job done. The incident stopped both fillies pretty badly. I was probably going to run third behind those two.

“I thought I was going to win half-way around the bend. But when I pulled out, she sort of didn’t go anywhere, so I came back in for a bit. And when they locked wheels, I came to the outside.”

Discussing the incident soon after the field had rounded the home turn, In The Spotlight’s reinsman Ryan Warwick said: “She was going to win. After locking wheels we were out of play. That’s part of racing, unfortunately.”

Jay Elle, purchased for $56,000 at the 2020 APG Perth yearling sale by Prentice for a team of 14 owners, is by Alta Christiano and out of the Live Or Die mare Smart By Design. She won on debut in a heat of the Sales Classic for two-year-old fillies at Gloucester Park last February before she finished a distant last in the final after breaking into a bad gallop about 500m from home. She was then sent for a long spell and was having her third start in a race on Friday night.