The audacity of it all, this son of Shamus Award, three-year-old RICH AND SHAMELESS was certainly shameless when he made it two in a row by winning the Kennards Hire Class 1 Handicap at Bathurst on Friday 31st January 2020.
It was an impressive victory, back a bit in distance, up in class and dropping half a kilo in weight carried. It’s a mean task to break your maiden status and back up winning a Class 1 next start … not for this fella.
Mitchell Bell was to take up the reins again, the pair had drawn barrier eight out of the ten starters. The day was a hot one, the rail was out 2 metres from the 1200m - 350m and the Cutaway applied. The track, rated a Good 4 at start of proceedings, was upgraded to a Good 3 a few races prior to RICH AND SHAMELESS’s race … in this case, the lucky last.
RICH AND SHAMELESS jumped well and was in the first three or four early on. One hundred metres further into the race his jockey realised a couple of his opponents, namely Epimetheus and Nevada Sunrise were taking advantage of their inside draws and were keen to lead, Mitchell eased to settle fifth, three off the fence.
On toward 1000 metres marker, the rider, wanting to keep in touch, urged RICH AND SHAMELESS to make up a little ground on the frontrunners, they were now joined by Cosmic Deluxe which had made a lightning move forward with the view of getting to the front. Epimetheus had other ideas and upped the tempo to retain the lead at the 800 metres pole.
With 600 metres still to go Mitchell had his mount perfectly positioned, running fourth just short of three lengths of the leader, two wide. The jockey had RICH AND SHAMELESS ready to strike when he needed.
The field were approaching 400 metres from home and Snippetsline had been asked to go forward and joined Epimetheus and Nevada Sunrise in front, the ever-alert Mitchell was awake to this, kicking up on RICH AND SHAMELESS inside the horse outside him (Snippetsline). This move forced that horse five wide around the home turn.
Well into the straight, Epimetheus and Nevada Sunrise were travelling strongly on the rail with Cosmic Deluxe dropping off. RICH AND SHAMELESS after being asked to up his rating, was hitting top gear down the middle of the track.
Just a bit less than 200 metres left to run, slowly but surely Mitchell maintained his horse’s rhythm and was closing. At the 100 metres RICH AND SHAMELESS had joined the leading bunch, the horses inside him were still kicking hard.
With the shadows of the Winning Post in their sights, Mitchell sensed victory was theirs, that was until the Bjorn Baker, Warwick Farm-trained Redjina came from the clouds, rattling down the outside and had drawn level 50 metres out. Under the urgings of his jockey, RICH AND SHAMELESS dug deep and raised another effort.
The narrowest of winning margins, 0.01 of a length. What a courageous performance, to the owners go the spoils … Congratulations, you’d have to be stoked. A pat on the back must go to Mitchell Bell for a top-notch ride. Finally, to Scott and the team at Singleton Racing you surely deserve all of the accolades bestowed upon you.