Rivals left in his wake
David Walsh swears he never had a really good look behind him during the 2500-metre Metropolitan Trophy on Saturday and it's probably a good thing he didn't.
Because if he had taken the chance to see just how far back his opponents were from his mount Kullu, he might have fallen off in shock.
It was described by one astute judge as the most daring ride at Riccarton in many a day.
Slow out of the gates from the one barrier, Walsh surged forward on the rail to take the lead after 150m.
At one stage, with around 1000m left to run, his lead margin was 20 lengths and although that was whittled down to eight lengths at the post, it was enough to get people interested for Saturday's New Zealand Cup.
"To be honest I don't know how far I was in front," Walsh said. "I had one little glance about the mile and must have been a few in front then, I don't know.
"But I really did no work until the mile and Mandy (co-trainer Mandy Brown) said don't let it be a sprint home so I quickened him up and then quickened up again at the half-mile.
"Every time I asked him, he gave me a bit more.
"Then he tried to run off the track up the straight."
Trained by Brown and her husband Matt at Ngapuke, Kullu rocketed into contention for the New Zealand Cup and yesterday was in as short as $12 to win the race.
"That's why he was here today - to see if he would measure up and I guess on that performance he has to start," Walsh said.
With a view to the New Zealand Cup on Saturday there were notable performances in behind Kullu.
Dancing Embers, Miss Isle and Blood Brotha all made up plenty of ground from well back in the field while Mungo Jerry was also useful in finishing sixth.