Group 1 Kingston Town Classic Rewards Darren Weir
It may have been coincidence entirely, or it may have been a major case of a lack of gratitude, but in most likelihood, it was simply the fortunes of racing that found Darren Weir’s five-year-old stallion Stratum Star grabbing the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic from local favourite Scales of Justice, whose trainer, Lindsey Smith, had allowed Weir to use Smith’s facilities in getting Stratum Star ready for the race.
The 1800 m race came down to the final stride and featured a bit of controversy when the stewards at Ascot leveled charges of not riding Scales of Justice out to the line at jockey Douglas Whyte.
Lindsey Smith felt that his rider had taken the correct course in resorting to using his hands and heels, rather than the whip, in the attempt to get the last little bit of effort out of Scales of Justice.
Weir was generous in the aftermath of the win, his 17th Group 1 victory and his first outside of Victoria or South Australia. Following the race, he put $5,000 on the bar, which was met with enthusiasm by those in attendance.
Damian Lane was the rider of Stratum Star and it was his first Group 1 win in the state of his birth.