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McEvoy Mitchell RacingLatest News So Unusual finds a way again

So Unusual finds a way again

Any doubts about the staying quality of the promising So Unusual were laid to rest at Flemington on Saturday, March 4.

The Tony & Calvin McEvoy-trained So Unusual overcame a home turn “peak hour traffic jam” to win the quality Lexus Melbourne Cup Tour Tenders Open Handicap (2500m) and make it four wins in a row.

For the first part of the race, Dean Holland, on So Unusual, gave the ex-New Zealander a perfect run but suddenly, on the home turn, a tiring runner and traffic, saw the gelding badly inconvenienced.

Two of the gelding’s major rivals saw the holdup and took advantage of clear runs to go for home.

Credit to Holland, he worked So Unusual into the clear and allowed the gelding to regain his momentum, then set out in the quest of victory.

A drifter from $2.60 to $3.20, So Unusual was able to gather in the heavily backed Timour ($5 into $2.70 fav) past the 200, then go after the leader Youth Spirit ($4.20).

The McEvoy-trained stayer arrived in the shadows of the post to win by a half-length from Youth Spirit with Timour, 2-1/2 lengths away third.

Provided he pulls up well and holds condition, So Unusual is likely to try and win a spot in the 2023 Melbourne Cup at his next run.

The winner of the Listed $500,000 The Roy Higgins (2600m) at Flemington Saturday, March 25 is guaranteed a start in the Melbourne Cup.

Trainer Calvin McEvoy was very impressed by So Unusual’s ability to overcome trouble and win.

“It was a bit of unfortunate circumstances,” McEvoy said.

“He had the most beautiful run throughout the race, he began beautifully.

“The great quality about this young stayer is that he switches off mid-race, that is going to take him a long way.

“Unfortunately, something came back in his lap on the turn, and I thought the race was over, they normally don’t pick themselves up like that. Especially a big, young, green horse, and the tenacity he showed were the signs of a very good horse.

“We can’t fault him at home, he does everything so easily – he’s a fit horse and we don’t have to work him very hard.

“He is still only a young horse, four, and I am sure he will be even better next preparation.

“We want to treat him carefully, treat him with the respect he deserves, but the Roy Higgins is definitely an option.”

Jockey Dean Holland continues his “love affair” with So Unusual.

“Things could not have panned out any better during the run,” Holland said.

“We had a plan where I didn’t want to be the first one to hit the front because he still waits for them, is still learning how to put them away.

“It nearly cost us the race.

“Damien Oliver (on Youth Spirit) saw me, and I saw him, and he made a move early.

“The leader stopped, and the horse outside picked up the bridle and I nearly got pocketed.

“He’s a tough horse, and he shook that bit of a bump off.

“He really chased hard to the line.

“It takes a decent horse to get you out of trouble like that, thankfully I had a horse good enough underneath me.”