Prominent Sydney trainers Peter and Paul Snowden have added another Ramornie Handicap at Grafton, with Signore Fox bursting through between runners to win the Listed sprint.
The father-and-son training partnership also won the Ramornie (1200m) with Calanda in 2017 while Peter Snowden prepared Pinwheel and Jerezana to successive wins in 2010 and 2011, respectively, when he was head trainer for the Darley operation.
Signore Fox was scratched from the Winter Dash in Sydney last month because of an unsuitable heavy track with the Snowdens desperate to wait to try to get him on firmer footing.
Grafton was downgraded from a good (4) to a soft (5) during Wednesday’s meeting after some rain but Signore Fox ($20) was still able to let down strongly between runners under jockey Jeff Penza to beat the James Cummings-trained Haunted by a half-length with Jonker a long neck away third.
The Snowdens also had favourite Hightail in the Ramornie, with the three-year-old finishing midfield in a bunched finish.
Peter Snowden watched from Sydney and was delighted to see stakes winning Signore Fox return to winning form for the first time this preparation from four starts.
“He ran super,” Snowden said.
“He’s always shown us that ability, we just couldn’t find any decent tracks. Even today, you couldn’t believe it. It was fine all week and then he got up there and it’s rained. Any worse than that (soft 5) and he’s out of play. He’s done a really good job today.”
Signore Fox was unplaced two starts ago on a soft track in the Takeover Target Stakes before heading to Queensland for the Group Two Victory Stakes on May 23.
Despite the track being rated good that day, Snowden said the Eagle Farm surface was shifty and Signore Fox did not let down on it.
“We gave him a freshen up with this race in mind and it has come off,” Snowden said.
Signore Fox also raced with a nose roll on for the first time on Wednesday.
The Snowdens had two winners at Grafton with California Longbow taking out a Class Six over 2200m while at Warwick Farm two-year-old colt Smart Image made an encouraging start to his career, narrowly winning in the Sky Racing Active Plate (1200m).
“He’s a nice horse. He’s got a future,” Snowden said of Smart Image.
“He’s still got a bit to learn but he won and he’s only half there. He’s got a lot of improvement to come.”