Spirit Of St Louis continued his domination of Victoria's premier country cups in the group 1 $110,000 PETstock Ballarat Pacing Cup, 2710m, on Saturday night.
The Belinda McCarthy-trained five-year-old's performance gave him a stunning third cup triumph in as many weeks, following Bendigo and Shepparton.
The five-year-old also emulated the feat of Ballarat all-time great Sting Lilka Bee, which had been the only previous winner of the three cups in the same calendar year in 2007.
Spirit Of St Louis will now also try to add the $500,000 AG Hunter Cup to his winning record - something Sting Lika Bee also did.
Spirit Of St Louis ($5) withstood a late charge from mare Amazing Dream ($19), which closed to within a half neck. Last year's winner Lochinvar Art ($1.95 favourite) was 2m away third.
The Cup had the harness racing community hailing it the best major feature race in living memory, with the 12-strong field providing a constant chain of moves and tactical manoeuvres.
Spirit Of St Louis, with young NSW reinsman Jack Callaghan, won the initial battle for the lead from gate one, holding out Matts Delight in a blistering start.
Lochinvar Art settled on their back before going forward taking the lead with 2000m to run. That did not last long. Matts Delights rushed to the front, but Lochinvar Art and Expensive Ego immediately went forward and with 1600m to go Luke McCarthy had Expensive Ego in front.
That was not the end of it.
My Uncle Sam swept around the field to sit outside the leader, with Mach Da Vinci parked three wide.
While all this was happening, Spirit Of St Louis was finally getting a breather after his initial effort and then a time facing the breeze.
Callaghan found clean air at the top the straight and that was all Spirit of St Louis needed to make his claim.
Spirit Of St Louis has been considered to be in the shadow of stablemates Expensive Ego and King Of Swing, but his Victorian campaign has seen him emerge to make his own mark, culminating in his first group 1 success.
Belinda McCarthy said the Inter Dominion championship series in his home state of NSW had been the making of him, with the former New Zealander winning a heat and beeing twice placed to reach the final.
Callaghan said he had believed in the horse
"He had to do it a bit different than I thought at the start, but I knew how good he is and he proved it tonight."
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