Mark Wallis continued his affinity with the William Hill St Leger last night as Rubys Rascal cruised to victory in the Category One event.
It sealed a record fifth competition win for the Lakenheath handler following previous successes in 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2016.
It was an impressive performance at Perry Barr by the July 2014 dog, who despite trapping last, showed good pace to move up to second position by the first turn.
That set up a straight battle between Rubys Rascal and Charlie Lister’s Keplar Nine, the latter of whom tired towards the end of the 710m race.
There were no such issues for Wallis’ strong finisher, though, and the 3-1 shot went on to triumph by a comfortable margin.
“It means a tremendous amount,” Wallis told Sky Sports.
“That was such a good race tonight — it has been a brilliant competition.
“We needed that big win because it was getting a little bit quiet.
“It is a tough competition and all you want to do is get the dogs to the final in the best possible shape you can.
“It comes really quickly after the semi-final and the key is recovery — we did that.
“He missed the break again, but what pace to the bend — great pace.
“I love the St Leger. If you cannot win The Derby then you love to win the St Leger.”
Hockwold’s Patrick Janssens was also represented in the showpiece race by Goldies Hotspur, with the January 2015 dog finishing in third place.