LOCAL Bloke ($3.40) did just enough to hold on in Monday’s Buck Fever @ Stud Stakes (520 metres) at Kennerson Park.
Race favourite Ellie May ($2.80) bore down on Local Bloke in the closing stages but the Steve Jones-trained runner held on by a neck for his second career victory.
Early Leader Sheba’s Gold ($10.80) was only a further nose away in a three-way battle to the line.
Local Bloke took the step up beyond the 500m mark for the first time in his short career, and although he tired towards the end, had enough in the tank to win in a time of 30.34.
Sheba’s Gold got out strongest from box three but Local Bloke on her outside got to the front before the first turn.
Going into the final turn Local Bloke had built up a three length lead on Sheba’s Gold, who was being challenged on her outside by Ellie May.
Local Bloke faded in the final 50m but had built up a big enough lead early on to secure the result.
“I thought he would be a bit suspect at the finish because he’s never been over that distance. He’ll improve on that,” Orange owner-trainer Jones said.
“He’s normally not good out of the boxes. At Richmond last start he missed the start so I did a bit of box work with him after that. His box manners were improved a lot today after that.”