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Almost Court, Emperor’s Way share spoils

Trainer Paul Snowden queried Glyn Schofield’s tactics after developing stayer Emperor’s Way had to settle for a dead heat with pacesetter Almost Court at Randwick.

The duo could not be split in the Fairfax & Roberts Jewellers Handicap (2000m) after Emperor’s Way, the $3.50 favourite, made a last-ditch dive at the line.

Snowden had virtually conceded the race when Schofield opted to go around The Bandit at the 300m rather than slip to the inside to make ground on Almost Court ($7.50) and Christian Reith.

“Head on there’s enough room to go in and he’s decided to come out. Schoey had his reasons, that was the difference,” Snowden said.

Schofield conceded he may have erred in the run home.

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“I’m glad to see the number go up to share it, it may have cost him the outright win,” he said.

“I elected for a little bit of clear room, I wasn’t sure where Blake (Spriggs) was going to go (on The Bandit).”

Snowden, who trains the four-year-old gelding with his father Peter, marvelled at top weight’s determination to reel in Almost Court.

“It was a massive effort from the little horse. It’s a testament to how hard he tries. I thought the bird had flown,” Snowden said.

“He’s got 58 kilos today, he’s got a very big will to win.”

Almost Court’s co-trainer Paul Jones was satisfied with the outcome as the five-year-old gelding aims for the Canberra Cup.

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