Cruz Bromac performed creditably from the back row but had to settle for third in the $500,000 Inter Dominion Pacing Grand Final at Melton on Saturday, December 15.
The Bromac-bred second favourite gave his best but the rub of the green was against him in the Final, after going through unbeaten through the three heats.
The race developed into a game of tactics, but Tiger Tara's explosive gate speed from the outside of the front row was the catalyst for the victory.
Tiger Tara's driver Todd McCarthy was able to defend the front, and a 26.3s second-to-last quarter when he kicked away at the 400m, left his rivals floundering.
The three-wide line over the final lap were the best of the remainder, with outsider Our Uncle Sam running the race of his life to come off Cruz Bromac's back late to snatch second, some 14.4 metres from Tiger Tara.
Cruz Bromac, and driver Natalie Rasmussen, tracked up stablemate and favourite Spankem, who led up the three-wide line over the final lap.
They boxed on for third, with Spankem fourth, and the third of the NZ-trained contingent, Im Pats Delight, fifth, after racing handy on the outer for much of the running.
All the honours were with the NZ-bred Tiger Tara, who set a stunning track record mile rate of 1:53.9 for the 2760m.
Tiger Tara, by Bettor's Delight-Tara Gold (Dream Away-Atom Gold, by Soky’s Atom-Vita Gold, by Knowing Bret-Petronella), bred at Rangiora by the late Ray Anicich, paced his final 400m in 27.9s, giving him a last 800m in 54.2s.
This made it impossible for Tiger Tara’s rivals to hunt him down.
The win was deserved for Tiger Tara, who had been a consistent Group One place-getter since being sold to the stable of New South Wales trainer Kevin Pizzuto stable in January, 2017.
Tiger Tara had been a proven Group One winner in NZ, numbering wins in the 2013 NZ Sires Stakes 3YO Final, 2014 Northern Derby and 2015 NZ Free-For-All, when co-raced by former West Melton trainer, Geoff Dunn, along with Bob and Jenny Sandford, and John Gould.
For Pizzuto, Tiger Tara had won last year's Group One Canadian Club Sprint at Menangle.
He had also recorded six Group One placings, including third in a Blacks A Fake, a third to Lazarus in the 2017 NZ Cup, second to Thefixer in this year’s NZ Cup, second in the 2017 NZ Free-For-All, third to Lazarus and Chicago Bull in the 2017 Perth Inter Dominion Final, and fourth in Field Marshal’s 1:46.9 Miracle Mile.
The Grand Final win was his 32nd career win from 99 starts, taking his earnings to just over .9 million.