Jamie Kah aboard Harlem (Image: Racing Photos)
Jamie Kah grabbed her first Group 1 win and Harlem defended his Australian Cup crown when the pair combined for an unlikely result in the $1.5 million race at Flemington on Saturday.
Last year, Harlem won the Australian Cup at $61 and on Saturday, despite not winning or being placed in eight runs since that triumph, jumped at the lesser quote of $31 but once again he proved impossible to get by as he held off Shillelagh ($18) to win by a short-half head, with a length to the leader Trap For Fools ($15) in third place.
WATCH: Harlem's win
For Kah, the win was a ground-breaking one as at 23 years of age, she is on the verge of becoming an elite jockey in this country following her move to Melbourne just a few months back after dominating Adelaide racing for the past few seasons.
"That was just the best feeling in the world," Kah said after bringing Harlem back to scale.
"I thought he was a really good chance and Ben (Hayes) said he was the toughest horse and he wouldn't give in and that's what he was out there."
WATCH: Hear from Kah
Kah said the victory meant a lot to her so soon after her move to Melbourne.
"I didn't expect anything too massive straight away," she said. "I worked really hard. I tried to go up to Euroa (Lindsay Park stables) whenever I could and It's paid off.
"They Lindsay Park) supported me in Adelaide in the past and now I've made the leap.
"I knew it was going to be hard but I didn't think that it would happen so soon."
David Hayes said the stable had five runners in the race and that Harlem was far from being the roughest.
"He's been going OK - probably better than last year - and he was able to do it again which is just great," Hayes said.
WATCH: Hear from Hayes
It was a mixed result, however, for the colours of royal blue, white hoops, white sleeves with royal blue stars and red cap as while Harlem was able to wear them to win the Australian Cup, they were also worn for the final time by Redkirk Warrior in the Newmarket Handicap.
Redkirk Warrior had won the past two Newmarkets but after beating just one of his 21 rivals home on Saturday, it was announced that he would retiring to live out life at Living Legends.
Corey Brown took over from Hugh Bowman as the rider of Australian Cup favourite Avilius after Bowman was called back to Sydney for family reasons and he said the $1.65 favourite raced below expectations.
"To be honest, I was a fraction disappointed," Brown said after winding up in fifth place.
"I had a soft run. I hadn't asked him to extend until I got the gap at around the 300-metre mark. I expected him to really storm when he got through the gap but he didn't do that."
The race was hardly kind to the Macedon Lodge team with their three runners all performing below expectations.
Melbourne Cup winners Almandin (13th) and Rekindling (15th) faded badly in the run to the line while The Taj Mahal (ninth) made a move to take the lead at the top of the straight before fading late.