There’s a new guy on the Woodbine scene, mate.

FLAG OF HONOUR (Aus), making only his second start in North America and second start at Woodbine on Tapeta, charged up the rail to win Saturday’s Kennedy Road Stakes (G2) for trainer Julia Carey and Aussie owners Ron and Judy Wanless. Behind the four-year-old gelding was Grade 1 placed Ice Chocolat, who just missed getting his first win of the year, and the much-fancied Dream Shake, who was mired in traffic and closed too late. Patches O’Houlihan, a two-time graded stakes winner this year and previously unbeaten in 2023, finished fifth.

Jockey Kazushi Kimura kept Flag of Honour (American Pharoah – Godiva Rock (Aus), by Stratum (Aus)) tucked in on the rail early in the 6 furlong dash while Jazz Hands sped to the lead going 21.73 and 43.85 over an inside speed-biased surface. When a path opened into the stretch, Kimura sent his horse through to the lead and held on to win in 1:08.86.

Daily Racing Form awarded him a 98 Beyer Speed Figure.

The Kennedy Road was one of 10 races on November 18 on a sunny but cold afternoon. More than $7 million was wagered on the card.

“This was the ultimate goal, this race,” said Carey, who received the horse this summer from the Wanless’ who had raced the promising horse in Australia. Carey ran the horse on October 29 off the layoff and with first time Lasix and after a slow start, he charged to the lead but was caught late by champion Hazelbrook.

A $330,391 purchase from the 2021 Magic Millions yearling sale, the August-born Flag of Honour showed plenty of promise in his homeland, winning his first two starts and placing fourth in a Group 3 event. He won his 2023 opener, a handicap at Gosford on May 6, before his long journey to Canada.

Flag of Honour’s dam, Godiva Rock (Stratum), won a Moonee Valley maiden race and was placed at the Group 1 level, while his second dam, Princess Jewels (NZ) (Quest For Fame {GB}) was a winner at three at Geelong.

He is related to the Listed winner Leica Jewel (Best Western), who is the dam of 1992 G1 VRC Derby winner Redding (NZ).