Otago Racing Club meeting at Wingatui, February 2, 2019.
Weather, fine; track, good (3); rail, true position.
Race 1 Wingatui Function Centre Maiden, $20,000, 1400m
Trudy Thornton rode Mowenna to win in her first ride on the Wingatui track. The 55yr-old accomplished Cambridge rider led early with Mowenna then trailed stablemate and favourite Hombre. Mowenna outfinished Hombre by half a neck with a nose to Deceptio Visus, who ran on well from sixth. Just Play came from last at the 400m in a 14-horse field for fourth, a nose back with half a head to Jessie Janet (fifth in the running). The well supported Nasheeta had her chance when sixth, ahead of Nellie Bly and Whatacracker.
Mowenna is owned and trained by John and Karen Parsons, who bred by the daughter of Swiss Ace – Umachelle, a Umatilla mare they bought in Australia.
Horse to follow: Just Push Play.
Race 2 Harcourts, $25,000, rating 72, 1400m
Taieri Gem and Zabay finished one-two for White Robe Lodge trainers Brian And Shane Anderton with a nose between them. Taieri Gem(Courtney Barnes) came from third last in the 11-horse field to edge out Zabay, who forged to the front inside the 200m after racing three back on the inner. There was a head to Carson River, who made a late dab from back in the field. Our Teddy Boy was a neck back fourth after dropping to the rear early. He shared that placing with Majic El, who was hampered in the closing stages when Zabay shifted out. Taieri Gem is raced by Brian and Lorraine Anderton and the Progressive syndicate.
Horse to follow: Carson River.
Race 3 KB Contracting Handicap, open, 1200m
Johnny Jones repeated his win of last year with a bold front running performance. The 6yr-old Pins – Raining gelding raced by Beverley Jones Racing Ltd and trained by John and Karen Parsons was ridden by apprentice Tina Comignaghi. Johnny Jones held on by three-quarters of a length from Signify, who was close up on the outer throughout. Shaara ran on well along the inner from ninth at the 450m for third, a neck back with half a length to Darci Mac, who finished on from mid-field. Passito who trailed the leader, faded to fifth, shading the favourite, The Precious One, who made ground late from back in the field. The well supported Prince Oz battled for seventh after showing up wide entered the stretch.
Horse to follow: Shaara.
Race 4 Mediaworks Dunedin Guineas, $50,000, 3yos, 1500m
Air Max followed up his win in the Gore Guineas with a convincing win.
Air Max (Terry Moseley) was late working clear after racing four back on the inner and won by three parts of as length from Upscale, who came home well after dropping to the rear early. There was a neck to Highly Unlikely, who trailed in the second line on the outer. Weaponry was a long neck back fourth after being held for a run over the closing stages. Fire Show, who made the pace was a close up fifth, ahead of Khimar War and Superstatic.
Air Max, a gelding by Nadeem – Steel Stilettos is trained at Riccarton by Lance Robinson. Air Max, who has some 35 owners, is raced by his Dunsandel breeders Bruce Sheat and Cheryl Wilson with the Doashoeychaz syndicate, HMCC Dreaming Big syndicate, J and T Ballantyne, M and F Fearon, Charles and Wilma Burrell, Lance and Christine Robinson.
Steel Stilettos is also the dam of Boots ‘N’ All (by Perfectly Ready), winner of the listed Timaru Cup.
The breeders bought Steel Stilettos (by Hussonet) for $800 as a rising 5yr-old at a New Zealand bloodstock mixed sale at Karaka after she had won a minor race in Australia. Boots ‘N’ All was passed in for $2500 as a yearling at the South Island sale when his reserve was $5000. Air Max was passed in for $20,000 at the SI sale.
Horse to follow: Air Max.
Race 5 White Robe Lodge Staff Reunion, $22,500, rating 65, 2200m
The Kraken, owned and trained at Wingatui by Otago Racing Club life member Marion Stevenson, outstayed his rivals. The Kraken, ridden by Dylan Turner, trailed handy on the outer and finished resolutely to win by a head from Riviera Rock, who was game in defeat. Riviera Rock attended the leader Run Forrest Run. Mossy Creek, who had the run of the race was a neck back third with two lengths to Bridget Town, who ran on late from the rear. Run Forrest Run was not disgraced when fifth, ahead of Lil Miss Swiss and Countess Ruby, who received a check in the run home.
Horse to follow: Riviera Rock.
Race 6 Fire and Mechanical Ltd Dunedin Gold Cup, open, 2400m
Orepuki Lad made his mark as a stayer when he led for most of the way and won decisively. Orepuki Lad gave Riverton trainers Graham and Michael Eade and jockey Leah Hemi their second win in the race. They won two years ago with La Nouvelle Vague. Orepuki Lad is a 5yr-old by Raise The Flag from The Star Gazer bred by Cecil Ferguson, of Orepuki (Southland), a member of the 10-person Ten Deep syndicate, who race the gelding. Orepuki Lad, who was challenged from the 1000m won by three lengths from the favourite Aboli, who trailed handy on the outer. Shakti ran from sixth for third, a length back with a head to Pamir, who enjoyed the run of the race. Sulcifera made ground from the rear for fifth, ahead of Shantav and He Ain’t Heavy.
Horse to follow: Orepuki Lad.
Race 7 Steve Anderton Memorial Trophy, $22,500, 1200m
Jim Burns, who lives close to the stable operated by the late Steve Anderton, owned and trained Plutonium to win. Plutonium (Krishna Mudhoo) led early but gave way to Kate The Great at the 700m. Plutonium unwound boldly in the run home to win by two lengths. Touch The Sky, who raced handy, ran on for second with half a head to Jim’s Gift, who came home well after a slow start. Kate The Great, who led until near the 200m was fourth, ahead of Dreaming Easy and Sentient, who had been slow away.
Horse to follow: Jim’s Gift.
Race 8 White Robe Lodge Weight-For-Age, $70,000, 1600m
Gallant Boy completed a notable double for jockey Terry Moseley, who won the Dunedin Guineas earlier in the day. Gallant Boy showed gameness to wear down favourite Boots ‘N’ All, who improved from back in the field to lead near the 200m. Gallant Boy, who drew the outer in the 14-horse field had also settled at the rear and Moseley guided him along the inner to score by half a head. Gallant Boy had finished second to stablemate Tommy Tucker in the race last year. Gallant Boy is trained by Brian and Shane Anderton for the estate of Pat Smith, whose widow, Jan was hand to receive the trophy. Gallant Boy, a son of Gallant Guru and Mega Babe is a half brother to Patrick Erin, winner of the group one Metropolitan Handicap at Randwick in September for the Smith estate. Accidental Offside was in a gap of two and a half lengths third after leading. Kolonel Kev ran on for fourth, a neck back, ahead of Timy Tyler and Macy. Tommy Tucker was badly checked at the 1200m and finished last. Jason Laking, the rider of Kolonel Kev was subsequently suspended over the incident.
Horse to follow: Gallant Boy.
Race 9 Diamond Syndicate, $22,500, rating 65, 1600m
Teddytwinkletoes triumphed for Riverton owner-trainer Andrea Dickson and apprentice rider Kate Cowan. Teddytwinkletoes was never far off the pace and the 8yr-old Remind gelding came from sixth at the straight entrance. He held off then, strong finishing Picture Me Rollin by half a length. Picture Me Rollin, who ran on from mid-field, was a head in advance of The Sparkle, who covered extra ground and led in the run home. Tony Two Chips made ground for fourth, ahead of Welcome and Irish Express, who had been slow away and blocked for a run in the closing stages.
Horse to follow: Irish Express.