By: Mark Haywood
Race 1 – TAB REWARDS HANDICAP (1200m)
1st THRONUM – Tommy Berry
2nd MORTON’S FORK – Brenton Avdulla
3rd WHO SAID IT’S EASY – Tim Clark
Competitive start and they took a while to get settled, Thronum eventually getting to the front inside with Who Said It’s Easy refusing to let him have it all to himself. A bank of three behind them with Miss Amajardan on the rails and Dynamic Bid right there too, with Golden Organic very deep outside them. Favourite Morton’s Fork and Foxy Housewife were next, with Ocean City trailing them all by three lengths.
Morton’s Fork was throwing his head around and didn’t look comfortable as they approached the turn, the leaders keeping it well off the fence as they straightened. Berry cruised on Thronum with everybody else getting into their charges, Morton’s Fork finally finding some rhythm on the inside and making ground, whilst Who Said It’s Easy was still second and Golden Organic made some progress widest. Berry only needed to give Thronum a couple of tickles to maintain the lead however, as it ran away and won easily being eased up.
Race 2 – SCHWEPPES HANDICAP (1100m)
1st BADAJOZ – Brenton Avdulla
2nd NOBLE JOEY – Winona Costin (a)
3rd ELEMENOHPEE – Christian Reith
Good go for the front with Costin taking favourite Noble Joey forward, with Italian Son on their outside, and a gap then to Professor Marx on the fence from Elemenohpee, with a couple of lengths to Badajoz and What Could Be bringing up the rear.
Costin once again took the field to the middle of the track out of the turn, Professor Marx and Italian son flanking the leader in the straight, with Elemenohpee and Badajoz further out. Badajoz had all the momentum before veering slightly and losing half a yard, handing Noble Joey a chance. It wouldn’t be taken however Badajoz quickly recovered to seize back the initiative and take the win.
Race 3 – THE MICK “CRUSHER” KERR MEMORIAL HANDICAP (2000m)
1st FIREBIRD FLYER – Tim Clark
2nd STORM SYSTEM – Kerrin McEvoy
3rd MORE THAN FABULOUS – Andrew Adkins
Clipperton shoved Fat Chap forward from out deep to take the lead, with Lookin’ At You following suit. Storm System was third the rails and favourite More Than Fabulous fourth, followed by Bon Equus, Most Exalted and Firebird Flyer.
Clipperton made his way across somewhat in the run, still staying a couple of lanes off the fence, keeping up a reasonable pace, whilst at the back Most Exalted was over-racing until Schofield let go a little and allowed his mount to move up the outside a little. Fat Chap held them into the straight which saw More than Fabulous and Most Exalted very wide, whilst Storm System sat just off the leader and Bon Equus and Firebird Flyer made their way back to the inside. The leader was swamped in the last furlong with Storm System looking to have the momentum, until a very late dive right on the line gave the win to a hard finishing Firebird Flyer.
Race 4 – TAB HIGHWAY HANDICAP (1400m)
1st THUNDER ROAD – James Innes Jr (a)
2nd SHE’S INVINCIBLE – Brenton Avdulla
3rd GRAND ROUGE – Sam Clipperton
Quickly into stride here with Balycastle Pegasus going to the front to head off favourite Attainment as Dhe’s Invincible sat in third. Grand Rouge was next without cover, then We Me Lord, Supreme Lad and Masking, with a gap back to Tipta Tantivy, Thunder Road and Percivale last of all.
The field bunched into the side of the course with Grand Rouge and Why Me Lord both staying deep, whilst Masking dropped off a touch to sit with the backmarkers. Balycastle Pegasus held them into the straight as Panya just stepped out a little, handing the inside run to She’s Invincible, whilst Attaintment and Grand Rouge stalked the leader’s immediate outside. Wider still were Why Me Lord and Tipta Tantivy, with Thunder Road and Percivale behind them and a long way back. It was She’s Invincible making the running up the inside with Grand Rouge and Tipta Tantivy making ground, until the late slashing run came from Thunder Road, exploding down the outside to swamp the lot and take the prize.
Watch: Grand Rouge, Thunder Road
Race 5 – MYBOYCHARLIE @ VINERY HANDICAP (1200m)
1st BURNING PASSION – Kerrin McEvoy
2nd SLYDINI – Brenton Avdulla
3rd POWERLINE – Koby Jennings
Battle for the lead with Clark booting Painte out of the gate to join Cosmopol and Burning Passion, the latter caught well wide, with Powerline also deep tucking in behind them. Alart and Grasscutter were next off the fence, a gap then to Shadow Lord, whilst Grande Punto and Slydini were taken back.
The leading trio were stride for stride right into the straight and headed for the middle of the track, while further back Shadow Lord and Slydini corner widest to loom up. It was about the 350m mark that McEvoy put his foot down on Burning Passion and went for home, getting a huge response that finished the race almost immediately, his mount charging off for an impressive win. Slydini, Powerline and Thunder Road finished well but were never catching the leader.
Watch: Burning Passion
Race 6 – ATC HERITAGE SOCIETY 6TH YEAR ANNIVERSARY HANDICAP (2400m)
1st MAJOR MAJOR – Brenton Avdulla
2nd LIE DIRECT – Deanne Panya (a)
3rd SWIFT LADY – Matthew McGillivray (a)
After a bit of an unsettled start it was Lie Direct settling in front out of the first turn, with Sapphire of Patch second and Zatopaz third. A gap then to Swift Lady and Defrost My Heart, with Dowdstown Charlie rolling forward outside them, then Major Major, favourite El Novio, and Four Carat last.
Panya slowed the leader along the back which had Zatopaz coming up to join in, whilst just behind Sapphire of Patch was joined by Dowdstown Charlie, Ford having rounded much of the field. A quick change of mind from Panya had the foot down again at the 1200m and the field strung out, and once again at 600m as she went for home early, the rest of the field bunching behind. She kept reasonably close to the rail out of the last corner, much of the field doing likewise except for the favourite El Novio, still well back and staying well wide. It was Swift Lady emerging as the main pursuer, going to Lie Direct both were joined by Deforst My Heart and Major Major, the latter finding something the others didn’t to kick on for the win.
Watch: Major Major
Race 7 – SHOOT OUT MILE (1600m)
1st FAROLITOS – Hugh Bowman
2nd ZAYAM – Tim Clark
3rd HIMALAYA DREAM – Tommy Berry
The favourite Sebrina went to the front and made the running, joined by Black Jag and Zayam just off them, caught a little deep. A gap then to Magical Stance from Farolitos, then Bold Circle and Himalaya Dream, and Springbok Flyer settling at the back.
The field stayed fairly bunched, Black Jag going with Sebrina and the rest staying relatively close, led by Zayam which still a bit deep as Clark moved him up three-wide in the turn. Those three cornered in front with Magical Stance joining them up the vacant inside, and Farolitos lurking just behind. It would be Farolitos cutting through and going the strongest for the win, with Zayam and Himalaya Dream keeping touch without threatening.
Race 8 – TAB.COM.AU HANDICAP (1400m)
1st MONOGRAM – Tim Clark
2nd HARLEM LADY – Rory Hutchings
3rd LYCIA – Andrew Adkins (a)
Flamboyant Lass fired out of the gates with Clipperton letting her go and establish a good advantage, Rustic Melody leading the rest and Tree of Jesse settling in third. Lycia and Monogram were next, with Tender moving up outside them, then Chosen Prayer, Harlem Lady and the favourite Elle Lou taken to the back.
Tender continued to improve and moved right up the outside to join Tree of Jesse, both wide of Rustic Melody, with the rest cold and strung out behind them. Flamboyant Lass continued to lead in the straight, going well wide, with Lucia and Rustic Melody taking the inside, the former looking threatening and going to the leader. There was a pair going very well outside from well bac however, Harlem Lady and Monogram both storming the field down the outside rail to do them all, Elle Lou finishing well behind them but ultimately never challenging.
Watch: Monogram, Harlem Lady.
Race 9 – HYLAND RACE COLOURS HANDICAP (1000m)
1st ARISE AUGUSTUS – Lester Grace (a)
2nd ALLEZ CHEVAL – Jess Taylor
3rd ENCOSTANATI – Hugh Bowman
Two-way battle for the lead with favourite Ms Wicked Wanda sliding through the inside and Quell down the outside to meet each other, whilst Minnesota settled just behind in third from Allez Chival and Encostanati caught deep. Floral Insight and Ever So Natural were next, with Arise Augustus last and well wide.
The two leaders just led into the straight and went for the middle, the entire field fanning to encompass them and briefly form a complete line across the track at the 300m. The better ground was still the very widest as Arise Augustus, Allex Chival and Encostanadi – the three closest to the punters – led the way home, with Arise Augustus taking it after doing a power of work in the run.
Watch: Arise Augustus, Allez Cival.
Horses to follow: Thronum, Thunder Road, Grand Rouge, Burning Passion, Monogram, Harlem Lady, Arise Augustus.