SUNDAY: November 25, 2018: HAWKESBURY trainers are on a roll!
A Gosford double yesterday made it “six of the best” in two days (three at Orange on Friday and another at Hawkesbury) and boosted to 59 the number of winners prepared from the track this season.
In both cases, the Gosford results represented breakthroughs for the respective winning three-year-old fillies.
Husband and wife training partnership Mitchell and Desiree Kearney scored with Gimme Shelter ($5.50), and Terry Croft followed up four races later by scoring with Lu’s In Charge ($4.80).
Manhattan Rain filly Gimme Shelter (Chris O’Brien) produced a barnstorming finish to upset fellow Hawkesbury trainer Brad Widdup’s $2.10 favorite Lagarde (Mitchell Bell).
Remarkably, it was another filly Lagarde’s fifth second from only eight starts – and she looked certain to shed her maiden status after getting clear in the straight, only to be overhauled on the post.
Co-trainer Mitch Kearney’s work with John Holgate’s Prestige Racehorse Transport was the catalyst for Gimme Shelter entering he and his wife’s stable.
“John knows Tony Cotter, who bred this filly, and recommended us,” Kearney explained today.
“Gimme Shelter is the first horse we have trained for the Cotter family, and we now also have her unraced two-year-old half-sister Factorial (by The Factor).
“We have taken our time with Gimme Shelter and didn’t race her as a two-year-old.
“She ran well on debut when second at Newcastle over 900m last month, and then circumstances were against her last time at home when she finished fourth.
“She was left in front that day, and is better suited when ridden with cover.
“We went to Gosford yesterday pretty confident that she would be hard to beat.”
There was extra merit to Gimme Shelter’s performance as she began awkwardly and also carried more than her allotted 55kg.
“I made an application midweek to the stewards for Chris (O’Brien) to ride her in a race for the first time up to 1kg over,” Kearney explained.
“Chris rode the filly in both her trials (at Hawkesbury on May 28 and Rosehill Gardens on October 2).”
Gimme Shelter is the first foal of unraced 10-year-old Dane Shadow mare Made In The Shade. As well as so far unraced two-year-old Factorial, she also foaled a filly by Your Song last season.
Her success was the third this season for Team Kearney, following on from Spin Bowles (Josh Parr) at Gosford on October 4 and Dynamic Dynasty (O’Brien) at Cessnock eight days later.
The couple’s training business is going well, with 14 horses in work.
Terry Croft also made it three wins for the current season when Lu’s In Charge took the Maiden Handicap (1200m).
His earlier winners were No Escape (apprentice Robbie Dolan) at Mudgee on September 2 and Orokonui (Grant Buckley) at Orange on October 15.
Charge Forward filly Lu’s In Charge (apprentice Mikayla Weir) was placed three times last season and was having her third start this time in at Gosford.
She moved up menacingly approaching the home turn, took over on straightening and was never threatened thereafter.
Lu’s In Charge beat roughies Dashing Badger ($41) and Hasty Heart ($31).