TUESDAY: July 30, 2019: HAWKESBURY trainer Brooke Somers could not have wished for a better conclusion to her most successful season with a “very satisfying result” at Cessnock today.
Somers made it six wins for the 2018-19 racing year which ends tomorrow when $1.90 favorite C’est La Vie (Bob El-Issa) led throughout in the Maiden Handicap (1350m).
To say the lightly-raced Animal Kingdom filly continues to be a work in progress would be an understatement – and Somers, understandably, was thrilled to secure a good outcome with her for her owners before she turns four on Thursday.
“We got her from a metropolitan stable when three of her original owners wanted to keep her and bought out the remaining 70 per cent,” Somers said.
“C’est La Vie was virtually unrideable when we got her, but we’ve kept working with her.
“My mother Tricia does a lot of dressage work with the filly, and the owners gave her a small interest in her in appreciation.”
C’est La Vie was barred by stewards and forced to trial to their satisfaction when she hung badly at her previous start at Goulburn on July 12 with an inexperienced apprentice and ran wide on the home turn.
Somers made a number of gear changes and trialled her a week later at Rosehill Gardens when she won a 1030m heat, beating import Agosto (who subsequently won first-up at Kembla Grange last Thursday).
Stewards then cleared the filly to resume her racing career.
Somers called on the experienced El-Issa to ride C’Est La Vie in the trial, and he again partnered her today when she clearly won the start but wouldn’t settle, yet still proved too strong for roughies Tremation ($19) and Cross Eyed Mary ($81), clinching a Cessnock treble for the jockey.
“Bob deserves a lot of credit,” Somers said. “Not too many other jockeys could have done a better job.
“That was C’est La Vie’s fourth start for me and it was rewarding to win for the owners who had faith in me to train her.
“She is a lovely filly with definite ability and has earned a break. With maturity, I’m sure she will continue to improve.
“We’ll keep giving her good experiences and do our very best to get her to settle in races.”
Somers, reflecting on her best season in a short career to date, said she was looking to the new racing year with confidence.
“Getting basically recycled horses from other stables and working hard to win with them has been very satisfying,” she said.
“I’m about to send a few horses out and will have some spare boxes, so I would be pleased to hear from any owners wishing to place their horse with a provincial trainer.
“We don’t mind travelling by placing the horses in suitable races, such as today.”