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  • John Curtis


TUESDAY: October 13, 2020: HE did a blinkin’ good job!

Hawkesbury trainer Mitch Newman had no doubt about two important points after Little Arnie had rolled his rivals at Queanbeyan today.

Newman put blinkers back on the Eurozone five-year-old, and he rewarded him with an all the way victory in the Benchmark 58 Handicap (2000m).

Well ridden by Michael Travers, Little Arnie ($6) was never really threatened in the straight and defeated Delude ($4.40) and Treasure The Love ($7) to post his third win at his 20th start.

“Little Arnie is a deadset blinker horse,” Newman said afterwards before making the journey home.

“And he likes to be in front. That’s when he runs his best races.

“All his three wins have been when he has made the running.

“When he can roll along, he gets more confidence.”

Little Arnie’s three wins have all been in blinkers, and Newman wisely put them back on him for today’s assignment.

“I took them off before he ran at the Newcastle carnival (sixth to Yuralla Boy in a 2300m Benchmark 64 Handicap) last month, but it didn’t suit,” Newman explained.

“They went back on, and also he was dropping from a provincial race back to a lower class country race.

“I expected him to be hard to beat.”

Little Arnie’s previous two wins were also over 2000m, both at Canberra – in December last year and January this year.

Now that he has regained winning form, Newman won’t mind making further trips to the bush with the gelding.

“We may as well try to pick up a few more of these Benchmark races over a bit of ground,” he said.

. Newman wasn’t disappointed with his handy mare Piping Roller’s performance at Royal Randwick last Saturday.

Following on from a first-up Newcastle 900m success on September 19, which was the trainer’s first winner in this new season, the Your Song four-year-old stepped right up in class and finished 10th to Blazing Miss in a Benchmark 78 Handicap (1000m) after racing up on the speed.

“It was her first run for three weeks and she was a bit fresh and over-raced,” Newman said.

“That run will bring her on, and we’ll find another suitable race for her.”

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