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  • John Curtis


SUNDAY: February 28, 2021: MITCHELL and Desiree Kearney had a “picnic” yesterday.

Whilst Royal Randwick hosted the Group 1 Surround Stakes for three-year-old fillies, the Hawkesbury husband and wife training duo headed down the road to Goulburn, which hosted Yass Picnic Racing Club’s annual Cup meeting.

And it was worth it. The Kearneys took two horses – and collected wins with both, topping off an overdue change of fortune in the last week.

After scoring with Jonjo’s Comet at Bathurst only five days earlier – the popular couple’s first success since Eerised at Muswellbrook last September – a pair of four-year-old mares put the icing on the cake.

Chloebella Rose ($2 favorite) and Magic Talent ($4.60) clinched comfortable victories; the former in the Maiden Plate (1300m) and latter in the Trophy Handicap (1100m).

“We haven’t got many horses in work at present, and would certainly be pleased to hear from any owners wanting to place their horses with a provincial stable,” Desiree Kearney said today.

“The decision to go to Goulburn arose because we wanted to give both Chloebella Rose and Magic Talent the chance to gain confidence-boosting wins.

“They had been in the mix, but finding it hard to break through.”

Whilst Chloebella Rose had not been to the picnics before and was having her 24th start which had yielded six minor placings, Magic Talent was no stranger.

The daughter of Sheer Talent had notched her first win at the annual Gosford picnic meeting in December, 2019.

Along with lifting their current season’s tally to five, the Kearneys’ Goulburn double was a real family affair.

“We race both mares on lease,” Desiree Kearney said.

“My brother William Brewer broke in Chloebella Rose (by Rothesay), and we named her after our daughter Isabella and niece Chloe.

“Rose is Isabella’s second name, so that gave us Chloebella Rose.

“Magic Talent came to us from fellow Hawkesbury trainer Mike Van Gestel.

“He had too many horses at the time, and we arranged a lease with Mike and his wife Louise racing her with myself.

“It was terrific to win with both mares yesterday.

“When you don’t have a lot of horses in work, you have to place them as best you can to try to win races.”

. A multi-cultural partnership helped pave the way for Team Kearney to clean up at Goulburn.

“Swedish apprentice Julia Presits comes out from her Warwick Farm base every Thursday morning to ride work at Hawkesbury,” Desiree Kearney explained.

“Her partner is Hammondville-based Leandro Ribeiro from Brazil, and being an approved rider, we asked Julia if he would ride our horses at the picnic meeting.

“It couldn’t have worked out better, and Leandro did a great job to win on both.”

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