Stephen Scholfield’s bargain buy Courtly is headed for a mid-week Metropolitan race following a good win on his home track to take out the last race.
The four-year-old gelding, ridden by Jean Van Overmiere, was a narrow winner in the 1600m WYONG REGIONAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE BENCHMARK 65 HANDICAP.
Returning $15 Courtly upset some of the more fancied runners beating the Bjorn Baker trained Vega ($5) by a long neck, with another Baker runner Collatoral, the $2.25 race favourite a length behind in third.
Stephen Schofield said he considers Courtly, who has had four career wins from 25 starts, deserves a chance in town.
He plans to take him to a mid-week race next week. “He’s performed well today. He’s trained here and has had a bit of practise around here, “Stephen said.
“He’s a lovely horse. We paid no money for him but he’s sound. He had a bit of a breathing problem but he’s over that now so all’s well. “We just hope for a bit of rain at Canterbury next Wednesday and we will be happy.”
Jean Van Overmeire said Courtly had found the front pretty easy and was able to relax. “He won well. When he felt the other horse coming at him he dug deep. It was a nice win.”
An upset in the 1100m COASTAL LINER COACHES TOURING CLASS 2 HANDICAP after Mathew Smith’s new stable acquisition Jeanneau ($3.60) scored a narrow victory over the short priced favourite in the small field.
The three-year-old Beneteau filly, who was originally purchased from Arrowfield at the 2015 Inglis Sales for $170,000, won by a short half head over Cockles ($1.70).
The pair got into a dog-fight in the final stages of the race with Jeanneau getting the final bob on the line.
Mathew Smith described the win, the second for the filly, as a “super effort.”
“We came here today for her to have a look and see where she was up to in her preparation.
“She trialled well at Randwick and both her recovery and subsequent work have been very good.
“She has always had ability. Her runs at Moonee Valley and Flemington were against good horses.
“It was good to see her stick her head out today and get the result. She really wanted to win.”
Jockey Tim Clark, who had ridden the filly as a two-year-old for her previous trainer Paul Perry in a Listed Inglis race, was also praising the win. “She really fought it out well and hopefully she can go on from here,” Tim said.
A race to race double for jockey Tim Clark after the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott trained Emma Jane ($4) staged a dramatic form reversal in the JOB CENTRE AUSTRALIA METRO & PROV 3YO MAIDEN HANDICAP (1350m).
The Sebring filly, a $140,000 purchase, finished last at her previous start at Newcastle, some 14.5 lengths behind the leader.
The stable decided to remove the blinkers and the gear change proved a telling factor after Emma Jane shot away in the straight to score a strong length and a half victory.
Tim Clark settled her just before the leader in the early stages of the race before hitting the turn on the straight and drawing away from the opposition. “The fast speed have her a chance to settle in behind the leader,” Tim said.
“I tracked her up for as long as I could and she really put them away on the point of the turn.
“She only had to reproduce her previous runs at Wyong and Randiwck and I knew she would be very hard to beat.
“Without the blinkers she settled well and the win will be good for her confidence.”
Stable representative Dave Mayer described the win as “real impressive.”
“She put them to bed pretty quick and had it won from a long way out,” Dave said.
It was the seventh career start for Emma Jane, who had her early racing starts in Victoria.
She beat Sunset Jewel ($16) trained by Kevin Miller, with Marc Connors $2.30 race favourite Sensacova half a length behind in third.
The potent Hawkes/ Berry combination struck again with impressive colt Radiant Choice winning the 1100m CBD LAW-WYONG 2YO C&G MAIDEN PLATE.
Breaking through for his first win at start three, Radiant Choice ($3.20) beat the Kris Lees trained Kettering ($7.60) by a length, with Mathew Smith’s Irish Success ($4.20).
A front-running ride by Tommy Berry saw the colt pull away in the straight for a dominant victory.
“Tommy rode him brilliantly,” Michael Hawkes said. “He jumped well and put himself in a position and Tommy did the rest. “We had a bit of an opinion of this bloke early days.
“He’s grown up now and is a big strong colt. He has kicked off the ball and got his win on the board and is hopefully away and running.”
Tommy said he thought Radiant Choice would have been back further in the runner but he jumped well and got into his rhythm. “He is a big green horse and there is a lot to like about him. He is only going to be better again in six months time.”
A great training effort by Gerald Ryan saw Gold Tickets ($2.90) break through for his debut victory following 15 months on the sidelines.
The four-year-old Tickets gelding scored a half length win to take out the 1200m CENTRAL COAST NEWSPAPERS MAIDEN PLATE.
He beat James Cummings’ $2.60 favourite Latin Boy, with Lady Moochi ($4.60), trained by Jason Coyle, a length behind in third.
Gerald Ryan said Gold Tickets had been spelled in March 2016 after it was discoved he had chips in his knees.
“He came to me about eight weeks ago after he was pre-trained at Bylong Park,” Gerald said.
“He had been off the scene for quite a while and has only had one trial.
“I thought he was gone on the corner and James (Innes Jnr) was at him a bit but he fought on and in the last forty metres he was pulling away from him.”
James Innes Jnr was also full of praise for the victory. “It was a gutsy effort and good team effort all round,” James said. “I had to use him up a bit to cross them early and from then on it was just a matter of nursing him for as long as I could then his abiity came out.”
A strong debut by the Kris Lees trained favourite Intrinsic ($2.15) to win the 1100m FAMILY CHIPS PTY LTD 2YO FILLIES MAIDEN PLATE.
The So You Think filly lived up to the high opinion held by trainer Kris Lees scoring a three quarters of a length victory over Aeecee Tong De ($10) from the Waterhouse/Bott stable, with the Snowden trained $10 a nose behind in third.
Hugh Bowman said he believes Intrinsic will be a nice filly in the Spring.
“She’s a nice filly and Kris gave her a good push this morning. He thought being by So You Think whatever she did today she would be better when she gets over further,” Hugh said
“I’m not convinced about that. I think she’s a sprinter miler type but she came here on debut and she’s won well.
“She got herself in the right spot and that’s a big tick for her being first start. She has a lot of race sense but didn’t quite know how to get job done. “Being able to win like that will give her a lot of confidence.”
Lees Racing Manager Lucas Miller said while it was a good win he believed there was plenty of improvement in her.
“She’s got a lot to learn still with her racing manners but certainly positive sings going forward,” he said.
“Hugh put her into the perfect spot but that’s what you get when you use the top jockeys.
“It was a good start and nice for the owners to get a win straight away. We will access todays effort to see where we go from here. “
A quinella to the Waller stable after stablemates and equal favourites Baysa ($2.50) and Sayed ($2.50) finished first and second in the 2100m SERVERS AUSTRALIA CLASS 2 HANDICAP.
Courtesy of a patient ride by Kerrin McEvoy, Baysa drew away in the final stages of the race to score a length and a half win. The winner, a three-year-old by Irish sire Mastercraftsman, brought up her second career win from six starts.
Danielle Podlewski from the Waller stable said Baysa had a bit of attitude which gave her grit to get up and win the race.
“Kerrin made the right moves and really put her in a winning position,” Danielle said.
“It’s good to get a winner for long term supporters of the stable.”
Danielle said it was also a strong effort for the second horse Sayed, who was settling into the Australian way of racing.
Kerrin McEvoy said the filly had jumped well and he was able to get her into a nice position. “She hit the line well and it was a good win,” Kerrin said.
“It’s another string to her bow and she stays every bit of that trip and will probably go further.
It’s a good time of the year for her and she will pick up a few more wins.”
Marc Connors and Deanne Payna combined with consistent mare Tenessee Hussey to win the 1350m JOB CENTRE AUSTRALIA BENCHMARK 63 HANDICAP.
The five-year-old Husson mare has had four wins and 19 placings from 37 starts.
“She’s been a star for the stable,” Marc said. “I know she hasn’t won a lot of races but every time you go to the races you know she’s going to give 110%.
“Today from an awkward barrier she strode to the front, kicked when she wanted and was strong at the finish.
“She’s a lovely mare and I’d love half a dozen more like her.
“We’ll keep plugging away with her and I think winter suits her better with the sting out of the tracks.”
Tenesse Hussey beat the heavily supported Kris Lees runner Calypso Bay ($5), with Gerald Ryan’s Comfortable ($12) a half length behind in third.