THE Clermont Spring carnival races went off with a bang, with a huge crowd on hand for the last race meeting of 2017.
The day was another big success for the club with close to 800 people flocking through the gates to support the meeting.
Secretary Wayne Sharik was more than pleased with the day and indicated racing in Clermont in 2018 would be back bigger and better.
The Miles magician, premier country Queensland trainer Bevan Johnson, combined with his stable jockey Rob Faehr to take out the first race on the program, the 1000 metre CFMEU class B handicap with Solartek ($2.80) in a tough gritty win.
Solartek is part owned by Middlemount Race Club president Donald Black and Middlemount Race Club stalwart Carole Gray.
The bonny mare looks set for more wins over the summer period.
Mark Barnham stole the show in the jockey ranks riding a double.
This included the rich $13,000 QTIS maiden handicap over 1000 metres.
He combined with leading Rockhampton trainer Jamie McConachy's runner Del Diavolo, who made the 780 kilometre round trip from Rockhampton to saddle up the full brother to the well performed Helarocity who McConachy trained as a juvenile to win the 2013 breeders plate in Rockhampton.
Del Diavolo was sent out as a raging $1.50 favourite after impressive jump outs at Callaghan Park and didn't let the punters who took the short odds down with the gelding charging to the line for an impressive win.
Barnham then combined with Barcaldine trainer Brendan Richardson with One Grey ($2.50) taking out the benchmark 60 handicap in dominant fashion.
Richardson took out the honours in the trainers' ranks with a double.
He took out the class four handicap over 1200 metres with Chatara ($7.00) who held off the challenge of the Ilfracombe trained galloper Spursyn ($8.00) ridden by Martin Hayley in the closest finish of the day making it a central west quinella.
The main event, the Lund Grain And Stockfeed Clermont Country Plate over 1400 metres was won by John Manzelmann, who saved his best for last saddling up the quinella in the feature event with winner Far North ($3.50), ridden to perfection by local Clermont apprentice jockey Emma Bell streaking away for a dominant win.
Gingersnap ($2.20) battled home gamely for second placing.
The win topped off a big seven days for the Manzelmann stable.
They finished with a haul of nine winners and 17 placings and over 4000 kilometres travelling supporting country and provincial racing at five different venues.
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