Central Highlands owned Russian Camelot taking out the underwood stakes on September 26.
Central Highlands owned Russian Camelot taking out the underwood stakes on September 26.

CQ race day attracted 500 patrons trackside

FORDHAM Park racecourse in Alpha was the place to be last Saturday with 500 racegoers flocking through the gates.

It wasn’t the Alpha Cup Race Day as we know it but under the COVID-19 restrictions Kev Wiltshire and his team at the Alpha Jockey Club put on a great day of racing uniting the Alpha community after a long, cold, hard winter.

Club president Kevin Wiltshire said the patrons who did attend made the day easy with all the current COVID-19 controls being well adhered to.

“It felt great to be back at the track and to have some normality in the community,” he said.

Alpha Cup racegoers were treated to some exceptional racing over the six races on the program with one of the highlights being the win of Snipfit in the main event on the program.

The $10,000 benchmark 65 over the Alpha cup distance of 1700 metres was taken out by Roma galloper Snipfit ($5) in a thrilling ding dong finish fighting off Longreach galloper Argento Pearlo ($4) ridden by Zoe White in a photo finish.

Snipfit was ridden to perfection by in form Bouldercombe jockey Dakota Graham giving it a perfect run in transit for Roma trainer Wayne Baker, a noted specialist in training country cup horses who could feature in upcoming country cups.

Snipfit has had a slow start since joining the Baker stable but the gelding’s win on Saturday was as strong as any you would see in a gritty determined effort.

The seven year old gelding carried the 65 kilograms to victory suggesting it is getting back to its old Melbourne form.

Ewan picnic meeting

Pioneer Park trainer Trevor Williams and his wife ventured to the iconic Ewan picnic meeting on September 26 and proved distance was no barrier to find the winners stall after taking out the $10,000 1200-metre class B handicap at Ewan with Mettre le feu.

Trevor and his wife Jenni have been very patient with the lightly raced mare after several injury setbacks and buying the mare at a bargain base price from Victoria last year.

Team Williams’ hard work was rewarded when the Pioneer Park trained mare was backed at $21, some solid bets for team Williams.

Longreach Cup Day

It was a big day for Jay Edwards and the Buy Me a Pony syndicate on Longreach Cup Day late last month.

The Emerald racing syndicate booked themselves in for a trip to the big smoke on December 5 for the country stampede final with leading Central West trainer Todd Austin.

The Buy Me a Pony syndicate now has the luxury of having qualified Media Vita after an outstanding win in the Top X Country Stampede Qualifier Open Handicap 1000 metres.

Jockey Brooke Richardson rode the perfect race on Media Vita using barrier three to position her mount just behind the four leaders coming into the straight.

Switching around the leaders heels 300 metres out, Richardson drove Media Vita through the centre and the Denman gelding responded with a sharp sprint to win by one and a half lengths.

It was a top training performance by Austin as Media Vita had not started since August 8, coming off recent wins and placings in open sprint races and came into Saturday’s race with fresh legs which proved to be a deciding factor.

Russian Camelot

Danny O’Brien recently anointed Russian Camelot the best horse he has trained after the Irish prodigy cemented Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup favouritism as Damien Oliver notched his 120th Group 1 victory.

Oliver took out the group 1 Underwood stakes dominantly on September 26.

Russian Camelot’s ownership includes the Central Queensland based Queensland Cup Colts’ Syndicate, a group put together by Dan and Rae Fletcher.

After Russian Camelot’s win on September 26 he was anointed the ruling $3.50 favourite for the Cox Plate on October 24.

Fletcher said with COVID-19 restrictions easing in Melbourne he and the syndicate were hopeful in attending the Melbourne Cup on the first Tuesday in November.

Russian Camelot will have its last hit out tomorrow in the group 1 Caulfield stakes before the $5 million Cox Plate.

Racing heads to Peperina Park in Clermont today with Billy Bell and his team hosting a five race transferred emerald meeting.


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