Young Hawkesbury trainers Mitch Newman and Jason Attard are on a roll. Newman clinched his seventh win of the season with another victory at Orange yesterday, whilst Attard made it two wins in three days.
Newman’s success with $2.90 favorite Marrock in the Class 1 Handicap (1400m) provided him with his third winner in the last week. He scored with Supreme Escape at Orange last Tuesday and two days later Hurricane Harbour comfortably beat his Gosford rivals.
Marrock, given the run of the race by Josh Adams, got home narrowly from Buffy ($4.80) after he looked likely to easily beat his opposition when he loomed up strongly on the home turn.
“I thought he was going to find another way to lose when he started to run out away from the other horses in the straight,” Newman said. “But he finished off the race and got there. That’s restored some of the faith I had in him.”
Marrock won on debut on his home track 12 months ago and, although he managed three subsequent placings, had not win since until yesterday.
A four-year-old by Pluck, Marrock had performed well at both starts since resuming leading into the Orange assignment.
“We found the right race for him; it was probably the weakest he has run in for a while,” Newman said.
Attard got well-bred Prodigy to break through at Hawkesbury on Sunday, and went bush yesterday to achieve a similar result with Hinchman. Having his 11th start, the $1.75 favorite was never in danger, leading throughout in the Maiden Handicap (1280m). With apprentice Jean Van Overmeire aboard, the four-year-old cruised home ahead of another Hawkesbury representative, Terry Croft’s Sega Dancer ($13).
“Jean recommended we run him on a tighter track with a smaller straight,” Attard said. “He has been struggling to win a Maiden; the long straight at Hawkesbury has been wearing him down. I think he’s a provincial class horse, but we brought him here for a kill.”
Van Overmeire said Hinchman was well suited “racing out in front by himself without any pressure”.
“He was tackling weaker company, but the win will do his confidence the world of good,” he said.