Local mares Sheza Gypsy and Lobban Dynamite had back-to-back wins at Taree Wingham Race Club’s TAB meeting on Tuesday.
Both gallopers won over similar distances at the club’s meetings on 5 and 17 January respectively and were again dominant.
Six-year-old mare Sheza Gypsy ($4.60), trained by Michael Byers and ridden by Paul King, led all the way to score by 2.8 lengths in the Winning Post Function Centre Open Handicap over 1312m.
“This is her track,” Byers said of his mare which has had five of her six wins at Bushland Drive Racecourse.
Her only other win was in a qualifying heat of the Country Championships at Port Macquarie.
Byers lamented that she was unable to again take that route as it was her 21st start and she was ineligible.
Her latest wins have come with the use of winkers and being in the best of heart after overcoming breathing problems and bad feet.
“She is switched on and she has really bounced back.”
King, a lucky substitute for Matthew McGuren due to her handicap weight, told Byers he did “exactly” what he was told and the mare gave a “good kick”.
McGuren was snapped up by Coffs Harbour trainer Gordon Yorke for the $3.60 favourite Murvate but the gelding ruined his chances with a slow getaway and did well to finish second, a half-length in front of Port Macquarie gelding Dixie Lad ($5), trained by Neil Godbolt.
Five-year-old mare Lobban Dynamite ($2.40), again ridden by in-form apprentice jockey Chloe Baker, led all the way for a seven lengths romp last start but a few jockeys had other ideas this time and took her on in the lead of the Country Championships at Taree February 26 Benchmark 59 Handicap over 2018m.
Baker was content to take a sit just behind the pace and then unleashed her finishing run at the 700m mark to score by two lengths to give breeder, owner and trainer Robert Barnes his first two wins in a row with his gallopers.
“You can’t stop the mare, she wants to do another lap,” Barnes said as he celebrated the win with family.
Another highlight of the day was Gosford jockey Chris O’Brien’s first winning treble at the track from only three rides. They were Milk ‘N’ Brandy ($5) for Gosford trainer, 86-year-old Albert Stapleford, Libertine Miss ($1.90) for one-horse comeback Wyong trainer Brian Garvey and Aerojet ($3.20) for Wyong trainer Allan Denham.
Milk ‘N’ Brandy, a sister to recent city winner I Told Georgie, was resuming from a spell after racing in Queensland.
She was mid-field early and came home with a strong run to score by 1.5 lengths in the Stacks Law Firm Entires & Geldings Maiden Plate over 1257m.
Breeder, part-owner and nephew of Stapleford, Robert Stapleford, praised the trainer for getting the gelding to win after tendon troubles.
Garvey went to Melbourne to secure Libertine Miss for $15,000 for his comeback to training after eight years and she could be in for more wins after scoring by 1.8 lengths in the Prime Television Fillies & Mares Maiden Plate over 1257m.
Aerojet made up plenty of ground to score by just under a half-length in the XXXX Gold Entires & Geldings Benchmark 55 Handicap over 1257m to deny local trainer Matthew Robinson a winning double with runner-up Corey ($7).
He and jockey Ben Looker combined to score with resuming mare Mosgiel Ruby ($10) which scored narrowly in the De Bortoli Wines Fillies & Mares Benchmark 55 Handicap over 1257m.
Other winners on the card were first-starter three-year-old filly Dangerous Behaviour ($2.80 to $1.70), trained at Newcastle by Kris Lees and ridden by Rachel King, and 5.3 lengths victor Manhattan Road ($7), trained at Wyong by Tracey Bartley and ridden by Taree apprentice Alena Skerritt.