Husband and wife Mitchell and Desiree Kearney won’t forget the annual Legends Showcase meeting at Bathurst. Saddling their first runner as a joint training partnership at Sunday’s fixture, the Hawkesbury couple got a dream result with $16 chance Final Trick in the Bill Aspros Showcase Cup (1200m).
With Winona Costin aboard, Final Trick beat Barricade ($3.70) and $61 outsider Dunderry in new race record time of 1:09.37. Coincidentally, the now six-year-old mare gave Mitchell Kearney his breakthrough win when successful on protest in the Hugh Bowman Maiden Cup at the same meeting two years ago.
Mrs Kearney purchased Final Trick after she had raced 20 times without winning (but had been placed four times), and Sunday’s victory was her seventh.
“She is our stable queen,” she said on the drive home from Bathurst. “Mitch is sometimes away on business as he works for Prestige Horse Transport, and it has always been my ambition since I left school at 15 to be a racehorse trainer.
“Our joint training partnership was approved only last week by Racing NSW, so I have achieved my goal. To win with our first runner was a tremendous thrill. Final Trick has been aimed at the race for a while. Winona (Costin) rode her a treat.”
The Kearneys have nine horses in work, and made an important gear change with Final Trick for the Bathurst assignment, racing her minus a tongue tie.
Bathurst is always a happy hunting ground for Hawkesbury trainers, and it was no different this time. Wade Slinkard and Scott Singleton joined in, scoring with Stradazzle and Staggering respectively.
Non-claiming apprentice Claire Nutman continued a successful association with Stradazzle ($5.50) in The Barb Benchmark 64 Showcase Handicap (2700m). The six-year-old gelding is in career best form, having won three of his last five starts.
Mitchell Bell rode Singleton’s Staggering ($7) to victory in the Rising Prince Maiden Showcase Cup (1300m). It was only the Mosayter’s filly third start, and her second this preparation.
Hawkesbury was unlucky not to have claimed four winners as Garry White’s $2.60 favourite, recent Hawkesbury winner Letter To Juliette, was a luckless fourth in the Bathurst Cup Showcase (1800m).
Letter To Juliette was forced to race wide until the 800m when she eventually got outside the leader, then nearly lost her footing on straightening and yet was beaten less than a half-length in a blanket four-way finish.