By Rod Fuller
Racing returns to Port Macquarie with the commencement of the January carnival and Hank Scorpio looks the testing material in the Harelec Solar Power Specialists New Year’s Cup. Despite only breaking his maiden status at Newcastle a month ago, the Real Saga gelding proved to be well suited in this class when a creditable 5th at Scone last start.
Trainer Benjamin Smith is a regular visitor to the Port circuit and regularly travels back to his Newcastle base with prizemoney and would be greatly encouraged by the last start performance when beaten around four lengths in Class 3 company behind Remittance. With a record of 14 starts for 2 wins and 5 placings, Hank Scorpio looks set to bring in the New Year with a bang in the feature race on the program.
The testing material looks to be San Sierra from the Grant Marshall stable, who broke through at Taree in early December before a solid 5th behind Crafty Tycoon at Newcastle in Class 2 company prior to Christmas. The Poet’s Choice mare Stanzza should provide a sound place chance following wins at Taree and Bowraville before an even run at Tuncurry in the race won by Serious Dancer.
Jessie Prevails should start punters off on a good note in the Fillies and Mares Maiden Plate following placings at Port Macquarie and Grafton when last in work. After a short spell, the Poet’s Choice filly resumed with a creditable run at Grafton when beaten around four lengths in a strong maiden behind Howick.
Popular local trainer Jenny Graham puts the polish on Jessie Prevails and the filly should continue the success enjoyed by the stable following the win of Victorem at Randwick a couple of weeks ago.
Real Son of a Gun looks hard to beat for Neil Godbolt in the Harelec Offgrid Power Class 1 following a narrow last start win over Natural Predator at Taree two week ago. The Street Cry gelding will be ridden by promising local apprentice Mikayla Weir who also pilots Jessie Prevails with an early double looming as a real possibility.
The meeting commences the January carnival of racing for the club and the excellent catering, wagering and bar facilities together with spacious lawns will be in full operation. Children will be fully entertained with the jumping castle and face painting available and free buses will run from Gordon Street and Tacking Point Shops at each race meeting in January.
The club would like to acknowledge the continued support of Harelec for their sponsorship of the program and welcome Midcoast Futsal to racing action at Port. The carnival continues with Panthers twilight raceday on Friday 12th January where all Panthers members will be admitted free and $160,000 in prizemoney on offer.
The culmination of holiday action is on Australia Day with the running of the $60,000 Queen of the North Handicap, one of the blue-ribbon events on the club’s calendar. Port Macquarie Race Club is delighted to welcome Patriots Bloodstock as major sponsor for this prestigious event and the partnership should provide wonderful benefits for the two organisations. Patriots Bloodstock is a thoroughbred management group that streamlines the training, buying, selling and administration of racehorses and offers an impressive selection of fine horses.
President, Greg Delaforce, and the Committee of PMRC would like to wish everyone the very best for a safe, happy and successful New Year and it is onward and upward for a wonderful 2018.
Race 1 (Midcoast Futsal Men’s Comp F&M Maiden Plate, 1110m): 6 Jessie Prevails, 1 Harada Lass, 5 Bubbly Lady
Race 2 (Harelec Remote Area Power CG&E Maiden Plate, 1110m): 3 Pentridge, 7 Wallaman, 1 All You
Race 3 (Harelec Offgrid Power Class 1 Hcp, 1512m): 1 Real Son of a Gun, 2 Eight Field, 3 The Zoff
Race 4 (Midcoast Futsal Juniors Comp Maiden Hcp, 1512m): 1 Tangarra Express, 8 Zanzarock, 2 There’s Always One
Race 5 (Harelec Solar Power Specialists New Year’s Cup, 1210m): 1 Hank Scorpio, 3 San Sierra, 6 Stanzza
Race 6 (Midcoast Futsal Social Mixed Comp Benchmark 50 Hcp, 1110m): 2 Dayarma, 6 Smithtown, 1 Amajill