By Julieanne Horsman
1% of the bill, 100% of the thrill. It’s the motto of Cogliere’s large group of owners and it rang true today when the 3-year-old colt won the Mid North Coast Country Championships Heat.
They stood pressed up against the fence, nails digging into each other’s arms, as he booked a spot in the $400,000 Country Championships Final at Royal Randwick.
“This is what racing is all about,” Port Macquarie-based trainer Marc Quinn said. “They’re a great group, they follow him everywhere and it’s wonderful to get a big win like this for them.”
Under the guidance of in-form apprentice jockey Andrew Adkins, Cogliere jumped from a wide barrier and had to work his way forward but at the 1100m his run came close to being cut short.
“Andrew told me he almost got skittled and feared the horse would go down on his nose,” Quinn said.
But Adkins managed to recover and get the horse into the clear, surging home to win by half a length.
“The horse has a tremendous will to win,” Quinn said.
“He’s the best horse I have ever trained,” he said. “It’s easy to say that in the emotion of the day but I’ve had a couple of nice horses and I feel as though this horse can step out to the mile and that’s when we will see his full ability.”
Wayne Wilkes’ Shotgun Roulette finished second and also qualified for the Country Championships final.
Favourite Ever So Natural ran 3rd, just missing out. Trainer Cliff Bashford has already indicated his intention to take the the gelding to the Wildcard at Muswellbrook.
Cogliere’s win was the third of the day for jockey Andrew Adkins, who had earlier saluted on I Am Serious and Glitterama.
“His riding is terrific,” Quinn said.
“He’s already been booked for the Country Championships Final at Royal Randwick. Hopefully this will be a bit of a springboard for his career.”
Quinn bought Cogliere at the Inglis Classic Yearling Sale for $22,000 but didn’t have the money to pay for him at the time.
Luckily, he was allowed to take the horse and fix up the bill later.
“I can’t thank Inglis and Johnny Darcy enough for letting me tick him up,” Quinn said.
“By the time I got him home he was 50% sold and I ended up keeping 25%.
“He showed me something right from the get go and I don’t think he’s reached his peak yet.”
Scone Race Club will host heat five of The Country Championships next Sunday.