Three Hawkesbury horses brushed aside below par last start performances to hit winning form again at the weekend.
Poet’s Advocate, trained by Scott Singleton, scored at Newcastle on the Beaumont track on Saturday. Jason Attard-trained My Millie Moo and Joan Pracey-trained King’s Tariff were Wyong winners on Sunday.
Poet’s Advocate (Jess Taylor) clinched the second win of his six-start career when he took the Class 1 Handicap (1300m) for colts and geldings on the Beaumont track.
Taylor gave him a perfect run behind the leader and was able to extricate the $11 chance into the clear in time for him to overhaul Balestrand ($3.40).
Singleton afterwards said he was mystified by the three-year-old’s previous last of seven runners in a similar race over 1100m at Canberra on 6 January.
“I thought he could win that day so I took him back to the trials (he ran second over 1000m on his home track last Monday in the same heat where top filly Spright ran fourth), and backed him up,” he said.
“I’ve always had a fair opinion of him; I think he could measure up in town.”
My Millie Moo ($3.20) had Josh Parr aboard when she landed Sunday’s Maiden Plate (1600m) for four-year-olds and upwards.
Parr took off on the five-year-old mare before the home turn and she cleared out for an easy win.
Her price drifted from an early morning quote as a result of a concerted move for third placegetter Jervois Knight ($1.85 favourite) who was never really in the hunt.
My Millie Moo was beaten nearly six lengths at her previous start when a $3 chance and a disappointing sixth in a Kembla Grange Maiden Plate (1500m) on 7 January.
“She had a bad day at the office; that’s all I can put it down to,” Attard said afterwards.
“Her previous form was good, and her work since the Kembla Grange run has been great.”
My Millie Moo’s 13th start certainly didn’t prove unlucky. She had notched four minor placings before this breakthrough.
Apprentice Jake Pracey-Holmes’ 3kg claim on $15 chance King’s Tariff proved as decisive as his winning ride in the Benchmark 65 Handicap (1200m).
And so too was trainer Pracey’s decision to put a tongue tie on the six-year-old, who dropped in class after finishing last to the impressive Dal Cielo in the Summer Sprint (1000m) at Warwick Farm on 7 January.
Pracey-Holmes, whose allowance lessened his mount’s weight to 56.5kg, hustled him out of the stalls – he had been slowly away at Warwick Farm – and quickly had him in front on the fence.
Despite being challenged strongly by Positive Problems ($5) in the straight, King’s Tariff fought on gamely to score by a half-length.
It was his sixth win from 42 starts and he has also managed 10 minor placings.