Chris Waller has scored his first of likely many early spring trifectas at Hawkesbury Racecourse on Thursday afternoon with the favourite McCreery dominating the Rowley Mile 2016.
Waller saddled-up four of the eight starters in this season’s $100,000 Listed Le Petit Rose Hawkesbury Rowley Mile (1600m) and prepared the first three over the line.
The short-priced favourite at $2.15 was imported Big Bad Bob five-year-old McCreery who saluted for the punters and continued his strong record over the distance (5-3-2-0).
Tommy Berry rode the top fancy to victory, the horse surging ahead over the final furlong after a patient ride to put one and a quarter lengths on stablemate Marenostro ($4) while Waller’s 62kg top weight Junoob ($15) ran a gallant third a further length away.
Berry did come into a bit of trouble at the top of the straight after apprentice Nick Heywood shifted on eventual fourth past the post Zero To Ten ($101), but he kept his cool and waited for a gap to appear.
“I was going for a run up the fence because there was about a three horses gap there but when Nick [Heywood] rolled back I had to skip across his heels,” Berry told Sky Thoroughbred Central.
“Once the gaps opened up he sprinted through quick.
“He was very well placed by Chris [Waller].”
Formerly prepared in the UK by Roger Charlton, Thursday’s Rowley Mile was his sixth start down under and his first win since saluting over the same distance at Gosford back in March.
McCreery raced in the same Magic Bloodstock Racing colours as the stable’s superstar mare Winx who makes her return on Saturday at Royal Randwick in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m).
It was Berry’s second winning ride in the dark blue and white ‘M’ silks after he guided Winx to victory in the Group 2 Phar Lap Stakes (1500m) back in March last year.
“I was just thinking, it gives me good memories,” Berry said.
“I won on Winx in these colours a few preparations ago so it’s always great to get back in these colours and they’re a great bunch of owners so all the best on Saturday.”
Hugh Bowman dons the colours on Saturday with Winx shooting for her 10th win on the trot.
The daughter of Street Cry races for the first time since posting her sixth Group 1 victory in the autumn’s Doncaster Mile.
That was her ninth run at Randwick where she boasts five wins and three seconds heading into her first-up run on the weekend.
Winx is the odds-on $1.30 favourite and firming in Warwick Stakes betting at Ladbrokes.com.au.
Rowley Mile winning jockey Berry meanwhile is on $8 shot Rebel Dane looking to score the upset from barrier two.
The Gary Portelli-trained California Dane seven-year-old comes off a first-up second to Tycoon Tara in the Group 2 Missile Stakes (1200m) and chases his first win since the Group 2 The Shorts (1100m) last September.
See below for the full Rowley Mile 2016 results, then for access to the weekend’s best racing odds and offers make sure you head along to Ladbrokes.com.au!
2016 Rowley Mile Results & Finishing Order
Hawkesbury Race 7 – 18/08/2016
|1||4||MCCREERY (GB)||Chris Waller||Tommy Berry||–||6||54kg||$2.15F|
|2||2||MARENOSTRO (NZ)||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||1.3L||5||59kg||$4|
|3||1||JUNOOB (GB)||Chris Waller||Brenton Avdulla||2.3L||4||62kg||$15|
|4||7||ZERO TO TEN||Jim Scobie||Nick Heywood (a)||3L||8||54kg||$101|
|5||5||DRAGON FLYER||John P Thompson||Kerrin McEvoy||4L||2||54kg||$6|
|6||3||SWEET FIRE||Chris Waller||Glyn Schofield||5L||3||54kg||$7|
|7||8||HAYMATE||Jason Attard||Jeff Penza||5.3L||1||54kg||$26|
|8||6||WALTZING WILLIE||Donna Grisedale||Grant Buckley||5.7L||7||54kg||$101|