An inch-perfect Craig Thornely drive was enough to see highly capable mare Supreme Gem down favourite Donegal’s Guest in today’s Hororata Cup at Methven.
Supreme Gem’s win in the 15,000 feature of day carried on from two very good seconds behind smart types Arsing Easton and Arden Rooney.
“Craig (Thornley) gave us a bit of a scare, but he got there in the end,” said trainer-owner John McDermott. “I am getting a bit old and the heart doesn’t take those close finishes to well anymore,” he joked.
“But in all seriousness it was a very good drive,” he added.
McDermott was also very thankful to Mark Jones and the team at his Woodend base for training the Christian Cullen mare nickname ‘Gemma’ for the past three weeks.
“I had a family wedding that I needed to attend to, but Mark and the team have done a fabulous job with her,” said McDermott. “She was going well before she left, but I think Mark might have even taken her up a notch,” he said praisefully.
“Everyone enjoys a beach holiday and she is no exception.”
Driver Craig Thornely then went back to back, leading all the way to win easily aboard Franco Harrington, who was an absolute tragedy beaten in his prior start at Waikouaiti.
Meanwhile, star trotter Royal Aspirations was super impressive overcoming a 40 metre handicap to win the feature trot by three quarters of a length over Superbowlcheerleader.
Today’s meeting was the first time the Hororata Trotting Club has raced on the grass track at Methven and on a whole it was an enjoyable day.
The meeting was shifted to Methven from Addington due to the Crusaders – Chiefs match at Addington, however club President Bruce Hutton said that Methven could well become the meetings permanent venue.
By Mitchell Robertson