Day At The Track

Hearts a Flutter as local champ claims cup

08:09 AM 12 Feb 2017 NZDT
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Flaming Flutter.jpg
Flaming Flutter (File photo)

A champion horse from Victoria’s west swept up the prized Terang Co-Op Pacing Cup with a gutsy run that delighted his proud harness racing connections.

Flaming Flutter has gifted plenty of joy to owners Neil Richmond, Margaret Allen and Ron Anderson and they savoured that winning feeling again on Saturday, when their old boy found some of his finer form to beat off a tough field.

“It just feels fantastic,” Mr Richmond said. “He’s been a great little horse for us. He’s now a seven-year-old, but I thought he looked really nice in the stall and I thought he’d run a really big race.

“When he got caught three-wide I thought, ‘this is going to be tough now’, he just fought on well at the finish. It’s just fantastic.”

Driver Greg Sugars showed patience in the run, leading Flaming Flutter forward from the wide draw and advancing three-wide before slotting in on the outside with about 2000m to go, while My Kiwi Mate advanced to the lead.

Come the last 150m it was a race in two as Sugars set after Jodi Quinlan, gobbling up My Kiwi Mate’s lead to win by 2m in a 1:56.4 mile rate.

“It’s a bit of a home town victory for a few of the connections and to have them here tonight just makes it all extra special,” Sugars said.

“He’s just been a fantastic horse for connections and a great earner right throughout his career.”

The win has the Bettor's Delight entire zeroing in on $700,000 in career prizemoney and reaffirms his return to form.

Long a fighter, Flaming Flutter’s campaign had stuttered a little when he returned mid last year and a tilt at the 2016 Perth Inter Dominion didn’t reach the same heights of his previous dual placings.

He stayed over in Perth and was soon back in the winners’ circle before returning to Bannockburn trainer Geoff Webster.

“His trip across to Western Australia has probably done him the world of good,” Sugars said.

“He is a stallion and being in the one place for a long time, sometimes they need a bit of a wakeup call and a bit of a change up and I think the couple of runs he spent in Perth with Ross Oliveiri really did the trick.

“He had him firing really well there towards the end of his Western Australia campaign and sent him back to Geoffrey in fantastic order.

“It’s a big pat on the back for the job he’s done as well as Geoffrey and everyone out at Bannockburn. They do a wonderful job.”

Michael Howard (HRV Media/Communications Co-Ordinator)

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