Day At The Track

Smokenapipe wins at Newcastle

07:09 PM 05 Apr 2018 NZST
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Chevals Diamond
Chevals Diamond (outside) and Last Party fight it out in the Santos Cup at Narrabri.
Coffee Photography

Tony Missen is back in the winner’s circle after Smokenapipe won the Mitavite-Make A Difference Pace at Newcastle on Tuesday night. 

The horse was a very astute and cheap purchase by Tony’s wife Joy. The couple have only had the Grinfromeartoear-New York Express gelding since the end of March, and the win came in only his second race start for the stables.

With Sydney reinsman Leigh Sutton in the spider, the win paid $6.60.

Racing in behind the leader, Glen Innes Boy, Sutton set Smokenapipe the task down the long Newcastle straight to post a 1.5-metre win over Talk About It (Aaron Garaty), with Officially Shady (Jordan Whiting) another metre away in third place.

Job well done for the Missen stables, with Smokenapipe posting a career personal best mile rate of 1.59.7 for 1609 metres.

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Narrabri hosted three feature races at the Carnival of Cups meeting on Easter Monday – and what a cracker finish it was in the Santos Cup.

The Aaron Goadsby-trained pacer Last Party, driven by Guy Chapple, and the Lola Weidemann-trained-and-driven Chevals Diamond had a tussle down the home straight, as both pacers gave more with every stride.

Judges took a long time to deliberate before awarding the win to Chevals Diamond, who had the edge over Last Party by a short half head. Bathurst pacer Uncle Peter (Anthony Frisby) was third.

“I always knew it was going to be a hard race but I certainly don’t want a finish like that again,” said Weidemann. “He [Chevals Diamond] did a great job to get me as far as he did.”

Chevals Diamond was backing up after finishing third at Marburg on Easter Sunday in the $25,000 Oakwood Capital Goldstrike Series Final, while Last Party came straight from contesting the Bathurst Carnival, where the mare finished second in the Ladies Invitational.

In the John Dean Memorial at Narrabri, Bathurst pacer Our Uncle Alan backed up from a win in the heat to take out the final, which was a set as a mission for trainer Chris Frisby and his son Anthony, who drove Our Uncle Alan to the win.

“It’s great to win this race,” said Anthony. “We won it back in 2013 so it’s fantastic to get another winner on the board.

“Once he got to the lead I thought he would be too hard to beat – he did what he had to do and got the job done.”

The 2390 Narrabri Cup also proved to be a nail-biting finish, when Ultimate Dawn (Anthony Varga) gained an inside split down the home straight to have a two-metre win over Arrokeefe (Narissa McMullen), with Our Chittybangbang (Anthony Frisby) a head away in third place.

“I was just glad to get the win,” said Varga. “I was a bit worried behind the leader and stayed there hoping for some luck and I got the luck. Once he saw the gap he sprinted quick.”

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Harness racing will return to Tamworth on April 13, while Tamworth trainer Richard Williams will contest the Newcastle meeting on Saturday night. 

Julie Maughan

Reprinted with permission of The Northern Daily Leader

 
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