Day At The Track

Another good season for Court

12:42 PM 03 Jul 2017 NZST
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Ideally, a few more would be the perfect result, but even if Paul Court only trains one more winner this season he’ll be a happy man.

In just his second season of solo training, the West Melton horseman has drawn level with his debut season tally of wins with 35 victories on the board and four weeks of racing still remaining.

That should spell a new personal best by the time August rolls around and Court considers that mission accomplished.

“You set out at the start of the season with the goal of going better than the season before,” he said.

“I’ve been lucky enough to have had a good season again, with some nice horses wearing the colours and doing the job out on the track.”

After training in partnership with his father, Graham for seven seasons with close to 100 wins, the pressure was always going to be on the young trainer when he broke out on his own accord.

But with 70 winners in his first two seasons and a strong team of horses around him, things are looking pretty bright.

“It’s been good to be able to pick up where Dad and I left off in a way, we’d set things in motion and I’ve been able to carry it on which is great.”

Incidentally, one of the finds of the season for Court was the horse who registered his 35th victory on Friday night at Addington.

And he’s hoping that Malik isn’t finished either.

The Somebeachsomewhere colt has now won four of his last five starts and is a horse on the rise.

He beat a tidy field of intermediate grade pacers on Friday night showing some impressive qualities in the process.

“He’s just getting better and better, I was a wee bit hesitant on Friday because we had taken him off the unruly, but he handled it really well and showed a bit of class against what I thought was a pretty good field.

“He’s starting to stand up and show what he’s got now which is great, and the best part is that I think he will just keep getting better.

“We’ll press on through the winter with him too, so hopefully he’s not finished.”

The other leg of Court’s winning double on Friday night came from Beach Skipper, who took longer to win his first race than anticipated.

He’d technically already won a race, but that was a dead-heat at Methven, so Friday’s victory was well overdue.

And adding double the delight to the win, was the fact Court did the driving himself.

Despite not driving often these days and preferring to leave that job to the likes of Blair Orange and Ricky May, Court has still managed to grab himself a win each season for the past 12 years from very limited opportunities.

Matt Markham


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