Day At The Track

Earl too good in Devonport Marathon

10:39 AM 12 Apr 2021 NZST
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Earl Jujon, Harness racing
Earl Jujon Photo

Gareth Rattray moved close to a milestone victory after winning the feature race on Friday’s Devonport card.

Rattray partnered Earl Jujon to victory in the Patrons Marathon, which took his Australian total to 1399 Australian driving wins.

The 11-time Tasmanian premiership reinsman has also driven winners in New Zealand and Norway.

Earl Jujon was sent out as the $1.95 favourite in the 2645-metre standing start event, and those that took the short odds no doubt had their head in their mouth when the gelded son of Rock N Roll Heaven was very slowly away from the tapes.

“That’s him, if he is not moving forward, he seems to wait and step back, he was slow away, but he paced away, and once he tacked on, he would be right,” said Rattray about the win.

Ending up one-out and two-back from the 2300-metre point, Rattray drove a patient race before racing three-wide at the 1000-metre point before the master reinsman released the ribbons entering the back straight on the final occasion.

“Against those sort of horses, he sort of had to win it, he ran a good half, and he still felt strong on the line, which was good,” Rattray said.

Earl Jujon scored by eight metres over Taurisi ($14) and Hez The One ($6.50), a further 6.4 metres away third in a mile rate of 2m 4.6s.

The win was one of five of the night for trainer Ben Yole who also prepared Wave The Hat ($3.30 fav), My Celebrity ($9.30), Oneofthelads ($3.50) and Yellow Taxi ($13), who won after a protest against the original winner Aitutaki was upheld.

Hannah Van Dongen drove the other two winners.

She scored on the Geoff Smith-trained Chris Be Quick ($4.30) who was a tough winner before she drove the last race winner Ol Titch to victory for Bianca Heenan at odd of $27, the longest priced winner of the night.


Duncan Dornauf for Tasracing

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