Big party for locals as mare flies home
By GREG WHITE
THE home town celebrations went long into the night after local hero Frisco's Lass won yesterday's historic Coffs Coast Advocate Sprint on day two of the annual racing festival.
Trained on the course by Brett Dodson, ridden by former local champion Glen Colless and with almost 20 Coffs Harbour residents in the ownership syndicate, the big mare gave nothing else a chance as she stormed down the centre of the track.
Fresh from winning his second Brisbane riders' premiership on the weekend Colless made a point of walking the track before the first race to look for the best going.
"Six horses off the inside fence is the best spot," he decided, and that's exactly where he steered down the straight.
Doodson looked stunned when he entered the mounting yard but quickly broke into an ear-to-ear grin when the congratulations began arriving.
"She always travelled well in running and got to the best part of the track and the jockey did the rest," he said.
"It's fantastic to have so many locals involved with her and we'll all party on tonight."
The win made it back-to-back success for Colless after collecting the cash on Elite Ted in 2005.
He settled Frisco's Lass off the speed in fourth position before making his forward move at the 600 metre mark.
After cutting the corner on the better part of the track Colless set his radar on the piece of turf he'd picked out before the meeting and then gave nothing else a chance.
Speaking on behalf of the winning crew at the presentation part-owner Phil Brown paid credit to the great revival of racing in the city.
"The sport went through a bad stretch not long ago but those now in charge of the club have done wonderful things," he said.
"It's an extra reason to be so happy to come out to win this race today."
Runner-up Epic Sky was the subject of specking in the bookmakers ring just before jumping and ran a bold race.
Settled just behind pacemaker Coalmine by Lorna Cook the outsider of the field hit the lead momentarily on turning but couldn't go with the winner.
"He ran well but Frisco's Lass had too many guns in the end," she said.
Third placegetter Shovoot ran right up to his high ranking in the wet conditions but found giving away a weight advantage to the first pair home too much to overcome.