Joy for 'close family' in Cup
IT was worth the flight for Brave The Way owner Ken McDonald.
McDonald has a company in China but the opportunity to see his five-year old win yesterday’s Carlton MID Coffs Harbour Gold Cup was too good to pass up.
Given the tip from Brave The Way trainer Alan Bailey that the Falbrav gelding was a really good show at winning the Cup, McDonald jumped on a plane and made the 12-hour flight from China and was thrilled with the result.
To make the win even over pre-race favourite Southern Shimmer even better was that McDonald was able to share it with both Bailey and jockey Glen Colless.
“I’ve been with Alan for about 15 years and I’ve had about 40 horses with him now and I’ve a great relationship with both Alan and Glen, we’re a lovely family,” McDonald said.
The thrilled owner said that he was confident of victory with a furlong still to run but Bailey wasn’t quite so sure.
Asked when he thought his strapping gelding who looked a picture pre-race in the mounting yard was about to claim the major prize, the trainer was a lot more circumspect.
“When they got to that winning post,” Bailey said.
The subject of a plunge in the 24 hours leading up to the race, Bailey thought that Brave The Way was due for a win.
“He was a certainty beaten in the Caloundra Guineas and I think it’s fair to say that he should’ve probably nearly won the Grafton Guineas and now he’s won a race,” he said.
“It was his turn I think.”
The first half of the race was a dream for local connections with the Coffs Harbour trained Rage And Rave, Civita, Save A Buck and Geronimo Jack all taking forward positions until the home turn.
Once the field turned for home though it was the favourites who made the long trek to the track that came to the fore.
Gazza Guru made the first break from the field after getting the kick on the turn with Silent Movie not far behind.
Sawtell Cup winner Southern Shimmer found itself behind a wall of horses on the turn but burst to the lead once jockey Robert Thompson found some room.
The final burst though came from Brave The Way and the Cup was his.