Warwick connection to dead heat in the Weetwood
RACING: Emotions ran high at Clifford Park yesterday when the historic $150,000 Listed Audi Centre Toowoomba Weetwood Handicap (1200m) produced one of Toowoomba racing's ultimate fairytales with an uncle and nephew sharing the race victory.
The extraordinary finish was set up by a thrilling Toowoomba duel over the final 150 metres of the race between Michael Nolan's Jumbo Prince ($9.50) and Col 'N' Lil ($41) for his nephew Ben Currie.
The pair of resuming middle distance gallopers hit the line locked together for jockeys Luke Tarrant (Jumbo Prince) and Josh Oliver with the judge unable to separate the pair.
Siegfried ($7) was a further half length back third.
A stunned Nolan, who started his training career in Warwick, was at a loss amongst a sea of well-wishers to put into words what had just unfolded before him.
"I thought we'd got beaten,” Nolan said.
"I don't know what do say. It's a dead-heat. But I'll take the dead-heat any day of the week.
"He's been a great little horse to us. I knew he'd be hard to beat.
"But full mark's as well to Ben's horse."
The result is the second career dead-heat for Jumbo Prince who also shared a first with Rudy at Eagle Farm last May.
Currie was equally as pleased to share the trophy with his uncle in what must be one of the Weetwood's most unusual scenarios.
"They are both just good horses. They are both Group placed,” said Currie who prepares the five-year-old for long-time stable supporter and former Michael Nolan stable client Kim McCasker.
"A lot said Col 'N' Lil was a stayer and no hope today.
"But we've been getting her ready for a while and we knew she'd run a race.”
The shared win was the first feature success for jockey Luke Tarrant since he resumed recently from a lengthy disqualification.
It was also the first Listed victory for Toowoomba-based Oliver who completed his apprenticeship with Currie late last year.
"It's the biggest win of my career,” Oliver said.
"It's my first win in a Listed race and to do it just out of my time - I'm very stoked about that.
"I'm not surprised by the win. She's been getting ready for this race for a while and she came from her break a bigger mare.”