Win was worth wait
RARELY does a six-year-old horse win at its first start in a race but trainer Brett Bellamy worked his magic with Lady Shadwell at yesterday's Coffs Harbour TAB meeting.
Ridden by stable apprentice Shohei Shirahama, the mare was a huge tip as runners paraded and it proved surprising she eventually paid $8.50 on the tote.
Pre-race favourite Miss Vhog dumped rider Josh Jones as the field was being loaded and while the runaway appeared to be suffering no apparent ill effects from the canter back to the mounting yard, stewards ordered its precautionary late withdrawal.
Several runners looked likely to come away in the straight but Shirahama's patience won the day with the last shot at the tiring Flying View who ran a bold race for trainer Neil Godbolt, despite still being a two-year-old.
Trainer Bellamy said there was some thought his latest winner was actually a seven-year-old when she entered his yard and outlined four years of false starts and misadventure before connections managed to get her onto the racetrack.
“Gerald Ryan originally trained her and the owners put her in the paddock when she went shin sore,” he said.
“They didn't think she was up to city standard and were about to send her to stud, but decided to give her a few starts after all.
“For a while they didn't know what to do with her ... then the EI thing happened and she went shin sore again ... it's been one thing after another.”
The first-up victory has increased Lady Shadwell's broodmare value substantially, seeing as she's a daughter of Irish-based shuttle stallion Mujahid, out of a Don't Say Halo (USA) mare.
“Breeding is an option but I'd like to keep her racing for a while yet,” Bellamy said. He understood why rumours of her class were circulating after sending her out in a Port Macquarie barrier trial on February 23 against the North Coast's top sprinting mare, Langfibian.
“Put Langfibian in a maiden at Coffs and you're going to get a nice touch up, so the form of mine was great,” he added.
“We weren't sure what she had or didn't have but now she's done the job right.”