Bad girl Say Please finally in the good books- Article by Tony McMahon

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Bad girl Say Please was finally in the good books when she shed her maiden status by winning the Normie Fox Memorial Maiden (1400m) at Rockhampton’s Callaghan Park races yesterday. TUESDAY

Winning connections including her trainer and part-owner Zoe Hohn and breeder-owners Greg and Elaine Sturgiss were both relieved and excited by the Hemingway mares long awaited win.

Ridden by Sonya Wiseman who will long remember Melbourne Cup Day 2019 fondly, Say Please ($1.80) surged late to win by 1.25 lengths from Saqsaywaman (Thomas Doyle, $4.00).

“She (Say Please) is my little buckjumper. Today was going to definitely be her last chance had she not won”, Zoe Hohn said as she waited for her feisty mare to come into the winners’ stall.

“She has had 14 barrier trials mainly as a three-years-old because of her misbehaviour. She pinged the gates (jumps quickly from the starting barriers) and then just drops her head and starts bucking. The stewards had told me not long ago she was on her last warning”, Zoe said.

However, after 14 earlier starts which netted four placings it seemed all was forgiven as the owners welcomed their winning mare back into the enclosure.

However, Say Please did cause them some pre-race drama when after being led onto the track by the Clerk Of The Course’s pony, it seems the pair weren’t the ideal match.

Maybe it was a simple case of “push leading to shove” with the bridle pulling through Say Please’s mouth but all was quickly fixed.

Zoe Hohn has done a fine job through her patient handling of Say Please and the win was well deserved for the Capricornia Yearling Sale yearling graduate.

Riding honours went to Sonja Wiseman with three Callaghan Park winner’s courtesy of the other pair – Geoff Elliot’s Csardas and Alan Jones trained Flat to Stack.

Earlier, Wiseman had ridden a winner at the morning race meeting at Gladstone aboard the Clinton Taylor trained Cash Strapped who put up a remarkable performance coming from 12 lengths last to win the 0-60 Handicap (1000m).

That means Wiseman has ridden six winners in four days as she rode a double at Yeppoon races last Saturday.

After that she flew from Rockhampton to Brisbane and from there to Cairns to ride at the TAB meeting there on Sunday.

Then it was a reverse flight back to Brisbane and then from there to Rockhampton on Monday before a drive down and back from her Rocky base to Gladstone races and return yesterday.

No one could question Sonya’s work ethics as she rides numerous horses track work at Callaghan Park each morning and as is said “the harder I work the luckier I get”.

Before his win as an owner-trainer yesterday TUESDAY at Callaghan Park with Csardas, a daughter of former Rockhampton grey star Aspiran, Geoff Elliot was beginning to think luck had abandoned him.

“I was feeling like a punch-drunk fighter. I kept getting up and off the canvas to keep on having a go. Plenty of placings but I just couldn’t get a winner”, Geoff said.

However, Allenstown Meats’ Butcher Geoff got the bacon yesterday TUESDAY in the BM 45 Handicap (1200m) claiming $5200 in winning stakes.

Racing returns to Callaghan Park on Friday for the Breeders Plate 2YO race day.

PICTURE: Patience pays as Say Please (Sonya Wiseman) wins at Callaghan Park yesterday. Photo: Tony McMahon.


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