A fantastic wrap up of an incredible day of racing at Callaghan Park, thanks to RJC CEO David Aldred

Published 18 April 2024


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Bowen trainer Tom Button won his third Capricornia Yearling Sale 2YO Classic on Thursday with his filly Silver Glitter coming with a big finish to blouse its opponents.

Ridden by Group 1 jockey Samantha Collett, Silver Glitter was well back in the field around the home turn but relished the big Callaghan Park straight with Collett reeling in the opposition. 

Starting at odds of $10.00, Silver Glitter (Denman – Grey Glitter) defeated the Toowoomba-trained Rocky Rich by a long neck with Roma-trained debutante Acedrod less than a length away in third place. Oohlalouvre finished fourth with Travelling Sweet the first local home in fifth place for Clint Taylor.

Button said he loves the 2YO Classic. “Where else can you buy a horse at a local yearling sale and be running for $150,000 just 12 months later, it’s my favourite race, “Button said. Button shares in the ownership with the Findyabookie Syndicate and other local friends from Rocky’s Cocobrew. Jockey Collett said she likes coming to Callaghan Park. “I rode my 1000th winner here last year and now I’ve won this special race for a good group of owners,” she said.

Apprentice jockey Cody “Chip”” Collis won’t forget Thursday’s race meeting at Callaghan Park too quickly. The young rider was on cloud nine when his third winner for the day saluted in the $100,000, Capricornia Yearling Sales 3&4YO Classic (1300m). Ridden a treat by Collis, Under the Cap trained by Stuart Kenrick at Corbould Park Caloundra, sprinted away from its opponents to easily win the Classic defeating two gallant locals, Track Tale trained by Ricky Vale, and Just Super trained by Nick Walsh. Under the Cap has now raced 15 times and won four. The gelding by Under The Louvre has previously won twice at Callaghan Park. 

Collis also won the Mayor’s Cup (1200m) on the Kendrick-trained Hard Reyva and kicked off his hattrick of wins for the Kenrick stable, riding Tour De Field in the Maiden (1200m). 

Deputy Mayor of Rockhampton Regional Council Drew Wickerson was on track to present the trophy to the winners of the 2024 Mayors Cup at Callaghan Park on Thursday. Representing Mayor Tony Williams and the Regional Council Wickerson presented the winner trophy to Adrian Coome who stepped in for trainer Stuart Kendrick. Hard Reyva defeated locals Fine Shot and Master Jamie in the 1200m sprint. It was Hard Reyva’s eighth win from 26 race starts. Master Jamie who is being readied for the $775,000 The Archer on the 28 April led the field carrying a big weight of 67.5kg and was far from disgraced. The Archer is a weight-for-age event, and the scale will suit Graeme Green’s two-time Rockhampton Cup winner. 

Rocky locals couldn’t remember when the RJC last staged a 12-race card at Callaghan Park. And it’s definitely a record for a TAB meeting at the track. A total of 136 horses were accepted for the 12 races which carried total prizemoney of $474,000. Prizemoney was the highest across the globe for a race meeting run on Thursday 18 April 2024, and the club is pretty proud that it has created history. The race meeting was bolstered by the rescheduling of three races from the washed-out local races on Saturday 6 April with the Capricornia Yearling Sales 2YO Classic; Capricornia Yearling Sales 3 & 4YO Classic and the Rockhampton Regional Council Mayors Cup added to the program. The additional races attracted more horses, trainers, and visiting jockeys, including two multiple Group 1 winning riders, which made for a bumper race meeting. Club chairman Rob Carr said it was a tremendous response from the participants. “We love seeing our race meetings well patronized by trainers and jockeys, it just goes to show if you create something different, they will come,” Carr said. “The carryover of races from our lost meeting boosted stakes for the day and improved the quality, which provided us with an excellent result.” 

The RJC had to organize an additional jockey room to cater for extra riders at the meeting, 25 male and female jockeys rode at the race meeting, about double the normal riding list and too many for the regular jockey rooms. A temporary room for the additional riders was established in the RJC’s former administration office adjacent to the scales area. 

It was great to see former Queensland racing steward Chas Clifford at Callaghan Park. Clifford managed the group of owners that won the opener on Rocky’s 12-race card. Mr Dudwey, trained by Paul Butterworth and ridden by Jim Byrne came with a late dash to defeat Lucky Exchange and Phoenix Flyer. Clifford was a regular on the steward’s racing panel for many years working in and around Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast. 

The RJC chairman Rob Carr hosted Racing Queensland’s CEO Jason Scott at Callaghan Park this week. Mr. Scott was in Rockhampton for meetings with the RJC, ATA, and the Rocky Amateurs. He had an opportunity during his fly-in-fly-out trip to look at the recent Callaghan Park improvements, funded by RQ, including the Club’s new administration office, the Raceview Deck, and the members’ lounge extensions. The RQ CEO was most impressed by the facility improvements.

Provincial-Midway Championship runner-up Strait Acer is heading to Rockhampton for the $775,000 The Archer next week. Strait Acer is a star aspirant who will race under the Aquis Farm banner in the Rocky Amateur’s annual 1300m weight-for-age slot race at Callaghan Park, tomorrow week. Trained at Hawkesbury by Ed Cummings, a grandson of the late great Cups King, Bart Cummings, and brother of Godolphin stable-trainer James Cummings, five-time winner Strait Acer raced brilliantly at Randwick last Saturday and has been flying this preparation. Strait Acer, a 4YO by Headwater was beaten under four lengths when fifth to King Of Sparta in the Group 2 Expressway (1200m) at Randwick in February, then flew home late to run second to the very promising Territory Express in the Group 1 Provincial-Midway Championship final (1400m) at Randwick seven days ago. The long 600-metre straight at Callaghan Park looks to be made to order for the gelding that has already won $1.2million. The Acton slot will now be represented by the Clint Taylor-trained Princess Tenko. They were to have the classy mare Chinny Boom but with her out of action, they have found a nice substitute. Old warriors Namazu and Master Jamie head the other Rocky locals in the slot race. The other starters will be Lavish Empire, trained by Peter and Paul Snowden, Ucalledit from Kris Lees stable, Eaglemont (Matt Dunn), Mishani Sniper (Les Ross), Super Helpful (Barb Joseph), Arentee (Chris Meagher), Better Get Set (Steve O’Dea & Matt Hoysted) and Nikau Spur (Corey and Kylie Geran). There are 32 nominations for the $75,000 Fitzroy Handicap (1300m).

Ash Butler had a great day of riding at Thangool last Saturday. Butler rode three winners on the six-race card. His successful run started in race two, riding $12.00 chance Afroginasock to win the BM45 Handicap (1075m) for trainer Adam Briskey. He then continued his association with 9YO veteran sprinter Ahwaneechee to win the Open Handicap (1200m) for trainer Ray Williams and then rung up his treble on Poets Day in the BM60 (1600m) for trainer Peter Fleming. 

The Yeppoon Turf Club is set to race today with a five-race card to be decided at Keppel Park. The first of five races is set down for decision at 1.40 pm. 

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