Racing AROUND Rocky with Tony McMahon.
Published 19 January 2024
In horse racing it is a given that you have to experience losing to really appreciate the value of winning a race.
That applies to jockeys, trainers and of course owners.
All three exponents of our beloved horse racing have experienced losing streaks where you begin to wonder like myself at a few stages “will I ever get another winner?”
Allow me the to exaggerate a tad as at one period during my active 37 years at the training caper I was happy when my starters actually didn’t run last!
We’ll sort of at least.
It takes plenty of gumption to stick it out when everything seems to continually go wrong but just like the tide it will change.
That’s why I was delighted to see Callaghan Park hard working trainer Zoe Hohn back in the winners circle there last Tuesday with impressive winner Roy’s Road.
Zoe is a very competent horse woman and when Roy’s Road won it broke a long winning Callaghan Park drought for her.
Not that Zoe has many horses in training mind you and has had not that many race starters this season.
Similar to my scribing on her fellow trainer Jesse Kuhn earlier this week, Roy’s Road is a part of the Hohn family.
The Sizzling gelding Roy’s Road is raced by Zoe, her parents and sister Heidi Butler.
Sharing in the euphoria of the win was jockey Beau-Dean Appo.
It came about at Beau’s eighth ride back after a 14 months hiatus.
Beau had been actively riding trackwork in Brisbane and rekindled the desire and motivation to get back race riding this month.
From what I can ascertain his last winner was at Esk in July 2022.
Throughout my lifetime involvement in the racing industry I have proudly been an advocate for what I describe as the “little players”.
They are the backbone on the industry in all facets and regrettably their numbers have diminished.
I enjoy nothing more in racing journalism than chronicling their hard earned successful achievements.
With respect I have classified Zoe Hohn and Beau-Dean Appo as “little players” but given the opportunities who knows how high they could aspire.
HOOFNOTE: Later on Tuesday the pair combined to win a barrier trial with Kamarcher. Maybe the flood gates have opened for them.
Back at Callaghan Park races last Tuesday winning grins were the order of the day.
The famous yellow, blue and red cap silks of the late Ron Beak and his wife Val and family members were carried to victory by Valtino.
That combination of racing silks have been worn by countless winners over decades in Central Queensland.
Also for that matter in Brisbane as well by the likes of Star Chat.
Chuffed to see Val continuing the Beak family tradition of racing horses.
Very much akin to that of Jennifer Acton in racing horses following the tragic death of husband Alan Acton.
The equally as recognisable green and white silks of the Acton family were worn by Bush Diamond on Tuesday when a close second to Dragon’s Snip.
The input from both Ron Beak and Alan Acton to the Central Queensland racing industry was monumental and Val and Jennifer must be congratulated for carrying on the legacies of their late husbands.
With sincerity I salute you both ladies.
Valtino was a leg of a winning double for local trainer Nick Walsh who has by his standard had a quiet start to the current season.
However, that looks likely to change from here on in.
Nick’s latest acquisition to the stable, the former Maher and Eustace trained Victorian galloper Awol(NZ) looked ultra impressive in winning the Class 3 Plate.
Rest assured, that will be the first of quite a few wins for Awol (NZ).
I believe it was also the first winner raced by the newly formed local syndication group – One Syndications.
Fabulous way to start off guys and gals and by the looks of the pics Awol did you all proud and provided you with a never to be forgotten thrill.
The win went a long way towards recovering Awol’s purchase price of $20K at a November 2023 Inglis online sale.
The omen was there for all to see for a win of many firsts by the One Syndications’ silks of grey with a black insignia of number 1.
Been a big week for Rockhampton but now Brisbane based apprentice Tahlia Fenlon, 20. Tahlia rode her second metropolitan mid-week winner in Tiger Tie at Doomben on Wednesday. The horse was trained by her master Chris Munce. The preceding day at Callaghan Park, Tahlia kept the winning roll of the Sturgiss family and Sileas Green running by wining on Dragon’s Snip. Tomorrow (20/1) Fenlon will have her first Saturday metropolitan race ride at Eagle Farm on a horse ironically named Not Going Back (Race 5, TAB 11). That name pretty much sums up her grit and determination in sticking it out in Brisbane. It’s a case of All Going Forward for Tahlia Fenlon now.
Interesting to see that SEQ trainers have now woken up to what we CQ racing stakeholders have long realised. That is “that Justin Stanley is a city class rider” and a good one at that. He is now getting more and more rides in Brisbane and around SEQ. About time! One of his rides at Eagle Farm on Saturday is recent Callaghan Park winner That’s Interesting in the first.
Of course Justin’s first class recent rides on Clinton Taylor trained starlet Chinny Boom in the big races in SEQ have certainly placed him under notice. Chinny is enjoying a short rest at Embrook Farm outside Beaudesert for a few more days. “She has pulled up super after her great third in the $1M MM Open last Saturday at the Gold Coast. She will come home to Rocky to be trained for the Military Rose on the Gold Coast on March 9. We have had some interest (from slotholders) regarding The Archer here as well after that. So that may be her race after that,” Clinton told me this week.
By the way C. Taylor was very active at the MM Yearling Sales and signed-up for three
yearlings. Fillies by Spirit Of Boom ($57.5K) and Dubious ($40K) as well as a drop dead gorgeous Star Turn colt for $60K. “I have some shares left in two of them”, Clinton said.
Ringer’s Reward will be flying the flag for the Capricornia Yearling Sales graduates at Eagle Farm on Saturday. Engaged in Race 3 as TAB 2, looks a great chance from where I sit but that is far, far away. Of course the CYS will be here before you know it on Sunday, April 7. As usual that sale is preceded by the Magic Millions March Yearling Sale commencing on Monday 11/3.
Suggest you keep tabs on Princess Tenko, Whakamihro, Beyond Star and Dollar Dollar as all trialled very promisingly after the races at Callaghan Park last Tuesday.
Until next time Happy Horses everyone – Tony McMahon.