Gary Harley – Wrap – 09.03.2023

Wyong trained gallopers quinellaed the Polytrack Provincial-Midway Championship Qualifier at the Newcastle Racecourse on Thursday.

Kim Waugh’s three-year-old True Crime went into the race with good form, but surprisingly drifted in betting markets to $9.50 when the barriers opened. Sydney’s leading apprentice Tyler Schiller is the gelding’s regular rider, and he was aboard on Thursday. He had no hesitation in setting the pace on the winner and True Crime held off the challengers to win by 0.17 of a length. Tracey Bartley’s mare Sebrenco looked a big threat with 100m to run but she just missed.  Kris Lees had three runners in the qualifier, and Geo was the best of the trio finishing third.

True Crime, raced by a Darby Racing syndicate has won four of nine starts with three placings. With bonuses his prizemoney tally is $300,965. True Crime and Sebrenco have now qualified for the $500,000 Polytrack Provincial-Midway Final at Randwick on April 8.

Gosford mare Alicia Roma maintained her outstanding race record when she bolted in with the Hellbent @ Yarraman Park Posthaste Benchmark 78 Handicap (900m). The $1.55 favourite has blistering speed and she hit the ground running to lead all the way and win by 2 ¼ lengths. Trained by Angela Davies the mares record now stands at four wins and four placings from eight starts. At Newcastle, Alicia Roma has had two wins and a second from three starts. Andrew Gibbons rode the mare, and he has been aboard in three of her four wins.

Nathan Doyle was the only Newcastle trainer to win a race on the day. Ambassadors joined the Doyle stable after four starts in which he was twice placed. He put the writing on the wall when a close third at Wyong on February 21. Kerrin McEvoy rode the three-year-old on Thursday and after racing on the speed Ambassadors raced away to win by 3 lengths.

Long time Cessnock trainer Brian Walker and Newcastle apprentice Ben Osmond combined to win the opening event, the Jennings Print Maiden Plate (900m) with three-year-old Classic Dreamer. A $16 chance, the gelding came from midfield to run over the leaders in the closing stages.

Leading Sydney trainers Chris Waller and Mark Newnham trained winners on the day. Waller with Fleur Du Monde in the Vale Robert “Puddy” Davies Maiden Plate (1500m) and Newnham with Cool Jakey in the Hunter Valley Premium Meats CG&E Benchmark 64 Handicap (1200m).

Riding honours for the meeting went to Kerrin McEvoy and Tyler Schiller with two wins apiece.