Veteran Newcastle trainer Paul Perry took the training honours on the second day of the Newcastle Jockey Clubs Spring Carnival on Saturday. Perry trained gallopers Florida Sky and Mr Trackside landed hefty plunges in successive races.
Newcastle’s premier jockey Aaron Bullock was aboard four-year-old mare Florida Sky, backed from $3.80 into $3.00 in the Reward Hospitality Provincial Benchmark 64 Handicap (900m). The mare was given a gun run behind the speed by Bullock and he steered her into the clear at the top of the straight. Florida Sky held off the challengers late to win convincingly from Newcastle pair Zanzibar Gem and Omar. Florida Sky was an impressive barrier trial winner on the Beaumont track earlier this month and she has a good first up record.
In the following race, the Waterford Accountants Midway Maiden Plate (900m) the Perry trained Mr Trackside was backed from double figures into $4.60. The colt had been unplaced in four previous starts, but he was resuming from a spell and had been narrowly beaten in a recent trial. Jess Taylor rode the three-year-old on Saturday and after racing in third place it took him a while to hit top gear in the straight. Mr Trackside sprouted wings late to win by 3/4 length.
It was a successful day for Newcastle trainers as Kris Lees and David Atkins prepared the last two winners. Five-year-old mare Terrameades, raced by Australian Bloodstock and trained by Lees provided Bullock with the second leg of a winning double when she won the Steamatic Benchmark 64 Handicap (1250m) by a nose. The mare raced better than midfield before Bullock let her stride up three wide outside the leaders on the home turn. Terrameades had to fight hard all the way down the long straight as there were many challengers. It was her fifth win for prizemoney of $139,775.
The David Atkins trained Two Up won his first race since November 2021 when he won the final event the PFD Food Services Benchmark 64 Handicap (1500m). Keagan Latham was the star of the jockey’s room on Saturday, and he put Two Up in a winning position from the outset, and the win competed a treble for him at the meeting. Two Up had struggled to win a race since a Port Macquarie win in November 2021 but he was at his very best on Saturday, racing away to win by 2.5 lengths. The late Alan Scorse was Two Up’s original trainer before she went to Allan Denham, and he won a Scone Maiden in November 2019. Two Up then went to David Atkins who has won five races with the seven-year-old.
Left Field only had to repeat her Autumn form to be a good thing in the Tassell Financial Planning Maiden Plate (1250m). Alarmingly she drifted to $2.05 late in betting and after settling midfield she forced her way into the clear and hit the line hard. The filly will benefit from the first up run. Formerly trained by Mark Newnham who is now in Hong Kong, Left Field is prepared by Brad Widdup.