Newcastle Jockey Club Chairman Geoff Barnett and his wife Maureen were amongst the owners celebrating after the win of Mydeel in the opening event, the 1600m Open Handicap at Saturday’s Newcastle meeting. Mydeel recently purchased online by his current owners was originally handicapped on 61kg however, new trainer Rod Ollerton engaged 3kg claiming Sydney apprentice Jackson Searle to reduce the impost. Searle was trapped three-wide with no cover early in the race, so he decided to drag the gelding back to the tail of the field. The apprentice urged Mydeel along 600m from home and he started to make ground around the field. He unwound in the straight and he ran the leaders down to win by a length running away.
The winner, a son of Dundeel won three of seven starts when trained by Paul Messara. The five-year-old was purchased by Newcastle businessman Tony Price on behalf of a group including his father Dennis, Wests Rugby league teammate Peter Jenner, the Barnetts and the horses’ trainer Rod Ollerton. Mydeel won first up for his current connections at Scone on August 15 before a last start failure at Newcastle on September 17. Geoff Barnett was elated with the win of Mydeel.
“Maureen and I get so much enjoyment from watching our horses’ race, and particularly when they win. I was playing golf with Tony Price when he was bidding for Mydeel. He was over the moon when he secured the horse. He is a nice horse with plenty of racing in him yet. Tony missed the meeting as he is in England to watch the English Rugby League Grand Final” Barnett said.
The Barnetts have part owned horses of the calibre of Mugatoo and Top Ranked, favourite for next weeks Group 1 Epsom Handicap.
Newcastle trainers Jason Deamer and Kris Lees won races on the eight-race program. Deamer’s four-year-old Sir Kerm made an impressive debut in the 1200m Maiden Plate. Never on the track, Sir Kerm cruised up the lead inside the furlong, and he dashed away. The son of Kermadec’s trial form had been outstanding and he is very promising.
Lees’ New Zealand bred gelding Sailor rocked punters when he ran down the leader Token Capitalist in the 1400m Class 1 Handicap at the juicy odds of $19. The lightly raced Sailor is a five-year-old who had had three starts in New Zealand for one win before being purchased by Australian Bloodstock. He finished last in his only start at Newcastle on August 30.
Veteran South African jockey Glyn Scofield and Kiwi Rory Hutching were the most successful riders on the day with two winners apiece.