Locally trained three-year-old King’s Duty defied an amazing betting drift when he confirmed his outstanding trial form by winning the TAB Venue Mode Maiden Plate (1150m) on the Beaumont track on Monday. Consistent showers saw the track downgraded from a Soft 6 to a Heavy 9 prior to race one however, the track played well despite the rain and the meeting was never in doubt.
Gerry Harvey bred and retained a share in King’s Duty, who is trained by Mark Minervini. The son of Exosphere was unbeaten in three trials at Scone, Muswellbrook and Wyong. The gelding was to make his debut at Muswellbrook on January 16 however, he was a late scratching at the barrier. In a subsequent trial King’s Duty cruised home to win by 2.16 lengths, only six days prior to Mondays race.
He has genuine speed but had to work hard early from a wide barrier to cross to the lead on the rail on Monday. Once in front, King’s Duty proved to be a class above with an effortless 2.44 lengths victory. On the morning of the race the bold striding galloper was the $1.95 favourite with Tab Fixed Odds however an amazing betting drift saw him displaced as favourite in the closing stages of betting. His price drifted to $5.00, before eventually starting $4.60.
The win was the second for the former South Australian trainer in three days on Newcastle tracks. Star Impact, a recent acquisition to the stable was a winner on the Course Proper on Saturday. Mikayla Weir rode King’s Duty, and the Hunter Valley jockey completed a double for the meeting when she brought Nevada Smoke from last to win the Hunter Valley Premium Meats Benchmark 58 Handicap (1150m). The winner is trained by former Gosford trainer Jim Louizos, who is now based at Taree.
Paul Perry also won his second Newcastle race in three days when $10 chance Just One Look stormed home to win the Reward Hospitality Class 1 Handicap (1150m). The Perry trained Olympic Gaze was successful on the Course Proper on Saturday. Former Hunter Valley apprentice Reece Jones was aboard the winner, and it was his second win for the day. Earlier in the day Jones piloted the Taree trained Moon Over Alice to a 3 length win the Charlestown Square Class 3 Handicap (1350m). Aaron Bullock’s win on Call Me Louis took his tally for the first six months of the season to 75 ½.