Tumut trainer Kerry Weir brought in the new year in the best possible fashion as he trained the winning trifecta of the $9000 Adelong Cup (1400m) on Monday.
Weir stole the show in the feature at Gundagai as Wagga apprentice Rebeka Prest guided Cod Rock ($6.00) to an upset victory in the Adelong Services & Citizens Club Adelong Cup – Benchmark 63 Handicap (1400m).
Cod Rock fought doggedly as he and stablemate Sand Dune ($4.20) cleared out in the straight to fight it out.
Just as it looked as if Sand Dune was going to cruise straight past, Cod Rock dug in for the fight and held on to win by a head.
Go Get ‘Em ($5.00) made up good ground from the tail of the field to finish 1¼ lengths away in third place.
It was a perfect way to start the new year for Weir, who was not completely shocked by the outsider of his trio saluting.
“Not really. He’s an honest horse and it was a pretty even race,” Weir said.
It was Weir’s first Adelong Cup triumph, and it was an impressive performance from Cod Rock, who hit the front early and fought off all challengers.
“Like Bek (Prest) said, she rode him bad, those were her exact words, but he’s probably the type of horse you have got to ride like that,” Weir explained.
“He’s got to get rolling a little bit early. He’s a big dour sort of a bugger, he needs to get rolling into his races.”
Cod Rock, a six-year-old raced by Noel Penfold, looks to be in for a promising preparation after winning at Gundagai just third-up into a staying preparation.
“I hope so. I still reckon he’ll be better once he gets over a bit further,” Weir said.
“A mile, 1800 is his go I reckon.”
Weir was happy to land the Cup trifecta after heading into the race with three of the seven runners.
“Happy, happy, happy,” Weir said.
“Sand Dune was probably one run short, that last 50 he had probably had enough.
“Richie (Bensley) was pretty happy with Go Get ‘Em, he said the same thing...he reckons he might want one more run.”
Aside from the Cup success, it was a day of near misses for the Weir stable.
Weir finished second in the first three races with Dante Pierro, Coandilil and Emerald Ice, before finishing with a third placing in the last with South Africa.
But Weir was still pleased with the day’s outcome.
“Three seconds is better than running three lasts,” he said.
Tumbarumba trainer Bob Burgun enjoyed his first triumph in a couple of years when The Good Mark ($18.00) caused a boilover to win the XXXX Gold Bob Vaughan Memorial Benchmark 51 Handicap (1000m).
Gundagai trainer David Blundell won the first, the Riverina Livestock Agents Maiden Plate (1400m), with Edea ($7.00).