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11 WINNERS FOR HAWKESBURY TRAINERS IN PAST WEEK




HAWKESBURY trainers are certainly on a roll!

Another three winners at Wyong today brought up 11 in the last week, 40 since the turn of the new year and 115 so far this season.

Marc Chevalier scored with Without You at Newcastle last Friday, and then Brad Widdup (four wins, including a Group 3 at Royal Randwick along with his home track Qualifier), Edward Cummings and Blake Ryan added six last Saturday.

Chevalier put another victory on the board on the Kensington track yesterday, and Widdup, Cummings and Steve O’Halloran all were successful at Wyong.

Widdup landed the Super Maiden Plate (1600m) with High Dandy ($5), Cummings the Provincial Benchmark 64 Handicap (1350m) with Navios ($4.40), and O’Halloran the Benchmark 64 Handicap (1000m) with Jaex ($7.50).

High Dandy was Widdup’s 39th winner this season, Navios Cummings’ ninth and Jaex O’Halloran’s fourth.




Having only his third start, Ace High three-year-old High Dandy (Tyler Schiller) steamrolled his rivals by nearly five lengths in the style of a young horse going places.

“I wasn’t surprised at all that he won so easily; he is a really nice horse,” Widdup said.

“He had his first run in town as a late season two-year-old last June, and then had a good break.

“High Dandy was slowly away when resuming and I thought he was unlucky not to have won first-up when fourth in a 1600m Provincial Maiden at Kembla Grange late last month.

“Tyler (Schiller) was keen to go forward on the colt if he jumped on terms with the field today, and it worked out well.”

Cummings was again happy to take advantage of Widdup’s apprentice Zac Wadick’s 3kg claim on Navios, and it proved the difference between success and defeat.

In a tense finish, Navios just edged out Zoe Shark ($6) to post his second career victory – and first since joining Cummings’ team.

Wadick also scored for Cummings on Long Genes at Hawkesbury last Saturday.

“Zac is a terrific young man, and very grounded,” Cummings said. “He rides well, and his claim is indeed an asset.”

Navios, a lightly-raced Astern four-year-old, scored on debut at Hawkesbury last June when a $17 chance, and was having only his second start for his new trainer, after finishing second first-up at home last month.

O’Halloran, after having no luck with his smart youngster Nymphadora in town of late, was relieved to get a change of fortune with Jaex (Mitchell Bell).

“It’s been a frustrating time; we needed that,” O’Halloran said.

“Jaex gives 100 per cent all the time, and has now won twice and hasn’t finished further back than fourth in seven runs since coming to me.

“I expected her to run well on the strength of a recent excellent trial in a really strong 800m heat (won by Zapateo) at home on February 27.

“Mitchell Bell rode Jaex when she won a Super Maiden (1350m) at Wyong last November, and her two runs there have now produced victories.”

Bell’s ground-saving ride from second last on the home turn paved the way for Jaex to overhaul Canberra visitor Dreaming Of Vegas ($5.50) in the last few strides.

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Wyong’s Kristen Buchanan ensured Hawkesbury trainers didn’t have things all their own way at her home track.

Buchanan won the Conditional Benchmark 68 Handicap (1600m) with Gardenzio ($4.60 joint favorite), and praised apprentice Anna Roper for a heady ride.

Gardenzio, a four-year-old son of Menari, will be chasing a hat-trick next time he steps out.

He also was successful at home at his previous start on February 22 in a Class 1 Handicap. That was also over 1600m and Roper was also his rider.

Story John Curtis, March 14, 2024 - Pics Bradley Photos

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