MACLEAN CUP: After over a week of action-packed racing, the final feature racing of this year's July Racing Carnival came to an exciting climax, with the Maclean Bowling Club Cup decided by a margin that even took several looks at the tape.
In the end, it was the John Shelton-trained five-year-old mare Cash Spinner, ridden by Matthew Paget, who put her nose in front on the inside to win from Present Sense.
And although the duo had just lost a similarly close photo finish in the previous, Paget said he was confident of the win when he hit the line.
"It was a bit of a strong finish between me and Peter Graham who'd got me in the last, but even though it tends to favour the outside I thought I had him," Paget said.
"The horse travelled brilliant. He had a virus the week before, so it was a bit of query on him, you just don't know how they're going to recover.
"But this horse turned up today, and when she's at its best this horse can win these type of races."
Trainer Shelton was equally pleased with the ride from barrier five, and said that Cash Spinner had been a good one for him, with nine wins, and six placings from 32 starts, including a Kempsey Cup.
"She drew a nice gate, Matty put her where we wanted her to and got a beautiful run," Shelton said.
"He's got her off the fence at the right time, and she'll hit the line well.
"She had 58.5kg on her and she's only a little thing, but she just loves to win."
The Maclean Cup win rounded off the carnival for Shelton, who had a winner on the opening day, and said the horse may be aimed at either the Coffs Cup, or a non-metro meeting in Brisbane, depending on how she pulled up.
For jockey Paget, the win was his third for the carnival, also winning the Mother's Gift and a benchmark 55.
"I was expecting to have a quiet carnival, but I tend to ride the local horse and they always perform well at home," he said.