Big Ben overshadows giant prawn at electric Ballina meeting
RACING :Ben Looker zoomed up the Northern Rivers Racing Association jockey’s premiership with a stunning quartet of wins at Ballina yesterday.
The talented jockey didn’t have a ride in the first race won by fellow Graftonite Belinda Hodder and Slice Of Heaven, but struck in the next three races.
Looker booted home Miss Magnolia, Enterprise Keren, Lucap and Group Think for trainers Chris Munce, John Shelton, Daniel Bowen and Edward O’Rourke.
Fellow Grafton jockey Matthew McGuren made his presence felt to pinch Looker’s shot at five-straight on Matthew Dunn-trained Dreamtime Magic.
Piloting Toby and Trent Edmonds’ Coolwedge, Looker started well but got caught on the rail down the stretch to finish fifth behind McGuren and Steven Phelps’ Ester’s Rose.
Lismore trainer Daniel Bowen prepares Lucap and snared his first win with the four-year-old gelding.
The son of Poet’s Voice had won previously at the Gold Coast and Ballina for previous trainer Scott Morrisey and was having his fourth start for Bowen since joining the Lismore stable.
Bowen’s win also took him to equal seventh on the NRRA trainer’s premiership with Coffs Harbour’s Brett Dodson. They have 11 wins apiece and trail premiership leader Matthew Dunn (45) by 36 wins.
Looker’s treble enabled him to leapfrog Coffs Harbour jockey Ray Spokes into outright third on the NRRA table.
Sitting in second, Hodder continued her Northern Rivers winning run with an early success yesterday.
The talented female jockey, who was second to Matthew McGuren on the NRRA jockey’s premiership before the meeting, moved a little closer to the top when Slice Of Heaven won the Paradise FM 2Y) Handicap (1000m) for Wauchope trainer Colt Prosser.
A daughter of Rubick Slice Of Heaven was having her fifth race start and was her second win after breaking her maiden at Grafton back in late January.
Shelton also has runners nominated for Thursday’s Lismore TAB meeting.
The Grafton-based trainer has nominated Canford Springs and Bugalugs for the Class 2 handicap over 1200m.
Lismore is rated a Heavy 9 for Thursday’s meeting.
The Lismore Turf Club received an extra four nominations from its extension today and has finished with 108 entries for the seven-race TAB meeting.
Feature race is $20,000 Biztax Open Handicap (2100m), a staying test with nominations.
Casino gelding, Landmarks, prepared by Scott Cumming is the topweight after the winner of nine of 46 starts received 61kg.
He has half a kilo more than Matthew Dunn’s Penshurst and Stephen Lee’s Polemic.