Race 9 Schweppes Race Day winner Ceequal Star, who is trained by John Shelton.
Race 9 Schweppes Race Day winner Ceequal Star, who is trained by John Shelton.

Big names come out at Grafton

HOW’S this for an honour roll at Grafton yesterday – Gerry Harvey, Nick Moriatis and Joe Janiak.

And throw in jockey Glenn Lynch, the former rider of Ron Maund’s champion mare Gold Edition and the big name winner’s list wouldn’t have been out of place carnival time in Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane.

Retail king Gerry Harvey, co-proprietor of the Magic Millions and one of Australia’s largest owner-breeders, tasted success with three-year-old filly Perfect Swindle, trained by former golfing professional, Paul St Vincent at Tamworth.

St Vincent, who prepares dual Ramornie winner The Jackal, and with sons Kane and Aden does a lot of breaking in for Harvey.

Perfect Swindle, by Reenact, was having its second start when, ridden by Gold Coast-based Chris Whiteley, scored a narrow win in the Woolgoolga Returned Services Club 3YO Maiden (1200m).

“She’s always shown ability but after her debut second she went shin sore and we put her away,” Aden St Vincent said. “Being by Reenact she should get over a bit more ground later.

“She’s just got to toughen up a bit.

“The filly is still green that’s why we put the winkers on her today.

“She’s shown enough promise to warrant pushing on with her.

“You never know we might bring her down as a travelling companion for The Jackal and his third Ramornie.”

Moriatis is best known as the owner of champion galloper Might & Power, dual Australian Horse of the Year who lists a Caulfield and Melbourne Cup and Cox Plate to his remarkable racetrack achievements.

Moriatis owns four-year-old gelding Wise And Wary, trained by Joe Janiak at Coffs Harbour, the former Queanbeyan taxi driver who shot to international stardom with sprint sensation Takeover Target, due to make a guest appearance at the July Racing Carnival.

“Nick always said one day he’d send me up a horse or two and he’s stuck to his word,” Janiak said. “This horse came to me in good nick. It’s just taken a while to really get going and figure him out.

“It was a great ride by Stephen (Traecey).”

Traecey had Wise And Wary across from barrier 15 to box seat behind the leaders on settling before winning the Northbeach Bowling Club Maiden (1410m).

“One of my better rides Joe,” the veteran horseman said on unsaddling. “At least you can still do it,” Jainak added tongue-in-cheek.

Janiak indicated Moriatis’s other galloper Bonded is targeted for this year’s Grafton Cup.

Glenn Lynch, now based at Tamworth, showed class to get the Bob Graham-trained Romiaka out from a pocket in the straight to win the Dale Thompson Memorial Benchmark 50 Handicap (1200m), named after the popular Clarence River Jockey Club CEO who died of a rare form of cancer in 2007.

Romiaka and another horse were purchased by Wauchope-based Graham from Sydney trainer Alan Denham.

“Romiaka and the other horse Lucky Gaze were both sold to Singapore,” Graham said. “When the cheque didn’t arrive for Romiaka I kept him and glad I did. He’s more than paid for himself.”

Girl power also struck yesterday, 20-year-old apprentice Priscilla Schmidt winning aboard Blue Oyster for Danny Bowen and Amy White and local Bruce Swan combining to win with Dash’s Princess.

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