Evopex finds the right line to take home Maclean Cup
RACING: Jockey Matt McGuren can add a Maclean Cup to his impressive tally of July Carnival wins after he piloted home Jim Jarvis-trained Evopex yesterday afternoon.
In a race that went down to the wire, the five-year-old gelding managed to find space on the home straight to chase down John Shelton's Cool Prince and take out victory on the line.
Coffs Harbour-based Jarvis said he had some nerves as Evopex came into the home straight.
"Coming from the 700m to the turn I was starting to shut my eyes and pray, I didn't think he would be able to weave his way through, but once he came around the corner and he saw that little bit of daylight the horse put his head down and knuckled right down to the task," he said.
"It was a bit of a struggle, the two best horses in the race fought it out to the finish, which is always good."
After a slow start to its racing career in provincial Victoria, having only previously won a maiden and some placings, Jarvis said Evopex has flourished since moving north to NSW.
"Since we brought him up here he has won a couple of races then went to (Royal) Randwick and won a TAB Highway race," he said.
"He has more than paid for himself triple time.
"Going forward the horse will more than likely go to the Sawtell Cup and then go onto the Coffs Cup. Being a former Victorian and now located at Coffs, although I've won the Coffs Cup before I just really like to win another one before I give it away."
Jarvis was full of praise for jockey McGuren, who has had another July Carnival to remember, guiding home nine wins and seven placings.
"Matt is a great rider and rides a lot of wins for me, he looks after me," Jarvis said.
"His manager will ring me up and ask me what I've got, I'll tell him and he can pick which one he thinks is the best to ride, and Matt really looks after us."
Jarvis dedicated the victory to his wife Kristine, who couldn't be at the Clarence River Jockey Club after suffering a number of injuries when she fell from a horse.
"My wife had a fall during the week and she cracked her ribs and dislocated her shoulder," Jarvis said.
"She would have loved to have been here today, because she loves trophies, but she will be bigger and brighter for the win, it will cheer her up for sure."