Rich Character shows ticker to win
THREE heats of the Blue Paws Fifth Grade were decided on Saturday afternoon with local trainer Rick Godwin getting three runners into the final.
Rich Character, trained by Rick, won the Beaurepaires Heat when he led from the first turn to score a two-length win over Money Enforcer, trained by Andrew Monaghan. Billy Bond, trained by Peter O’Malley, finished third in the quickest time for the heats - 23.16 seconds.
Okeechobee, trained by Tracy Lindsay, was heavily supported to win the Al’s Mechanical Heat and didn’t let his supporters down to beat Rick Godwin-trained Rich Debate by six and-a-half lengths with Orara Bill, trained by Gary Smith, third in 23.27 seconds.
The Jim Madigan-trained Shalana Magic was resuming after injury when she led all the way to win the PFD Food Services Heat. She beat the Rick Godwin-trained Rich Accent by four and-a-half lengths with Cee Ya Dude, trained by Greg Hancock, a half-length away third in 23.27.
The final field, with a $1000 Blue Paws bonus to the winner if eligible, will be held next Saturday featuring: Shalana Magic, Rich Accent, Rich Character, Money Enforcer, Okeechobee, Rich Debate, Billy Bond, Cee Ya Dude, Orara Bill (first reserve), Shabro Augusto (second reserve).
Trainer John Free landed a winning double, the first leg of the double So Seductive arrived right on the line to win the George’s Tree Services 610m race by a nose after being the last to leave the boxes then railing inside the field at the first turn to be chasing the leader Captain Bravo, trained by Jim Madigan. So Seductive had to pull out all stops to win in 35.68.
The second leg of John’s winning double, Phantom Smiles, really has a liking for the 480m trip at Grafton where he has had the four starts for two wins and a third, this week in the Iluka Bowls Club Fifth Grade. Phantom Smiles raced to the lead along the back straight and then won by three lengths in 27.75.
Orara Jack, trained by Gary Smith, handled the step up to top grade with ease when he won the Henwood’s Hot Bread shop First Grade by five and-a-half lengths. Orara Jack has won five of his nine starts at Grafton and his last five in a row.
Chasing Slater, trained by Maxine Gleeson for her son Peter, used box one to advantage when he led all the way to win the Yamba Pumps and Irrigation Maiden by a length and-a-quarter in 23.52.
The Bimbindi Caravan Park Maiden went to the Mick Patterson-trained Manhatten Heat who led all the way in 23.49.