‘Unreal’, says trainer 2YO Plate
IT WAS hard to tell who was happier, trainer Jane Clement or 90-year-old owner-breeder John Clift after Chrysolaus swept to victory in the $40,000 NBN 2YO Plate (1200m).
It was a stunning win after the two-year-old was three wide throughout and the widest runner on turning for home.
"It's unreal. It's unreal," a delighted Clement said after the gelding's 1 1/4 length win. "This is undoubtedly one of my greatest thrills.
"He's been set for this race for a long time. We put the blinkers on and it switched him right on.
"This has been one of my best ever seasons with 23 winners and a few cups included.
"To come here and win this race over the Grafton carnival ... well, it's fantastic."
Clift, who bred Chrysolaus, by Youthful Legs out of Canadian Bullet, still enjoys his racing even though a nonagenarian.
"This is great," Clift said sporting a winning smile. "I've won this race a couple of times."
Clift revealed Chrysolaus's dam, Canadian Bullet, failed to have a race start.
"She won a trial by 31 lengths, then bled. She was retired without racing," Clift added.
Clift, a former long-time president of the Tamworth Jockey Club, has been on race club boards since 1944, starting with Gunnedah.
Jane Clement trains on a private property at Bendemeer, near Tamworth.
"I've got my own track and ride all my horses work," she said proudly.
Winning rider Kody Nestor has been a long-time fan of Chrysolaus.
"Ever since he won at Armidale (March 2) I've really liked the horse," Nestor said. "I've always had an opinion of him.
"He really motored home over the final stages today. It was a great win."
Chrysolaus ($13) beat the Leon Davies-trained Crooked Blaze ($7), who hit the front soon after straightening and looked home until the winner emerged out wide, with Flarendi ($11) third.
A massive plunge on Toowoomba-trained Crossroad, backed from $20 into $4.40 favouritism, stayed in the bookies bag. Crossroad finished 13th of 14 runners.