Hawkesbury trainer Garry White has enjoyed the first win of the new season on home turf.
In what was her first run since arriving at White’s stables from Queensland, the six-year-old Royal Hootenanny led all the way in the Benchmark 72 Hawkesbury Gazette and Courier Conditional Handicap (1000m) at Hawkesbury Race Club on Thursday, August 2.
“I’ve only had her a couple of months, she came down from Queensland, Chris Munce had her,” White said after the run.
“She’s actually going to go to stud and the owner asked if I’d give her a couple of runs.
“She’s got a lot of speed but she’s known to be a little bit weak at the end of her races. To me, she just wants to get everything over and done with so we just worked on getting her to relax, which she’s done really well.
“It was a good effort.”
Apprentice jockey Ashleigh Borg knows the horse well, and her four kilogram claim was an asset during the race, White said.
“She rides her work so she knew her. It’s a pretty straightforward ride, you’re not going to change her habits at her age,” White said.
“She’s got great speed and likes to roll along, and I think the claim was a big asset.
“It was good, a good job.”
White recorded his most successful season since 2009/10 last season.
Meanwhile, the local thoroughbred industry is celebrating a massive investment in the area by Racing NSW, which announced it had purchased the historic Princes Farm at Castlereagh, the former property of legendary trainer Bart Cummings.
The 137-acre masterpiece will be used as a training base for the NSW Thoroughbred Racing Industry Training Academy, along with quarantine for International visitors and the ongoing industry commitment to rehabilitate and re-home retired racehorses.
“The purchase affirms the confidence (of Racing NSW) in the Hawkesbury Region as an area worthy of investment in equine infrastructure,” Hawkesbury Race Club CEO Greg Rudolph said in a statement.
“Racing NSW has already contributed to the funding of Hawkesbury Race Club’s pristine Polytrack training surface and impending addition of 50 on-course stables.
“It confirms the Hawkesbury has built a solid foundation for trainers, pre-trainers, breakers and breeding operations – and now the training of future industry leaders”.
Racing NSW will consider naming the property the Bart Cummings Farm to honour the “Cups King”, with the showpiece farm ideally located a short drive from Hawkesbury Race course.