There was a popular hometown win at the Gawler and Barossa Jockey Club race meeting on Wednesday, June 14.
A group of local business people own Travel Plan, the winner of the Young Guns Day – Saturday, July 8 – Three-Year-Old Maiden (1400m).
Chris Cahill from Inspirations Paint, his wife Lisa, Maxine and Neville Wytkin from Gawler Motors Rewinders, Paul Howett of BP Roseworthy and Wade and Kate Seal are the owners of Travel Plan, but the story goes deeper.
Mr Cahill said he and Mr Howett raced a mare called Belle Addiction, which was trained in Gawler by Trevor Saltmarsh.
“(Belle Addiction) won six races between 1600m and 2200m and when retired, Maxine (Wytkin) came up with the idea to breed from her,” Cahill said.
“I looked at suitable sires and came up with Good Journey which was standing at Cornerstone Stud at Angaston and Travel Plan is the result.
“David (trainer David Jolly) said he felt the horse had potential but wouldn’t be suited until he got out to 1600 metres like his mother, so today was a pleasant surprise.”
A $4.20 chance, Travel Plan, ridden by Jamie Kah, scored a half-neck win, beating Zaaladd ($6) with King Tomlola ($16), three-quarters of a length away third.
Jolly said Travel Plan had been very new when making his race debut over 1200 metres at Strathalbyn on May 31.
“He didn’t know what racing was all about and settled last but ran home well to finish fifth,” Jolly said.
“I expected improvement today, but he surprised me by showing as much early speed that enabled him to sit fourth trailing the leaders.
“Jamie (Kah) said when he hit the front he got a bit lost and didn’t know what to do, but when challenged over the final stages responded and wanted to win.
“I’m sure that win will improve his attitude again. I think the owners are going to have a lot of fun with him.”
Last Wednesday’s meeting was the first at Gawler for six months following a major track upgrade.
The meeting featured the running of the annual Wolf Blass Rascals Club trophy.
Rascals Club organiser Wolf Blass was on course and complimented the Gawler and Barossa Jockey Club on its facility.
Mr Blass also noted the continued development of the Wolf Blass the Man Pavilion which is proving popular with patrons as a place to relax between races.
Staying three-year-old Hippogriff broke through for his first win in the Wolf Blass Rascals Club Trophy (2100m).
Trained by Phillip Stokes at Morphettville, and ridden by Ben Claridge, Hippogriff ($6.50) finished best to score a half-length win from Canonic ($15), with Treicheln ($11) three-quarters of a length away third.
Winning jockey Claridge said the three-year-old had been hard work.
“(Hippogriff) is still learning,” Claridge said.
“He does stick on well, but takes a bit of riding. He is fitter than me.”
It was Hippogriff’s seventh start and Stokes has been keen to step him up in distance.
There is no doubt the gelding has been slow maturing and Claridge said he hoped the victory might trigger continued improvement.
The Gawler and Barossa Jockey Club’s next meeting is on Wednesday, June 28.