COROWA was once again a happy hunting ground for Andrew Dale Racing.
It was a stable quinella in race five (BM66) with Chairman’s Choice ($12) edging out stablemate Turnaquid by two lengths.
It’s been a tough month for all trainers in the area with constant rain forcing a number of meetings to be abandoned and Dale echoed those thoughts.
“I’m not sure how many meetings we’ve lost over the past month but I can name Corowa, Gundagai, Wagga and Wodonga off the top of my head,” Dale said.
“When you’re only have eight or nine runners a month because of the weather it’s tough.
“We’ve got a barn full of 20, 25 horses who are in racing mode and can’t race but that’s where it’s at at the moment and it doesn’t look like the weather’s going to get much better.”
Chairman’s Choice has been unplaced this prep but relished the soft seven conditions in race five’s benchmark 66 (1000m) to return to the winners’ circle.
The seven-year-old gelding jumped from barrier one and hoop Jack Martin settled off the leader on the rail before storming up the inside down the straight to win by nearly two lengths.
“We were probably a bit closer to the leader than we wanted but we thought Mitch Beer’s horse (Seventh Seal) would lead and he couldn’t get to where he wanted so it opened up for us and Jack (Martin) found a spot behind the leader,” Dale said.
“It was Jack’s first day back after some time out and he was pleased to get a result which was great.
“He’s got a lot of talent as a jockey and he’s someone I’ve always liked, if he can find some rhythm he’ll ride plenty of winners around the area.”
Dale said he was pleased with Turnaquid’s first-up run.
“It was a good performance from Turnaquid,” Dale said.
“She was first-up after four or five months out, has only had one jump out and came back in 66 grade so she did really well.
“Mojo Music ran in the same race and was a bit disappointing, she’s not jumping with the same positivity which is putting her on the back foot from the start.”
Corowa’s been a happy hunting ground for Dale with the local trainer striking at 17 per cent.
Along with Chairman’s Choice and Turnaquid, four-year-old mare Sheila finished third in race five, while a number of his other nine runners finished within five lengths of the winner.
“All of our runners went okay I thought,” he said.
“Sheila was good again and I think the winner of that race (Imps) has some ability so for her to loom at the 250m was great buth the winner was too good.
“On paper you’d look at Jahbath (10th in race six) and think he didn’t do too well but he only finished five lengths off them so he went okay as well.”
Dale’s next targets are Sunday’s Wodonga meeting, followed by Albury on Tuesday but he won’t be holding his breath on those two race days going ahead.
“We want to go to Wodonga on Sunday and Albury on Tuesday, that’s what we’re planning for,” he said.
“But with the weather around you just don’t know if they’ll go ahead so we’ll have to wait and see.
“We then have Narrandera on the 16th.”
BY: Willson Mack (Wangaratta Chronicle)