Damien Lane completed a successful week with a home track victory, Oakfield Mahogany giving him his third win in just seven days and 19th for the current season.
Lane is enjoying one of his best runs in recent years and it was fitting the latest win came from one of his biggest supporters Bruce McKenzie.
The Capitalist gelding was second up from a spell and while Lane gave him a chance of breaking through for win number four, he felt he may have needed another run.
He preferred the chances of stablemate Wealthy Investor in the 1200m DE BORTOLI WINES PROVINCIAL BM68 but Oakfield Mahogany ($9) and jockey Andrew Atkins had other ideas.
Atkins let the speed go out of the race, popping off the fence on the turn and racing away in the straight to win by over a length. Stablemate Wealthy Investor ($3.80) finishing fourth.
“He’s a big gross boy and I thought me might need another run, but he proved me wrong,” Lane said.
“He resumed on a wet track at Gosford and knocked up over 1100m. It was great to see him get the job done today.”
Super ($12) looked sharp storming home to finish second, also appreciating the better ground, while the $2.35 favorite Extreme Cat appeared to have every chance, finishing third.
It was an Irishman stole the show in the riding ranks with Darragh Keenan bagging a double and bringing up his 200thcareer win.
Keenan was having only his second ride at Wyong when he lifted Dunbelievin’($3.60) to victory in the SKY CHANNEL SUPER MAIDEN (1600m).
And it didn’t stop there, the 23-year-old bringing up a double on another Maher runner, Cape Byron ($3.40fav) in the last.
Keenan relocated to Australia from the UK in early December linking with the Maher stable.
He had posted two wins since relocating before Saturday, Dunbelievin’ the first at Wyong. It wasn’t an easy task, the well-bred Dundeel three-year-old beating Beach Party in the smallest of margins.
The judge found it difficult to split the two after Keenan lifted the gelding on the line, with the result eventually going his way.
Keenan came from behind again in the last, running down the leaders to win the 1300m SENPOS MAIDEN HCP on the well supported Cape Byron.
The Capitalist gelding resuming from a spell to bring up his first win at start three.
It wasn’t all celebrations with Keenan earning the wrath of the stewards for his ride on Cape Byron, copping a four-day suspension for careless riding.
Tim Martin was very confident heading into the 1300m CARLTON & UNITED BREWERIES F&M CLASS 1, and that confidence was rewarded with Give Me Joy ($2.20) bringing up her second career win.
It was back-to-back victories on the Wyong track, with the four-year-old daughter of Caravaggio having broken her maiden with a five length win on December 23.
She took up where she left off, with apprentice Hannah Williams piloting her to a front running victory.
The race wasn’t without controversy, Andrew Gibbons, riding the Lees trained second favorite Imposant protesting alleging interference in the final stages.
The protest was dismissed with a relieved Martin, a co-owner of Give Me Joy, banking the winner’s cheque.
“I thought she should win and that’s how it panned out,” Martin said. “She’s a big, scopey mare and when she starts putting things together, she should be pretty good.”
At a subsequent inquiry, Williams pleaded guilty to a charge of careless riding and was suspended for four days.
Class prevailed in the TABCORP BM 64 HCP with John’s Thompson’s well bred mare California Grass ($2.35fav) returning to the winner’s circle after a run of placings.
Keegan Latham put in a well-timed ride to chase down the leader Supertrail and score a half length win.
A lightly raced Al Maher mare, California Grass was coming off a second at Warwick Farm on December 23.
She was given a great run off the speed in the early stages, Latham circling the field before the turn and going head-to-head with Supertrail in the straight, getting the better of the Brett Cavanough trained second favorite, Supertrail on the line.
There was an eventful finish to the 1000m MERCURE KOOINDAH WATERS RESORT MIDWAY MAIDEN with the short priced favorite Russian Snitzel running off on the turn after looking the winner.
The Russian Revolution filly was sent out a $1.90 on the strength of two impressive trial wins, but things didn’t go according to plan when she ran off the track, taking second favorite Ballet D’Esprit ($3.70) with her.
This enabled Maddie Owen on Parmenio ($15) to rail through and kick away in the straight, holding out the fast-finishing Battlefield to win by a half head.
Trained by Anthony Cummings, the winner was resuming from a spell having been gelded.
“He has come back this time in as a gelding and I think that has made a big difference to him,” Cummings said.
Ballet D’Esprit was impressive, storming home to finish third, while stewards sent Russian Snitzel back to the trials.
The Snowden trained Kadall ($4.40) was given a great ride by Alysha Collett to bring up his second win in just five starts in the 1300m DIMENSION ONE GLASS FENCING CG&E CLASS 1.
Collett sat just behind the leader throughout, drawing clear in the straight and holding out the fast-finishing Canadian Ruler ($7) to win by a long neck.
An $80,000 yearling, Kadall raced by Triple Crown Syndications, was coming off a second at Hawkesbury in the same grade.
Stephen Farley’s $3.90 favorite Lease was ridden toward the rear and failed to make up ground in the straight.