Massuri proves her worth in tough finish
FORTUNATELY Massuri is a powerfully built filly.
With the sort of start the Mackay bay got off to in yesterday’s $ 150,000 Office Choice Pen to Paper QTIS 600 Plate, even her biggest believers doubted her abilities to recover.
All it took was a crack in the pack and the two-year-old Massuri ($ 5.50) blew by the star-studded field of the North’s finest up-and-comers to win solidly ahead of Townsville’s He’s So Tempting ($ 19).
Chaos was sprung on the field early when Apache Crazy Horse got out of the gates sensationally, only to pull and settle into last.
The real disaster was to come when jockey David Simmons was dislodged from the John Manzelmann-trained Rocket to Glory.
While she narrowly averted getting caught up in the hys-terics, Massuri (Andrew Spinks) was still stranded near the rear of the field, and in trainer St uart Kendrick’ s mind, out of contention for the biggest payday in North Queensland racing.
‘‘ She was in all sorts of trouble,’’ he said.
‘‘ She jumped well and there was some interference early as the horse bucked near her. I thought she had no chance.’’
He was ecstatic to be proved wrong.
‘‘ It’s a big blast winning that sort of race and the way she did it,’’ he said.
‘‘ Into the turn she picked up, spotted a gap and just flew.
‘‘ When I saw her winding up I just thought ‘ gee it would be a big effort from that far back and all that interference’ so yeah I’m just rapt with the horse.
‘‘ Just look at her, she is a big filly and since she has been doing quick work she has improved every time.’’
A little extra was required to get the better of Pallarenda Stakes winner He’s So Tempting, who added to his sterling reputation as a big race runner, with his second-place finish in unfavourably slow conditions.
The Craiglea Stud t eam looked to have the running of proceeding searly with Craiglea Romeo ($ 3.60 fav) rounding the bend strongly only to be overrun by the dashing pair, eventually coming in just ahead of stablemates Craiglea Marlena and Craiglea Mac. While a host of scratchings reduced the feature to a 13-horse race, it was the least affected of the ninerace meeting in which a staggering 65 entries pulled out.
Almost a third of all runners were cut off from Townsville, with the Bruce Highway cut to the city’s north.
STRONG FINISH: Massuri gets to the line in front yesterday