Mas­suri proves her worth in tough fin­ish

Townsville Bulletin - - Racing - by Andrew Aloia andrew. aloia@ townsville­bul­letin. com. au

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

Photo: SUZANNE LOWE

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