Hunter bullish on Browsing
Browsing announced himself in the Great Southern with a blistering first-up performance for trainer Paul Hunter, the four-year-old making light work of her rivals at the opening meeting of the season at Mt Barker Turf Club on Sunday.
The former Darren McAuliffe galloper has been with Hunter for three months but produced a slashing 2¼-length victory in the Mt Barker Hotel Maiden (1000m), sitting outside early leader Ibiza before rocketing home for rider Mitchell Pateman to comfortably defeat Our Mate Boots.
In five career starts for McAuliffe, Browsing competed in Saturday-class three-year-old races where she finished behind smart types Rockon Tommy and Necklet and Hunter was bullish about her prospects.
“She came down and had a spell and then we’ve brought her back,” he said.
“They went pretty quick and she hit the line good which was impressive.
“I think she can get a bit further, hopefully 1200m and I don’t think she has to be on speed all the time.
“Hopefully she can go on with it, that’s the test now.”
Fellow Albany trainers Peter Western, Steve Wolfe and Des Attwell also tasted success on an even day of racing to kick off the 20meet Great Southern calendar.
Western’s consistent gelding Lord Kronos lumped 60kg first-up to chalk up a fifth win in 20 career starts after coming from 10th on the turn to win the Michelle, Ivy, Harry & Ross Parsons Memorial Handicap (1300m).
“I’m rapt with that, I thought he’d go OK first-up,” Western said.
“First-up with 60kg is a big effort, he’s so consistent I just wish he was a bit bigger.”
Last season’s leading trainer Wolfe kicked off his local tally with three-year-old maiden Triggerfish who held off Shezabutoo by a short half-head in a thrilling finish to the Bruce Williamson Memorial Maiden (1200m). Local jockey Natasha Faithfull guided Long Knife Brother to victory in the first race on the card for Attwell.
Jockey Mitchell Pateman brings the Paul Hunter-trained Browsing back to scale after winning first-up.