The Courier-Mail

Lou backs Walhaan to end cup loss pain

- NATHAN EXELBY

AFTER 23 years, owner Lou Kinsey thinks improving stayer Walhaan can ease the pain of a Townsville Cup loss that still bugs him to this day.

Walhaan earned himself a trip north after Luke Dittman guided him to a comfortabl­e 2200m win at Doomben on Saturday.

“I’ve been waiting 23 years for this,” Kinsey, who races Walhaan with his wife Maxine, said.

“In 1992, I had In His Hands in the Townsville Cup and I backed him 16-1 into 4-1 and he won. But John Schreck (AJC chief steward at the time and later Hong Kong chief) had come up from Sydney and upheld a protest against him.

“I’m the only one to lose that race on protest in the last 100 years, so it’s always been a race I’ve been desperate to win again.”

Kinsey, who is Mackay Turf Club president, said Walhaan had been a frustratin­g horse because he was so often around the money but had only won three times before Saturday.

However, he said Walhaan was now ready to fulfil his potential.

“He’s with one of the best trainers in the country (Graeme Boyd) in my opinion and Luke Dittman got him down to the right weight and rode him beautifull­y,” he said.

Kinsey said after a turbulent few years, Mackay racing was “on the improve” with Racing Queensland set to hand back control to the club this year.

FAWKNER TO BEGIN COX PLATE TILT

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