Queen Bee Bar­don stings late for Wal­dron


ASH­BUR­TON trainer Ben Wal­dron en­joyed a dream home­com­ing when Queen Bee Bar­don won the Roxburgh Cup.

The classy mare came with a big late fin­ish to win the 2700m fea­ture on Fri­day af­ter an icecold drive from Craig Thornley.

The vic­tory was special to Wal­dron as he grew up near Omarama, just over the South Can­ter­bury border from Roxburgh.

‘‘I grew up just over the hill in Omarama be­fore we moved up to Can­ter­bury when I was 10, so this is a bit of a home­com­ing,’’ said Wal­dron.

‘‘I have al­ways wanted to take a horse to Cen­tral Otago for the cir­cuit, so this is amas­sive thrill to win this race.’’ Queen Bee Bar­don was driven com­pletely dif­fer­ently to her pre­vi­ous start in the Cen­tral Otago Cup.

She was up on the speed dur­ing Fu­natthe­beach’s track­record break­ing run.

On Fri­day, Thornley took the com­pletely op­po­site ap­proach with the mare from her 15-me­tre back mark.

Thornley did not move from last un­til around the 600m, when he tracked Espe­cial into the race.

Af­ter she bal­anced up in the straight, Queen Bee Bar­don ($11.90) came with a huge late fin­ish to win.

Thornley was glow­ing in his ap­praisal of the mare’s per­for­mance and of Wal­dron’s abil­ity to pre­pare a horse.

‘‘She is a very good mare, peo­ple prob­a­bly for­get she was on the bal­lot for theNew Zealand Cup.

‘‘Even though she wasn’t in it that shows she is up to that class.

‘‘Ben is a very good trainer and has done a huge job with this mare.’’

Queen Bee Bar­don could WILD RANGE PHO­TOG­RA­PHY re­turn to rac­ing at the top class at the end of this month.

Wal­dron said she­was likely to tackle the up­com­ing fea­ture mares’ races at Ad­ding­ton, in­clud­ing the New Zealand Stan­dard­bred Breed­ers’ Stakes, next month. ‘‘We won’t be fright­ened to have a look at them for sure.

‘‘She will need to have the right run at that level, but when she gets the right run she goes well.’’

The fea­ture trot was won by Jus­ta­moll­yarcher for train­ers Ja­son and Am­ber Lethaby and driver Ray Jenk­ins.

Jenk­ins gave the trot­ter a per­fect run in the trail through­out.

Vet­eran trot­ter Val­magne made an in­stant re­turn since to form af­ter chang­ing sta­bles, dash­ing along the pass­ing lane to run sec­ond.

The 11-year-old was hav­ing his first start for Oa­maru trainer-driver Brad Wil­liamson and lines up again to­day at the Cromwell grass track meet­ing at $15 on the fixed odds mar­ket.

Queen Bee Bar­don storms home to win the Roxburgh Cup.

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