Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

{SHELTON HAS BIG DAY OUT } {Shelton's Big Day out at Grafton}; Bookies Left to Feel the Pain

Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

{SHELTON HAS BIG DAY OUT } {Shelton's Big Day out at Grafton}; Bookies Left to Feel the Pain

Article excerpt

Byline: Tony White

THE money trail led to a fistful of dollars at Grafton races yesterday, particularly for supporters of the John Shelton stable.

On his home track, Shelton trained a treble, with bookmakers feeling the brunt of successive plunges.

Shelton went within a whisker of making it four winners on the seven-race program, but for the cruelty of a deceptive photo finish involving the well-tried Fantheblaze.

Two-year-old filly Faltessa (Ben Looker) began the bookies' nightmare when backed from $13 into $7 before winning the Blanchard Haulage Handicap (1100m).

Tellemtogo, owned by several directors of the Clarence River Jockey Club, continued the charge winning the Crown Hotel Motel Rating 72 Handicap at $6 with Shelton's other apprentice, Adam Hyeronimus, in the saddle.

However, the fait accompli came when Our Gangstar, courtesy of a superlative front-running ride by Looker, stole the Westlawn Finance & Insurance Handicap (1400m).

The six-year-old gelding, who has been up for sale for several months, was backed from $8 into $4.60.

"A good day at the office," Shelton said, sporting a wide grin after Our Gangstar's defeat of Le Rhythm and Tejada. Locally-trained Montana Hilton was inches away in fourth.

"We've been trying to sell him but no-one wants him," Shelton said. "He travelled like a champion today. Ben (Looker) rated him to perfection."

Our Gangster ran a track record to boot, carving out the 1400m in 1.21.97sec.

Proud part-owner Russell Graham quipped: "You know that makes seven straight cheques. Since we've had this horse he's had 26 starts for us for six wins, two seconds, three thirds and finished in the first five 21 times.

"You can't get more consistent than that and unbelievably, no-one wants to buy him."

Shelton said Faltessa, owned by a group from Armidale including breeder Alan Chappel, will be an even better horse next preparation. …

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