Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Old Mates Winning Return

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Old Mates Winning Return

Article excerpt

Turf Talk

Mark Sleeman

MACKAY'S Cups bridesmaid from last season Old Mates Act made a stunning return to racing with a first-up sprint win on a heavy track in Townsville on Tuesday.

The runner-up in this year's Rockhampton, Mackay, and Townsville Cups proved too classy for his sprinting rivals in the Open (1200m).

Trained by Darren Symons, Old Mates Act ($7.50) came from back in the field to wear down favourite Reprobate ($2.30) in the last couple of bounds.

It was an enormous effort from Old Mates Act resuming over the unsuitable trip and jumping from the outside gate.

He'd previously had five goes first-up for just one win and that victory was also his only one from three attempts at 1200m.

It was his first career start in a Warrnambool 3YO Maiden (1200m) way back in December, 2007.

Tuesday's heavy track probably played into Old Mates Act's hands as it made the race more of a slog than a sprint.

But his previous wet track form suggested otherwise, with no wins from two goes on the heavy and just one placing from two runs on the slow.

In fact, Symons considered scratching the horse due to the state of the track before pulling the right rein and electing to start.

He believes Old Mates Act has returned from his spell a better horse than the one that had an outstanding but luckless Cups campaign.

The horse did go well in an unofficial jump-out in Mackay before Tuesday's win.

Massuri back

MACKAY horse Massuri scored her first win as a three-year-old in a QTIS 3YO Open (1200m) in Rockhampton on Thursday.

Massuri won three races as a two-year-old, with Q600 and QTIS bonuses pushing her prizemoney to around $150,000.

But she'd had five runs back as a three-year-old, including a couple of runs in Brisbane, without winning before Tuesday's breakthrough.

Freshened since finishing eighth at Doomben in late October, Massuri ($3), trained by Stuart Kendrick, upset favourite Falon Terror ($1. …

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