Williamson appeals


Invercargill trainer-driver Nathan Williamson has appealed his four-meeting suspension for excessive whip use in a bid to drive star Southland pacer Tas Man Bromac in the $25,000 Hannon Memorial at Oamaru on Sunday.

Williamson appealed the severity of his ban, imposed when he drove Tas Man Bromac to win at Winton on September 7.

 Williamson’s appeal was heard by the JCA in Christchurch on Tuesday and he should know the result by Wednesday afternoon.

Tas Man Bromac (10 wins) ran second at Gore fresh-up and won narrowly at Winton, with Williamson allegedly using the whip 21 times in the last 400m, when the maximum allowed is 10.

At the time Williamson said he was only flicking the horse with the whip.

Williamson has never won the time-honoured Hannon (2600m stand), which has attracted a top field including Seel The Deal (drawn one), Dream About Me (three), Titan Banner (seven) and Tas Man Bromac (eight).

Meanwhile, seven-year-old trotter Poppymalda (eight wins), who beat the maiden pacers in a workout at Wyndham last week, is fresh-up from a two-month break at Oamaru after winning three of four starts last season, following 17 months off with a hind tendon injury.

“It was a very pedestrian workout, we went very slow and we just sprinted up the straight. She sprinted up nicely like she can,’’ said Williamson. 

“I’m happy enough with her going into a new campaign and hopefully she can improve through the spring and make her way into some of the features at cup week.

“She’s only had four starts in two years and this is her first step up against the better class so we’ll just have to see. On talent she’s good enough and hopefully she keeps building through the spring.

“She’s a very good mare, it was unfortunate that injury curtailed a season otherwise she might have made a bigger impression at the highest level.’’

Poppymalda clocked 3:14.5 (2400m mobile) at Wyndham, her last 800m in 60.2sec and the 400m in 29.6.