News

Brilliant debut win by Baquero

NZ HARNESS NEWS

Baquero lived up to the hype with a brilliant debut win in the fillies and mares’ maiden at Alexandra Park tonight.

The Cambridge visitor was a clear last at the half-mile and had to track six-wide around the final bend and overcome some obvious greenness to get the win.

Bookies kept her very safe on opening last night, listing her as the $2 even-money favourite early doors.

But punters weren’t perturbed, backing her in to $1.60 by mid-afternoon.

She rewarded them in spades, running her last half in 56.8 off the track care to win in the hands of Scott Phelan.

An excited bunch of owners from two new syndicates put together by trainer Arna Donnelly were on course for the win and thrilled to enjoy that winning feeling with their first runner.

Donnelly was suitably impressed with the win and says the filly will derive huge mental benefit from the run.

“I’m very happy with that run; it was a huge effort.

“I would have been happy with fourth or fifth given where she was at the half, so to get up and win was a super effort.

“It’s all good and well going to the workouts, but those are small fields and tonight she had to get around 12 other horses.

“It’s a huge learning curve racing here under lights for the first time and she will learn a lot from it.”

For now, Baquero will hit the paddock for ten days and have a freshen-up before Donnelly and the connections dare to dream of loftier targets as the season wears on.

“Everyone is really excited – they shouted the grandstand down.

“But there’s a little way to go before we can say she’s a classic filly so we will take it one step at a time.”