Beach Day delivers at Winton

By Jonny Turner

Patience has been the ingredient in the development of Southland’s latest rising star.

Beach Day provided the star turn on an outstanding day of racing at Winton’s Winter Rewards Finals meeting last weekend with an incredible winning display.

The classy mare defied her rivals, and winter conditions, prevailing in an epic home straight battle with Jordy in the brilliant time of 2.54.2 for 2400m.

While she was pacing perfection in her big win on Saturday, she has been far from perfect as trainer Greg Hunter has brought her along.

But the work that Hunter and his son Michael have put into her is certainly paying off.

“She has certainly got a fair bit of attitude, she likes to do things her way,” Hunter said.

“You have got to go with her.”

“But she has gotten better as she has gone along.”

Though she has tested the patience of the Hunters, Beach Day has always shown she has been worth the extra effort.

The pacer is by Sunshine Beach from Cool Delight, who is from a long line of Hunter-bred horses.

“She has certainly always shown us a wee bit,” Hunter said.

“Her mother could run a bit and she is probably the one the attitude comes from.”

“It has been a great breed to us, it goes back 100 years with our family.”

Driver Mark Hurrell has formed a strong partnership with Beach Day and has been a key part of refining the mare into the outstanding force seen on Saturday.

“Mark has done a great job with her, and before him, Craig Ferguson was very good with her when she was starting to go to the trials because she was a handful.”

Beach Day had shown she was something of a speedster in her 12 starts prior to her big win in her Winter Rewards Final on Saturday.

But with her powerful performance, she left no doubt about the big size of her staying motor too.

“The time was a bit of a surprise, it was a good effort,” Hunter said.

“I was a bit worried that she might have hit the front a bit early, because she can’t really go in front at all.”

“She is still a bit green and hasn’t had that many starts.”

“She has had a few issues along the way, but the extra time probably hasn’t been the worst thing.”

Beach Day has earned herself a good break following her standout win.

The Hunters won’t bring her back into work until well into the spring.

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