Country Cups bid now likely for Cos I Can

By Dave Di Somma, Harness News Desk

A relieved Mike Berger is now eyeing up a tilt at the lucrative Country Cups final, after Cos I Can's win in the City of Palmerston North Festival Cup last night.

After starting off 10m the Always B Miki four-year-old ended up in the one-one for driver Benjamin Butcher before peeling out turning for home.

He then got into a spirited battle with New York Minute before winning by a neck. Rough And Ready was third six lengths back.

Cos I Can paid $5 and $1.70 and was the third favourite behind the Arna Donnelly-trained stablemates (New York Minute and Rough And Ready).

"It was getting a bit frustrating because he'd been racing well," says Berger, Cos I Can's Cambridge-based trainer, "and he had had a horror run with draws as well."

"And then on the first night (Wednesday) he missed away which he doesn't normally do."

But last night everything fell into place as he registered his sixth win in 31 starts, and his first in eight attempts this year.

Berger reckons the horse can "go a fair way".

Among the targets he's looking at is the $100,000 Country Cups final at Addington on May 12. Last night's win sees him third in the rankings for that race on 25 points, behind Homebush Lad on 46 and Sam's Town on 38.

"I'll keep racing him and that race is attractive .... and I think he races better left-handed as well so that suits."

The night also featured a driving treble to Sailesh Abernethy.

He led all the way with Play Footsie as she finally broke her maiden status at start number 47. The six-year-old is trained by Sailesh's brother Jay.

Sailesh Abernethy also won with Highview Rockn Roll and Voodoo Prince, who both backed up their wins at Manawatu on Wednesday to get a double for the week.

Both were impressive wins with Highview Rockn Roll being three wide before leading and holding on in the Ken Fraser Memorial Handicap Trot to register his sixth win in 44 starts for Stratford trainer Farley Cossey.

In the Courtesy Ford Mobile, Voodoo Prince, trained by Fred Mitchell at Hawera, cleared out from the field to win by four lengths. It is his sixth win in 76 starts.


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