Dual success for Our Pegasus Pearl

By Brigette Solomon

Our Pegasus Pearl scored back to back wins when the mare took out the Cartown Country Cup Handicap Trot at Manawatu yesterday for Blenheim trainer Don Morrison.

“We were absolutely thrilled with the mare,” said Morrison’s wife Shirley, who also co-owns Our Pegasus Pearl, “she’s had good success at various times at Manawatu and has really come into form lately.”

“We also have to give a big thanks to Stephen Doody who the horse stayed with and of course Andre Poutama for great drives on both days.”

The mare started off the front line and despite several delays to the start, stepped away cleanly to secure an early lead. Poutama’s lead went unchallenged, and although Del Shannon pressured the leader on the final occasion down the back straight, Our Pegasus Pearl was travelling comfortably and lengthened stride in the home straight to win by 1.25 lengths, from Alana and Boyz Invasion.

“With the delays at the start we were worried she might become unsettled, but she held it together and once she got into stride she never missed a beat,” said Morrison, “she comes home now and there’s a race at Addington next Friday that Don plans to start her in.”

It was the seven year old Pegasus Spur mare’s sixth win and brought her earnings to just over $67,000.

The win was also the first of a driving double for Poutama who also took out Race six, the Happy Retirement Mike Berger Mobile Pace with Cote D’Azur for trainer Doug Gale.

Fittingly, Mike Berger had a successful night to send him into retirement with a winning double and a third placing from the four horses he started at his final race night. Both winners were driven by Benjamin Butcher.

“I was really happy to get a couple wins for Mike tonight,” said Butcher, “he’s been a big help to me sending horses my way and plenty of drives.”

“It was a pretty awesome send off for a deserving fella and although he doesn’t show it much, I’m sure he was pretty pleased too.”

Barbarossa took out Race 2, the Outback Trading Mobile Pace over 2500 metres.

Having drawn 11, the gelding was one off four back in the early stages and lost ground when Ticking Over galloped and came back through the field. Barbarossa recovered to rejoin the field in the one out three back position and Butcher made his run three wide with 450 metres left to run. The gelding appeared to level out with 100 metres left to run but rallied to win by half a length.

Invisible was Berger’s second winner in Race 5, the ITM Palmerston North Mobile Pace.

After drawing two, the gelding enjoyed an easy trip in the one out one back position early, before being shuffled one out and three back with 1200 metres to run. At the 400 metre mark, Butcher took the gelding wide and got running, kicking on in the final stages to win by a neck in a blanket finish.

The winning double brought Berger’s total number of training wins to 709.

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