Fletcher and Thornley double up
By Jonny Turner
Though there are a few decades between them in age, it doesn’t stop Fred Fletcher and Sam Thornley make a great combination.
The veteran trainer and his junior driver were in the winner’s circle twice at Addington on Thursday night, scoring with both Sunny Louis and Mikey Maguire.
Mikey Maguire bounced back to winning form for the first time since April of last year when running to a front running in Thursday night’s feature pace.
The junior driver was delighted the eight-year-old was able to repay the faith Fletcher has had in him.
“It was great to get a couple of wins for Fred, especially with Mikey winning,” Thornley said.
“He paid good money for him at the sales and has turned down some pretty good offers for him all of the way through because he has wanted to race him.”
Punters lost faith in Mikey Maguire, sending out at $34 odds before his win.
But there was plenty of faith in his camp that he still had more to offer on the track.
And his victory, with closing sectionals of 56.1sec (800m) and 27.3sec (400m), backed that up.
“I thought he had been going real good, but he seems to go his best races over 1980m,” Thornley said.
“He ran fourth first up over 1980m and went real good but all of his other races have been over 2600m.”
Thornley took no chances with the promising Sunny Louis, who scored an impressively to notch his second career win in Thursday night’s one-win trot.
The three-year-old worked early before Thornley moved out of the one-one at the 1000m, allowing Sunny Louis to stride to a big win.
“He is a real good horse, he is the best one we have got in work.”
“Even though he ran second in his last start, I was pretty disappointed in him because he didn’t travel on the bit the whole way.”
“But we thought he didn’t back up from Ashburton five days earlier.”
“We gave him a freshen up and thought he would be pretty hard to beat tonight.”
Thornley brushed off praise for his part in his victories on Thursday night, passing on all credit to Fletcher.
“Everything is going pretty well.”
“They are pretty good horses to drive, that is the main thing, they make you look good.”
Thornley’s double took him to 13 wins for the season, just one shy of his tally at the end of the last extended harness racing season.