Grass works wonders for pacing-bred trotter
By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk
Farley Cossey has been coming to Manawatu Raceway for the best part of four decades, so it was only fitting that the veteran horseman took out the opening race of the season at the Palmerston North track.
Pacing-bred trotter Highview Rockn Roll was having her first start for Cossey in the ITM Handicap Trot (2500m) and she made it count.
The daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven was able to find the one-one with a lap to go and driver Sailesh Abernethy asked her to improve three-wide with 400m to go.
She showed her tenacity when wearing down Love Is Everywhere down the home straight to win by a half neck.
“She went really well, it was a great drive by Sailesh,” Cossey said.
Abernethy had two winning drives on the seven race programme, the other coming with the Michael House-trained Carrera Lucia. House trained three winners, with Sam Thornley gets a driving treble with Daisy Duke and Sharp Lou for House, and the Murray Gibbs-trained Smokinhotcheddar.
The eight-year-old Highview Rockn Roll had previously won two races for her part-owner and former trainer Donald Cossey, but the Ohaupo trainer thought she would be better placed in Taranaki with his brother who could work her on the grass.
“She has always been a pretty good trotter, but she has had crook feet,” Cossey said.
“My brother had her up north and he suggested I work her on the grass track down at Stratford and it has worked the oracle I think.
“She was very fit when I got her, most of the work had been done, I just had to work her on the grass.”
Cossey was delighted to get the win, his second of the season, and he is looking forward to returning to Manawatu Raceway on Sunday to try and replicate the result.
“We will come back on Sunday and have another crack at it,” he said.
Cossey has been a stalwart of Central Districts harness racing and said he hopes to continue training for a few years yet.
“I have been training horses for 40-odd years and only work one or two at a time. I really enjoy it,” he said.