Hurrell thrilled with Playboy’s cup win

by Jonny Turner

Mark Hurrell enjoyed one of the biggest thrills of his career when winning the Wairio Cup with Robyns Playboy on Saturday.

Hurrell produced a perfectly-timed steer to help the horse known as The Beast From The East bounce back to his best form.

Robyns Playboy came into the Wairio Cup after producing a mixed bag of form since winning the Tuapeka Cup in his first start back from an Australian campaign.

Though he was only sixth of seven behind Macandrew Aviator in the Northern Southland Cup last week, the horse gave Hurrell the feeling that he was ready to show his class on Saturday.

“It is one of my most satisfying wins,” the reinsman said.

“The horse had sort of gone off his form for a wee while there and he looked like he was getting back into a little bit of form last week.”

“It was a good run in the Northern Southland Cup, I didn’t drive him at his best but he gave me a pretty nice feel there.”

“Hopefully he is on the way back up to where he was.”

Saturday’s eight-horse field and handicap conditions set up a tactical Wairio Cup.

With the field staying in single file for much of the race, Hurrell was able to time his winning run to perfection.

“They all stayed in single file and I thought if we get to the half (800m) and no one’s moved and they come, I can probably move and come out and give him his chance.”

“He was under a good hold when I came up beside the leader and he did what he could at the finish to hang on.”

The victory was made more special for co-trainer and owner Ross Wilson as it came on his home patch.

“This is where I was born and raised.”

“And it is where I got the bug with the horses.”

Wilson went into the Wairio Cup hopeful his horse was ready to return to his best form after producing some great work leading into the race.

“It was a great thrill

“We weren’t really confident, but he had worked really well the other day and we just thought the handicap was the thing against him.”

“But as it turned out the handicapped horses were the ones in the finish.”

“So maybe the handicapper was right – we were only off 20m.”

“It was really satisfying.”

Mark Hurrell enjoyed an outstanding day in the sulky on Saturday, producing a winning treble.

The reinsman also won with impressive debutante Beach Day as well as the in-form Netherton Franco.


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