Jones' go 1-2 at Rangiora

Since 2008 Derek Jones has been training winners, either on his own account or in partnership with wife Adele.

There have been 34 in all (think horses Sunny Kash & Kiss the Girls 6 wins apiece), along with Majestic Lavros (for 2 of his 9 wins) and LuLu Le Mans (for 3 of her 10 wins), but before Sunday he'd never ever trained a quinella.

Then at Rangiora Eurostyle and Muscle Sass went one-two in the North Canterbury Trotting Trials at Rangiora Trot.

"You can never be confident in a big field of maiden trotters and my two are good wee horses," says Derek Jones, "and I was rapt."

"It's a first for me - I'd been close before with Lulu Le Mans and Kiss The Girls but it had never happened."

And the win wasn't without incident.

Favourite Desert Royal led with Muscle Sass in the trail before Eurostyle went up to sit parked after making a three wide move.

But then Desert Royal broke leaving the two stablemates out front as they headed home.

Capitalising on a sprint lane run Muscle Sass (Sheree Tomlinson) then got the better of Eurostyle (Kim Butt), only to gallop across the line. She was subsequently relegated from first to second. They were five lengths clear of their nearest pursuer.

"It was a shame," says Jones, "I was gutted for the other horse."

That's because Muscle Sass was bred by Catherine Ironside (pictured above - right) - "she's a close friend who works at our place" - and they race the horse together. Ironically the same thing happened with her dam Sunny CJ at Timaru.

While Muscle Sass (Muscle Mass - Sunny CJ) is a three-year-old filly Eurostyle's a four year-old mare (Orlando Vici - Sunny Kash) bred by the Jones themselves.

It was Eurostyle's first win in three starts, while it was just Muscle Sass's second start.

"Both had terrible tying up issues," says Jones, "and I have to thank (close relative) Mark Jones for helping out with that."

Mark Jones has a track record of helping horses with such issues, and it's worked a treat.

“We’ve changed their work, feed and stabling regime, which seems to agree with them so far".

While Jones' six win pacer Kiss The Girls is a month away from racing Jones' young trotters will get another run this week, with Muscle Sass likely to start at Addington on Friday night, while Eurostyle is entered at Ashburton on Sunday. He also has two yearlings.

"So that's five horses in all and that keeps me pretty busy."

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