Jones goes two from two at Timaru
By Jonny Turner
Don’t expect to see Mark Jones in the sulky too often in the coming weeks despite the reinsman reminding everyone of his skill with a winning double at Timaru on Wednesday.
The former World Driving Champion made it a perfect two from two when he drove Bella Button and Kowhai Shadow to victory.
Owners John and Jill Hartnell were partly behind Jones making a somewhat rare appearance in the sulky at Phar Lap Raceway.
The Canterbury couple were keen for their trainer to don his own colours after their pacer had suffered a run of bad luck.
Jones agreed and the results speak for themselves.
“I wasn’t doing much this afternoon, so I thought I would drive a couple myself,” Jones quipped.
“Kowhai Shadow hadn’t had much luck and the owners were keen for me to drive her.”
“I thought she would win over on the coast but she didn’t get any luck.”
“But it worked out good today.”
Soon after, Jones gave Bella Button a perfect run in the trail and she capitalised.
The victory came in the trotter’s first run for the Jones stable after her purchase by a group of his owners and supporters from the Scott Lethaby barn
“We have had her about a month or so, Scott has done a good job with her,” Jones said.
“She got the right run today and got the job done, so it was a good result.”
Jones produced the quinella in the event with Kowhai Sundown challenging Bella Button in the run home and only missing by a neck.
In the process, Jones beat out his own number 1 stable pilot in Samantha Ottley.
“We shared a bit of a laugh after we passed the post.”
“Sometimes you have got to get out there and show the staff how it’s done.”
“But with winter coming I don’t think you will see me driving for a while.”
The action continues for the Jones stable this week with runners at Addington and Motukarara.
But before then the dual code horseman lines up two gallopers at Ashburton today.