McCaffrey zips up Manawatu Cup
By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk
Waikato horseman Sean McCaffrey couldn’t get over the odds his charge Betterzippit was paying after he won the Manawatu Cup (2500m) at Manawatu Raceway on Thursday night.
The three-year-old gelding returned a winning dividend of $12.70 to punters and his trainer and driver was astounded he was at that price with his form.
“It was a crazy price. He should have been at worse the third favourite in the race,” McCaffrey said.
From his second line draw Betterzippit found himself three back on the pegs early before McCaffrey guided him to sit parked outside High Point.
McCaffrey was happy to sit parked but elected to press forward for the lead when Mahia began his three-wide run.
Betterzippit came under pressure by Pull The Other Leg and Franco Hoffman in the concluding stages and was headed by the pair with 400m to go, however, at the urgings of McCaffrey he was able to find his second-wind and fought back to record a 1-1/2 length victory.
“It worked out perfect,” McCaffrey said. “I managed to get a spot to get off the fence and then he would have been quite happy sitting parked, but when they came I rolled past Dylan (driver, High Point) and the horse was cruising down the back and then going for home he just took off.
“He is a very nice horse, he has come a long from where he started. He is doing a huge job.”
McCaffrey said his first time owners are enjoying a golden run with the three-year-old, who has now won four of his 12 starts, placing in three others.
“This is the first horse that Stu and Linda Cottle have had. They bought two weanlings at the weanling sales, one won its third race and the other won its fourth race,” McCaffrey said.
“They are living the dream.”
McCaffrey was also full of praise for the Manawatu Harness Racing Club for putting up an enticing $15,000 stake.
“Manawatu are doing a hell of a job in paying good money. They deserve some better horses to come down for the money they are paying,” he said.
“It was either go to Auckland and get up high up in the classes or come down and race against horses from the same cut as him for practically an Auckland stake, you have got to take your hat off to Manawatu.”