Me oh Mia - junior driver "stoked" with first win

There was no flamboyant flourish as she crossed the finish line but that didn't mean that Mia Holbrough wasn't "absolutely stoked" with her first winning drive on Sunday.

The 19-year-old, having just her fourth race day drive, drove the Greg and Nina Hope trained Crazy N Love a treat to win the Advanced Joinery Trot on the grass at Motukarara.

"It was an unreal feeling," says Holbrough, "and pretty overwhelming."

Since her breakthrough win the congratulations have been coming thick and fast.

"A lot of the drivers clapped me in ... and I think Dad (Steve) just had about a tear in his eye. He was in the birdcage and was over the moon for me."

Crazy N Love started well in the 2170m stand and got a cosy trip three back the fence before getting the gaps when it mattered.

"I started smiling at the 200 .. once she came up the inside I was pretty confident then."

"I've been told a few times it's a long straight (at Motukarara) and to be patient."

The rookie driver was just that as she beat home Ruthless Lizzie by nearly two lengths.

The win also rewarded the faith shown in her by her employers, the Hopes. She's been at their Woodend operation for three months, after previous stints with Brad Williamson in Oamaru and Bruce Negus when she was still at school.

Holbrough's introduction to the sport came earlier than that thanks to family friends, the Tomlinsons.

"I’ve been going out to Amanda Tomlinson’s since I was little so that’s how I got into harness racing. I started doing Kidz Kartz with Amanda and moved into driving some of her racehorses."

Now she's a race day winner - and hoping it's the first of many.






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