Mossdale Ben earns New Zealand Cup nomination with Kurow Cup win

By Jonny Turner

The New Zealand Cup got another contender when Mossdale Ben produced a powerful victory in the Kurow Cup at Oamaru yesterday.

The Greg and Nina Hope trained pacer rounded up a quality field with ease to give driver Ben Hope his first win in New Zealand since May.

After handling his first standing start well and producing a slick victory, the Hope camp now plan to nominate Mossdale Ben for the New Zealand Cup and give him his chance to show whether he can foot it with the country’s best pacers.

“I am pretty sure he will be nominated for the Cup now,” Ben Hope said. 

“It won’t be easy but he deserves to be at least nominated.”

“We will go in some of the lead up races and he will tell us if he will be up to it.”

Hope went into yesterday’s race with plenty of faith in his charge and Mossdale Ben didn’t let him down. 

“He is nice a horse, I knew he would be a good beginner, he is a sensible horse and I knew he would be able to handle it,” Ben Hope said.

“He has always been a lovely wee horse, he trialled up well leading into it.”

“He has had a good career, he’s always tried hard and he’s gone some nice races in some good fields.”

Hope hadn’t won a race in New Zealand since his recent stint in Victoria working for Brent Lilley’s stable.

Though the junior driver thoroughly enjoyed his Australian experience, he is glad to be home.

Having star trotter Muscle Mountain working and feeling very well on his return is clearly one of the reasons Hope is happy to be home.

“It was good, I loved the trip and I learned a lot over there,” Hope said. 

“It is certainly good to be home, Muscle Mountain is really well, I fast worked him yesterday and he felt super.”

“The Ordeal Trotting Cup will be his first run back.”

Galleons Ambassador continued her outstanding winter form when taking out yesterday’s Kurow Trotting Cup.

The five-year-old swept home wide on the Oamaru track to complete a hat-trick of wins for trainer-driver John Morrison.

One of the biggest performances on the remainder of the Kurow Cup programme came in yesterday’s opener.

Tossies Son produced a stellar effort to win for trainers Anne-Marie and Jack Best and driver Sam Thornley after an early break saw him lose around ten lengths. 

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