One Apollo on new mission, Alta Wiseguy wins Invercargill Cup
By Jonny Turner
One Apollo bowed out of New Zealand harness racing on the best possible note with his powerful winning performance on Invercargill Cup Day.
The horse trainer Brent White admitted was one of his favourites ran his rivals off their feet, clearing out to score by almost three lengths.
A move to Australia now awaits the six-year-old where he will reunite with his former stablemate Jazzy Star.
“With the owners, we have made the decision to send him to Australia.,” White said.
“He’s going to Trevor Munday’s in Sydney – Trevor is a good mate of mine.”
“He has done a good job here, he’s won close to $200,000 and that is a good way for him to go out.”
One Apollo broke the Ascot Park track record for 2700m with a strong front-running performance to win the Group Three Southern Lights Trot at last year’s Northern Southland Cup meeting.
In an almost identical effort to that win, One Apollo charged along in the lead for driver Matthew Williamson to score in a similar time.
“His work had been good before he came down for the race and Matty did a good job, rolling along and taking the speed out of the others.”
White went from the highs of his feature trot win to then having to watch his classy pacer Cranbourne gallop away in the Invercargill Cup.
There were no such antics from Alta Wiseguy, who stepped away perfectly to lead before driver Tim Williams secured him a perfect run in the trail.
After a sedate tempo was set by the leader One Change, the Steve and Amanda Telfer trained four-year-old unleashed a scintillating 200m dash along the passing lane to win the Group Three feature.
Williams gave all credit for the victory to the Stonewall Stud stables team.
“He has just taken the next step every time, the team has placed him beautifully and he keeps getting the job done.”
“I think it is a credit to the team at home and up north, they said this would happen one day, so credit to them for the horse’s manners and the ringcraft they’ve put into him.”
Runner-up Pembrook Playboy went down fighting in his return from the injury which ruled him out of the New Zealand Cup, going down by just a neck at the line.
His trainer-driver Nathan Williamson enjoyed an outstanding Invercargill Cup Day, reining home three winners in Sand Wave, Yankee Party and Watchlist.
Watchlist was the talk of Ascot Park after delivering a stunning maiden win when recovering to win after galloping early and losing around 10 lengths as the mobile left.
Though he had faith in the horse, Williamson admitted it was hard to be too confident when last at the bell.
“They had gone hard and I knew he is a good follower of speed – he has got a good motor.”
“But you can never be too confident when you do that ground at the start.”
Watchlist is trained by Katrina and John Price who also produced Yankee Party to win the Robin Dundee Crown for mares.