Oscar too slick in Flying Mile
By Garrick Knight
Less than a week after his stablemate took out the Inter Dominion Grand Final, Oscar Bonavena has reaffirmed his position as the country’s best trotter.
The four-year-old star showed a scintillating burst of speed to ward off the challenge of another flyer, Majestic Man, and win Tuesday’s $50,000 Gr. 2 Trotters Flying Mile at Cambridge.
Punters who included him in their multis at microscopic odds of $1.22 were probably sweating at the furlong, but as soon as co-trainer Mark Purdon asked him to sprint up the passing lane, he responded with gusto.
It was his seventh win in eight starts this season, the only error coming at the worst possible time – in last month’s Gr. 1 Dominion Handicap at Addington.
Purdon has made no secret of the fact he harbours a desire to go to America in 2021 with the Majestic Son entire that could well be a generational talent.
But first it will be back to Alexandra Park on New Years’ Eve where he will clash with Winterfell in a contest that will have fans buzzing.
Another All Stars square-gaiter, Enhance Your Calm, will also be there in spite of his disqualification from third at Cambridge after galloping the length of the home straight.
He led throughout and looked to be travelling well on turning in, but became unbalanced and flew to bits, according to driver, Brent Mangos.
Destiny Jones was the benefactor of his error, the bonny Canterbury mare slipping up the markers to be fourth across the line, promoted to third.
There was some early drama when the usually very well-mannered Marcoola galloped off the mobile arm for new driver Zachary Butcher.
He took no further part and, given it was his second gallop in a row, trainer Barry Purdon has plenty to work on ahead of next Tuesday’s National Trot.
On the under card, local trainers Andrew and Lyn Neal got some early Christmas presents when they trained a double at either end of the card.
One - $1.40 favourite Louie The Horse – was expected while the other – double-figure shot A Better Dancer – was not.
Louie The Horse was one of two winners on the card for driver Todd Mitchell, the other being Our Spitfire for Bernie Hackett and Michelle Wallis.