Robertson’s efforts pay off
By Jonny Turner
Early starts and late finishes paid off for Invercargill trainer-driver Tim Robertson when Miss Jessica won at Forbury Park on Wednesday night.
The 4yr-old registered her sire Master Glide’s first victory in New Zealand when producing a tough maiden victory over 2200m.
Sitting parked throughout and getting in to a three-way battle for the lead for much of the race’s last lap proved no obstacle for Miss Jessica, who produced a gritty win at massive $48 odds.
The victory helped to put a spring in Robertson’s step on Thursday morning.
The horseman had a 4.30am start on Wednesday before his win and had to be up again at the same time after travelling back to Invercargill from Dunedin after the Forbury Park meeting.
Robertson juggles work as both a truck driver and a chef with working his team of seven horses.
Victories like Wednesday night’s made all that work worth it, Robertson said.
“I am a chef at night, doing a couple of nights, but mostly I am a truck driver in the mornings.”
“I was up at 4.30am this morning trying to get all the jobs done so we could get to the races.”
“This makes it worth it - especially because I have had her since she was a baby.”
Robertson leased Miss Jessica when she was a yearling.
The mare’s career hung in the balance after she had a float mishap on the way to qualify at Forbury Park, earlier this year.
Robertson spelled the mare and worked her back up to full fitness and she has not looked back.
Miss Jessica hinted she was capable of a winning performance in her debut at Ascot Park behind Dream Of Pat, earlier this month.
The 4yr-old galloped early, before making up good ground to run fifth.
Robertson said adjustments to the horse’s tongue tie were key to her improving on her debut on Wednesday night.
“She is quite a heavy breather, so just getting her used to the tongue tie did the trick, really.”
Miss Jessica qualified on grass at Balfour earlier this month and Robertson plans to try her on grass again at next month’s Cromwell meeting.
Miss Jessica is from the first of Master Glide’s five New Zealand crops.
The Yankee Glide stallion has left an Australian winner from his first book in New Zealand in Doug, the winner of five of his 15 starts in Victoria.
Master Glide, who has left 52 live foals in New Zealand, stands at Wai Eyre Farm for a fee of $2500.