Williamson has key hand in Gore Cups

by Jonny Turner 

Despite not driving the favourite in either race, Matthew Williamson has a big role to play in both of Gore’s cup races on Tuesday.

On Southland’s biggest day of grass track racing, the reinsman combines with Tairlaw Toll and Hurricane Hill who look genuine winning threats in the Gore pacing and trotting cups, respectively.

Macandrew Aviator has opened favourite for the Gore Pacing Cup and deservedly so following his excellent third behind Krug in the Group One Invercargill Cup.

Tairlaw Toll won the race last year and looms as a key rival for the favourite.

The Carl Hanna trained pacer was run off his feet when Krug set up sizzling final sectionals in his Group One triumph, but returning to grass track racing looks very suitable for him on Tuesday.

“He’s last year’s winner of it and hoping to hold the title again,” Williamson said.

“As we know, the harder he goes the better for him and he looks one of the leading contenders.”

“He will be put in the race and doing it tough and hopefully he can hold them off.”

Hurricane Hill has taken his game to another level this spring and summer.

The Phil Williamson trained trotter comes into the Gore Trotting Cup on the back of an eye-catching effort at Winton behind his classy stablemate Love N The Port.

Off the front line with the advantage of a head-start over his key rivals, Hurricane Hill could take plenty of catching.

“It is his first grass run for Dad, but he has been absolutely flying that horse,” Williamson said 

“He was flying home again in his last start.”

“I’d say even though it is a strong field, he looks one of the ones to beat.”

Williamson has ten drives on the massive 12-race programme at Gore.

The reinsman rates Shandon Bells in race 4 as the best hope among his remaining steers.

“I would probably go Shandon Bells, she looks the best of the rest.”

“She ran second to Peregrine there last year, there’s no Peregrine in her race this year so I think she would be hard to beat.”

Mamma Mia and Bowlem Over look next best among Williamson’s Gore drives.

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