Gavenlock begins preparations for biggest race of his career
COFFS Harbour's first ever Country Championships qualifying heat might have been shifted to Grafton yesterday but that didn't stop one of their own from taking out the $150,000 prize.
Coffs trainer Warren Gavenlock trained-Plonka edged Murwillumbah trainer Matthew Dunn's crop of five runners with a commanding run at the Clarence River Jockey Club.
While it took a little longer than expected to get the result, Gavenlock was delighted with the victory.
"I'm very pleased. It was a difficult time for everyone, track managers, club, owners, jockeys, riders and trainers. It was a very trying time but the result for me ended up great," Gavenlock said.
Experienced jockey Ms Rachael Murray had Plonka out in front from the start and held him well to come home with gusto.
"He began well, the others came around and took him on as expected. We had a beautiful sit and Rachael rated him perfectly to hit the line at the right time," Gavenlock said.
"She did a super job. She's ridden winners for me in the past when we only had two or three horses. We were on the journey with her when she won over 100 races in a season which is great for any jockey, let alone a female jockey."
Gavenlock will now shift his attention to Royal Randwick in Sydney where he will contest the Country Championships in early April.
"It most certainly will be the biggest race for me in my career. Now, it's just a matter of keeping my feet on the ground and the horse in good condition," he said.