Matt Paget guides Innocenttassie (left) to victory in the Maclean Cup.
Matt Paget guides Innocenttassie (left) to victory in the Maclean Cup. Debrah Novak

Sweet success for Shelton

LEADING trainer John Shelton capped a successful Grafton Carnival with victory when Innocenttassie powered home to win the $25,000 Maclean Bowling Club Maclean Cup (1400m) yesterday.

The rising eight-year-old snared his second Cup success, sprinting away to score a three-quarter length win from Trescorpioni and Show A Lion Heart before a supportive crowd of 2000-plus racegoers.

“He loves racing at Grafton, loves the distance,” Shelton said.

“Today was probably a better win than 2009. He seems to be getting better with age.”

The Shelton yard annexed five wins during the carnival, including Midnight Honey’s win in the final event yesterday but Innocenttassie’s success was undoubtedly the sweetest.

Innocenttassie, a half-brother to Shelton’s former star Sir Dan, cost owners Pat and Kaylene Bramich $30,000 as a yearling at the Magic Million sales.

The gelding has recorded 11 wins from 53 starts, eight of them on his home track, and earnings in excess of $130,000.

With jockey Matthew Paget in the saddle, Innocenttassie was always handy to the lead, dashing away soon after straightening.

“He wanted to win today,” Shelton said.

“They came at him but he really wanted to win, kept kicking all the way down the straight.”