Te Aroha conditioner Peter Lock is hoping his success in the Central Districts on Saturday will continue when his team heads north to Pukekohe Park this week.
Lock’s trip south to Awapuni in search of more favourable ground proved fruitful, highlighted by five-year-old Badgeringdawitness producing his second career win in the Majestic Horse Floats 1400m.
The striking grey son of Reliable Man and jockey Lemmy Douglas wound up in the latter part of the straight and ran down pacemaker and runner-up Miss Dixie to take victory by the smallest of margins.
“It was really encouraging, he got back, stormed home and fought hard,” Lock said.
“We’ve always held him in really high opinion, and from here on in he’s just going to improve and get up over more ground.”
Lock also produced Per Incanto filly Lili Marlene to finish second in the Bowls Wellington Raceday 15 July Maiden 1200m, with Douglas sending her forward to be prominent in the running and fought hard to go down by a head to Swindle on the line.
“She was great, she’s always promised us a lot but she’s just been hampered with very heavy tracks,” Lock said.
Lock was also represented by eight-win mare Dawn Jessie, who finished midfield in the New World Churton Park Parliamentary Handicap (2200m).
“We were very happy, she’s jumped from 1400m up to the 2200m and she’s just run out of puff in the last little bit,” he said.
“She’ll improve a tonne on that and she should be right amongst it in her next start.”
Both Badgeringdawitness and Dawn Jessie hold nominations for the $60,000 ITM/GIB Winter Championship Finals at Ruakaka in mid-July at 2100m and 1400m respectively.
Lock will now head to Pukekohe on Wednesday and he believes his two runners will thrive on the wet track, which was rated a Heavy10 on Monday morning.
Spieth gelding Italian King will make his debut in the Staphanos at Novara Park 1200m, while last start winner Debit will contest the Majestic Horse Floats 1200m.
“Italian King loves bad ground, he won a trial nicely on the heavy track at Avondale and we expect him to run a really nice race,” Lock said.
Courtney Barnes will pair with three-year-old Debit, after winning in the wet conditions at Matamata on the filly last start over the 1200m.
“She’s a Darci Brahma we bred ourselves and she is a lovely promising filly,” Lock said.
“She loves really bad ground, she’s worked well and done extremely well since winning at Matamata, so we are hoping for another big, bold run from her too.”