TOOWOOMBA CUP WIN BY PORNICHET CAN POSSIBLY RESTORE BLACK TYPE STATUS

29/04/15

The Toowoomba Turf Club should feel humbled to have a horse with the possible potential of Pornichet nominated to run in the Toowoomba Cup at the track next Saturday.

The Toowoomba Cup invariably has a big field of relatively ordinary horses going around in it but this year Pornichet will head to the Clifford Park track simply because he wasn’t able to secure a run in the A.D. Hollindale Cup last Saturday at the Gold Coast. It’s history now that when acceptances were taken for the Hollindale Stakes he was named third emergency. As it turned out, the first emergency for the Hollindale Stakes – Leebaz – won the race but he was the only emergency to gain a start in the Group 2 WFA feature, following the scratching of the Victorian Banca Mo.

Unfortunately in the modern day, the Toowoomba Cup has even lost its black type status, so if Pornichet was able to go on and win the race next Saturday then go on and win better class races at the Brisbane Winter Carnival and/or the Melbourne Spring Carnival, the Toowoomba Turf Club would be able to mount a case to the Pattern Committee why the Toowoomba Cup could revert back to being a Listed race. The mere fact that the Toowoomba Cup was run on the synthetic track for a couple of years meant that track surface severely restricted the quality of the horse running in the race as it’s simply a fact of life that owners and trainers don’t like racing their horses on synthetic tracks.

When weights were issued yesterday on the Toowoomba Cup, the Handicapper had 16 horses to access weight wise, in a race that can have up to 14 acceptors and five emergencies when acceptors are taken later today.

Pornichet was given 60.5kgs for the Toowoomba Cup and the weights were scaled down 2.5kgs for the race. The Handicapper weighted 12 of the 16 nominated horses (75%) on the minimum weight of 54kgs – so as usual the race has a long tail, but that happens with Cup races all around Australia.

I’ve put together a list of the winners of the Toowoomba Cup from the Year 2000 to 2014 inclusive – and that list reads:

YEAR

WINNER

JOCKEY

TRAINER

WEIGHT

2015

?

 

 

 

2014

Military Move

R. McMahon

S. Ritchie

59.5

2013

Bang On

S. Bogenhuber

T. Gollan

54.0

2012

Musashi of Mieko

B. Wallace

J. Wallace

54.0

2011

Humma

L. Cassidy

R Heathcote

58.0

2010

Yield Curve

S. Scriven

K.Carroll

59.0

2009

Jussemi

S. Katsidis

R. Lipp

53.5

2008

Sir Sensible

A. Pattillo

R. Lipp

54.0

2007

Adavale Hornet

M. Price

I. Duke

56.5

2006

Precise Timing

T. Treichel

R. Stitt

59.0

2005

Rue The Saint

J. McKinnon

M. Flanigan

53.0

2004

Up The Bid

J. Sharp

T. Andersen

54.0

2003

Kugelhopf

J.P.Stanley

H. Norman

55.0

2002

Regal Tycoon

K. Pope

B. Thornton

51.0

2001

Tis Love

J Byrne

M. Nolan

53.5

2000

Director’s Special

S. Seamer

R. Lipp

51.0

 

The Toowoomba Cup was first run way back in 1919, one year after World War 1 ended, so it’s not long until the centenary of the race.

 

The classiest winner of the Toowoomba Cup was undoubtedly the 1945 winner Abruzzi. He had the remarkable distinction of winning the Toowoomba Cup after winning the feature Toowoomba Turf Club sprint, the Weetwood Handicap, just one year earlier. Abruzzi won 20 races in his career and was considered by many Toowoomba locals to be a better horse than the recognised Toowoomba champion Bernborough. The pair met in races six times and Abruzzi finished in front of Bernborough on four of those six occasions. Whilst Abruzzi won at Eagle Farm, Doomben, Albion Park and Ipswich, his barrier manners were so bad that he was barred from racing at one point in time. He won with crushing weights at the Clifford Park track in Toowoomba – lumping up to 71kgs (11 stone 3 pounds).

 

Only one horse, Navleigh, has won three Toowoomba Cups and he won them in successive years – 1956/57/58 when ridden by top local jockey Benny Tebb for trainer P.J. Lee. In more recent times the only horse to win the race twice was the John Wallace trained Distancia, which won in two consecutive years, firstly in 1986 when ridden by Paul Hamblin and in 1987 by Danny Williams.

 

The most successful trainer in recent times has undoubtedly been local mentor Rex Lipp. He has won the race four times since 1999 with Gene’s Interest (1999 – Brad Stewart), Director’s Special (2000 – Scott Seamer), Sir Sensible (2008 – Tony Pattillo) and Jussemi (2009 – Stathi Katsidis).

 

Tomorrow I’ll look at the Weetwood Handicap – which still has Listed status.

 

On www.brisbaneracing.com.au today there’s the first of two montages of photos from the Gold Coast last Saturday. On www.sydneyracing.com.au there’s a harness story on the pacer that will have three stable changes in a matter of months, whilst on www.melbourneracing.com.au Victorian racing is perused.

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