Riccarton-based trainer Andrew Carston has the $100,000 Otago Daily Times Southern Mile in his crosshairs with several of his runners picking up qualifying points at Saturday’s Wingatui race meeting.
Former northern mare Seven Twenty added to the five points she collected when finishing fifth in the qualifier at Wingatui on Boxing Day with a 10-point win.
Seven Twenty and Ace Lawson-Carroll following their win at Wingatui on Saturday
Seven Twenty was settled in mid-field by apprentice jockey Ace Lawson-Carroll, following the hot pace set by runaway leader Anjameme, after initially being held up behind runners the pair managed to get out and flash home to win by a nose over local runner Burgie.
“It was a good result,” Carston said. “She’s a handy mare and she’s done a great job since she’s been with us.”
“She’s qualified for the final now so we will pick a path from here.”
The four-year-old daughter of Power joined Carston’s stable in November and she’s since had five starts for two wins, a second, a fourth and a fifth.
The win was made extra special for Carston with her Auckland-based co-owners Terry and Jane Lines and son Connor on course to celebrate the win.
“They’ve been great supporters of the stable, I have half a dozen in work for them and it was good for them to be there,” he said.
The Lines family also picked up a couple of placings on the day with the Kelvin and Aimee Tyler-trained Mooloolaba third in the Cargill Contracting (1600m) and the Carston-trained Poverty Bay picking up eight ODT Southern Mile points in the last race.
Carston now has six runners with qualifying points for the race in which the field is selected from the horses with the highest number of points.
Seven Twenty is his highest points earner on 15, with Demand Respect (9), Poverty Bay (8), Caitlyn Jay (7), Hunter Villian (5) and Nambia Miss (1) also on the board.
“We just need to get a few more points somewhere else for a few of them,” Carston said. “It’s a $100,000 race so it’s worth qualifying them for.”
The Otago Daily Times Southern Mile takes place on April 4 at Wingatui with five further qualifying opportunities before then.
Carston was also pleased with three-year-old maidens Mumbo Jumbo and Tough Time who finished second and third in the Brent Luca Builders (1400m).
“It was a good day out with a win and a few placings and most of the team went well,” he said.