It was a fitting result with leading horseman John McCarthy returning in style.
The former multiple Albion Park Metropolitan Trainers Premiership winner returned back to his old stomping ground and claimed the Gr.3 $30,660 AQWA Constructions Be Good Johnny Sprint last night (Saturday), the opening night of the Queensland summer carnival.
McCarthy guided giant New Zealand gelding Rakarolla ($9) to victory in the 1660m feature after racing three back against the pegs before sprinting past the Ian Gurney duo of Mach Alert ($3.30) and Our Hi Jinx ($7.50) in a scorching time of 1:51.9.
Sectionals of 27.3, 28.4, 28.3 and 27.9 seconds.
The winning time is well outside of the track record of 1:50.4 set by champion pacer Im Themightyquinn back in 2014.
It is the second time McCarthy has prepared the winner of the feature named in honour of his former champion after Washakie scored back in 2011.
Now based at Cobbitty near Menangle, the highly decorated horseman prepares a team of around 20.
“It’s great to win a race that’s named after my best ever pacer, I got a good run against the inside and that’s the best place to be when the running that sort of time. He finished off really well and we’ll start in the Christmas and Queensland Cups,” McCarthy said.
“Earlier this week, I sat and thought about taking my horses to Newcastle and then thought I should drive a little further north and take in the Brisbane features. So I headed up with a small team and it’s been a good start.” He added.
Rakarolla is raced by his New Zealand based breeder, Brendan Fahy.
In the other feature, race favourite Mr Kalypso ($1.75) accounted for the Grant Dixon duo of Aqua Miss ($14) and Red Charmer ($7.50) in the AQWA Constructions APHRC Members Cup.
The Kylie Rasmussen trained and driven pacer rated a strong 1:57.1 after racing without cover for the bulk of the 2138m event.
Mr Kalypso remains unbeaten in seven Queensland starts.
The Art Major – Kalypso five-year-old entire looks destined for bigger and better things in the future.
Next week, the features include the $20,660 Christmas Cup and the $20,660 Forever Gold Mares Open Pace.
RQ Web News | December 2