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Locals, visitors share spoils at Bluff-Blackwater Winter Carnival

By Richard 'Nugget' Turnbull

Bluff-Blackwater Amateur Race Club hosted their inaugural annual June winter carnival on Saturday, where a big crowd was on hand to enjoy the railway town's social day of days.  

The rich $12000 Maiden Handicap was won by one of Central Highlands racing’s good guys in trainer Noel ‘Coyney’ Coyne.

The former top jockey turned veteran trainer, track curator, owner, patron and Emerald Jockey Club committee man, broke through for a much-deserved win with his stable favourite, Snooze ($3.20).

The gelding was ridden by Rockhampton apprentice Nicole Seymour, who timed her run to chase down race favourite, the Shane Sigvart-trained Bagger Nemo.

The first feature race on the program - the $9000 Bluff Newmarket (1200m) was won by the Glenda Bell-trained One More Bopa ($2.40fav) for jockey Mark Barnham. 

Tom Button made the trek west on the Capricorn Highway from Rockhampton and stole the show in the main event - the $9000 Bluff Cup (1800m). 

Button saddled up Oakfield Midnight, owned by his brother Jeffrey, and celebrated a 5.5 length victory with jockey Tash Chambers in the saddle. The win put the writing on the wall for the $20,000 Alpha Cup (1700m) on June 30. 

Ross Vagg broke through for the Bluff trainers in the Class B Handicap (1300m) with Onemoretwoless ($2.80) ridden by gun Rocky apprentice Elyce Smith. The pair repelled the challenge of the Shane Sigvart-trained Bauhinia Drought ($3.20) in the closest finish of the day. 

Racecaller and claub stalwart, Scott Power, thanked the Bluff and Blackwater community for turning out and supportin the day. The club is looking forward to a bigger and better year in 2019.