By Duane Ranger
Ardmore trainer Steve Telfer nailed his second consecutive Parawai Cup on the Thames grass on Saturday when Ideal Roman got the chocolates in the $10,000 feature pace.
The victory came the day after Telfer lined up all six runners in the second event at Cambridge Raceway. Ironically Ideal Roman was also nominated for that Cambridge event, but Telfer decided to pull him out in favour of Thames.
“He actually goes a bit better the left-handed way around but because I had so many in that Cambridge race I thought I’d take him to Thames and race alongside his stablemate, Delightful Zen.
“It proved to be the right decision. I’m rapt with his win. We won the race last year with Sir Richie. I really enjoy racing at Thames. It’s the closest country cups meeting to home,” Telfer said.
Delightful Zen and Ben Butcher (j) missed away and finished last, but David Butcher’s decision to take Ideal Roman around to the lead, from his 20m handicap with just over a lap to go, was the winning of the race.
Rated perfectly in front, Ideal Roman, who was the $4.90 second favourite, held on to beat favourite, Mo Casino and Zachary Butcher by a nose.
Ideal Roman paced the Bayley's Coromandel 2018 Parawai Cup for the R60 to R88 pacers in 3:31.2 and came home in 61 and 30.1.
The 5-year-old American Ideal gelding paced a 2:10.7 mile rate for the 2600m stand. It was his seventh win in 36 starts and took his career earnings past the $60,000 mark.
“He’s a lovely horse to have around the place. He’s so honest and always tries hard. I think he will have a good country cups campaign because he steps well and can put himself in the race. He’s a nice safe horse,” Telfer said.
“I think he can give the Series a good shake,” he added.
He said Ideal Roman would now head to Gate Pa, where he would compete on the Tauranga grass on January 28.
The win provided Telfer with his 29th win ($369,175) of the season. Last year he and Chris Garlick trained 39 winners ($485,731), and the year before that they nailed a personal best 41 victories ($405,984).
"It's been a great start all right. Things have just fallen into place. It's also been a week to remember," the Australian-born horseman said.
One of the other highlights of the meeting came in the ninth event when Franklin trainers Michelle Wallis and Bernie Hackett trained the trifecta in the feature trot - the $9,000 Bill and Eva Darrah Memorial.
The $10.20 sixth favourite, Blood And Whisky (Tony Cameron j) got up by a neck to beat favourite Massive Metro (Todd Mitchell). Makarewa Jake (Hackett) was six-and-a-half lengths back in third.
The ‘Waiuku’ trifecta paid a whopping $538.90.
Summary from today's meeting on the Thames grass were:
Race 1: The Cheree Wigg (Kumeu) trained and driven REDMARO (9 Ch g Badlands Hanover - Margaret Franco (by Nero's B B).
Race 2: The Ross Paynter (Cambridge) trained LIS RULZ (5 Br m Lis Mara - Victoria Rulz (by Badlands Hanover) Luke Whittaker (j).
Race 3: The Rob & Simon Lawson (Pukekohe & Whitikahu) trained MCLEOD’S DAUGHTER (4 B m Elsu - Van Seraa (by Christian Cullen) Simon Lawson.
Race 4: The Mathew Salaivao (Pukekohe) trained MANIHIKI PEARL (4 B m Tintin In America - The Black Pearl (by Presidential Ball) Andre Poutama.
Race 5: The Jay Abernethy (Papakura) trained and driven REGAL GRIN ( 5 Br g Grinfromeartoear - Shards A Flyin (by Sands A Flyin).
Race 6: The The Logan Hollis & Shane Robertson (Pukekohe) trained MAJOR CLASSIC (6 B g Art Major - Classical (by Soky's Atom) Logan Hollis.
Race 7: The Jeremy Young (Pukekohe) trained LYNBAR ROSE (4 B m American Ideal - Screen Idol (by Artsplace) Maurice McKendry (MNZM).
Race 8: The Steve Telfer (Ardmore) trained IDEAL ROMAN ( 5 B g American Ideal - Charioteer (by Christian Cullen) David Butcher.
Race 9: The Michelle Wallis & Bernie Hackett (Waiuku) trained BLOOD AND WHISKY (5 B g Pegasus Spur - Our Super Ann (by Sundon) Tony Cameron (j).
Race 10: The Arna Donnelly (Cambridge) trained BETTOR BUY A ROSE (4 B m Bettor's Delight - Riverboat Rosie (by Riverboat King) Scott Phelan.
Race 11: The Michelle Wallis & Bernie Hackett trained (Waiuku) SECRETOFTHESEA (5 B m Sundon - Houdini Smile (by Evander's Gold) Todd Mitchell.
Top Trainer(s): Michelle Wallis & Bernie Hackett 2 wins.
Top Stallion: American Ideal 2 wins.
Top Junior Driver: Strike Won's Tony Cameron and Luke Whittaker 1 win apiece.
Top Driver: Eleven races and 11 winning drivers.
Extensive results can be viewed here:
Meanwhile it was the second time the Parawai Cup has been run under the Waikato - Bay of Plenty Harness banner.
The last 10 winners of the Parawai Cup on the Thames grass have been:
2017: The Steve Telfer & Chris Garlick trained Sir Richie (Maurice McKendry - MNZM).
2016: The Tim Vince trained Celtic Warrior (Kyle Marshall).
2015: The Arna Donnelly trained and driven Ideal Success.
2014: The Tony Herlihy (MNZM) trained and driven Spirit Of Art.
2013: The Anne-Marie Best trained Tijuana Bromac (Scott Phelan).
2012: The David Kaa trained Speedstar (Jay Abernethy).
2011: The David Kaa trained Speedstar (Jay Abernethy).
2010: The Mike Berger trained Phil B (Arna Donnelly).
2009: The Mike Stormont trained Border Raider (Anna Stormont).
2008: The Ian Small trained Heez Justamachine (Philip Butcher).