With only one month to go in the current season Cambridge trainer Les White was able to secure his first win of the term when Hezaluckygrinner took out the Cambridge Equine Hospital Mobile Pace (2200m) at Cambridge Raceway on Sunday.
Driver Dylan Ferguson sent the six-year-old son of Grinfromeartoear forward from gate six to take the early lead before handing up to the Nicky Chilcott-trained and driven Allonblack.
Hezaluckygrinner was able to get the better of Allonblack in the homestraight to win by a length, with half-a-head back to Jingles Bromac in third.
White was pleased to get the result, particularly after a recent scare with the gelding.
“He has been trialling well and he had the perfect trip, which helps a lot,” he said. “Everything sort of went to plan.
“He has been thereabouts and had a couple of unlucky runs, and a couple where he should have done better.
“I was more happy for the horse because he had had a wee bleed a couple of starts ago and getting him back on track and back to the races was a big thrill for me because I didn’t really think he would make it back.”
While the partnership of White and Ferguson denied victory for their former employer Nicky Chilcott, White said she has been a big help with the gelding and was pleased for his success.
“I did just over three years with Nicky, just working in the mornings,” he said. “She still drives for me whenever I can get her. Nicky and I get along really well, she’s been a big help with the horse.
“She was the first one to come up and congratulate me, she thought it was great.”
White, a retired prison officer, has just the one horse in work, but said he is excited for the future with the recent purchase of a weanling at New Zealand Bloodstock Standardbred’s recent Auckland All-Aged Sale.
“I have just got the one in work and I have got a weanling that I bought at the sales a couple of months ago, so that’s my next project,” he said.
“She is an American Ideal filly out of the In The Pocket mare, Pocketmore. (Cambridge junior driver) Alicia Harrison bought the yearling half-sister at the yearling sales, so hopefully there will be a couple out of the mare running around in a season or two.”
While White is likely to be kept busy with his new acquisition, he has already been enlisted to help out son Matthew in the mornings after he recently returned to New Zealand to pursue his training career.
“I have been waiting for that (his return) for quite a while,” White said. “He spent the last two years working for Darley over in New South Wales and I thought his driving talents were being wasted a little bit. It’s great to see him back and he’s driving well.
“He has already applied for his trainer’s license and has registered his colours, it will be a big step for him.
“I don’t mind helping him out, that is what you do for your kids.” – Cambridge Raceway
Race Replay: Hezaluckygrinner winning the Cambridge Equine Hospital Mobile Pace (2200m) at Cambridge Raceway on Sunday.