Ross Paynter is off to a flyer this season, with the Cambridge trainer posting three wins and three placings from nine starts this term.
“We have had a really good start to the season,” Paynter said. “We have quite a few in work at the moment (27), so the boys are working hard and everything is going well.
“I am lucky to have great staff in Fergus Schumacher and Colin Pruden, it makes my job easier.”
Paytner’s third victory of the season came courtesy of a gutsy performance by promising trotter Molly Bones in the McGregor Bailey Chartered Accountants Mobile Trot (1609m) at Alexandra Park on Friday night.
Drawn the outside of the front-row, the four-year-old mare was kept three-wide in the early stages of the race before driver David Butcher was able to press forward to sit outside leader Safrakova.
The daughter of Monkey Bones sat out parked for the remainder of the race until she was asked to improve down the home straight by Butcher. She duly obliged and was able to get the better of Safrakova, winning by 1-1/4 lengths, with a further 2-3/4 lengths back to Prince Mackendon in third.
“She went really well, she is a very strong mare,” Paytner said.
“In that grade you can sort of get away with doing that, as long as you have got a bit of ability, but once you get up in grade you can’t.”
It was Molly Bones’ second victory from just nine starts and Paynter said it has taken a little bit of time to get her back into peak condition after a mishap a couple of months ago.
“She had a couple of issues. A few months ago she fell over and hurt herself, so it’s taken a while for her to find her feet completely again, but she is really good now, I am really happy with her.”
Paynter was relatively confident heading into Friday night after her third placing last start over a mile and that form was franked by race winner Kratos subsequently taking out the Gr.1 What the Hill Breeders Crown 3YO Trotting Colts and Geldings Final (2240m) at Tabcorp Park Melton on Saturday night.
“She went really well, she sat parked in that race as well,” Paynter said. “Michael Guerin’s horse (Kratos) ended up winning the Breeders Crown on Saturday night and Kay Cee (runner-up) just galloped the other night. They are all pretty decent horses.”
Paynter has kept Molly Bones to mobile starts of late and will continue that trend at Cambridge Raceway this Friday before she heads to the spelling paddock.
“She will go in a junior drivers race at Cambridge on Friday, which is a mobile, because she just struggles with standing starts at the moment,” Paynter said.
“She is going to have a break after Cambridge and next time in we will make sure she has plenty of stands and just start afresh with her. She will get there, it’s just going to take a bit of time.” – Cambridge Raceway
Race Replay: Molly Bones winning at Alexandra Park on Friday night