It was a mighty effort from everyone at Lucinda Russell Racing to prepare and produce sixteen horses to race at Perth and despite some crazy weather including sun, heat, thunder and lightning, hail, downpours, and ultimately flooding we managed to have three winners.
Effet Special ran in the worst of the conditions, pictured, and along with Last King Of Wales, he coped with the hail and poor visibility. Taking the lead two out he galloped to the line reinforcing that two miles is his distance. If we can keep him in the same form he could win again and he has the option of chasing at some point too, giving his owners Brahms & Liszt a horse to look forward to. The maiden, Last King Of Wales ran well until just before the last and is not quite firing in handicap company yet.
Thankfully the rain had not got into the ground by the time Boys On Tour ran as he is not a heavy ground type. However, given a confident ride by Stephen, he battled as ever and won nicely, continuing his love affair with Perth. Only little, he is a tough chap and a credit to Stephen and the team who keep him fresh and settled at home, and it was great to have Foresight Racing's smart new colours in the winners' enclosure. In the same race, Voix D'Eau ran a blinder after over a year off to be fourth and should be all the better for this run.
With the ball rolling Katalystic continued our winning streak, jumping well and powering up the run-in. It was a great win for Ronnie and Loraine Young who have been involved in racing for many years; Loraine's mother Eve Stafford was a steward in Ireland and watches all of Kat's races closely. In the same race, The Road Home ran well to a point but having been hampered he faded and was pulled up after the home turn.
The majority of our horses ran with great credit; Gemologist was second, showing a great attitude and boding well for the rest of the season. Dr Hooves was third in an incident-packed novice chase where A Ladies Milan started slowly but got the idea about jumping by the end. Emirat De Catana fell at the last when challenging for the lead, crumpling onto his knees and firing poor Thomas into the ground. Unfortunately, Thomas has broken his collarbone and a couple of ribs so will be out of action for a few weeks.
Mannochmore was third in the novice hurdle, looking stronger and hurdling better than last time. He stayed the trip nicely and will probably be back in a handicap next time. In the same novice hurdle, both Accost and Offtheshoulder were pulled up and we will consider their racing future over the next few days. Of our other hurdlers, Celtic Flames was fifth; he ran well but can improve on this performance. We were delighted with Caboy who was fourth on his British debut. He looks a proper stayer and can run over fences and hurdles; there are still some shares available in a free lease of him.
Finally, Diamond State took a step forward from his last run, and while green ran a super race in the bumper to be fourth. He still needs time to develop but has ability and will probably run in another bumper later this summer.
The lorries were home and the horses back in their stables by ten o'clock, all checked over and settled before the ensuing thunderstorms. It was some night!