(By John Jenkins)
Open class sprinter Scandalo scored a good win in a 750m jumpout at Hastings today, showing he is back on track after suffering an injury in a freak accident at the Awapuni racecourse on March 30.
There were seven jumpouts held up against the running rail on the course proper, where the ground was dead.
Scandalo contested the second of two 750m heats and, although the opposition was made up of mainly maidens, he still looked good when winning by a length in a time of 43.4s.
The six-year-old Shocking gelding, winner of seven races from 29 starts, suffered a severe gash to his nearside foreleg when he crashed into the side of the Awapuni birdcage gate as he was going out on to the course proper to do his preliminary for the Listed Flying Handicap.
Trainer Patrick Campbell said the horse bounded forward as he was released off the lead and caught the top of his leg on a bolt that was sticking out of the gate post. The horse was bleeding profusely from the wound as was declared a late scratching.
Campbell said the injury didn’t require stitches but Scandalo was treated with antibiotics and had a gaping wound and a swollen leg for several days after.
Campbell was able to give Scandalo a bit of light work six days after the incident and today was his first real serious hit out since. Providing the horse continues to progress he could now contest the $35,000 Open Sprint over 1400m at Hastings on April 27.
Other good winners at today’s jumpouts were the last start winner Charlie Zulu, the race fit Pep Torque and the promising Polizzi.
Charlie Zulu clocked the quickest time of the four 1000m heats when recording 59.1 and won by three-quarters of a length. The Zed four-year-old was a game maiden winner over 1200m at Waipukurau at the end of last month and has obviously trained on well since.
Pep Torque also won a 1000m heat today and, although the winning margin was close, the four race winner looked to be doing it easily at the finish.
Polizzi indicated a maiden win may not be far away by winning her 1000m heat by three-quarters of a length in a time of 60.1. The Niagara mare, trained by Kate Hercock, recorded a second and a fifth from four starts earlier this season.
Heat 1, 750m: Calsign Mav (Z Thomson) 1, El Roca 2yr-old gelding 2, Eisenhower 3. Four starters. Margins: 1-1/4 lengths, 6 lengths. Time: 44.3. Winner trained by John Bary, Hastings.
Heat 2, 750m: Scandalo (K Hercock) 1, Surpriseus 2, Cinzento 3. Four starters. Margins: 1 length, ½ length. Time: 43.4. Winner trained by Patrick Campbell, Hastings.
Heat 3, 1000m: Chalk (K Hercock) 1, Chouxmaka 2, Showcasing 3yr-old gelding 3. Five starters. Margins: ½ length, 3 lengths. Time: 59.9. Winner trained by Richard McKenzie, Hastings.
Heat 4, 1000m: Pep Torque (L Hemi) 1, Louboutin 2, Band 3. Five starters. Margins: ½ head, ½ neck. Time: 60.2. Winner trained by Kirsty Lawrence, Waipukurau.
Heat 5, 1000m: Polizzi (L Hemi) 1, Rip ‘N’ Roll 2, Showcasing-Zaballet 2yr-old filly 3. Five starters. Margins: ¾ length, head. Time: 60.1. Winner trained by Kate Hercock, Hastings.
Heat 6, 1000m: Charlie Zulu (H Durrant) 1, Talenti 2, Smokin’ Oak 3. Six starters. Margins: ¾ length, head. Time: 59.1. Winner trained by Guy Lowry & Grant Cullen, Hastings.
Heat 7, 1400m: Zardetto (D Turner) 1, Galapagos 2, No Tip 3. Six starters. Margins: 1-3/4 lengths, ¾ length. Time: 1:27.4. Winner trained by Paul Nelson, Hastings.