Otaki trainers Johno Benner and Hollie Wynyard will have two strong chances in Saturday’s Gr.1 Windsor Park Plate (1600m) at Hastings, and the couple couldn’t be happier with their charges heading into the mile feature.
Karaka Million 3YO Classic (1600m) winner Scott Base, pictured, ran home strongly in the first leg of Hawke’s Bay’s triple crown, the Gr.1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m), while Group Two winner Wyndspelle pleased connections with his sixth-placing.
“They were two of the better runs in the race I’d say,” Johno Benner said. “I couldn’t really fault them and 1600m looks good for both horses.”
Benner has been pleased with the pair’s work since their first-up run and believes they will both relish the step-up in distance to a mile.
“We couldn’t be happier heading into Saturday. Everything is going to plan, they have both been working well and they are in good order. We have got two nice draws (Scott Base – 6, Wyndspelle – 4) to work with, so we’re pretty happy.”
All going to plan both runners will back-up in the Gr.1 Livamol Classic (2040m) on the last day of the carnival, before Scott Base could potentially continue his spring campaign in Australia, where his trainers have previously campaigned Group One winners Humidor and Vespa.
“There’s two weeks into the last one (Livamol Classic) which is appealing enough for them both, but we’ll just get through Saturday,” Benner said.
“Scott Base could potentially head to Australia (after the Livamol Classic).”
Benner said he and partner Wynyard enjoy training out of their small operation at Otaki, where they have access to the nearby beach, which has been well utilised by Scott Base and Wyndspelle since their return from Hastings.
“We have twenty in work the entire time, we have a nice set-up right on Otaki racecourse,” Benner said. “We have got Otaki to ourselves really, it has good training facilities and we are really happy here
“We’ve got the beach and these horses spend quite a bit of time out there and they enjoy it.”