(By John Jenkins)
Foxton trainer Emma Haworth got special satisfaction from Toms win in Thursday’s $20,000 Best Travel Waipukurau Cup.
Haworth owns and trains the Towkay five-year-old in partnership with her father David and he is the first horse she bought from the Karaka yearling sales.
“We’ve bought a lot of yearlings over the years but he (Toms) was the first one I bought on my own,” a delighted Haworth said.
Toms was a $12,000 purchase from the 2015 Festival session of the Karaka yearling sales and has now recorded three wins, three seconds, four thirds and a fourth and amassed more than $50,000 in stakes.
“He tries very hard and is a great horse to have in the stable,” Emma Haworth said.
Senior jockey Darryl Bradley showed he still has what it takes when getting Toms home in a close three-way finish to the Waipukurau Cup.
Bradley settled his mount at the back of the field and bided his time until well into the home straight before lodging his claim. Race favourite Cottoneva and Al Haram were fighting out the finish of the 2200m event until Toms swept up outside them in the final few strides to snatch a half-head victory.
Topweight Al Haram held second by a short head from Cottoneva, with a gap of 7 lengths back to the rest.
Emma Haworth said she wasn’t worried when Toms was back last of the seven horse field coming to the home turn.
“I knew he was fit because he’s been doing a lot of work at the beach and I thought it was only a matter of getting him out into the clear in the straight and he would finish it off well.
“I knew he would be strong going up that hill just before the winning post.”
Toms is building an affinity with the Waipukurau track as he has now had three starts there for two wins and a second.
Haworth said the horse will now be aimed at the Listed $75,000 Royston Hospital Hawke’s Bay Cup (2200m) at Hastings on April 13.