Thursday, 5 July 2012
: It didn't take long for top north coast jockey Raymond Spokes to get back to his winning ways on the opening day of the Grafton Cup carnival.
| Blinkin Easy|
Photo by Racing and Sports
The Coffs Harbour-based jockey took out the North State Finance Class 2 Handicap on Thursday when having just his second ride back from injury.
Last year's north coast premiership winner had been sidelined in March when he was injured in a fall at Armidale but was in great touch to record an all the way win on $26 chance Newbold Reine, prepared at Coffs Harbour by Paul Smith.
Newbold Reine held on gamely to beat the Tim Martin trained favourite We've Got Tonight.
Spokes dislocated his AC joint and also hurt his neck in the Armidale accident.
He has five rides at Grafton on Sunday including Slick Sniper, the half-brother to Jungle Juice Cup winner General's Sniper, in the $50,000 South Grafton Cup.
Thursday's Westlawn Grafton Cup Prelude was won by the Ruth Cooper-trained Blinkin' Easy, securing him a second crack at next Thursday's $150,000 Maclean Bowling Club Grafton Cup.
Blinkin Easy finished fourth in the Grafton Cup two years ago.
The John Shelton-trained Ibalance
won the John Carlton Cup (1200m) but is not nominated for next Wednesday's $150,000 Ramornie Handicap.
He is likely to have the Maclean Cup on the final day of the carnival on Sunday week as his next target.