Celtic Love Wins Inaugural Wyong Town Plate

Warwick Farm-trained Celtic Love had to fight hard to win Thursday’s inaugural $50,000 Hudson Homes Wyong Town Plate for the Marc Connors stable.

Celtic Love Wins Inaugural Wyong Town Plate

Warwick Farm-trained Celtic Love had to fight hard to win Thursday’s inaugural $50,000 Hudson Homes Wyong Town Plate for the Marc Connors stable.

Marc Conners
Marc Conners Picture:Racing and Sports

Celtic Love Horseform narrowly defeated the locally trained Bryan’s Babe from the Stephen Farley stable after the runner-up looked the winner before being pipped in the final stride.

Celtic Love settled toward the rear of the field in the early stages and was scrubbed up by Tim Clark from the 800m mark, travelling three wide on the turn.

He hit the front early in the straight but was headed by Bryan’s Babe before fighting back strongly to gain ascendency on the line.

Connors said he had been worried by the short straight.

“I knew he was fit and would handle the going but the short straight had me a bit concerned,” he said.

“It was a good ride by Tim. She has trialled twice leading into this and won a trial a couple of weeks ago pretty impressively.”

Connors said they had bred the five-year-old Dylan Thomas mare, making the win even more rewarding.

He praised Wyong Race club for introducing the Town Plate.

“It’s a great concept this race. She was probably not ready to go to the city straight away, so this provided her with another step,” he said.

“It’s a good incentive with great prizemoney. We will most likely take her to town now.”

The victory brought up a double for Tim Clark, who scored earlier on the hot favourite Enjoy Elsie.

The Hawkes stable look to have a smart filly on their hands after Enjoy Elsie blitzed her maiden opposition over 1000m.

Enjoy Elsie Horseform led throughout, kicking away on the turn to score a dominant four and a quarter length win.

The filly was first up from a spell and coming off an impressive nine lengths barrier trial win on November 19.

“She’s had one run last prep. She ran third but didn’t really know what it was all about,” Michael Hawkes said after the race.

“She’s come back bigger and stronger. She’s a big Sepoy filly and she trialled very well.

“She ticked every box. She’s just going to get better as she gets older.

“She’s got natural speed and if she can learn to harness that then she might definitely go somewhere in the future.”

Enjoy Elsie, bred by Ross and Pam Crosby from Tamworth, is a half sister to Dawn Dawn, a horse the Hawkes stable also hold in high regard.

Hawkesbury trainer Brad Widdup believes his filly Ragazze could have bright future after notching her second win from three starts in the Wideline C1 Handicap.

The three-year-old Snitzel filly, part owned by Widdup, scored a narrow win over the Joe Pride trained Rheingau .

Ragazze Horseform made a winning debut at Kembla Grange on October 27 and finishing second at her subsequent start on November 17.

“She’s been doing everything right. She has done a good job in her first preparation,” Widdup said.

“We will probably tip her out for a spell now. I think she should get over more ground once she matures and she could make a nice horse.”

Ragazze, a $200,000 yearling, was ridden by Corey Brown and denied Theingau’s jockey Josh Parr a winning treble by a short half head.

Parr recorded earlier wins on Jazzland for local Kristen Buchanan and Ivy’s Class for Chris Waller.

Jazzland dominated the USG Boral C/Maiden over 2100m with a commanding nine lengths win.

Buchanan has a big opinion of the four-year-old and wasn’t surprised by the ease of the victory.

“I didn’t know he would win that well but this horse is a serious stayer,” Buchanan said.

“He is an amazing, economic mover. He did that like a canter.

“He has the best movement and eats up the ground.”

“It was an easier option up there but I’m happy we backed his ability and started him here.”

Parr agreed that Jazzland Horseform has a bright future.

“His stride is so efficient. He is still a good six to 12 months away from reaching his full ability - there is still nice improvement there,” Parr said.

A daring mid-race move by Parr saw him land the Taubmans BM64 on the Chris Waller-trained Ivy’s Court.

Parr took advantage of a muddling tempo to take off from the rear at the 800m, circling the field to claim the lead.

The Choisir mare kicked away for her third career win from 13 starts.

Other races were won by Archedemus Horseform from the Gwenda Markwell stable at Kembla Grange and the Randwick-trained pair Everlasting Love Horseform (Anthony & Edward Cummings) and Ladies’ Gem (John Sargent).

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