CIARON Maher and David Eustace added another accolade to their growing training partnership, with the pair saddling up Here to There to victory in Saturday’s Camperdown Cup.
The nine year-old was a narrow winner in the $45,000 1600 metre event, holding off Aaron Purcell’s Zebrinz in the final 100 metres, while Dane Smith’s Golden Authority was two lengths further back in third.
Jockey Dean Yendall had the ride on the winner, with the 45 year-old adding another Camperdown Cup
Victorious owner Clive Smith said it was a great result for all involved in the horse.
“Any win anywhere is a great feeling for owners,” he said.
“I’ve had the horse since he was a yearling and he’s now nine, so for him to come here and carry top weight and still fight them off and show the determination he’s always had it’s just a great feeling.
“It was a great job to Ciaron and David and the whole team to get him up, it’s just a great feeling to come down and win the cup obviously.”
Our Bottino and Gold Fields took up the early lead and dictated terms over the first 800 metres, opening up four lengths on the rest of the field.
However, the speed quickly dropped as they neared the 400 metre mark, with Here to There and Aaron Purcell’s Zebrinz pushing to be the widest on the track as a wall of eight horses rounded the term.
They had beaten off the field with just over 100 metres to go, with the pair fighting it out over the final strides, but it was Here to There who held strong to record its 12th career victory.
Smith reserved praise for Yendall’s ride on Here to There, declaring it as “absolutely perfect” and said the hoop rode the horse to instruction.
“The instructions were with this particular horse, you don’t ever want to hold, you just let him jump and flow into the race,” he said.
“He’s just one of those horses that he won’t over-race, he will just gallop along in a comfortable position, whether it’s midfield or up the front.
“Dean carried it off to a tee, they went pretty hard up front and he was able to gobble them up.
“But that horse that was coming up second was finding him but Dean said he just wouldn’t let him go past, so it was a great ride obviously.”
Yendall said with the race “run at a good tempo”, he was able to use the early speed to his advantage over the latter stages as they surged to victory.
“We were back worse than midfield, but travelling okay and then sort of steadied up at the 800 so I sort of used that to my advantage,” he said
“I started to creep into it at the right time entering the straight and I thought he was going pretty well at the time.
“It was just a matter of whether he was going to be good enough, he was getting a bit long in the tooth.
“It was a good pleasing win for the old horse, it was good to get a winner for Ciaron and David.”
Yendall paid tribute to the club for the track’s upkeep, with the jockey taking out riding honours for the day after finishing with a double and two seconds from seven rides.
“Obviously we come here with Darren’s (Weir) horses and a lot of other horses to do a lot of track work, gallops and jump-outs here,” he said.
“The facilities are good here and it’s a big plus for the committee and all the staff that work on the track, they bring a good track out on the day and that makes it perfect.”