500 career wins for John

While often in the shadow of his record-breaking brother Dexter, Premier Night at Addington has already seen older brother John make his mark. With wins in Race 1 Ten Too and Race 3 Graduate Under Fire, John has achieved a magnificent personal milestone of 500 career wins.

This season has seen the older of the two brothers in supreme form both in the cart and through results achieved by the Woodend Stable that he runs.

Ten Too was another superb drive by John. The horse stepped like a toff tonight and was soon in a perfect 3 back trailling position. John pulled out, making a swift move at the 1400m, before easing into a trail for the last 1200m. He was always travelling strongly before barging into the clear at the 200m, gathering in the Cyclone U Bolt and going clear to win by 1 length in a smart 3.19.2 for the 2600m stand, the last 800m in 57.8, the last 400m in 28.5. Remarkably this is the horse's 7th win from just 15 starts for owners Mark and Sam Smolenski. He has always had the game to race against the very best, but unsoundness has been a major issue, hence the change to the beach. If he can stay fit and well, he will surely be targeting some of the big trots in the new season.

After a good 2nd on Jay Bees Grin in Race 2, it was heavily backed stable runner Graduate Under Fire that did the damage in Race 3. As usual the horse showed his superior stand start manners, easily reaching the top and from there it was somewhat of a procession. He held on strongly to stave off a late challenge of roughie Whyamibettor, running home a last 800m in 57.7 and the 400m in 27.7. The overall time on a cool night was a solid 3.17.7. Graduate Under Fire, owned by Ray and Maureen Beale of Hilderthorpe is yet another example of a horse who's formline has turned around remarkably since joining the beach team.

Hopefully Johnny and the stable can keep charging for the night, but win, loss, or draw, J R Dunn 500 not out a top effort from one of racings quiet achievers.            

Posted: Fri 05 Apr 2013