Former New Zealand galloper Second Slip left bookmakers reeling after his debut victory at Murray Bridge on Saturday.
The Will Clarken-trained four-year-old opened at $12 with tab.com.au on Wednesday and that was quickly snapped up by those in the know, before the horse scored at 1.2-length win with Todd Pannell in the saddle.
Clarken made it a double when he provided former Victoria jockey Mitchell Aitken with his first winner since making SA home.
Aitken elected to try and reignite his career in Adelaide in 2021 and La Richesse’s win was the perfect advertisement for his riding talent.
“It’s good to be on the board early,” Aitken said.
Aitken has been riding work for the Leon Macdonald and Andrew Gluyas stable, along with the Gordon Richards stable at Morphettville and is hoping to extend that to the provincial circuits as he tried to expand his SA contacts and opportunities.
“Hopefully we can venture out here once a week and see what we can come up with,” he said.
It was a rewarding win for connections after the mare injured herself at her previous outing.
And Aitken wasn’t the only ‘first’ of the day, with Victorian apprentice Alana Kelly landing her first metropolitan winner with the aptly named Can’tforgetyou for Andrew Noblet.
Kelly, who is based at Ballarat with her dad Daniel, had previously enjoyed success in SA on the country circuit and said it was nice to get a win for a hometown trainer.
“I’m so happy to do it for a Ballarat trainer…” Kelly said.
And it came in a fashion they weren’t expecting, after the talented mare showed brilliant early speed to take up the front-running role.
“Definitely when from A to Z in the plan wise as soon as we jumped out of the barriers,” she said.
“(We) didn’t intend to be that close but she did it so well today. (She) showed good toe at the start and fought on very brave.”
Von Costa Glass produced one of the post impressive wins off the day after he was slow to jump and help-up deep into the straight. The South-East trained galloper nailed rivals right on the line.
Meanwhile Victorian visitor Saasmit provided Ciaron Maher and David Eustace with another SA two-year-old winner in the opening race of the day.
Saasmit defied a big betting drift before showing a brilliant turn of foot to power past rivals and score with Jess Eaton in the saddle, the first leg of a winning double for the in-form apprentice.
“For a two-year-old having her first start, she was very professional,” Eaton told racing.com.
“She travelled well in behind the speed and when she balanced up and asked her quicken, she really let go with a sharp sprint.
“It’s a thrill to ride a winner for Ciaron and Dave and a lot of credit has to go to them and their team. They do such a great job with their two-year-olds.”
Eaton holds a three-win lead over Todd Pannell in the Metropolitan riders’ premiership and is expected to stick out the season in SA in a quest to claim the title.
HORSES TO FOLLOW
Very nice debut, closing smartly late behind Saasmit. Was slow to get going, held-up a few strides in the straight and really knuckled down when he was able to get to the outside in clear racing room.
Made good ground behind Second Slip first-up from a break after being held up in the home straight and should be back a winner shortly.
Doesn’t help those who took the $2.10 but her last 200m was very good behind talented Victorian Can’tforgetyou to be beaten less than half a length.
ALL IN WAR
Slashing effort at his SA debut. Was midfield and chasing early before switching back to the inside and looked the winner only to be nailed by Fabulous Flipper on the line.
IMAGE: Second slip landed a big plunge to score impressively at his Australian debut on Saturday.