Good luck finally favoured Aberdeen trainer John Lawson when Sharnie led most of the way to win the City Hotels Challenge Final over 450 metres at Maitland.
The $1800 first prize made the drive to Maitland worthwhile for Lawson, who lost his wallet containing a substantial amount of money a week earlier.
Lawson was full of praise for the 20-month-old daughter of Head Bound and Paua Of Love, saying she had lived up to his expectations after searching far and wide to buy a well bred bitch.
Sharnie, the $3.20 second favourite, pinged the lids from box four and after being headed by Geoff Sattler’s Shilo Valley as they entered the home straight fought back to beat it by three quarters of a length in 22.28 seconds with the Carol Hudson-trained Viva Opal third.
The race series also brought together a number of the city’s hotel licensees and patrons to take home he City Hotels Challenge perpetual trophy and bragging rights for the next 12 months.
This year’s honour went to Ian Maxwell and his team from the East Maitland TAB, which is part of the Windsor Castle Hotel complex.
A big thank you to the Rutherford Hotel, Bradford Hotel, Shenanigans at the Imperial and the Station Hotel/Motel Kurri for making the afternoon a huge success.
If you’re a supporter of the Maitland Pickers rugby league team make sure you get along to the showground track this Thursday for the running of the inaugural Maitland Pickers Cup.
It promises to be a great afternoon of racing with some of the region's best young 450m sprinters expected to contest the $1700-to-the-winner cup race.
Maitland District Leagues Club has thrown its support behind the series and the first race kicks off about 3.30pm with the Maitland Pickers Cup likely to be race eight on the program.
Jilliby trainer Lorraine Atchison enjoyed a double with Blossom Belle and Celebrate in consecutive races at Maitland on Thursday.
Blossom Belle was sent out the $1.20 red-hot favourite and won the Shenanigans At The Imperial Stakes over 565m in 31.42s, just eight hundredths of a second off Lochinvar Hugo’s 31.34s track record.
Blossom Belle beat the Lindsay Davis-trained Deejay Frankie by twelve and a quarter lengths with the Steve Burgis-trained Roc Raida third. Celebrate then saluted in the Rutherford Hotel Stakes over 450m, clocking a slick 25.17s to beat the Andrew Rowe-trained Pawfessional with Robert Green’s Scary Mary third.