Consistency rewarded: Snake Cavern (Daniel Stackhouse) a clear winner over Arthurian at Benalla. Photo: David Thorpe

by “Pegs”

KILMORE female thoroughbred trainers enjoyed success at the weekend.

At Benalla on Friday, Lesia Masnyj and Jody Thompson saddled-up winners in Full Reward ($12) and Snake Cavern ($5.50) respectively.

For the former it was a special thrill as it was her first winner since obtaining her licence mid-last year.

Happy connections with First Watch and Alicia Macpherson doing strapper’s duties after the gelding’s win at Yarra Valley on Saturday. Photos: Racing Photos. Photo: Ross Holburt

The four-year-old daughter of Reward For Effort and Pinpante was most impressive in an all-the-way win in the $22,000 Benalla Waste and Recycling Maiden Plate (1206m) defeating Shadow Looms ($8.50) by 4-1/4 lengths with Hurry Up Harry ($11) a further ¾-length away third.

On waiting for the mare, with Stan Tsaikos aboard, to return to the winner’s stall, the excited Masnyj when interviewed by Racing.com’s Kevin Casey wanted to thank everyone – even down to the stewards.

“I would like to say thank-you, if I could, to all the trainers at Kilmore because they have been really supportive because I’m only new at doing things, and also the strappers, and the jockeys and the track riders and again the stewards for being supportive in helping me understand a lot of the things when it comes to racing,” she said.

“Today the horse really performed well and fingers crossed we are looking upward and forward to many more first placings.”

Masnyj said her mare was injured in the tie-up stalls in her first prep with her and had to be spelled.

“She just loves to get out and run, run, run and I love her and I love working with her, and thanks everybody,” a thrilled Masnyj said.

Formerly trained at Mornington by David Brideoake, the mare, now part-owned by Masnyj along with family and friends, has had two minor placings prior to her win from nine starts.

Consistent Snake

Thompson’s Snake Cavern was equally impressive in taking out the bet365 BM58 Handicap (2046m) later on the Benalla program.

The Golden Snake 6-year-old gelding was still eligible for a maiden race, was well ridden by Daniel Stackhouse, in defeating Arthurian ($4.80) by ¾-length with the $2.70 favourite a further 1-3/4 lengths third.

Thompson said the gelding has drawn really bad gates probably in five out of the last six he has been entered.

“I’m just glad for the horse as he deserved to win a race.

“The Norton Bit helped, but Daniel gave him a 11 out of 10 ride,” Thompson told Kevin Casey.

Thompson said she’ll keep the gelding as “he’s pulled up super”.

“He’ll tell us when he’s had enough,” she said.

Raced by long-time stable client, Craigieburn resident Ian Forsyth, the gelding has had four minor placings prior to his win from 14 starts.

First up for First Watch

At Yarra Valley the following day, fellow Kilmore trainer, Alicia Macpherson had First Watch ($10) cherry ripe for a first-up win.

Having his first run since September last year, the four-year-old gelded son of Bel Esprit and Belle Ball stormed down the outside from the rear of the field to take out the Direct Connect 0-58 Handicap (1009m).

The gelding, giving apprentice Jack Martin his first winner since returning from a bad fall, defeated Waterford Sound ($6) by a head with Jack Henry ($8) a half-neck away third.

Part-owned by the Macpherson family along with stable clients, Snake Cavern has now won two races with the same number of second placings from 13 starts.

Border-hop win for Laws

Fellow Kilmore trainer saddled-up Equitation ($2.40 favourite for an effortless win at Balranald (NSW) on Saturday.

The Equiano 4-y-o gelding was a six-length winner of the B R & C Agents Maiden Plate (1400m).

The gelding, part-owned by Laws, was having his 16th start. He has had four minor placings.