LIGHTLY raced three-year-old In Cahoots broke the class record and was only 0.49 seconds outside the course record when he won a dramatic benchmark 70 (900 metres) sprint at Broadmeadow on Saturday.
Raced by Newcastle businessman Lee Rowan and trained by Phillip Atkins, In Cahoots ($3.80 fav) sat off the hot speed and sprinted clear when jockey Jeff Penza gave him full rein in the straight.
The gelding scored by a length from the well backed Merry Christmas ($7.50), with Reigns Above ($31) third. The time of 50.39 seconds was 0.14 quicker than the previous track record set by On My Command more than four years ago.
In Cahoots has won three of his six starts. There was drama inside the final 100 metres when the joint leader, Sky Prince, stumbled and fell.
Sky Prince was euthanased by the veterinary surgeon while apprentice jockey Jake Pracey-Holmes lay motionless on the track.
The NJC’s club doctor, Geoff Fowler, said Pracey-Holmes was unconscious after hitting the ground and had a seizure when he regained consciousness. The apprentice had a badly cut lip and went to John Hunter Hospital for observation.
Rowan was elated with the win of In Cahoots.
‘‘This is a very fast horse, and his recent barrier trials suggested he was ready to win,’’ Rowan said.
‘‘He had not raced for more than six months and he was gelded since his last run. I paid $10,000 for him at the 2010 Inglis January Yearling sale and he has won $52,000 on the track with a big fututre ahead of him. He has been shin sore three times and that has restricted him to six starts.
‘‘The plan is to step up to 1100 metres at Gosford or Wyong next start and then to town.
‘‘We have no doubt about him running 1200 metres this preparation.
‘‘My trainer Phillip Atkins only has a small team in work in his Maitland stable but he does a great job with them.’’
The quietly spoken Atkins has eight in work at his Maitland stable and he works them at Broadmeadow.
The 50-year-old Atkins rides most of his horses in trackwork.
He has only been training for Rowan for five or six years but he has had a team in work for 30 years.
It was apprentices day out at Broadmeadow with the ‘‘kids’’ winning four of the nine races.
Singleton apprentice Aaron Bullock notched up his 80th win with a top ride on his master Todd Howlett’s three-year-old Esgrimidor in the class 1 (1200m).
Esgrimidor ($8) was a surprising drifter in betting but was well rated in front.
Howlett is keen to take the gelding to Albury for the three-year-old Inglis Classic later this month.
Howlett said after the race the 1400 metres at Albury was a query.
‘‘He won’t have another start before Albury but I will trial him,’’ he said.
‘‘I don’t know if he will run 1400m but if he is allowed to bowl along in front he may,’’ Howlett said.
Rosehill based 19-year-old apprentice Blaike McDougall rode his second career winner when successful in the Maiden Plate (185m) on his master David Paynes’ filly Amaliehaven.
Ukraine born apprentice Serg Lisnyy, who is also apprenticed to Payne, sooled home the Paul Perry-trained The Graft to win a 900 metre maiden.
Promising south coast apprentice Winona Costin, who recently transferred on loan to Gai Waterhouse, booted home Countryman for her new boss in the final event, the benchmark 65 (1400m).
Champion jockey Robert Thompson edged closer to an amazing 4000 winners when successful on the Peter Moody-trained $19 chance Juantorena in the 1300 metre Maiden.
Thompson has ridden 3984 winners.