The death of a young Canberra track rider has given Tommy Berry’s Listed Canberra Guineas win on Eusebio added meaning as he reflected on the similarities with the tragic death of his brother Nathan.
Fresh from winning a Group One race among a treble at Randwick on Saturday, Berry took out the three-year-old feature at Thoroughbred Park on Sunday aboard the John O’Shea-trained gelding.
Berry dedicated Saturday’s Group Three Wenona Girl Quality victory to Canberra track rider and foreperson Riharna Thomson who suffered fatal head injures in a fall on Tuesday.
He said to win at Canberra’s feature meeting while the community mourned Thomson, who at 22 was one year younger than his late twin brother Nathan when he died after falling ill at track work with a rare form of epilepsy, was even more special.
“Canberra’s like my second home,” Berry said.
“I’ll be here for the whole weekend and celebrating her life tonight with everyone.
“She only had a short life a bit like my brother, but they had a good life while they were here and they passed away doing what they loved.”
It was an inspired ride by Berry who produced Eusebio ($3 fav) through a tight opening in the straight to win from Ebenos ($8) with Godolphin stablemate Bryneich ($4.20) third.
Eusebio wasn’t the only three-year-old who staked a claim for higher honours with the James Cummings-trained filly Smart Amelia winning a strong maiden in Sunday’s opening race.
“A month between runs and then we’ll look at somewhere in The Championships for her,” stable representative John Dixon said.