Matamata trainer Daniel Miller made his first start as a trainer a winning one when Sheezallmine scored on debut in the Mount Shop 1200 at Pukekohe Park on Wednesday.
The three-year-old filly was ridden by Miller’s partner Tegan Newman, who utilised their handy draw (barrier two), taking her charge straight to the lead and dictated terms throughout to win by three-quarters of a length.
Miller said he was happy with the filly heading into the contest and is hoping she can continue her winning form.
“She won a couple of nice trials coming into today, but race day is completely different and going to the front like that I thought she could be a bit susceptible to being run down late.
“She did knock-up late, but she’ll take improvement out of today and hopefully she carries on.
“She’s quite a competitive horse and she really does get stuck in and likes to keep her head in front of the other horses which is half the battle.” The daughter of Super Easy is owned by Miller’s parents, John and Marie, who were on course to watch their bargain buy win on debut.
“Mum and Dad got rid of all the kids and wanted another hobby so started to get back into the racehorses,” Miller said.
“They bought this filly off Gavelhouse for $1,000 and I broke her in and put her out for about six months. She came back twice the size and started showing a bit at the jump-outs with Te Akau’s horses and it’s just gone from there.
“All the family were here to watch their horse go around, which was great.”
Miller, who won 23 races as a jockey, said he turned to training after his initial dream was cut short by weight issues.
“I always wanted to be a jockey and that obviously didn’t work out, but the opportunity arose to train a few for Mum and Dad,” he said.
“My weight ended my flat riding career and then I went on to jumping, but I couldn’t really make a living out of that, so I just gave it away.”
The 22-year-old is kept busy at the Matamata track in the mornings, riding work for Te Akau Racing before working his own team.
“I’ve got two race horses in work at the moment and three pre-trainers. I have five or six in work at any one time.”