Matamata trainer Karen Fursdon got exactly what she asked for at Ellerslie on Saturday.
Fursdon was interviewed prior to the start of race four about the chances of stable star Yearn in the Go Racing Syndications rating 85 1400m contest. She was upbeat her prospects but did add the caveat she was hoping that the four-year-old could break a run of bad luck that she had endured in her most recent starts.
Apprentice Sam Weatherley delivered on Fursdon’s wishes with a stylish effort that saw Yearn positioned beautifully against the rail throughout after jumping well from an inside barrier. Angled into the clear by Weatherley at the 300m mark, the Savabeel mare produced a powerful finishing burst between runners to snatch victory from Ruud Not Too in the shadows of the winning post.
While outwardly the performance seemed to happen relatively smoothly, Weatherley reported not all had been what it seemed.
“She gave me a very very tough ride today,” he said.
“She was on the toe through the birdcage and wanted to race very keenly in the running. I was in trouble there for a while, but she has got an incredible turn of foot.
“She was very tough. I always had the feeling she was going to win but it took a little longer than I thought.”
Fursdon admitted she had her doubts as to whether the mare had made it to the line first.
“I thought she had won but you never know sometimes so we had to wait for the photo finish,” she said.
“This is the first time we have backed her up so quickly, but it was a really good strong run to the line.”
Fursdon advised the ultimate goal for the mare was the Gr.1 Fiber Fresh NZ Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes (1600m) at Te Aroha on 7 April, with a run at Tauranga on 24 March as the most likely lead-up to her Te Aroha task.