Monnay winning at Waikouaiti earlier this month. His win at
Wyndham on Saturday takes his record with Phil Williamson
to four wins in his past five starts. Photo by Matt Smith.
Monnay's form is hard to ignore, and it is becoming
harder for his trainer to ignore the big races just around the
The 5yr-old Monarchy gelding trotted his way to victory at
Wyndham on Saturday, running the 3200m in 4.07.6, a time good
enough to win the Dominion Handicap in 2007.
Monnay's patch of form - four wins in his past five starts -
is not just testament to the talents of Oamaru trainer Phil
Williamson, but also Wyndham owners and former trainers Megan
Irvine and Ivan Gutsell, who decided to send the gelding to
''It was their call to send him to us, and they're thrilled
they made it so it's worked out great for him,'' Williamson
Williamson is quick to apportion plenty of credit to Irvine
and Gutsell, and suggested life on a new property can often
make a difference for a horse.
''He's just turned the corner for whatever reason,'' he said.
''I can't put a finger on what I've done - he was with a good
trainer. You can pick up horses off good trainers and turn
them around just with a change of scenery.''
Williamson's stable will benefit massively from the extra
Jewels races added earlier this month, with 5yr-old trotters
now having their own $100,000 race in June. Springbank Sam
and Monnay give Williamson the top two spots on that
category's leaderboard, and Murcielargo is not far away in
All three will likely head to the 4 and 5yr-old trotting
championship at Addington in late March, and Williamson sees
no reason to give Monnay a spell at this stage.
''We'll probably just carry on racing, because when you're in
such good form, I don't see much to be gained by putting him
out,'' he said.
''He seems to want to be there. And when it comes to the
business end, he wants to put his hand up.''
Galleons Triumph had his mind on the job in the lower-class
trot, giving Alan Mason an owners' quinella. The Kakanui
retiree has a share in the ownership of Galleons Triumph,
while he also races Nickelson - who finished second - out of
Nathan Williamson's Ryal Bush property.
Galleons Triumph unwound nicely to zip past Nickelson in the
closing stages on Saturday, winning by three lengths.
Williamson said the inconsistent form-line was not all of
Galleons Triumph's making.
''He jumped a bare patch at Waikouaiti, so it wasn't really
his fault, but he's been looking like a maiden winner ready
to go for a while.''
Matthew Williamson drove both Monnay and Galleons Triumph to
victory, and also picked up wins behind Supersub and Royal
Impression to go into the Australian young drivers
championship, starting in the New South Wales town of
Goulburn today, in great form.