Celebrating’s win after mid-race gallop ‘pretty special’

Graeme Anderson
Graeme Anderson
Westwood Beach pacer Celebrating overcame a mid-race mistake to produce a stunning win from a seemingly hopeless position at Wingatui yesterday.

The Graeme Anderson-trained 3yr-old looked to have lost his winning chance when galloping with 1200m left to run in race 3.

Celebrating not only caught the field after losing 10 lengths, he then charged around for driver Matthew Williamson and dug deep in the home straight to win in spectacular style.

When the Mach Three pacer galloped and almost ruled himself out of contention, Anderson was not particularly happy, but did not give up on his horse’s chances.

"At the time I said he could still win," Anderson said.

"But I thought it would be if he just sat at the back and ran past them.

"To do what he did was pretty special, even though he probably beat a bad lot. Horses just don’t do that."

Celebrating was cantankerous in his previous start at Wyndham before showing his wild streak again yesterday.

The pacer was due for a break following his Wyndham run, but Anderton did not want to end the horse’s campaign on that note.

The horse’s wayward traits are nothing new for Anderson, who dealt with similar from his half-brother, Terrorway.

Terrorway all won six of his starts for the Westwood Beach trainer before going on to star at Grand Circuit level in Australia.

"It is a bit of family trait. That is why his half-brother took until January of his 4yr-old season to have a start.

"Their mother, Rejoicing, was a very good mare and she was the same."

Celebrating is the first of Rejoicing’s progeny Anderson has had in his barn since Terrorway.

The 3yr-old’s empathic victory completed a brilliant three days for the trainer after he produced Spirit Of St Louis and American Lightning to win at Winton on Saturday.

The cancellation of racing for the immediate future will hurt.

"It has happened just as we have some nice horses ready to go."

"But from a stockman’s point of view it would not be the worst thing for a horse like Spirit Of St Louis to have a couple of weeks off."

Edendale trainer Craig Laurenson enjoyed a good day at yesterday’s Wingatui meeting, winning two of the six harness races.

Laurenson struck success in yesterday’s opener when Sage Trouble scored the second win of her career.

The 6yr-old was aided by a patient drive by Allan Beck, who gave her an economical run in the running line before waiting until the home turn to angle her out for her winning run.

Laurenson made it a trotting double when Miss Bamboocha narrowly won yesterday’s feature trot.

Miss Bamboocha was driven with the same kind of patience her winning stablemate was.

McIlwrick gave the 7yr-old a perfect run in the one-one throughout and did not launch her for her winning claim until the point of the home turn.

Those tactics paid off when Miss Bamboocha scored by a head over grass track specialist Matai Jetstar at the finish.

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