Williamson brothers combine with Flying Ellie to claim Oaks

Flying Ellie and Matthew Williamson (outer) chase down Aardie B Miki and Tim Williams to win the...
Flying Ellie and Matthew Williamson (outer) chase down Aardie B Miki and Tim Williams to win the Southern Oaks Final. PHOTOS: MONICA TORETTO
Brothers Nathan and Matthew Williamson combined with Flying Ellie to send the group 2 Southern Oaks trophy straight to Oamaru.

Matthew gave the filly trained by his brother a perfect trip and she made full use of it when running to a strong victory in the Diamonds Day feature at Ascot Park yesterday.

After putting on father Phil Williamson’s colours in feature races for many years, putting Nathan’s silks for a group 2 event was a relatively new experience for Matthew.

While making the most of the opportunity, the reinsman was thrilled to deliver a feature race win for his brother.

"It is super. Obviously everyone knows what a great job Nathan is doing as a trainer", Matthew said.

"I am just lucky enough that he is such a good trainer that he has got more than one good horse in a race like this.

"To pick up the drive on a beautifully mannered filly — she couldn’t be nicer to drive. It is great to get the win for him."

Flying Ellie’s win could be considered an all-Oamaru victory as both Williamsons were born and raised in North Otago and the filly is raced by Oamaru owners Mark and Melanie Kingsbury.

Flying Ellie brought a stronger form reference into the Southern Oaks than any of her rivals could boast with her second placing in the group 1 Northern Oaks.

Williamson slotted the filly into the trail behnd eventual runners-up Aardie B Miki and driver Tim Williams.

Though Aardie B Miki dug deep in the run home, Flying Ellie kept coming to notch her second group race victory.

"Tim was the one I was hoping to follow. I was thinking he would be the one that wouldn’t hand up to anything else", Williamson said.

"As it turned out he did try to hand up, but luckily for us Ruby Roe wouldn’t go on to the lead.

"If anything it took us the straight to wear the leader down. It kicked pretty well at the top.

"But then halfway down my filly really started to get into her work and she was strong to the line."

Rubira and Blair Orange (outer) fight off a big challenge from Always Dreaming and Nathan...
Rubira and Blair Orange (outer) fight off a big challenge from Always Dreaming and Nathan Williamson to win at Group One level on Diamonds Day.
Nathan Williamson went close to landing a big Diamonds Day training double when Always Dreaming came up agonisingly short in the Diamond Creek Farm Classic.

The colt fought out an epic home-straight battle with Rubira in the first running of the race at group 1 level but the latter dug in to hold out a strong bid from his rival.

Rubira took his record to three starts for three wins, having formed an unbeatable combination with driver Blair Orange.

"He is quite a cool horse. He is quite nervy but when he is out he is lovely", Orange said.

"He made his own luck today and he just held on from a gallant Always Dreaming."

Stonewall Stud trainers Steve and Amanda Telfer enjoyed a big Diamonds Day, producing Built For Glory to win the group 2 Southern Supremacy Stakes and Beach Flybye to win the Southern Country Cups Final.

Built For Glory ran to an early lead with driver Tim Williams controlling the 3-year-old feature before his colt fought hard to hold out his stablemate Double Jeopardy.

"It worked in our favour getting the lead pretty cheaply, but it probably wasn’t his favoured position as he hasn’t done a lot of racing there."

"Luckily enough he was good enough to stick his head out on the line."

Williams also had Beach Flybye in front throughout, while the reinsman also combined with the Telfers to win a minor race with Miki Bennett.