Petticoat Princess proves her point at midweek meet

31 Jan 2018 Seymour Telegraph, Seymour VIC (General News) Seymour trainer Pete Smith sent four-year-old maiden Petticoat Princess to the Benalla races last Wednesday but chose not to go himself. Instead he went to the beach for a break and missed seeing his four-year-old mare win her first race in spectacular style. With only one place in her previous seven starts, punters also showed little interest in the horse, sending her to the barrier at 17/1. Track commentators said while the horse had been steady in her recent two starts, they thought the step up to 1406 m in the $22 000 Jaclyn Symes Member for Northern Victoria third race on the card was a little premature. They felt the horse was overracing although agreed the number two barrier offered the chance of an economical run. Someone forgot to mention that to Petticoat Princess, she barely walked out of the gate and dropped to second last as the field settled. However, apprentice rider Georgie Cartwright showed enormous patience and maturity as she slowly improved her position through the back of the field. But as they began the turn for home Cartwright found herself trapped behind a wall of horses, and when she tried a couple of runs was almost checked. We kept moving across the track and around the 200 m mark we managed to get into the clear, Cartwright said. Pete rang me before the race and told me to try and be in the first four or five but with her start I suddenly found myself further back than where I intended to be, she said. She had travelled well the whole way and I thought if she got out she would be a chance. When Cartwright did get her out she was the widest horse on the track and still at the tail end of the action. But the young jockey never panicked and once she got Petticoat Princess into her stride she showed incredible acceleration. Once we were in the clear she was pretty strong to the line, Cartwright added in a masterpiece of understatement. The horse was still in seventh with 50 m to run and caught Medard literally on the line. Cartwright had only twice touched Petticoat Princess with the whip then went to hands and heels and hung on for the ride. Starting at its long odds Petticoat Princess paid $18 on Super TAB if you were lucky enough to have picked the first four you would have received $13 816 for your modest investment. For Smith the win was a bit of a bragging rights affair he trained at Benalla before switching to Seymour. While he was at the beach, stable representative Gary Parkinson did not seem as surprised by the win as most pundits. We thought she would be a bit close, but when she missed the start we got a bit worried, Parkinson said. But she came home real well and the young rider did really well, he said. We had expectations, Peter certainly did, but she tends to get all fired up when she races and you have got to take your time with her. She has shown Pete plenty and hes got faith in her and shell just keep improving she just had to break that duck and now she has we expect shell go on with it. Seymour jockey Tahlia Hope also had a happy day at Benalla, winning the seventh on the card with Paddy Paynes Honolulu Lass. The pair had won with her at Echuca late last year as one leg of the four winners she landed that day. The other highlight of the day was trainer Robbie Griffiths and rider Nathan Punch landing a double Ambitious Gem in the $22 000 Royal Hotel Benalla Plate and Son of City in the $18 000 Sam Miranda Wines Handicap. Caption Text: Winners: Petticoat Princess (above) in full flight as the field hits the line, giving the horse its maiden win. And Seymours Tahlia Hope (right) celebrates another win at the same Benalla meeting. Pictures: Racing PhotosLicensed by Copyright Agency. You may only copy or communicate this