The Michael Moroney and Pam Gerard-trained Tiny Terror was a debut winner at Te Rapa on Saturday, but it was anything but plain sailing for the son of Shamexpress.
The three-year-old was promoted to first following a Stewards’ Enquiry that saw the strongly supported favourite Von Trapp relegated to second.
In an on-speed dominated affair, Tiny Terror sat outside the leader Von Trapp for much of the contest but was denied clear-running in the home straight by the wayward favourite, who shifted out over the concluding stages.
The final margin of just a head was telling in the placings being reversed, with Cyber Attack three-quarters away in third.
“It’s not the ideal way to win and I feel a bit sorry for the other owners, but I think it was a fair decision,” Gerard said.
“He was a first-starter against some quite good horses and we wanted to get a line on him.
“We do think he is pretty good. He’s a very strong horse that trialled up really well.
The win of Tiny Terror will provide a small tonic for prominent Sydney racehorse owner Max Whitby, who recently lost his wife Jenny after a long-running battle with illness.
A passionate racing man, Whitby is a friend to many in the racing industry on both sides of the Tasman.
“We have had a few offers for the horse but Max Whitby has been a fantastic owner for me,” Gerard said.
“I’ve had three horses for him and all three of them have been named after his grandchildren and this is the last one.
“Max lost his wife Jenny recently and this victory is for her.”
“We will see how the horse pulls up. He seems to be matching-up pretty well against the other early three-year-olds, so he will probably keep going.”
The hitherto unbeaten Von Trapp lost no admirers in defeat, with trainer Richard Collett saying raceday experience was the key to overcoming his greenness. – NZ Racing Desk