The Todd Smart trained Hallo Poppet has proven her trainer Todd Smart right, outstaying her rivals over the 2000m to win the 2020 Wagga Picnic Cup on Saturday.
Ridden quietly in third place by Mathew Cahill for the first 1800m of the event, the five-year showed off a stunning finishing burst in the final furlong to win by 0.38 of a length over Shadow of Mordor and George Two.
The former Gundagai trainer was pleased with the result and said the $4000 purchase would continue to make the stable money.
“She is a nice horse, going forward she will win some more races,” Smart said.
“She has only had limited starts and she has placed a lot. We only paid $4000 and now she has won us $20,000.”
The five-year-old Fruehling mare, who has won three times and placed a further six times from 17 starts, had struggled in previous attempts over 2100m and 2300m at Goulburn and Smart said she was better suited to a mile, up to 2000m.
“She probably has too much speed to be a 2300m horse, but she came back to 2000m and won well and I think the perfect distance is going to be the 1800m to be honest,” Smart said.
“It was a good ride by Mathew (Cahill), she was ridden quietly and was too good on the day.”
Hallo Poppet will now be on the quick back up when either racing in a 2000m Benchmark 65 Handicap at Canberra today, or a 2000m Benchmark 58 Handicap at Queanbeyan on Tuesday.
“I actually have her in a Benchmark 65 over the 2000m in at Canberra on Friday (today) and I have her in the (TAB) Highway on the weekend, but I don’t think she will go there,” Smart said.
“She will either go to the Canberra on Friday or Queanbeyan on Tuesday, we will see how she draws.”
My Solaki sizzles at Wagga
Tumbarumba sprinter My Solaki has put in a terrific first up performance at Wagga on Saturday when winning the 1000m Class One Handicap.
The George Dimitropoulos runner was the well supported $2.15 favourite in the event and lived up to that short quote, winning by 1.36 lengths and recording 59.04 seconds for the journey and a very fast 33.91 seconds for the final three furlongs.
Apprentice hoop Heni Ede was in the saddle and had to sit outside the lead in the small field, but the Supreme Class gelding powered away in the final furlong, registering his second win in seven career starts.
“It was very good, he seems to have done it very easily,” Dimitropoulos said.
The Tumbarumba trainer, who currently works out of his stables in Wagga, said My Solaki was maturing nicely ahead of what he hoped would be a lucrative spring racing season.
“He is a funny horse, once he hits the lead, he seems to relax but he has matured quite a bit and should continue to improve and hopefully win some more races,” Dimitropoulos said.
The four-year-old nearly didn’t make it back to the track though, after suffering an eye-abscess whilst spelling in the paddock.
“He had an accident and we really don’t know what happened and something got into his eye and it wasn’t picked up on right away,” Dimitropoulos said.
“We spent about eight grand after an eye operation and he was 50/50 on getting back; we would have paid for the operation regardless, but it is good to see him back healthy and happy.”
Dimitropoulos will now look to set my Solaki for a race at wagga next Saturday, with Ede likely to be back in the saddle.
“There is a 1200m race at Wagga in a week and a half and we will give him a go at that,” Dimitropoulos said.
“Heni has ridden him twice and won on him twice and if I can help it, she will ride him again.”