Apr 07, 2013
Courtesy of Racing Victoria - Ben Asgari. Banca Mo Warrnambool bound after claiming Pakenham Cup
Tasmanian galloper Banca Mo put the disappointment of missing a run in last weekend's Bendigo Mile (1600m) behind him with a victory in today's $100,000 Centrebet Pakenham Cup (1750m) for trainers David and Scott Brunton.
After having to be scratched at Bendigo when suitable transport couldn't be arranged for the five-year-old son of Tough Speed, co-trainer Scott Brunton said Banca Mo would now head towards the Listed $200,000 Sungold Milk Warrnambool Cup (2350m) on May 2.
"I'd take this any day of the week, it's a huge thrill and we got pretty excited about it," Brunton said.
"It was a fantastic ride, Ben's never ridden him badly and I don't know why he doesn't get more opportunities.
"This horse has had no luck this preparation and I think he's top class even though we all tend to overrate our own horses.
"When Lady Lynette retired it left a pretty big hole in our stable but this horse has been outstanding, he's our little champion.
"There's a 2000 metre race at Flemington in two-and-a-half weeks which will lead him in nicely to the Warrnambool Cup. I reckon he'll run 2400 and he loves a wet track so that's where we're headed."
Settling in third position early, jockey Ben Knobel eased Banca Mo into the clear at the 400 metre mark with the gelding appearing under severe pressure as the field approached the home turn.
Under hard riding entering the home straight, Banca Mo ($4.20) drew alongside the leader Dany The Fox ($3.30F) inside the final 200 metres and despite wanting to lay in, proved too strong for the favourite in the run to the post to score by nearly a length on the line.
In the race for third position over three lengths away, Storm Burst ($3.50) finished powerfully down the outside to narrowly edge The Wingman ($10) in a photo.
Speaking after today's victory, Knobel said the win was the highlight of his career to date.
"That's probably my biggest winner and it's thanks to Scotty and David (Brunton) for being loyal and putting me back on, I've got a good connection with this horse," Knobel said.
"He copped a little bit of a bump coming into the home straight and to his credit he was really tough to the line."