Queensland's Own Welcome to the best coverage of racing in Queensland Queensland's Best
Horse Racing Only
www.horseracingonly.com.au Horse Racing Only logo
Home Racing Queensland National International Blogs Photo Gallery Links Contact Us


By Graham Potter | Saturday, August 26, 2023

The win of the Corey and Kylie Geran trained Nikau Spur on July 29 and the horse’s subsequent close-up third place finish in his follow-up outing on August 12 had already kept the KO Racing’s colours to the fore in town giving the training/ownership team a good start to the season ... and it got even better at Doomben on August 26 when the self-same Nikau Spur made it two wins in his last three starts, taking out a BM90 contest over 2020m.

In spite of his consistency, Nikau Spur started at seemingly generous odds of $5 in a five-horse field ... with punters rather siding with the big stables of Chris Waller, who saddled the $2.70 favourite Wairere Falls with whom Nikau Spur had dead-heated for third place when they last met, and Tony Gollan, who sent out the $3.90 second favourite Fifth Position.

That would prove to be their mistake.

Nikau Spur’s pervious win had come over 1815m. Following that, his narrow defeat had come over 1835m ... and now the stable saw fit to step up the distance test to the 2020m trip with Mark Du Plessis, who had partnered Nikau Spur in all of his last three starts leading into this race, staying in the saddle, thereby giving his vote of confidence to the chestnut son of Proisir, and providing a presence, with his knowledge of the horse, which would serve Nikau Spur well.

From the break, Du Plessis settled Nikau Spur in second place on the back of Mubariz ($6) as the lesser fancied of the Chris Waller trained runner took the field along at little more than a dawdling gallop.

Halfway down the backstraight apprentice Bailey Wheeler had enough of the ordinary speed and he chased the $6 chance Linthorpe Lad around runners to take up the lead ... meaning Nikau Spur was now back to third place, but still only a little over two lengths behind the new leader.

And still Du Plessis waited ... even allowing Fifth Position to move up along his inside. That briefly put Nikau Spur back to fourth, still those two lengths back, with only the favourite, Wairere Falls, behind him ... and the positioning of these two horses here which would prove a key factor in the finish.

Sprinting off a slow speed is not what stayers want to do and Du Plessis was clearly aware of the fact that he had to get Nakai Spur going early in the straight. After cornering three wide, Du Plessis wasted no time in getting Nakai Spur to start going through his gears ... only taken a moment to look behind him to see exactly where the favourite was ... before continuing to urge Nikai Spur to sustain a strong finishing effort.

Linthorpe Lad, who had brought the field into the home straight, fought on well for much of the straight, but Nikau Spur has his measure and winning momentum when he took over the lead with 100m left to run.

Wairere Falls did threaten briefly over inside the final 75m, but the advantage that Nikau Spur had held over Wairere Falls turning for home and the fact that Du Plessis ensured Nikau Spur got first run on the Waller trained runner when the speed went on, all served to leave the favourite with too much to do ... to the point where Nakai spur was actually holding Wairere Falls again at the line.

A big win, courtesy of a great training effort by the Geran Team effort and a well-judged ride by Du Plessis put the KO racing connections were back in celebration mode.

More articles

Photos: Graham Potter
Photos: Graham Potter
Queensland's Own www.horseracingonly.com.au Queensland's Best