Aviator’s cup victory tops bumper night for Cortopassi

Headshot of Cameron Newbold
Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
Trainer-driver Aldo Cortopassi.
Camera IconTrainer-driver Aldo Cortopassi. Credit: Mary Meagher

Trainer-driver Aldo Cortopassi has enjoyed a brilliant night at Harold Reid Paceway on Saturday, topped by victory in the $20,000 GWN Albany Pacing Cup (2683m).

Cortopassi finished with four winners on the night, the highlight being talented four-year-old Naval Aviator who held off all challengers in the Albany Harness Racing Club’s biggest feature race of the season.

Driven by Cortopassi, Naval Aviator started smartly to cross from gate four on the front line to lead the field of 10 runners and from there he was able to dictate the race. Supported into $4.20 on the tote, Naval Aviator led throughout and kicked strong in the final lap to surge clear of a bunching field and win by 4.7m on the line.

Better Finish started $2.70 favourite in the 2019 edition of the cup and got off the inside to finish strongly and grab second for reinsman Aaron Beckett while the Matthew Saw-trained pair October Brown and Estocada were third and fourth respectively.

Cortopassi’s winning evening began when raging favourite Theo Aviator easily saluted in the opening race to make it seven career wins in 18 starts.

Tims Portrait led all the way in the Bottle-O North Road Pace (1828m) with Cortopassi in the sulky again and Naval Aviator made it a winning treble.

The night was not done yet though as Trust My Judgement proved too strong for his rivals in race six to hand the Cortopassi team four victories on the nine-race card.

Trainer Barry Howlett and driver Beckett finished with a winning double, combining to win the Simone Tomaszek Pace (2258m) with Millwood Gucci before Mickie Gee made it two wins from only four career starts.

Local trainer Bob Poolman also tasted success on the card with Art Tutor scoring a tough win in race seven.

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