Insurgency eyes second Mt Barker Cup

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
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Veteran local stayer Insurgency appears ready to chase an elusive second Mt Barker Cup after producing a fairy tale victory in his 100th career start on Thursday.

Trainer locally by Garry Delane, the 11-year-old has overcome a serious ligament injury that threatened to end his career early and fittingly he ground out a gutsy win in the Rolling Acres Handicap (1850m) to claim his 13th victory in start number 100.

Ridden by Jason Whiting, the Street Cry gelding settled midfield but was rated perfectly as he charged home down the outside to defeat Accrual by a short half head with Ancient Spell a long neck away in third.

Insurgency has been a model of consistency this preparation and firms as a major player in the $35,000 XXXX Gold Mt Barker Cup (2000m) on March 20.

In 2011, Insurgency won the Narrogin Cup then the Mt Barker Cup and was third in the Albany Cup behind Double Barrel.

He has finished sixth in his two attempts at the Mt Barker Cup since that 2011 triumph.

Delane finished with a double at the meeting after promising five-year-old Never Can Tell won the 20-20 Swim For Jim Handicap (110m) by a neck over Blizzard Express to notch his second victory this campaign.

Meanwhile, the enthralling race for the Great Southern jockeys’ premiership continued last Thursday with Albany hoop Mitchell Pateman and defending champion Shaun McGruddy both riding three winners on the card.

Pateman lifted himself to second on the standings with 10 wins for the 2015-16 season after victories aboard smart type Wild Ruby, maiden galloper Super Saxon and stayer Prince Charming.

Super Saxon, having his first start for Mt Barker trainer Alan McNamara Jr, shot home strongly on the inside to win the IR & TM Pope Shearing Contractors Maiden (1300m) by a long head over Protectable.

The Helen Harding-trained Prince Charming fought on strongly in the concluding stages of the MND Awareness Handicap (1850m) to edge out Fairly Hot and Gold Invader after five unplaced runs to start his preparation this time in.

McGruddy also claimed a treble, bookending the meeting with a win on the Alan Smith-trained Key To The World in race 1 and then saluted aboard promising gelding Never Can Tell in the final race of the day.

The talented rider, who leads the premiership with 11 victories, also won aboard impressive Steve Wolfe runner Jester Rock in the Amerillup Pastoral Company Handicap (1300m), the third first-up win of his career.

“He always races well fresh and has always shown me plenty but just hasn’t quite put it together,” Wolfe said.

“We will space his runs, find a nice race for him maybe over the Bunbury carnival and hopefully he puts it all together.”

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