Kerry Weir kicked off 2022 in the best possible fashion when winning Saturday’s Adelong Cup with Crocodile Cod.
Racing at Gundagai Adelong Race Club’s New Year’s Day meeting, Crocodile Cod found himself in a ding-dong battle in the $13,000 feature event over the 1400m journey, battling local hope, the David Blundell-trained Thistledo.
Ridden by Kayla Nisbet, the Tumut galloper found the front, but a game Thistledo fought back as the pair raced neck-and-neck down the Gundagai home straight.
Crocodile Cod ($6) eventually pulled away to win by a 0.43 of a length from Thistledo ($4), while race favourite Bezazzalled ($3.60) for Phil Sweeney and Hannah Williams finished a further 1.51 lengths away in third.
The Cluster gelding did everything wrong in the Adelong Cup, sweating up in the stalls prior to the race, before bombing the start and racing wide but the five-year-old still boasted enough class to get the job done according to Weir.
“It was a good win considering everything,” Weir said.
“He missed the start and had to work hard to get around them and like Kayla (Nisbet) said to me after the race, for the first 600m of the race he was four and five wide.
“He actually switched off though, which is good. Sometimes he can over race, and he looked to have settled nicely.”
Crocodile Cod was on the short back-up after finishing a solid second in the 1400m Benchmark 50 Handicap at Tumut on Boxing Day, and Weir believed a shorter than usual turnaround benefited his gelding at Gundagai
“The other day at Tumut, against Namarari he over raced but maybe that quick back-up took the edge of him,” Weir said.
“He did a lot wrong but tried really hard. I thought the other horse (Thistledo) had him halfway down the straight because he was coming again but he fought back and won.”
The Tumut trainer is confident he has Crocodile Cod worked out and hinted he was the stable’s best chance of winning the Tumut Cup in February.
“I’ve always thought he was a 2000m horse and last prep we had him up to 2000m, but I honestly think he is a 1400m horse, and maybe a mile horse if you keep him fresh and don’t over race him,” Weir said.
“To get him up over 2000m, you have to work him twice as hard and he was a bit flat at times last prep, but over 1400m, I can keep him fresh.
“He is my Tumut Cup horse this year. He will probably back-up in the (Tumut) Mile in January and not race again until the (Tumut) Cup.”
Crocodile Cod’s Adelong Cup victory capped off a stellar day of non-TAB racing at Gundagai-Adelong Race Club, with a good local crowd getting out to enjoy the warm summer conditions and strong racing.
Readers can pick up Friday’s Tumut and Adelong Times for full results along with more stories and social and racing photos.