SA Trots -Gawler Carnival of Cups Roundup

The Kapiti Express provided a fairytale result to the inaugural TAB Gawler Platinum Pacing Cup (2070m) at the Carnival of Cups harness meeting on Sunday.

The winner is part-owned and trained at Buchfelde by Aaron Bain, who was one of the key people involved in the creation of the Gawler Carnival of Cups which has social events this week, the thoroughbred Cup on Friday and the greyhound cup on Sunday.

The Kapiti Express also had the biggest cheer squad at the Gawler track on Sunday because also in the ownership group is the 250 member Aaron Bain Racing Lads Club and a number of them were on course to cheer him home.

The Lads Club is one of four clubs organized by Bain to give the public a cheap way to become involved in ownership, and there were many delighted members celebrating the win.

Driven brilliantly by Wayne Hill, The Kapiti Express led throughout to win the inaugural TAB Gawler Platinum Pacing Cup (2070m).

The five-year-old smashed the track record in his win rating 1:54.7 taking two seconds off the previous best run by Go Go Shikari on March 7 earlier this year.

Despite only being a National Rating 53 taking on better performed horses with NR’s up to 88, The Kapiti Express ran $4.20 favourite with punters and didn’t let them down.

Coming from gate two, Hill drove the gelding to lead and then rated him perfectly.

He ran 30.2 and 28.1 second quarters for the first half of the last 1600 metres, then left his rivals standing with a 27.7 second third quarter before slowing to a 29.3 second final quarter.

The Kapiti Express crossed the line 7-1/2 metres clear of Weeroona Boy ($81) with Maharajah ($12), 4-1/2 metres away third.

A good group of ABR Lads Club members and their families invaded the track to be in the winning return to scale photo.

An emotional Aaron Bain was happy to wave the inaugural TAB Platinum Pacing Cup in the air to celebrate the win.

Bain said Hill had driven to a plan and was delighted it had come to fruition.

“The Kapiti Express is one-paced but tough and once he led, Wayne intended to keep him running,” Bain said.

“He was going quick enough to prevent the backmarkers from getting into the race and going for home down the back straight made it near impossible to be caught.

“He was getting tired close to home but had established a winning break.

“This win is a credit to all the staff at Aaron Bain Racing.

“There is pressure on them to ensure the team is worked correctly and prepared for race day and this win is a tribute to them.”

Bain was close to tears as he accepted the trophy.

“I don’t know what it is like to have a Group 1 winner, but this certainly feels like it.”

Bain said the ABR Lads Club had been formed to have a rivalry with the ABR Ladies Club who race the talented mare Arco.

“When Arco won at Globe Derby and The Kapiti Express ran second on the same night it was advantage Ladies Club, but now I think the Lads Club has the bragging rights.” 

  • Story & Photo Graham Fischer