Zimmerman completes sentimental Anniversary double Sat, 21 Jan 2012
Fairway Wish completed a sentimental Anniversary Handicap double at Trentham today for Otaki trainer Karen Zimmerman when he won the Listed 1600-metre feature at odds of 35-to-one.
The Sandtrap gelding is closely to Zimmerman’s 2006 Anniversary Handicap winner King Of Ashford and just as importantly to Govicar and Paddy’s Wish, the two horses that put her on the map in the 1990s. She also won the Anniversay with Barinka two years ago.
Fairway Wish’s dam Menta Verde is a half-sister to Zimmerman’s former star trio, who between them won 27 races under her care. As well as his Anniversary success, King Of Ashford won the Gr. 3 Thompson Handicap over the same 1600 metres, the Gr. 2 Hawke’s Bay Cup and the Listed Matamata Cup. He won another three races in Australia when transferred to the Freedman stable.
Govicar credited Zimmerman with her first stakes success, the 1996 Wanganui Cup, and in total won nine races, one more than Paddy’s Wish.
Fairway Wish was backing up today from an unplaced run at Awapuni last Saturday, when he carried 58 kilograms in Rating 85 grade. Zimmerman opted for the higher grade race in the belief that the slightly built gelding would be better served carrying five kilos less.
So it proved as Lisa Allpress rode Fairway Wish positively form his wide draw to take up a prominent position. He was vying for the lead when the field swung for home but looked beaten once headed by Undisclosed and Flash Hapi, but neither horse nor rider would be denied as Fairway Wish responded and clawed his way back to the lead to down Undisclosed, Flash Hapi and the favourite Villifye. She had loomed up with 300 metres remaining but was unable to round off her effort. A protest by connections alleging interference by Undisclosed was dismissed.