Day At The Track

Ameretto shows her quality in the Victoria Cup

06:37 PM 15 Oct 2017 NZDT
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Ashlee Grives, harness racing
Ashlee Grives steered Ameretto to an impressive second place in the Victoria Cup on Saturday night.

She has been dubbed the best harness racing mare in Australian harness racing and after the run Ameretto produced in Saturday night’s Group 1 Victoria Cup, it is easy to see why.

Owned by Bathurst’s Ryan and Tracey Grives, Ameretto ($22.90) placed second to star horse Lennytheshark ($1.20) as she motored home down the straight at Melton in the 2,240 metres feature.

With former trainer Ashlee Grives in the gig behind the daughter of Million Dollar Cam, she actually made up ground on Lennytheshark as the post loomed. In the end 3.6m separated the pair.

“She was amazing and it was a big thrill. It was certainly good to reunite with her and get the job done,” Bathurst driver Grives, who last steered Ameretto in May, said.

“Lenny, he’s an absolute flyer. We knew with the right run she could be in contention, but when Lenny drew one, we knew he’d be very hard to beat. To finish second to him is a big thing, she was the only mare in the race as well.”

Now part of Kerryn Manning’s team, Ameretto had won six consecutive races prior to the $200,000 Victoria Cup. It was a step up in class, but she showed her quality.

Going from barrier two, Ameretto found a spot three back on the pegs as Lennytheshark led the way. Into the home straight, Grives guided her into the sprint lane.

“The lane couldn’t come quick enough. In the last 50 metres she was absolutely motoring, she just got fully wound up and they hit the post,” Grives said. 

“I couldn’t be happier with that result. She just follows the speed and peels off those sectionals.”

By Anya Whitelaw

Reprinted with permission of the Western Advocate

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