10 May 2023

Bonnie puts on a clinic to win Cooktown Cup

| Cape York Weekly
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SEASONED jockey-turned trainer Bonnie Thomson celebrated her first major win on Saturday when she claimed the Cooktown Cup with Balmaceda.

A previous winner of the Cup as a jockey, this was Thomson’s first big win as a trainer.

The Townsville horsewoman put on a clinic at the Cooktown Turf Club to claim the feature event over 1760m.

Thomson jumped to the front with Balmaceda and quickly put on the brakes to dictate the speed.

When she gave her mount a squeeze approaching the straight, the six-year-old responded and kicked clear to record an easy victory in the $13,000 race.

The typically laid back Thomson was not getting carried away on Sunday.

“Yeah it’s all right,” she said of her first Cup win as a trainer.

“Just another day, really.”

The horse is owned by her son Dustin Carne and was purchased specifically for the Cooktown Cup, she said.

Earlier in the day, Thomson had another winner when she rode grand old mare Our Recipe to a three-length victory in the 0-60 Handicap (1000m).

The $3.20 favourite had too much toe for her rivals and gave Townsville trainer Ronnie Finch a deserved victory.

It was a great day out for female jockeys as Cairns apprentice Emily Cass notched a treble in the middle of the card.

She rode two for Fred Wieland and one for Jenny Ball.

Cool Attitude ($2.60) was an impressive winner in the Class 2 Handicap (1290m) for Ball.

Wieland’s Dream I Can was sent out as a $1.30 favourite in the Open Handicap (1290m) and did not disappoint backers, beating his two rivals.

Dream I Can is owned by Cairns publican Tom Hedley.

Wieland’s other winner was Sweet June, who bolted to victory in the Class B Handicap (1400m).

Cass gave the $3 favourite every chance and the mare did the rest.

The day kicked off with Ricky Ludwig making a rare appearance at a bush track.

The Tolga trainer sent Serious Moves up for an easy kill.

Frank Edwards put in a sit-and-steer job and the $1.40 favourite won with a leg in the air.

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