Second Innings’ joy for Foote

Ben Foote1Cambridge trainer Ben Foote (pictured)was given much of the credit after Hastings eight-year-old Second Innings made a successful jumps debut at Riccarton today.

A winner of three of his 21 flat starts, Second Innings started favourite in today’s Trevinos Restaurant & Bar Maiden Hurdles and he lived up to expectations winning the 3100-metre event by three and a quarter lengths from Yardstick in the hands of Aaron Kuru.

“He did a lot of his early work with Ben Foote,” said trainer and part-owner Paul Nelson. “We knew he was pretty useful, but it’s his first start so we won’t get too carried away.”

Second Innings was bred by Garry and Jan Sherratt, long-time supporters of the Nelson stable, and they race the eight-year-old son of Yamanin Vital with Foote, Kim Rogers and Nelson.

“He’s from a good family, he’s from the same family as Proposition and Just Not Cricket,” said Nelson.

Foote and Rogers were also in the syndicate which raced Proposition, whose wins included the 2008 McGregor Grant Steeplechase as well as the 2011 Manawatu Steeplechase. Their partners in Proposition were the Sherratts, former race caller Keith Haub and Byerley Park’s Elias Nakhle.

Second Innings’ win came eight years after the Sherratts and Nelson combined to win the Grand National Hurdles with Just Not Cricket, who had earlier won successive Great Northern Hurdles at Ellerslie from 2006.

Second Innings went into today’s event with strong flat form, having finishing second to Reka in the Parliamentary Handicap at Trentham then third to the Terry Wenn-trained Jochen Rindt in the Listed Woods Contracting Taumarunui Gold Cup at Te Rapa.

Before tackling the two winter features he won an amateur riders’ event at Hastings effortlessly in the hands of Steven Barlow.

Second Innings could attempt to complete a double at the Grand National meeting as he is an acceptor in Saturday’s Speights Mid Ale Premier Hurdle.

“You don’t get a lot of one-win opportunities so it’s likely we will go that way but we’ll see how he pulls up,” said Nelson.