Top ride gives Boninsky overdue win

Leading northern apprentice Michael Dee earned the praise of Cambridge trainer Margaret Falconer after guiding Boninsky to an overdue win at Ellerslie today.

Boninsky had been off the winner’s list since completing a double when scoring at Ellerslie in April last year, but Dee ensured there was cause for celebration tonight when picking his path to victory in today’s $40,000 Carbine Club Trophy.

Dee gave Boninsky a perfect run fifth on the inner as Skysoblue made the pace from Joey Massino and angled him off the fence turning for home. Boninsky then unleashed a strong finish down the outer, while Neo, who had enjoyed a good trail in third or fourth spot, dived through along the inner to challenge.

Neo looked a big chance to score for Cambridge trainers Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, but Boninksy kept up a strong gallop to get home by a neck, while Joey Massino fought on solidly for third.

Dee was having his first ride on Boninksy and Falconer was full of praise over his handling of the Keeninksy six-year-old.

“He had him in a lovely spot and got him off around the bend,” said Falconer. “He gave him every chance.”

Boninsky has now won four races for his connections and Falconer is keen to start him in the Gr. 3 $100,000 DHL Counties Cup at Pukekohe on November 23.

“He finished close up in it last season and we’ll have another go,” said Falconer. “He’s come up really good this time and he tries really hard.”

Boninsky finished sixth, just a length from the winner Jeu de Cartes in last year’s Counties Cup then went on to run creditable races in the Gr. 3 Waikato Times Gold Cup (fifth to Annie Higgins), the Gr. 2 Lindauer City of Auckland Cup (sixth to Hiace) and the Gr. 3 Hooker Pacific Taranaki Cup (seventh to Capone).

After a couple of below-standard runs, he bounced back to run fourth at Ellerslie last April before finishing strongly into second behind Survived in the Gr. 3 Hawke’s Bay Gold Cup.

Boninsky has had three starts this campaign, beginning with a second over 1400 metres at Taupo then a fast-finishing fourth behind Grand Admiral over 1600 at Ellerslie last month. He indicated he is ready for the step up to 2100 metres at Pukekohe as he kept up a strong gallop past the winning post with Dee taking a while to eventually pull him up.

“He picked them up that easily and he found the line really nicely,” said Dee. “He didn’t want to stop.”