Thornton produces top ride to win Marton Cup

Cambridge jockey Trudy Thornton could not have done more to secure the ride on Guns At Five in this month’s Gr. 2 Platinum Homes Wellington Cup than she did at Awapuni today.

Thornton won the 2009 Wellington Cup on Megapins for Balcairn trainers John and Karen Parsons and she produced a 10 out of 10 ride on Guns At Five in the Listed $55,000 Gallagher Marton Cup. And it was a performance which was recognised by trainer Chris Wood.

“It was a lovely ride,” said Wood. “We had to be positive out of the gates. He had been having bad luck in the running in his last few starts. It was nice to see him get a trouble-free run and everything go to plan.”

Thornton settled Guns At Five into fourth position, one-out and one-back, following Figure Again, McDaids and Smartly, and had him poised to challenge on straightening for the run home.

Smartly ranged up to head Figure Again early in the home straight and when Thornton asked Guns At Five to accelerate there was never a doubt over the winner. Guns At Five surged away to score by two lengths from Smartly.

Thornton deflected praise over her performance on Guns At Five.

“We got in an absolutely perfect position and he was travelling well all the way,” she said. “He was never in doubt turning for home. It was a great feeling. He’s got a bit of class and a lot of heart.”

Thornton has had only three raceday rides on Guns At Five and has a good record on the son of Duelled. Her first ride on the six-year-old was on October 13 when winning the Listed Agrodome Rotorua Plate and she was also aboard when he finished third to More Than Sacred in the Gr. 3 Waikato Times Gold Cup last month.

Between the Rotorua win and the Waikato Times Gold Cup Guns At Five finished a close second to Little Alfie Brown in the Listed Ricoh Feilding Gold Cup and third to Spring Cheer in the Gr. 3 Christchurch Casino NZ Cup.

Guns At Five took his record to nine wins from 36 starts and Wood rated the Marton Cup as “a sweet victory.”

“He’ll go back home tonight and we’ll be back down at Trentham for the Wellington Cup,” said Wood, who also has the Gr. 1 Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup on Guns At Five’s programme.