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Yacck recalls win for 1976 Riverton Cup "De Lomond" who won for her part time trainer Wallie Turner.
Reading about the Riverton Cup has bought back memories for Mrs Turner as she remembers well when her husband trained the winner in 1976. De Lomond was the rank outsider and stormed home to win a very memorable time for both her and her late husband.
It was hard work training and racing horses part time as it meant that we had to work as well to support the passion we had. We lived next door to the Riverton racecourse, which was one advantage as Wallie worked at the Makarewa Freezing Works and I stayed home, and had to look after the horses after he had worked them in the morning before work. I use to get the housework done then feed the horses and get everything ready for Wallie after work. Sometimes I would load them into the horsefloat and pick him up after work and head to the trials and races.
I remember Bill Hillis who trained and rode for Hazlett lived next door at Simper Lodge. He was a marvellous person who helped me out whenever I asked. He was the perfect gentleman and even though we were competitive in the racing game he would do whatever he could to help us out.
De Lomond was a 4 year old and was a newcomer to cup class. Of course we were the underdog that day and was paying 50-1.
We only managed to get into the field when last year's winner Zee Bee was withdrawn.
De Lomond was of the family, which produced Royal Lancer who won the Riverton Cup and Invercargill Gold Cup in 1941.
She was bred by Wallies brother of Pine Bush
Russell McAra was the jockey that day and this ride gave him a trifecta in that it was the third winner in three years for him, with Zee Bee in 1975 and Loch Linnhe in 1974.
He said "I let her sprint from the half for a furlong and then steadied her for the turn. I felt really confident here as she was travelling so well and felt nothing else was going as good as her. McAra said nothing was prepared to be the pacemaker so it was left to us. It was a thrill for all of us and all the hard work and disappointments you get with racing seemed a distant memory.