JOCKEY Simon Miller celebrated Albury Racing Club’s first meeting of the new racing season in style, with a winning double on his home track yesterday.
The club was forced to transfer its opening meeting on August 27 to Corowa after the recent wet weather left the track unsuitable for racing.
Miller combined with local trainer Kym Davison to win aboard debutante Escebee in the opening race before also guiding the Kevin Hanley trained Eklands to victory.
Escebee recently won a trial at Corowa by almost 10-lengths, with punters heavily supporting the gelding who started as the $1.50- favourite.
Punters who took the short odds never had any anxious moments after Escebee found the early lead and was never seriously challenged in the home-straight to win by 1½-lengths.
The Brett Cavanough-trained Sapphire Storm ($21) finished runner-up ahead of Speedastro ($6).
Davison said it was an impressive debut considering Escebee was never comfortable on the rain affected track, which was rated a slow (7).
“It was a nice effort and it looks like he is a promising horse in the making,” Davison said.
“His dam Sonic Animation couldn’t handle a track any worse than dead.
“The track was a genuine slow and bordering on heavy in some patches.
“So under the circumstances it was a good win.”
Davison said he would look for a firmer track for Escebee’s next start and would possibly only have two or three starts this preparation.
Miller made it a race-to-race double when Eklands resumed from a 26-week spell to claim the $15,000 Maiden Hcp (1175m).
Eklands finished eighth over the Albury Gold Cup carnival at her only previous start and paid in excess of $50 on the NSW TAB.
Miller was denied a treble and Hanley a double when Magic Shag was overhauled in the concluding stages by Undercurrent in $15,000 Bechmark 70 Hcp (1000m).
Albury trainers won three of the seven races after the Cavanough-trained Scatcat ($15) scored an upset win in the final race.
The club will stage its next meeting on Caulfield Guineas day on October 12.