WAGGA trainer Dave Heywood has dedicated promising galloper Calke Abbey’s win in yesterday’s $15,000 Class 2 Handicap (1000-metres) at Corowa to his late niece.
Mother-of-four Kellie Wall, 46, lost her three-year battle with cancer last week.
Her funeral will be held at Sacred Heart Church in North Albury today.
Kellie is the daughter of long-time stable supporter and former Riverina publican Russ Milne.
“The win is a bit of a welcome tonic to the family after sadly losing Kellie last week,” Heywood said.
“She was a champion.
“It’s a huge loss at a relatively young age.
“Her father, Russ, has been in horses with me for years and years and we have enjoyed our fair share of success over the years.”
Kellie, well-known among the Border’s swimming, basketball and netball ranks, is survived by husband Russell and children Laura, Jake, Evie and Lani.
Calke Abbey ($3.60-fav) was given the run of the race by apprentice Megan Taylor.
Taylor settled off the speed before fanning wide entering the straight.
Once straightened, Calke Abbey produced a devastating turn of foot to quickly open up a winning break and careered away for a 3¼-length victory over Little Roller ($11) and Adolescent ($7).
Heywood said he was confident Calke Abbey would be hard to beat after winning twice from three first-up attempts.
“It was a fairly dominant win and he looks to be an above average horse in the making,” he said.
“The only time he has been beaten first-up was when having his first start and he run third.
“He also seems to have an affinity with the Corowa track with two wins now from three starts there.
“I think he is going to make the grade and turn out to be a fair horse down the track.”