Tavis Court makes long awaited return to winning form

Tavis Court makes long awaited return to winning form2 Sep 2023

By Kevin Robertson, LOVERACING.NZ News Desk

Popular winter sprinter Tavis Court found his winning groove again when he showed all his fighting qualities to claim his first victory in nearly a year at Wanganui on Saturday.

The tough as teak eight-year-old had hinted at a return to the winners’ enclosure with mostly improved showings in his last few starts and found the right race to compete against his younger rivals in the rating 88 1200m contest.

Apprentice Lemmy Douglas used his 3kg claim effectively to reduce the Anna Clement-trained son of Tavistock’s topweight to a manageable 57kgs and the old stager delivered as he powered home in the middle of the track to defeat the unlucky Flower Of Wanaka, who was held up most of the home straight, by a neck.

Clement has seen enough from her stable favourite lately to consider him a winning prospect as long as he struck the right conditions.

“He loves it at Wanganui and his last three or four runs have been better, so I thought if we could place him well he had another win in him,” Clement said.

“He is up in the weights so Lemmy’s claim was invaluable and he had ridden him well at his last start so that gave me confidence.

“He galloped well during the week so I thought today might be the day and that’s how it worked out.”

Clement will now look to the Hastings Spring Carnival, which kicks off on 9 September, for her next target.

“We will see if there is something at Hastings for him as he goes well there,” she said.

“He ran third in the Spring Sprint (Gr.3, 1400m) last year and back in 2019 he was runner-up on all three days.

“Now he has got his confidence back I’m hoping he can do it again there.”

Tavis Court has now won nine of his 48 starts and more than $247,000 in prizemoney for his owners, Graham and Annette Hill who bred him from their Keeper mare, Keep Her Free.

Keep Her Free is the granddaughter of eight race winner Free Court, the dam of Gr.1 Queensland Derby (2400m) winner, Court Ruler.