Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators
Not only was Miracle Moose’s stylish victory in the 2130m The Running Camel Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night a pointer to his prospects in the rich Fremantle and WA Pacing Cups in January, but it also gave trainer Nathan Turvey and driver Emily Suvaljko an extra reason to celebrate their respective birthdays.
Suvaljko was delighted to drive a winner the night before celebrating her 21ST birthday, while Turvey chalked up his 44TH birthday the following day.
Friday night’s success reminded the highly successful trainer-driver combination of Suvaljko’s win on her 20TH birthday last year when she drove the Turvey-trained Carter Micheal to a six-length victory over Crocodile Kid at Gloucester Park at the stallion’s final race before retiring to the stud.
“I wasn’t happy with Miracle Moose until the past ten days,” said Turvey. “All this preparation he hasn’t been right, and it was his feet that were causing problems. We changed a few things, including his shoeing, and now all is well.
“He is a versatile horse, and we are looking forward to the big Cups in January. We know his best is right up there, and he showed how good he is when he came from last and went past some pretty good horses when second to Vultan Tin in the Pinjarra Cup last February.”
Suvaljko said that she was confident going into Friday night’s event. “Miracle Moose gave me a really good feel at his previous start,” she said. “It was in Free For All grade, and he got pushed back before running fifth behind Bletchley Park. That showed he was back to his best, and I wasn’t too afraid to do that bit of work early in tonight’s race.”
Miracle Moose, the $1.90 favourite from the No. 2 barrier, was beaten out by the flying Thereugo before Suvaljko sent Miracle Moose to the front after 400m. Miracle Moose set a moderate early pace before dashing over the final quarters in 27.6sec. and 28.1sec.
He defeated the fast-finishing My Carbon Copy by 4m, rating 1.56.2, and the Mach Three gelding, who has 13 owners, including Turvey, has raced 33 times in Western Australia for 11 wins and 12 placings after his 15 New Zealand starts produced two wins and four placings.