One could say that the three-year-old gelding BASE CAMP would be hitting the heights after winning the third race of the day, the Hunter Charity Network Prov & Ctry Maiden Handicap (1300m) at Newcastle on Thursday 20th April.
He was able to break his maiden status at only his fourth race start after running fourth then two second placings, all at Newcastle. The son of the American-bred stallion Moysater (USA) out of a Last Tycoon mare in Better Days, started favourite and was fairly impressive justifying his prohibitive odds of $1.60.
Jess Taylor was declared as the replacement rider for Tommy Berry and It turned out to be to Jess’s good fortune as BASE CAMP’s victory gave her a double after she was successful on the other stable runner, Art of Defence in the first of the day.
The betting fluctuations showed that BASE CAMP was always “into red figures”. He had to carry the top weight of 59.0kgs and would jump from barrier five out of the eight allocated.
After jumping cleanly with the field, Jess was happy to let Android (trained by Terry Evans) go to the front and after a couple of hundred metres, eased BASE CAMP and eventually took a sit outside that horse which was setting a solid tempo.
Jess and her mount remained there as they passed the 600 metres mark and it was just prior to being 400 metres from home the jockey pulled BASE CAMP up alongside the leader, still on the bridle and travelling nicely.
Although there was no explosive turn of foot, BASE CAMP, being confidently ridden, got to the front and to keep his mind on the job Jess gave him a couple of slaps of the “persuader” maintaining his tempo.
One hundred metres out the duo were a length in front of Android and heading for victory, with Explosive Prince closing pretty quickly from back in the field.
Passing the winning post it was BASE CAMP just over a length ahead of Android then Explosive Prince. The time for the 1300 metres journey was 1:18.24 the last 600 metres sectional took 34.63.
Congratulations to the owners J W Kelly Suffolk Vale Co., to jockey Jess Taylor for her heady ride and to the team at Singleton Racing for getting BASE CAMP consistently performing well.