It’s a long way from Flemington to Inverell but that change in scenery worked wonders for Aprochier who had his first race – and first win – for the Paul Grills stable on Saturday.
An easier race also helped.
Aprochier has been with the Guyra trainer’s stable for eight weeks now and took out the Peter Tanner Roofing Maiden Plate (1200m) and the top prize of $3305 on Saturday.
Very happy with him. He’ll go on to run a bit of distance. He should get to the 2000-2200 without any problems at all.Paul Grills
A slightly smaller purse than that of the gelding’s last race at Flemington where Aprochier ran 14th and the winner took home $66,000.
Grills was confident the four-year-old would go from strength to strength after the Inverell win and would also step up in distance.
“Very happy with him. He’ll go on to run a bit of distance. He should get to the 2000-2200 without any problems at all,” Grills said.
Grills had four runners at Inverell and while the other three didn’t get onto the podium, there was another run that caught Grills’ eye.
“The mare that run in the second race, she only got beat by three lengths in that,” Grills said of Yisa who finished eighth in the Australian Hotel Class 2 Handicap over 1200 metres.
“It wasn't a bad run, she’s just wasn’t fit enough.”
Grills was also meant to have to runners go around at Muswellbrook on Monday but both were scratched after one of the horses, an in-form gelding by the name of Melted Moments, was struck with Colic.
While Melted Moments didn’t get the chance to notch up another victory, another of Grills’ geldings did just that on Tuesday.
The Skrill was the only horse Grills took to Grafton to race in the Blues Brews & BBQ’S March 11 Benchmark 60 Handicap (2350m) and put in a stunning performance.
After settling last, Peter Graham took off on his mount and went around the field about the 1000-metre mark and took the lead by the 800-metre mark.
The Skrill picked up the pace and by the by the 400-metre mark had opened up a lead of two lengths.
That lead only opened up more.
Graham had a couple looks over the shoulder about 200 metres out but he needn’t have as The Skrill won by four lengths over the Scott Henley-trained Joueur.