By Isaac Murphy
It was going to take some sort of run to win the stacked Group Two Flying Amy Final and Forbes trainer Jack Smith had just the dog to do it, Jungle Deuce elevating himself to superstar status as he careered away with the biggest win of his blossoming career.
The dog was highly fancied coming into the series a recent winner of the Brother Fox at Dubbo and Group Three New Sensation at Wentworth Park. He tackled his biggest challenge with aplomb – an emphatic 29.54 winner.
Smith, who’s enjoyed tremendous success with cult hero Feral Franky who now stands at stud, couldn’t quite believe he’d found another race dog capable of similar feats right on the back of ‘The Feral’s’ racing retirement.
“I’m so grateful to be a part of the journey this dog’s taking me on. We were a nose away from not being here this week when he won his heat in the pouring rain and we walk away with the Group Two Flying Amy,” he said.
“You can speak about the dog’s talent as much as you want and he’s got plenty of it, but he’s got a sense for the occasion as well. The Group Three New Sensation at Wenty, the Brother Fox at Dubbo and now this. He finds a new level when he needs to.
“There were quicker box dogs than him in that race, but he found a way to muscle his way through at the first turn and he doesn’t get run down when he finds the front.”
Smith was humble as always in victory, but couldn’t help cracking a smile after a big couple of days and with plenty more to look forward to.
“Not a bad couple of days for a bloke from Forbes. I was in the hotel watching New South Wales win Origin last night and now this guy’s come out and won the biggest race of his career thus far,” Smith laughed.
The Listed Dashing Corsair complemented the Flying Amy as the second feature on the card and the race changed complexion dramatically before the jump with the sensational late scratching of former Group One Queensland Cup Winner Classy Ethics.
This left box one vacant and Queensland star Maggie Moo Moo came in for heavy support drawn in box two, but while Zipping Niseko was unwanted in the market her stock continued to rise with a gutsy win.
Interim trainer Tony Brett said he couldn’t be more impressed with the bitch who continued to step up to the plate.
“Only having had her for a few weeks, I’m still learning what she’s capable of. She had to work pretty hard to slide across outside the leader tonight from box seven and looked a sitting duck, but she just keeps finding,” he said.
“She had the wrong dog on her tail too. Maggie Moo Moo was a bit too close for comfort in the run, but this bitch clearly has a will to win which is something you don’t see in stayers as young as her.
“She’s been a treat to have at home … just goes about her business and does the same on the track. Her confidence has got to be sky high for the rest of the carnival.”