Tulloch Lodge accolades were shared between Gai Waterhouse and her husband Robbie after Tullamore came out on top in a hard-fought slog to win the Provincial Stayers Championship Final at Hawkesbury on Saturday.
“This horse is another Robbie special … a typical New Zealander who will stay all day,” stable spokesman Bruce Slade said.
While Gai has reached Hall of Fame status as a trainer, her bookmaking husband is highly-regarded as a talent scout for the stable.
His forays into the New Zealand form has helped Tulloch Lodge source high-class staying talent, including Descarado.
Tullamore, while not regarded in the same class as last year’s Caulfield Cup winner, races in the same silks.
“He has taken a while to put things together but he’s a horse Gai has always had a lot of time for,” Slade said.
“We decided to take the blinkers off today because when he’s been beaten a few times it was because he hasn’t seen the other horse coming.”
After reaching the lead Tullamore, backed into $3.60 favouritism, dictated his own terms and shrugged off a brief challenge from Palasport ($8) before scoring by two lengths.
Sandberg ($4) finished another 4-1/2 lengths away third, just ahead of stablemate Hollywell ($17).
Slade said Waterhouse would almost certainly send the Savabeel four-year-old to Brisbane for the winter carnival.
“Now that he is winning I would think Gai would keep going with him,” he said.
Jockey Tommy Berry rode Tullamore to the letter despite taking longer than expected to reach the lead.
“When you are riding a Tulloch Lodge stayer you know they are going to keep going and I was always confident from the turn,” Berry said.
“In the end he was just as strong on the line as he was at the start.”