Racing at Cessnock on Monday and the day belonged to Aaron Bullock as he landed a double, which took his tally of winners for the season past the century. The Singleton boy who these days is one of Kris Lees stable riders spent his apprenticeship riding trackwork at Cessnock for his master Todd Howlett. Bullock reached his century when Kim Waugh’s flashy chestnut White Boots ($1.55) took out the 1570 metre Advanced Pest Control Class 2.
Bullock put the odds-on favourite in the box seat from the outset and the three-year-old surged clear in the closing stages. Bullock was over the moon on returning to scale on White Boots. “I have worked hard to reach the century for the first time after not riding for three months earlier in the season. I was having weight problems but I had a break and got my weight down. Kris Lees has been a great supporter and a high percentage of my winners have come from his stable. Kris trained my first metropolitan Saturday meeting during the year. I was rapt to ride my hundredth today because my mother and twin brother came down from Singleton to watch me ride today” Bullock said.
The second of Bullocks’ winners was the former Victorian gelding Nathan Road. The latter was starting for the first time since joining the Tanya Randell stable from Victoria. Randell and her partner Mal Ollerton purchased the five-year-old which had his last Victorian start at Tatura in September. Nathan Road ($3.20) was heavily backed after an easy Cessnock barrier trial win recently.
The evergreen Robert Thompson took his amazing career tally of winners to 4359 when he also landed a double at Cessnock. He was aboard the heavily backed Pluck and Lucky, all the way winner of the 900 metre SENPOS Point Of Sale 2YO Maiden. Trained by Allan Denham, Pluck and Lucky was backed from $3.20 into $2.10. She had to overcome a wide draw and Thompson rode her hard to cross the field and lead in the run to the home turn.
In the final event the East Cessnock Bowling Club Benchmark 55 (1150m) Thompson brought outsider Pierone ($21) from back in the field to win. The filly was formally trained by Greg Hickman and was having her first start for Scone trainer Rod Northam.
Hawksbury based Robbie Brewer also booked home a double. He was aboard the $1.55 favourite Hendo’s Magic in the opening event the Hungerford Hill Wines Class 1 Plate (2125m). The three-year-old was under threat on the home turn but class prevailed and he drew clear late. In the Bidfood Newcastle Maiden Plate (1570m) he steered home Red Brocade ($5) for Jason Coyle.