Almost Court delivers home town win

Local trainers Barbara Joseph and Paul Jones celebrated a hometown victory when Almost Court claimed a brave front-running win the Listed Canberra Cup (2000m). Almost Court gave the local duo their second win in the race following Fill The Page’s success in 2012. A recent stable acquisition from New Zealand, Almost Caught raced quickly through his grades on the country circuit before winning in Sydney two starts back and running fourth at Randwick last weekend. That hitout proved the perfect Canberra Cup preparation with jockey Christian Reith sending the five-year-old forward early to take control of the race. Booting for home soon after straightening, Almost Court opened a handy gap in the straight and gripped on tenaciously to hold off the fast finishing Admiral Jello with Get On The Grange third. Co-trainer Paul Jones said the win was a team effort. “A lot of work has gone into him. We planned his program pretty meticulously, we were always going to take him through the coastal cups and culminate here. “He’s really come on in leaps and bounds, we’re really happy.” Jones said there were no set plans for Almost Court but said country cups such as Albury and Wagga could be on his agenda. “Great ride by Christian, he probably went a bit keen down the back straight but he got him back under him at the 1000m and was able to kick on the turn.” Reith said the horse had been perfectly prepared. “Last start he was just a bit fresh, that’s why they ran him,” he said. “It was probably the winning move today. “He came home in sensational sectionals and that’s how he felt underneath me too.” Reith said Almost Court had further improvement to come as he continues to mature. “I think it’s still a big learning curve for him this preparation, I think he’s going to be better next prep. “Just that aggressiveness he needs to lose, once he can do that he can step into better races.”