Concrete wins Queanbeyan opener by 10 lengths

Queanbeyan trainer Joe Cleary said he'd win on the biggest day of racing at his home track and win he did on Wednesday.

A heaving crowd braved blistering conditions for Queanbeyan's Boxing Day meeting and it was Cleary who reigned supreme after Concrete won the first by 10 lengths.

Troy Phillips rides the Joe Cleary-trained Concrete to a thumping win in the first at Queanbeyan on Boxing Day.

Troy Phillips rides the Joe Cleary-trained Concrete to a thumping win in the first at Queanbeyan on Boxing Day. Credit:Sitthixay Ditthavong

The three-year-old gelding left them for dead at the turn to break his maiden in emphatic style after 12 starts.

It was Concrete's fourth run under Cleary and the $1.60 favourite delivered after his colourful trainer promised victory two days before the race.


"Mission accomplished, he did it in a canter and it was a nice little confidence booster before he goes for a well-deserved spell," Cleary said.

"It was his 12th start today so a horse like him gets to a stage where they need to have confidence booster moving forward for both the owners and the horse.

"Getting a win under the belt keeps everyone happy and it might only be a non-TAB [meeting] at Queanbeyan but it's a step in the right direction.

"He'll have a spell and be ready to race in the autumn, we'll play it by ear and find the right race for him.

"Its bloody hot out here today but its a big crowd and the beers are cold so thats all that matters."

Queanbeyan Racing Club boss Brendan Comyn agreed with Cleary's final assessment and said it was club's best supported day of the year.

"It's been a terrific crowd which we're very happy with because it's stinking hot," Comyn said.

"We've started counting the gate and have got up to $8000 which is very a good result. It's our biggest day of the year as far as attendance goes, prize money is lower and fields smaller because it's non-TAB but it doesn't matter because people use it as a reunion.

"You walk through the betting ring and everyone is talking to people they haven't seen for years asking what they're up to these days and how many kids they've got."

Queanbeyan trainer Jack Van Duren took out the second with Hercegovka, while Canberra's Trevor McIlrick won the third with Save A Match in a three-way photo finish.

Eamonn Tiernan is a sports reporter with The Canberra Times

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