Testing Love wins Ladies Day Sprint for trainer Adam Durrant as Fashions on the Field return to Geraldton

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Reuben CarderGeraldton Guardian
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Clint Johnston-Porter crosses the line first in the sprint on Testing Love.
Camera IconClint Johnston-Porter crosses the line first in the sprint on Testing Love. Credit: Picture:

Perth-based trainer Adam Durrant capped off an incredible day at the Geraldton Turf Club with the Brown Brothers Ladies Day Sprint.

Clint Johnston-Porter rode New Zealand horse Testing Love, owned by prominent industry figure Bob Peters and trained by Durrant at Karnup, to the win over 1200m in the $30,000 feature for the pair’s fourth win in five starts on the day.

Durrant said the day was up there with his better outings at Geraldton.

“The boss has won all sorts of cups and prizes (here), this ranks amongst them,” he said.

“We’re lucky enough to train a few of Mr Peters’ horses, and him allowing us to bring them up here on a Sunday is very kind. It’s nice to come up with a bit of quality.”

Johnston-Porter said the turf club had done well to draw a crowd on the day. “It’s a good atmosphere and it’s great to see a big crowd here, and great to win,” he said.

Testing Love finished ahead of Geraldton horse Startrade, trained by Kim Anderson, and fellow Kiwi Tampering Falls, trained in Bunbury by Nikki Davies.

Johnston-Porter booted Fashion Queen, also trained by Durrant, home in race two ahead of Arnie’s Boy, trained by Ashley Maley in Gingin, and Geraldton horse Red Epic, trained by Tony Scally. He was also aboard Foxy Son for Durrant in race three, beating out two local horses, trainer Ron Cowl’s Be Seated and Allan Hughes’ Colour Me Quick.

Durrant and Johnston-Porter completed the hat-trick in race four as Savage One reached the line ahead of Warm ‘N’ Fuzzy, trained by Maley, and Aerolite, trained by Cowl.

Hughes’ horse Kenyluck, a track favourite, restored local pride in race five, beating Quality Fair, trained in Geraldton by Ken Nightingale, and Maley’s Megadon.

Turf club chair Brian O’Dwyer praised the “fashions, the magnificent crowd, the colour, and exciting racing” on the day.

O’Dwyer also announced upgrades to the stables area, starting immediately.

Eliza Hebiton took out the Fashions on the Field competition.

A frequent fashions competitor, she is from an equestrian family who are co-owners of Bonsai Jacks riding school in Geraldton.

Another frequent competitor, track rider Christy Poulsen, was runner-up. Poulsen was third at last year’s Ladies Day. Pip Kupsch was third on the day.

Other competitors including Carnarvon-based rider Tessa Daly, Steph Johnson, belly dancer Rachel Smith and local Year 4 student Lilly Chant provided strong competition.

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