THE 70th version of the Moama Bowling Cub Echuca Pacing Cup was over within the first lap of the Frank Ryan Raceway on Friday night.
Despite an extreme outside back row draw, the unbackable favourite Buster Brady was in front within 600m of the mobile barrier arms folding back in the 2560m marathon.
Trainer-driver Kima Frenning’s daring early move to take up the front-running position put paid to any expectant rival hopes of causing an upset in the $35,000 feature.
The Wayne Potter trained and Gavin Lang driven 25/1 shot Shadow Reign chased Buster Brady to the line in a tough performance as he had faced the breeze for the final two laps while the Tamworth visitor Gottashopearly ran home strongly to finish third after getting clear from three back on the pegs in the home straight.
But both the minor place getters were more than 7m from Buster Brady, whose 56-second last half made it just about impossible for him to be run down.
Local hope Franks Very Much raced at the tail of the field before making a run wide out early in the last lap, but was never a chance and finished at the tail of the field.
While it wasn’t the quickest time recorded over the distance – that still belongs to the 2017 cup winner Stormfortheboys at 1.57.1 — Buster Brady’s effortless 1.58.5 mile rate was still up the best time recorded for the distance on the track.
But Buster Brady now does hold the honour of the shortest priced winner of the cup, paying a miserly $1.04 for the win.
Before Friday night Buster Brady had claimed two country cups — Geelong and Cobram — in his meteoric rise since crossing the Tasman to be prepared by Frenning.
The Swedish horsewoman had another good night in then sulky, also steering another short priced favourite, the David Aiken trained Shelby Bromac, to victory in the Norm and Joan Visca Pace for C3-5 pacers.
The other feature on the 10 event card, the JA Connelly Crystal Bucket, was another win for fairytale trotter Pantzup who outclassed a small by talented field of rivals.
Trainer-driver of Pantzup, Gavin Lang, explained he was hopeful of winning a couple of pacing races with the Always A Virgin mare when she joined his stable.
But he said he can’t believe what she had done — her latest win her sixth in succession as a trotter.
‘‘I’d like to say I’ve done this and that with her but I’ve done nothing really. She wanted to trot and not pace and we have let her do that. It’s unbelievable really what she has done,’’ Lang said.