Precious Gem gave trainer Gwenda Johnston a precious victory in the $100,000 TAB Rewards Trophy (1700m) on Tuesday.
The Econsul mare won by a nose in a driving finish from Amanpour at Flemington. “I wasn’t certain she had won at first,” Johnston admitted. “It’s a very special to win on Melbourne Cup Day.”
Johnston and her husband Mick train out of Echuca but he is laid up with a bad back and couldn’t make it to Melbourne. “Mick’s in a brace and doing good but he will be even better now,” Johnston added. “We knew a good race was just around the corner for this mare.”
Precious Gem (5m Econsul – Gem Of Gems by Peintre Celebre) was coming off a brave second to Suavito in the G3 Tesio Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley. “I told Gwenda after the Tesio to go for this race,” jockey Craig Williams said. “She’s a beautiful ride and gave me everything at the finish.”
There’s a Melbourne Cup link through her dam Gem Of Gems who was bred by Seven Creeks Estate owner Denis Marks. He raced 1991 Melbourne Cup winner Let’s Elope.
Gem Of Gems is also the dam of brilliant Econsul galloper Happy Money. He has won 6 sprints in his first year of racing in Singapore.
Econsul (NZ) is based south of Perth at Darling View Thoroughbreds in Mundijong where he stands for a $4,400 (inc gst) fee.