IT was a while in coming but trainer Garry Lunn and the connections of Jetking were rewarded for their patience and perseverance when Jetking took out the Club Dubbo Directors Maiden Plate (1305m) at Dubbo yesterday.
The six-year-old Jetball x Zach's Girl gelding had been to the races 26 times prior to yesterday and recorded two thirds and little more than $4000 in prize money.
But with 18-year-old apprentice Winona Costin in the saddle, Jetking ($17.00) led all the way to beat Global Scale ($11.00, Michael Travers) by a neck with Hammer'em ($4.40, Kody Nestor) a further one-and-a-quarter lengths away in third place.
Jetking was the first leg of a winning double for Costin who later won the Christmas Cup aboard Moment of Clarity.
The $2.80 favourite Alfie Bee finished eighth in a race where the time for the 1305m journey was 1:17.84s.
Lunn admitted after the race that Jetking, a noted rogue that has to be mounted out on the track, was on his last chance yesterday.
"He's had a few chances along the way but today was it," Lunn said.
"He ran a good race here two starts back (when fifth behind Corniglia) and then the other day at Narromine he got smashed out of the gates and never got into it.
"I told Winona that if she could find the lead on him he would be hard to run down and that happened.
"She rode him perfectly and it's a good result because I had something on him each-way as well."
The win was the 11th of Costin's young career and was a reward for what was a long day.
Indentured to Mick Tubman at Kembla Grange, she rode trackwork at the Illawarra track yesterday morning before making the six-hour trek to Dubbo.
Then straight after the races she was jumping back in the car to head back to Kembla for trackwork this morning.
"It's been tough but it was good to get a winner," she said.
"When I looked at his form it was hard to get too enthusiastic but the trainer told me to be positive and lead and if I did that he would be hard to run down.
"He kicked pretty well for me halfway down the straight and I knew he was going to be hard to beat."
Earlier, punters got off to a poor start when debutante and favourite Two Penny Blue could only finish third behind Pelorus in the Rod Firth Maiden Plate (1100m).
Despite the Paul Messara-trained Pelorus starting a $3.50 second elect, there was a rush of money for Two Penny Blue, which was given the run of the race by jockey Mathew Cahill but couldn't go with her more experienced rivals in the home straight.