Dennis and Ann Barnes made it two Dubbo features in the past month when Nangar Rock took out the $4605 Mayor’s Cup Final (516m) at Dawson Park on Thursday.
The win continued the stellar start to Nangar Bear’s career and followed on from his brother, Nangar Rock, taking out the Lesley Ann Leonard Memorial Final late last month.
Despite a talented field in the Cup Final the event was billed as a race between two – the emerging star in Nangar Bear and the experienced champion Brad Hill Billy, who ran second in the Group 1 Golden Easter Egg event at Wentworth Park earlier this year.
Nangar Bear jumped as a $2.10 favourite while notoriously slow starter Brad Hilly Billy was second in the line of betting at $2.50.
Neither of the leading duo got out well but both worked their way through the field as the bend for home approached.
But where Nangar Bear got a clear run, Brad Hill Billy endured some contact and had to settle for second, three-and-three-quarter lengths behind the winner.
“I was delighted to win that one, especially when there were so many good dogs in the race,” Ann Barnes said.
“I thought mine would jump a bit better than he did today, he didn’t come out as well as I thought. He did it hard but he got there, that was the main thing.”
Andrew Bell’s Sketchy Amber ($17.50) got out from the boxes the best in the final and shot to an early lead, ahead of Cicatriz ($12) and Nangar Bear.
Ron Steel’s Suzi Cargo ($10.10) began to threaten while Brad Hill Billy wound up from deep in the field and moved around the outside.
There was plenty of jostling for the lead as they hit the bend but Nangar Bear shot through along the rails and scored the win while Rival Ranga ($39.60) got third, half a length behind Brad Hill Billy.
“Hopefully he can go a bit further and go to Wenty and go to bigger races but only time will tell,” Barnes said of Nangar Bear after his seventh win from 12 starts.
With the Lesley Ann Leonard title and Mayor’s Cup now back at the Barnes hometown of Cudal, the Soldiers Saddle feature at Bathurst is next up on the agenda, with Nangar Rock to line up in the semi-finals on Monday.
Another dog from the litter, Uno Arjo, is trained by Christopher Spratt and is also in the semis at Bathurst.
“His brother won the Lesley Ann Memorial trophy so good to double up and it’s good racing at Dubbo. They’re friendly, family people so it’s always good to race here,” Barnes said, adding she “very pleased” with her current litter.