Billy Owen lands Moruya treble and Narooma Town Plate

Billy Owen guides the Jamie Stewart-trained Akeed to victory in Sunday’s Narooma Cup. Photo: Bradley Photos.

Billy Owen helped land a popular win in the Narooma Town Plate at Moruya Jockey Club on Sunday, while also booting home a winning-treble.

Riding for Moruya trainer Jamie Stewart in the $29,000 sprint, Owen hopped aboard the well-supported local galloper Akeed, which eventually started a $6.10 chance after reaching as high as $11 in the lead-up to the race. 

Owen and Akeed found the front from gate four in the 1010m event, and there was no catching the pair as they led from pillar to post, beating the Barbara Joseph, Paul, and Matt Jones-trained Delightful Dream (Quayde Krogh, $5.50) by 1.3 lengths, while in third and 1.4 lengths off the pace was the Lynne Morrison-trained Get Shafted (Jeff Penza, $17).

It was Owen’s first time on the seven-year-old, which has now won eight races, and he was pleased to deliver connections another feature-race win. 

“Riding for Jamie at Moruya, and he is a good old horse, and he deserved to be in the race, and he was always going to be in the firing line,” Owen said. 

“Jamie is a good bloke, and he is quietly confident in his own horses but he’s not one of those blokes that just say they will win, but with him, he just said jump, lead, and win.”

While he celebrated a good victory in the Narooma Town Plate, Owen was tickled-pink to pick up a treble, which started on the Tash Burleigh-trained Iron Will ($1.90) in the 1010m Class One Handicap, while he rounded it out by riding the last winner on the program when guiding the Keith Dryden-trained Eastern Glow ($3.10) to victory in the 1300m Class Two Handicap. 

The 30-year-old nearly had four winners on the card and was just beaten in the $30,000 Narooma Cup when running a game second on the Jamie Stewart-trained Mr Magical ($15). 

The pair went to the front and led them along comfortably from gate one, and only the fast-finishing Devil’s Triangle (Jeff Penza, $3.70) from the Matt Dale yard could beat them. 

“At the furlong I was confident myself and thought we might pinch it, and probably coming to the 100m, I could see that one of Matty Dale’s was getting to me quite quickly, and I didn’t have too much left to give,” Owen said. 

“He is a tough old horse, but Matt’s horse is trained on the track, it’s a city winner, and was carrying two kilos less, so I’m pretty proud of my fella’s run.”

Owen’s big day at Moruya came after he rode a winning double at Narrandera on the Saturday. 

He was again steering home a local chance, this time helping the Shane Bloomfield-trained Retell ($7) to a good victory in the 1200m Maiden Handicap before teaming up with Wangaratta trainer Andrew Dale when taking out the 1600m Benchmark 50 Handicap aboard Smokin’ Soldier ($4).

The five winners over the two days puts an end to what has been a frustrating run of outs for Owen, and he explained he had a feeling this weekend would see a change of luck. 

“It’s been one of them spells over the last three weeks or so, and I’ve been a bit unlucky here and there, and that’s racing, but things were going wrong, and it was getting very frustrating,” Owen said.  

“People say, ‘It will turn, it will turn’, but when you’re the one going through one of them lean spells, it can get a bit tough.

“It’s funny, the acceptances came out on Thursday for the weekend, and I said to a couple of people, ‘this could be a good weekend for me’ and well it worked out that way.

“Especially today, I was excited about the rides I had, and yesterday at Narrandera I had four rides for Andrew Dale, and he chalks up a winner or two at those meetings, so I was feeling pretty confident.”

Owen was off to Corowa on Monday, and he had four rides on the full TAB program, and that leads into a busy week and a half as the local will be riding at Wagga on December 23, Tumut on December 26, the Sapphire Coast on December 27, Corowa again on December 28, Canberra on December 30, Nowra on December 31, and Gundagai on January 1. 

For full results from Narrandera click here and for Moruya click here.