Smart eyes Picnic Championships with $3000 purchase

Georgian Court, pictured here winning the Burrangong Cup, will race in the colours of Todd Smart on Sunday when contesting the NSW PRA Championship final. Photo: Bradley Photos.

Todd Smart will venture to Dubbo Turf Club on Sunday, with recent stable addition Georgian Court contesting the NSW Picnic Racing Association (PRA) Championship final, worth $50,000. 

The event is set aside annually for the top 12 picnic horses in NSW, with trainers often venturing far and wide for valuable (PRA) points and a chance to race in the feature picnic racing event. 

Oddly, Georgian Court was put up for sale by previous connections prior to the final and the recent $3000 purchase will have her first start for Smart in the final, giving connections a chance for an immediate return.  

“Ben McAllister bought her online for $3000 and I’ve had her five weeks now,” Smart said.

“She had a lot of checks and she is a stressy type of mare but she has settle in and shew will be better now.”

The six-year-old, has three career wins from 33 starts, while running nine placings and earning over $50,000 in prizemoney.

It will be a tough task for the Turffontein mare though, who will be first up in the feature event, jumping from gate 10 and coming up against some of the best picnic campaigners in the state. 

“We gave her a 1000m jump out last week. First up at 1400m, some people might think she is a little suspect but we have done a fair bit of work with her and she doesn’t look like she will take much to get fit,” Smart said. 

The Canberra trainer and his connections have made a habit of making some astute purchases in recent times, and Smart said Georgian Court had the makings of another good pick up for the stable. 

“I think she will go well; you sort of buy these horses online and it’s a bit of a surprise sometimes but whatever she does in this race, she will go better next time,” Smart said. 

“She will definitely win a couple of races that’s for sure.”

The former Gundagai trainer and Georgian Court will get a helping hand on Sunday with experienced hoop Alan Barton taking the ride.  

“I actually rang Billy Owen up and asked him what he thought of the jockeys available and he thought with Alan being a bit more experienced, it might help,” Smart said.