Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Stewart has eyes on Shepparton Gold Cup

Congupna trainer Scott Stewart has pencilled in the Shepparton Gold Cup as a possible start for his star pacer Bitobliss who returned to his best form with a brilliant victory at Melton on Friday night.

GUS UNDERWOOD January 6, 2014 4:15am

Bitobliss and Scott Stewart stormed home to win at Melton on Friday night.

Northern Victorian trots fans could get to see the district’s best pacer Bitobliss in action in the Shepparton Gold Cup on Saturday night week.

Trainer-driver of the Congupna-trained pacer Scott Stewart said he would love to tackle his home club cup after Bitobliss returned to the winning list at Melton, on Friday night, claiming the Sew-Eurodrive Free-For-All in dashing style with one of his characteristic blistering finishing bursts.

Stewart said at the weekend Bitobliss would by-pass the South Australian Pacers Cup in preference for the Bendigo Gold Cup on Saturday night.

‘‘It would be ideal to go to Bendigo then Shepparton the following week in the lead up to the Hunter Cup, but whether he runs at Shepparton will depend on what handicap he gets,’’ Stewart said.

On Friday night Bitobliss claimed the scalps of other top-class pacers Keyang Cullen and the favourite Caribbean Blaster to notch his first win since winning the VHRSC Classic at Melton on October 18.

Below par runs in the Kilmore Cup when seeking his third successive win in the race and also a failure in the Victoria Cup has convinced Stewart his gun pacer has to be driven with a sit and not bustled early in an attempt to try and hold or gain a forward position.

‘‘Everything worked out well in the running on Friday night and he has pulled up very well from the run,’’ Stewart said.

Bitobliss’ win on Friday night was the 21st of his 42 race career and along with 10 minor placings has taken his prizemoney earnings to more than $400000.

It was a good night for Goulburn Valley trainers at Melton on Friday night with leading trainer David Aiken snaring a double.

Aiken notched a quartet of wins with the promising US-bred trotter Vics Cheval with a dashing drive and also produced the promising in-form Shepparton-owned pacer Our Warwick Lad for wins at the meeting.

Our Warwick Lad was driven by Aiken’s son, Josh, and in taking the Vetforce Pace Final for C2-C3 class pacers has now won four of his past five starts.

Another impressive winner at the meeting, Hectorjayjay, also had a district flavour to it being bred by Lancaster horseman Russ Thomson and his wife Pauline.

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