It was almost a clean sweep for Rodney Robb at Trangie on Saturday as the Nyngan trainer claimed his second consecutive Macquarie Picnic Cup.
Huang Zhong ($4.40) was well guided by Jody Hughes, surging home by three lengths in the $4500 feature.
It was Robb’s fourth of five victories across the six race meeting, at a track he first raced at back in 1975.
Condobolin’s Mark Ward was the only other trainer to salute all day.
Rainbows Game (Ridge Wilson, $3.50) kick-started Robb’s streak, storming home in the Reacol Building Delta Ag and Imperial Hotel Picnic Maiden Plate (800 metres) to win by 1.7 lengths.
Owned by Baradine’s Denis Todd, the four-year-old gelding’s maiden victory came in his first start back after a lengthy spell.
“He did bleed there at his second start [at Moree] and we gave him three months off and three months turned into six months,” Robb said.
“But he’s always showed that he’s got plenty of speed and he’s got a little bit of ability.
“Don’t know whether you’ll ever see him over in the Highway in Sydney, mate, but we’re at Trangie and it’s good to win a race anywhere you go.”
After Dead Reckoning and Silly Talker finished fourth and seventh in the second, Madison Gardens ($3.20) continued Robb and Wilson’s winning ways.
The Master Harry x Melrose Gardens (NZ) gelding won in a tight, one-third-of-a-length finish ahead of the $2 favourite, Sharon Jeffries’ Sikum (Michael Wade).
Wilson guided Trumby the Ringer ($4) to a half-a-length victory in the fourth before claiming the Cup with Huang Zhong ($4.40), and Mango Liston ($2.30 favourite) rounded out Robb’s successful day.
It was a timely win for Mango Liston in particular; the Shellscrape x Camp Dawn gelding is a possible picnic champion contender, but faced being rehomed if he didn’t “aim up” on Saturday.
“[Mango Liston] is one horse there that we might have a little bit of a chance with, but he’s got to perform up to his best,” Robb said.
The legendary trainer said it meant a great deal to race and win at Trangie.
“This is one of the first meetings I ever raced a horse at when I was at Cobar, and that goes back to 1975,” he said.
“I always love Trangie. They do a good job here, and I don’t think there’s a lot wrong with the dirt track either.”
Austin (NZ) – who won the 2018 Showcase Picnic Championship at Dubbo in September after taking out last year’s Macquarie Picnic Cup – is in work at Robb’s Nyngan stables, and one of “four or five horses” that could contest this year’s Country Championship.
“Austin … Security Code, all those horses, they’re all heading towards that aim again,” Robb said.