Taree-Trained Bear Spelling To Target Country Championships

Bear’s A Star has already gone for a spell with next year’s rich Country Championships in Glen Milligan’s mind after the Taree trainer scored with him at Monday’s Taree meeting.

“We sent him off to the paddock this morning,” Milligan said on Tuesday.

“That was always the plan, win lose or draw, and fortunately it’s happening after a win.

Taree trainer Glen Milligan

“He’s still only a two-year-old, but he’s already a big, strong horse and now he’ll develop even more while he has a break going into his three-year-old season.

“You always have the Country Championships in mind if you have a good horse coming through and that’s definitely in the back of my mind with him now.

“The aim will be to give him a run in a TAB Highway in town during the spring and then we’ll find out for sure if we’ve got the right sort of horse for the Country Championships in the autumn.”

Bear’s A Star was having just his second start when he hit the line in a desperately close finish to the Banksia Turf Country Boosted Maiden Plate over 1007m.

Thedaythemusicdied was on Bear’s A Star’s inside and to many onlookers appeared to have won, but the photo finish revealed Milligan’s horse had stuck his head out to get home by a nose as the $4 second favourite.

The win saved punters from a wipe-out in that race, because Thedaythemusicdied was a $61 chance. The $3.80 favourite, Noci Di Cocco, finished third.

Bear’s A Star has only had the two career starts and Milligan was forced to run against older horses in maiden races each time because of a dearth of two-year-old maidens in the country.

He was second in his debut run and now he’s a winner and the fact he’s been able to beat older horses is one of the main reasons Milligan is optimistic about him graduating to Country Championships class.

“He’s done it purely on ability so far, because he’s very much still learning to race,” the trainer said. “He doesn’t know what it’s all about yet. Zac Wadick rode a terrific race to win on him and he’s been wrapped in the horse from day one.

“He’s only run in 1000-metre races so far, but I think he’ll get the 1400 metres of the Country Championships. He’s bred to get 1400 to a mile and he races like he will. He was in for the fight at the finish on Monday.

“We’ll look after him and hopefully down the track there will be good times. Our family own the horse with Peter Braude and Chris Swadling, who have been great supporters of ours. I was delighted to see him win for Chris and Peter.”

– Racing NSW

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