Hillbilly Time claims Busselton Cup
AUSTRALIA Day signaled the final meet of the 2017/18 Busselton trotting season with the highly anticipated main event of the program, the Busselton Cup.
In-form Collie pacer Hillbilly Time, trained by Peter Hemsley, proved too good in the final stages to cap off a stellar season.
The Busselton Cup had a star studded line up of country pacers, many horses had a leading chance but it was the start which played all important.
Nobbys Beach Boy started well to lead with local hope Rum Delight making an early move to be prominent in the breeze.
Collie hopeful Hillbilly Time sat just off the pace and when the intensity increased Trent Wheeler made a three wide dash foward to take the lead.
Rum Delight didn't give up though and gave backers a great sight but couldn't hold out.
Hillbilly Time won by two metres.
Riri Rihanna ran an honest race in third.
The Albies Sweetheart series was also an intriguing affair with two mares fighting it out for honours in the overall win.
Lady Azalea and Abetta Tiny Dancer head the leader board, but roughie The Royal Lady driven by Shane Young would cause the upset of the night with a stirring finish from mid to claim a slender win from Daddyslilprincess.
Lady Azalea would claim the series with a close up fifth, she was prepared.
Our Bobbydazzler was glad to see rival Hillbilly Time in the cup and made the most of his absence with a much deserved win.
Finishing second at his past three outings, Ash Markham sent the bay horse into the breeze and gained the front.
Heading for home he was set upon by a rejuvenated Compact Rocket, but Bobby, known for his toughness, held on to score by a head, with local Armbro Lincoln finishing third.
Magical Mitch for Steven Jelf continued where he left off last meeting with a catch me if you can tactic in the first.
Looking good once again Mitch turned for home well clear but stable mate Roman Reign gave the favourite a scare but Jelf lifted the reins to hold off the challenger.
Cavalry Call saluted in race 5 to claim his second win of the season.
Trained by Brian Clemens and driven by Ryan Bell he got a great start off 20 metres and Bell had him positioned perfectly in the one by one.
When the leaders faulted Cavaly Call dashed clear to defeat Riverdale Joker and local Bledisloe.
The Kerry Clarke Memorial saw local Sheldon Cook record his first win as a trainer and driver when Spoilt Talk would salute in fine style.
Second the week earlier, Cook took the lead early and held off Ideal life in the run to the finish.
Happy As gave driver Ryan Bell a double with a strong win in the Tazs Taxi race when he raced clear of stable mates Mixedupmuddledup and Five Star Major.
The final event of the season gave talented but wayward youngster Lightning Jot his first career win.
Trained by Callan Suvaljko the three year-old started well to lead and would hold all at bay to race away to defeat Heartland Cavalla.
Leading trainer was Matthew Scott. Leading driver was Ashley Markham. Horse of the year was Hillbilly Time.
WELL the Busselton T20 cricket season is coming to an end, but what a finish we have in store.
With the Heavy Rollers claiming their first win of the season last week, the final place in the top four and the final’s format is far from finalised.
But before this is all explained, let’s report on the Heavy Rollers first win of the year.
Batting first, Shane Annadale (3) and Robbie Williams (4) opened the batting before they were both sent packing with the score 2 for 14 in the third over.
The Rollers leading run scorer, Brett Titterton came and played a steady innings to retire on 25, before batting again and remaining not out on 31.
Sean Uren hit out with an unbeaten 34 including two sixes and a four while Logan Whitwell hit a quick fire 17.
A competitive score of 150 was reached after their allotted 20 overs.
Mark was the pick of the bowlers with 2 for 22 from 2 while Hillzy #1 was miserly with 1 for 7 from 2.
Jake and Dylan S got the Jacks off to a flying start with 17 coming from Logan’s first over. 30 from 3 and then 40 from 4 overs and the Rollers must have been wondering how they were going to stop the Jack’s onslaught.
When the danger man Hillzy #1 was dismissed for four with the score on 45 and Dylan dismissed with the score on 70; a procession of wickets fell.
Three for 83, 4/88 then this turned into 5/88. Six for 92 became 7 for 100 and when Bernie was run out for a duck, the Jacks were 8 for 100 with 6 overs to go. Enter Jake back onto the arena.
With eight sixes struck by Jake in his unbeaten 64, it appeared he was going to break the hearts of the Heavy Rollers. Robbie bowled the 19th over with only 16 runs needed from the final two overs.
Three dot balls and three singles conceded had the Jacks needing 13 from the final over and it was up to the Rollers captain Paul Keen to bowl his side to victory. His first three balls conceded only two runs before Jake hit a massive si to bring the score to within one clean hit of victory.
Five runs needed from two balls. Jake managed to hit a single to leave Mark on strike with the equation pretty simple. One ball; four runs; one wicket. Who was going to stand up?
And as history says, it was the skipper Keen who took the wicket and bowled the Rollers to victory!
So what does this mean for the finals?
The Bin Chooks, with a bye this week, will finish top and take on fourth to progress into the grand final.
A win by the Lemons over the Heavy Rollers, (played last night and after the paper deadline), would see them finish third and take on the Swingers who are guaranteed second spot.
A win by the Rollers over the Lemons would see them leapfrog the Jacks into fourth.
This would then require the Jacks to defy the odds and defeat the Swingers tonight, who are guaranteed second, to then leapfrog the Rollers back into fourth.
As you can see there is still a lot of cricket yet to be played before the finals are finished.