Mother-son team all smiles at Winton

23:18, Dec 23 2012
Anne and Matt Brinsdon
FAMILY FUN: Winning owners Anne and Matt Brinsdon hold the Wairio Cup on Saturday.

An inheritance 25 years ago made Anne and Matt Brinsdon more involved in harness racing.

The mother and son, of Gore, are the owner-breeders of Saturday's Wairio Cup winner, Phantom Grin, who is trained at the Gore Raceway by Matt.

''Mum's uncle, Bob McQuillan, gave her 10 or 12 horses when he died,'' Matt said.

With a large number of horses in his mother's ownership, Matt thought he best learn how to train them. He helped and gained knowledge from Southland horsemen Alex Milne, Brian and Keith Norman, Colin Baynes and Robin Swain.

Matt received a trainer's licence five years later in 1992. He has trained the winners of 19 races and had 16 seconds and 16 thirds.

Phantom Grin scored his sixth win on Saturday, while the 5-year-old's dam, Phantom Menace, won eight races for the Brinsdons and ran third in the Gore Cup. Other good winners in the family include 1984 Pan Am Mile winner Norton, Yankee Hall and Kate's Return.


Phantom Menance produced a dead filly foal by Art Major recently and will be mated with him again soon. Thursday's Gore Cup and, possibly, the Roxburgh Cup on Friday week are on Phantom Grin's agenda.

Wairio Cup favourite Ted West is likely to be spelled after finishing 10th on Saturday.

Saveapatrol, who won the Nightcaps Contracting Ltd Pace by six and three-quarter lengths, will be reserved for a $10,000 3-year-old race at the Northern Southland Trotting Club meeting at Ascot Park on January 17. His autumn goals include two other Ascot Park features, the $40,000 Southern Supremacy Stakes and $25,000 Caduceus Club of Southland Autumn Futurity Pace.

Christchurch owner Grant Hatton took a risk when he bought Saveapatrol six months ago. The son of Christian Cullen and Rondel Franco needed time to mature and had knees that looked like causing problems.

Saveapatrol, trained at Burnham by Mark Jones, was earlier owned by another client of the stable, Peter Chambers.

''When he got vetted (for sale), it was 50-50 that he'd make a racehorse,'' Jones said.

After Hatton bought Saveapatrol, the horse's knees checked out OK through an exploratory operation.

''We've taken our time with him,'' Jones said.

''He's extremely quick, does it easy.''

My Man Dan, trained by Jones, and Lightspeed, formerly with Jones's father, Peter, have been other winners for Hatton. The owner is in the Dallas Cowboys Syndicate which owns the Mark Jones-trained Ohoka Texas. He is starting in Wednesday's Ashburton Cup.

The Southland Times