ACCORDING to the adage “the more things change, the more they stay the same”.
Well, going by the result of yesterday’s Strathalbyn Trotters’ Cup, the saying is spot on.
Last season prominent horseman Ryan Hryhorec dominated South Australia’s trotting country cups, to become the first trainer in the nation to complete a clean sweep of a state’s provincial squaregaiting features.
C K Spur was Hryhorec’s best performer, winning three country cups and the final – the SA Trotters’ Cup at Globe Derby.
Hryhorec also enjoyed cup glory with Aldebaran Alissa and Mass Destruction, with the latter scoring in Strathalbyn.
Fast forward 12 months and the year has changed and so have the squaregaiters, but Hryhorec’s dominance has remained the same!
This time round Hryhorec was triumphant with Mangana Joe, which will go down in history as the last cup winner as the meeting doubled as the club’s farewell to the venue.
Operating at the site since 1938, the club recently sold the land to developers and is in the process of designing a “multifunction sporting complex”.
As for Mangana Joe’s success, the gelding worked to the lead from his frontline draw before scoring by a metre-and-a-half from Hammers Law, which began from a 30-metre back mark.
Uncle Louis, which shared the back mark, was a head away third.
Undefeated from four starts for Hryhorec, the son of Majestic Son rated 2:07.6 over 2110 metres.
“He hasn’t set a foot wrong since he got here and put in another good run yesterday,” Hryhorec said. “He hadn’t beaten much before the cup, so it was a step up for him, which he handled well.
“Don’t get me wrong, he has given me the feeling of being a very nice trotter and I think he showed he can mix it with the better ones under those conditions.”