Pennants flying for Bellamy
The lightly-raced five-year-old contests the Wintersun Bowls Carnival Rating 77 Hcp (1300m) at Ballina today, race six on the eight-race program.
Pennants is by Grand Lodge from the Group winning Sir Tristram mare, Sashed.
The gelding was formerly owned by Bob Ingham's Woodlands Stud and trained by John Hawkes.
He is now under the care of Coffs Harbour-based trainer Brett Bellamy.
A long-time friendship between Bellamy's father Kevin and Hawkesbury Race Club president Ted McCabe led to the current owners snaring Pennants.
"Dad and Ted (McCabe) have been good mates for years and he let us know the horse was available," Brett Bellamy said.
"It was on Ted's advice we managed to buy him. He looks like a nice horse.
The syndicate that race him has been going for around 20 years.
"Unfortunately we had bad luck from day one. During that time we've raced a stack of horses, the two best probably being Gold And Fancy and Hayiling Gold.
"Most of them were bred but bad luck has dogged us.
"A while back we decided we've had no luck at the breeding caper so we'd try and buy some well bred tried horses.
"Hopefully Pennants can change our luck."
The Pennants syndicate is made up of Brett Bellamy, Kevin Bellamy and long-time stable supporters, Doug McLeod, New Guinea-based Peter Wootton and Shane Eichmann.
Pennants made an immediate impact for the syndicate winning first-up after a 244-day break over 1300m on his home track on April 8.
And Bellamy remains confident the full-brother to Freemason, who beat champion Northerly in a BMW boilover in 2003, can continue his winning efforts at Ballina and beyond.
"The horse was as sound as a bell when we got him," Bellamy said.
"Apparently he was very immature and tangle footed as a young horse so the Inghams gave him plenty of time to mature.
"My understanding is he just didn't appreciate life in the big city.
"He would go off his tucker and they never got the chance to send him over ground.
"He did a great job to win first up over 1300 metres and didn't have it easy in that race.
"I've been very happy with the way he's trained on.
"He did win two races on heavy tracks in Sydney so you would imagine a wet track won't worry him.
"Provided he gets through his next few races I'd like to run him in a heat of the PJ Bell Championship with a view to running in the final in Sydney then hopefully try him over a journey which he's really bred to handle."
Pennants will be ridden by 1.5kg claiming apprentice Jamie Quinnell.