A short break and a first-up visit to Healesville proved to be a winning recipe when Perfect Colour set the pace in the heats of the Victorian Straight Track Championship (350m) on Sunday afternoon.
The winner of 21 of his 57 starts, Perfect Colour, trained by Jane Reynolds at Pearcedale, stepped up to elite company in October and made his presence felt against the big guns.
The super consistent but underrated speedster ran a close third to all-conquering provincial superstar Ferdinand Boy in the Sale Sprint Championship and then qualified for the G2 Bendigo Cup final.
A minor injury saw the son of Fernando Bale sidelined for three weeks and the state Straight Track Championship heats provided a ‘perfect’ platform – pun intended – for his return to action.
“He bruised a metatarsal at The Meadows, so we gave him a couple of weeks off,” Jim Reynolds, trainer Jane’s husband, explained.
HEAT WINNERS (Fastest to slowest)
19.24sec Perfect Colour
19.34sec Sambar Chief
“He always goes well up the straight and he’s good fresh, so we were looking at either this race or the Christmas Cup heats, which are on this weekend.
“With only two heats for the Straight Track series we would’ve been disappointed if he didn’t run in the first four.”
The first two finishers in this Sunday’s $5000 to-the-winner final will earn the right to represent Victoria in the National Grand Final, to be run at Capalaba in Queensland on Sunday, December 19.
Perfect Colour always looked in control as he defeated Aston Latham by one length in a Best Of Day 19.24sec, his fifth win from eight starts over 350m at Healesville, and he’ll exit Box 4 in Sunday’s decider.
WATCH: Perfect Colour (7) enhances his impressive Healesville 350m record to five wins from eight starts with a BOD 19.24sec victory in Sunday’s Victorian Straight Track Championship heats.
“It was a good win; he’s run 19.18sec at Healesville, so he wasn’t far off that and hopefully he might go a bit quicker next week,” Reynolds said.
“I don’t mind Box 4 for the final. If he jumps he runs in the middle of the track anyway. He’s never been a railer and if he’d drawn one or two he would’ve wanted to push out, so four isn’t too bad.
“I think the one (Trickity Click) will sort out the race. It had the one in the other heat and ran out into the middle of the track, so I’m hoping Perfect Colour will miss any interference.
“It’s a very good field. From the other heat there’s Sambar Chief and Dream Wizard and Pirate Pete got its muzzle caught in its teeth in our heat, so it had an excuse.
“We’re not thinking about going to Queensland yet. We’ve got to run in the first two on Sunday to qualify, so we’re just taking it one week at a time.”
Jim and Jane Reynolds and co-owner/breeders Neville and Christine Haigh had some more good news last week when Perfect Colour’s dam, Cooler Colour, produced a litter of six to 2019 Melbourne Cup hero Whiskey Riot, a son of Fernando Bale.
WATCH: Coursing sensation SAMBAR CHIEF (4) storms home to win the second Victorian Straight Track Championship heat in 19.34sec last Sunday
VICTORIAN STRAIGHT TRACK CHAMPIONSHIP (350m)
Healesville, Sunday, December 5
1 TRICKITY CLICK (Billy Galea, Melton West)
2 DREAM WIZARD (Sean Lithgow, Devon Meadows)
3 PIRATE PETE (David Bourke, The Basin)
4 PERFECT COLOUR (Jane Reynolds, Pearcedale
5 HA HA MAGOO (Des Douch, Maffra)
6 SMART AS JACK (Adele Powell, Stanhope)
7 ASTON LATHAM (Chloe Van De Maat, Healesville)
8 SAMBAR CHIEF (Jason Whybrow, Wangaratta)