Whatarap gave the father-son training duo, Lee and Shannon Hope a worthwhile result at Geelong on Saturday scoring her first victory for the Hope Racing team.
Having her only third start for the stable, the six-year-old daughter of Kuroshio and Rap Tale was most impressive in taking out the “Avis Ballarat and Western Victoria” 0-58 Handicap over 1112 metres. A first emergency in the original field, the mare managed a start morning of to take her part in the race with Beau Mertens engaged as the rider. Patiently ridden in the early stages of the race, Beau was able to guide Whatarap through the field and with a clear passage in the home straight was full of running to the line. She defeated Chelsea Toff by a half-head with Via Capo a further three quarters of a length away third.
Representing the Hope team at Geelong, Shannon who saddled the mare was full of praise;
“It was a good win, she hasn’t the greatest set of feet and our farrier, Matthew Oakford has done a superb job to get them right”. She is a beautiful kind mare and we reap plenty of satisfaction from the win not only for us but the owners who entrusted their faith in us”
Whatarap was purchased from the Inglis online auction earlier in the year and is raced by a large contingent of Owners. Heading the partnership is the Hope Racing Business Manager, Tony Buckley together with his fellow mates, Peter O’Dea and Peter Dwyer & family. Local identities and Mitchell Shire residents, Paul (Pegs) Egan, Anthony Piper, Roger Mansbridge, Dave Wilson, Rick Maloney and the late June Fletcher also from part of the group along with long term clients. Ian and Alison Edwards and family, Wayne Harris, Kim Deriman and Michael Denavi heading the Saniuqa7 racing syndicate.