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Perfect Start (PR) 2nd NZ Cup Gr.3
13 Nov 2016

Pump Up The Volume defeats Perfect Start (right) on the line to take out the NZ Cup Gr.3

Dennis Ryan

Pump Up The Volume completed a remarkable treble for Cambridge trainer Ralph Manning when he lapped up the conditions to defeat fellow Waikato raider Perfect Start in the Christchurch Casino New Zealand Cup at Riccarton today.

Thirty years ago when a fledgling trainer, the former successful jockey had celebrated his first big win as a trainer with Oakvue in the 1986 New Zealand Cup. From the stable named after that horse Manning has produced close to 500 winners, headlined by dual Horse of the Year Seachange, and 1996 New Zealand Cup winner Laud Peregrine.

“That’s quite something when you think about it, 30years from the first one,” mused Manning after Pump Up The Volume had been confirmed the half-head winner over Perfect Start.

“He’s an amazing horse this, just keeps fronting up and doing the job.”

Manning wasn’t alone in celebrating a New Zealand Cup treble. Winning jockey Kelly McCullough had won the race for the first time on boilover winner Hoorang in 2008 and added the 2014 edition on Mungo Jerry.

She completed the treble today narrowly at the expense of her sister Rosie Myers, who was chasing a double after winning on Spring Cheer in 2013.

Manning races Pump Up The Volume, an eight-year-old by Savabeel, in partnership with one of his most loyal clients, Paeroa accountant Tony Coombe, who praised Manning’s ability to condition the gelding for today’s 3200-metre test on a limited programme.

There was plenty of merit in the performance of runner-up Perfect Start, who had finished fifth behind Nymph Monte in last Saturday’s Metropolitan Trophy. After settling last she improved between runners to burst through with a likely challenge in the straight, only to be out finished by Pump Up The Volume wide out.

Lightweight Imperium, a son of champion staying mare Ethereal, finished third after taking the lead soon after straightening, while Gentil Tonton made a late dab into fourth ahead of the odds-on favourite Nymph Monte.  

He settled well back and raised his backers’ hopes when working into the action near the home turn, but was unable to finish it off in the ground.