Dr. Tucker, metaphorically speaking, deserves to sit alongside the historical ‘Dog on the Tuckerbox’ monument at Snake Gully, just outside of Gundagai in NSW.
Trained by William McMahon at Darriman in Gippsland, Dr. Tucker displays the same courage, diligence and tenacity as the quintessential Australian cattle dog or heeler so intrinsically aligned with our nation’s early pioneers.
Dr. Tucker, a son of McMahon’s former classy sprinter Bernardo, has been in sensational form since returning from five months on the sidelines due to a hock injury.
In fact, he’s won five races, with one second, from eight starts since mounting his courageous comeback. And that second placing was behind dual G2 country cups winner Ferdinand Boy in the inaugural $25,000 to-the-winner The Horizon at Sale.
However, the comeback kid just keeps gaining momentum and is once again fulfilling the vast potential he displayed late last year.
Back in October, Dr. Tucker was spruiked as the ‘new kid on the block’ when he won the G3 Great Chase at The Meadows. He vindicated that rating soon after with a third placing to retired champ Hard Style Rico in the G3 Silver Bullet – also at The Meadows.
WATCH: Dr. Tucker (6) claims a Winter Cup heat in a flying 19.02sec (Best) at Healesville on Sunday.
Pawnote: Three trainers will each be represented by two runners in next Sunday’s $5000 to-the-winner final – William McMahon (Dr. Tucker & Dr. Knuckles), Pearcedale’s Jason Thompson (Pirate Pete & Zambora Lou) and Anakie’s Jeff Britton (Mr. Fix It and Mepunga Knight).
And to all intents and purposes, Dr. Tucker – owned by McMahon’s wife, Judith – looked the speedster of old taking out a Winter Cup heat (350m) up Healesville’s straight track on Sunday.
In a sensational start to the Healesville Festival of Racing, Dr. Tucker ($2.40F) clocked the fastest heat time defeating rank outsider Untested ($59.70) by 2L, with Pirate Pete ($4.10) a further 0.7L away third in a slick 19.02sec.
Dr. Tucker, who has amassed $112,080 in prizemoney, notched his 14th win from 24 starts and made it three from four over this track/distance. His winning time was only three lengths outside his blistering 18.84sec personal best.
Meanwhile, the remaining heat was taken out by the Jeff Britton-trained Mr. Fix It who recorded 19.29sec – around four and a half lengths slower than Dr. Tucker.
Mr. Fix It ($2.80F) accounted for reigning Healesville Cup hero Zambora Lou ($3.30) by 1.2L, with Dr. Knuckles ($13.60) – also trained by McMahon – a further 1.6L away third.
A finalist in last year’s G3 Cup Night Sprint at Sandown Park and Geelong Derby, Mr. Fix It registered his 14th win from 35 starts.
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