Thurston one to watch

Up and coming Warwick Farm trainer Bryce Heys played the dual role of strapper with talented O’Reilly four year-old Thurston, who made an encouraging debut at Goulburn yesterday. Sent to the front by Mitchell Bell from gate two, Thurston travelled well throughout and kicked strongly down the running to surge clear and win the 1300 metre maiden by two lengths.

Heys was well pleased with the win and plans to let the promising gelding work his way through the grades. A $160,000 NZB Premier purchase for John O’Shea Racing from the WS draft, Thurston was previously trained by O’Shea prior to his Darley appointment with Heys a logical pick to take him over having worked closely with the horse when he was foreman for O’Shea.

Thurston is a half-brother to Group Two winner Epingle and stakes-placed Etoile Filante and is the third winner for stakes-winning Zabeel mare Etoile du Nord. The O’Reilly x Zabeel cross has produced 19 winners from 25 runners and among those winners are Group One winners Silent Achiever and O’Marilyn as well as stakes-winner Collar, so Thurston might be able to add further gloss to this nick.

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