Turn of Faith gave trainer Jim Lake a perfect 70th birthday present during the Mildura Cup carnival on the weekend.
Turn of Faith (5g Keep The Faith – Tresillian by Danehill) won the Murray Mallee Winter Sprint Final (1300m) by a half a length over Nice and Neat and Kiaola.
Winning jockey Jarrod Fry was pleased to deliver a birthday bonus for the veteran trainer. “I’ve had a bit of luck here with Jimmy,” Fry explained. “I won the Mildura Cup with him a few years ago on De Mars. Jimmy always has his horses going well.”
Turn of Faith has been a model consistency this prep. In his last 7 starts, he was won 3 races and earned a minor cheque 4 times for owner Tony Penglase and his partner Julie Estep. “I knew he would be thereabouts with an even share of luck,” Lake claimed. “He’s a tough little tiger and really knuckled down to win the Final. I will back him up at Stawell next Monday as long as the track isn’t heavy.
“Tony and Julie are terrific people and they also raced De Mars,” Lake said. “They want their horses right for the day and don’t ever push you to race them before they are ready.”
Penglase also part-owns the Melbourne stakes winners Danzylum and Count To Zero. They are both by Danzero and are trained by Robert Smerdon.
Lake has spent most of his life around the Murray and Riverina districts as a roustabout, shearer and dairy farmer. He lives on a 50 acre property at Gunbower with his wife Liz and, in his spare time, looks after the local track as well.
A late starter to the training ranks, Lake took out a license some 30 years ago and kicked-off with Fair Paint who won a Kerang maiden in April 1982. He raced on and on until bowing out with a Swan Hill victory in November 1988.
Fair Print (Warpaint) won 24 races in 106 starts and a highlight was the 1986 Schweppes Stakes at Flemington on the same day At Talaq won the Melbourne Cup.
Turn of Faith was part of a winning roll-call for Greta West Stud sire Keep The Faith last week. He sired 7 winners in 5 days topped by G1 Thousand Guineas aspirant Dinkum Diamond.
The Keep The Faiths are doing it at both ends. Perth based sprinter In Faith improved his record to 7 wins in 22 starts with an on-pace victory at Ascot on Saturday.
In Faith was Keep The Faith’s first-ever winner. He scored on debut at Morphettville in January 2010 and then doubled up at Moonee Valley the following month.
Keep The Faith (Sunday Silence) will stand for a $4,400 (inc gst) service fee at Greta West Stud in 2012.