Trainer Tom Button, who is now based on the Sunshine Coast, is bringing 14 horses to next week’s Capricornia Yearling Sales Racing Carnival in Rockhampton.
Trainer Tom Button, who is now based on the Sunshine Coast, is bringing 14 horses to next week’s Capricornia Yearling Sales Racing Carnival in Rockhampton.

Trainer Tom set to dominate CYS Racing Carnival

Sunshine Coast trainer Tom Button is set to play a pivotal role in next week’s Capricornia Yearling Sales Racing Carnival in Rockhampton.

The final group of Button’s marauding team of horses has rolled into Rockhampton over the last few days bringing it to 14 in total, virtually ensuring his dominance over the two days of racing.

The Rockhampton Jockey Club will offer more than $500,000 in prizemoney at Callaghan Park over a feast of at least 14 races on Friday, April 9, and Saturday, April 10.

Button may have as many as five starters in the $143K DVL Finance Capricornia Yearling Sale 2YO Classic (1200m) and three in the co-feature $93K CYS 3 & 4YO Championship (1300m).

At an early morning Callaghan Park trackwork session on Wednesday, Button - formerly Rockhampton’s premier trainer before shifting south a few years ago - explained his position.

“Some of the team have been up in Rocky for a few weeks but the rest arrived this week,” he said.

“I mainly came early for the Carnival for two reasons. They are pulling up the cushion track at Corbould Park racecourse where I am based. This would have disrupted their training schedule.

“Then, with the Covid business breaking out, I thought it best to get all the horses that would be racing over the carnival up here early.”

Button has a sizeable owners base in Rockhampton and they are likely to be rewarded handsomely next week through his astuteness.

His five juveniles in the CYS Classic are spearheaded by recent Brisbane winner Valley Rattler.

The Denman youngster, an Oaklands Stud graduate from last year’s online CYS, won over the distance of the 2YO Classic, taking out a 1200m 2YO Maiden at Eagle Farm on March 10.

“He then ran a good race really when unplaced over 1400m at Eagle Farm at his next start but he should be ideally suited in the Classic distance here,” Button said.

“I have another four in training here, all ready to go for that race also should they get a run.”

On reviewing the list of likely 2YO Classic runners, it seems highly likely that Button will have five colour-bearers in the feature and don’t be surprised if they fill the placings.

It is a similar scenario in the 3 & 4YO Championship with Button’s three, headed by regular in-form Brisbane placegetter of late in Flying Crackerjack, as well The Silver Lady.

“Flying Crackerjack has developed into a Brisbane Saturday class horse so this race has been targeted for him,” he said.

Button said riding engagements for his team had not been locked in and he would welcome inquiries from jockeys available for Friday and Saturday’s races.

“Hopefully they may read your story and get on the phone to me,” he mused.

The Button stable won last year’s CYS 2YO Classic with Miss Lot One.

“Flying Crackerjack ran second to Marway in the Championship last year so that is great form,” he said.

Tom Button honed his skills as an apprentice rider in Central Queensland before going on to become Brisbane’s leading junior jockey and he has turned his hand to training equally as sharp.

“I love coming back and racing in Rockhampton and naturally, winning. It has been on my bucket list to win both the Capricornia Yearling Sales feature races. I can only hope this occurs next week,” he said.

Without hesitation, Button said the stable was also set to be purchasing yearlings at the CYS on Sunday week, April 11.

“I’ll be there with a group of owners and we plan to be making purchases. This Capricornia Yearling Sale Carnival is a real winner for Rockhampton and it is very satisfying to be part of it,” he said.

Some 101 yearlings, including two supplementary lots, have been catalogued for sale at the Robert Schwarten Pavilion at the Rockhampton Showgrounds on Sunday, April 11, from 11am.

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