1000 WINS; ANOTHER NOTCH ON KEVIN GRAY'S BELT
Kevin Gray scored his 1000th training success on his old stamping ground at Waverley today, but he wasn't there to see it.
The 79-year-old had to stay home at Awapuni after a number of his staff fell victim to the flu.
Itsallbelt, ridden by his apprentice Holly Andrew, splashed through the mud in the last to bring up the boss's milestone win.
"How's this for a story,'' said a chuffed Gray. "I get my 1000th winner with a horse I race, who is out of a mare I bred, who is led into the birdcage by a former apprentice and now my foreman (Richard French) and ridden by my apprentice."
Gray said of all his group, open handicaps, maiden and lower graded winners, NZ Oaks winner Legs would rate his favourite, followed closely by 2009 AJC Oaks winner Daffodil.
And while Itsallbelt has hardly earned star status in 26 starts he has earned a special place in an album lovingly put together by Gray's wife Kathleen.
She has photos of all Gray's winners, starting with Keen Kiss in 1982. - By GLENN WATSON