The old adage ‘the family that plays together stays together’ would aptly apply to Attunga’s Swan family.
Parents Dennis and Robin, along with kids Tim, Matt, Bec and Ashley have been the linchpins behind Tamworth’s successful Avro Glass business for decades. That’s on a Monday to Friday basis, but come the weekend,as many of the close-knit family (including grandkids) as can make it frock up and head to the racetrack wherever the family investment Mock Song is racing.
Mum Robin though jokes that the kids are all in ownership of the seven-year-old mare, but “mum and dad pay the bills and the kids reap the benefits”.
Mock Song, with a strong contingent of the Swan family in the grandstand, will be having her first start back from a short spell in the 1000m BM 58 at Tamworth this Sunday. And if she pulls up well after that, Tamworth trainer Jake (Jacob) Perrett will be eyeing off a possible start at either Barraba or Bundarra cup meetingsnext month.
Victory this weekend would lift Mock Song’s career tally to seven. In the mare’s favour of grabbing a win fresh is the fact that she’s already won first-up before – a 1000m maiden at Gunnedah back in February 2018. Prior to spelling after a midfielder at Inverell back in March this year, Mock Song won the 1000m BM 50 Boggabri Cup at Gunnedah. That win didn’t only bump the Swan Syndicate’s bank account somewhat, it also gave Dennis and Robin a rewarding 39thwedding anniversary present.
Three starts back, the Your Song-Mocks mare, who has won on the track and over the distance at Tamworth,glided to victory on a wet track during February’s Walcha Cup Meeting.
Trainer Jake Perrett is confident of an honest presentation from Mock Song, but is leaning towards her finishing in the placings.
“She won first up when younger, but now she takes one or two runs to hit form,” he said.
“There’s a nice 1000m benchmark (BM) 45 at Barraba that would suit, but she’d probably get 60kg or more, so we might bypass that and look to Bundarra.”
And while racing Mock Song is a family affair with the Swans, the Perrett family of four kids (or “four ferals” as Jake jokes) and wife Lasche also treat the good-looking bay as part of the family.
“Particularly Kenzie (13-year-old daughter Mackenzie) has a very soft spot for her. She likes to give Mock a bit of a groom, or sometimes I’ll come home from work and she’ll have her tail plaited. Kenzie might have even whispered in Mock’s ear about the wedding anniversary before the win at Gunnedah. The Swan family deserve all the wins they get – they’re a great family to work with. I never hear from them – I always have to ring them to let them know what’s going on with the horse,” Jake said.
Like many in the racing game, Jake Perrett is looking forward to things getting back to normal after Covid has buried its ugly head.
“It’s pretty depressing going to the races at the moment. The only ones on course are horses, trainers and jockeys. I went to Gunnedah last Monday (where he led in winner Jousting) and it was like real ghost town. No-one around – no people, not even a bookie.” By Vinnie Todd