By Ray Thomas, The Daily Telegraph

THE unusually named Steakandbearnaise made a name for himself when he finished hard to win the $100,000 Country Championships Qualifier (1400m) at Wagga on Saturday.

Brett Cavanough, the leading trainer in the Riverina, had three runners in the Wagga heat with Steakandbearnaise the outsider of the trio at $12.

But apprentice Kayla Nisbet rode a superbly judged race on Steakandbearnaise who ran down a very game Mitchell Road ($21) to win by a half-length.

The three-year-olds Lord Von Costa ($6) and favourite Challenge Accepted ($4) ran third and four respectively but a further three lengths behind the first two placegetters.

Cavanough’s other Country Championships runners Another Rush ($10, seventh) and Just A Bullet ($6, 12th) finished down the track.

Steakandbearnaise and Mitchell Road secured starts in the $400,000 Country Championships Finals (1400m) at Royal Randwick on April 2.

Nisbet, the sister-in-law to champion Sydney jockey Tommy Berry, rode her biggest career winner on Steakandbearnaise. She has enjoyed a successful start to the year having also ridden Atom Eve to win a TAB Highway Plate at Randwick last month.

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