Day At The Track
Carter Dalgety,Harness racing

Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety

Super Star Down Under Mare wins first race in her American harness racing career. Bettors Heart N didn’t waste any time when getting back into the winners circle since relocating to the US to purse her racing career. Friday night at the Meadowlands in New Jersey was the night, where the daughter of Bettors Delight wore down race rivals late in the home stretch to pick up a win in the $16,000 pace. With Down Under blood running through every part of her body the mare is handled by Down Under trainer/driver combination in Nifty Norman and Dexter Dunn. She is also still partly owned by her New Zealand breeders the Bagrie Family. Bettors Heart N showed her real toughness late in the race when getting into clear air at the top of the straight but really rallying late to win in 1:50.3. Finishing a very gallant 2nd place was another Down Under Pacer in Tango Dancer N for Kelvin Harrison. Bettors Heart N made a name for herself Down Under when visiting Menangle Raceway in Sydney where she won the $200,000 Lady Ship Mile in 1:49.7. Following that win she raced the $1 million Miracle Mile against the boys but not placing. Her Down Under career stats stand at 9 wins and 11 placings for over $270,000 in prize money. An intriguing note of this race was that of the 8 trainers contesting in this race, 7 of those were Down Under trainers and those 7 finishing from 1st to 7th. There were also 3 Down Under drivers and 3 Down Under horses in the race. Dexter Dunn sends Harness racing Equine masterpiece out in style. Saturday night at the Meadowlands in New Jersey was the running of the TVG Finals. Being the last big event for top stakes horses of the year in the US. It was a large night for Down Unders Dexter Dunn, with three of his superstar horses having their last career start before pursuing a career in the breeding sector. Todd McCarthy, Nifty Norman and Chris Ryder had a night to remember also. First came freakish trotting mare Manchego who competed in the $320,000 TVG Open Trotting Mares Final. Settling 4th of the pack she angled first over just after the half to make her move and getting to the outside into the stretch with hardly any persuasion from Dunn the daughter of Muscle Hill made a mess of rivals to salute in 1:51.3. Shortly after the win one of the greatest Harness Racing trainers Jimmy Takter labelled her, “In my opinion best filly ever.”.  Next up for Dunn came the mare on a win streak Kissin In the Sand in the $150,000 TVG Open Pacing Mares Final. Coming off the gate Down Under mare Shartin N was the leader but Kissin In the Sand soon took over the lead and that was that, she kicked away up the straight to win in a new stakes record of 1:48.0. Now in the $371,900 Governors Cup for 2yo Pacing Colts and Geldings Nancy Takter and Dexter Dunn picked up their third big win of the night with Always A Miki, a son of first season sire Always B Miki who scored a very tough win in 1:50.2. Motoring for the 2yos.  To really top off he night the Down Under duo of Chris Ryder and Dexter Dunn took Bettors Wish out for his last race start and he was as fast as ever. Dunn taking the Bettors Delight Colt to the lead off the gate saying post-race, “we weren’t going to die wondering tonight”. From then running even splits until three quarter where he powered away to win in fitting fashion of 1:48.1.     A personal favourite of Dunns the big salute over the line was appropriate.  A huge victory came on the night for Down Under Duo in Noel Daley and Todd McCarthy. The pair teamed up with 2yo trotting filly Anoka Hanover to win the $451,800 Goldsmith Maid in 1:53.2. A huge win for the pair and driver Todd McCarthy’s biggest win since relocating to the US. Down Under trainer Nifty Norman also scored a large success on the night in the $398,650 Valley Victory for 2yo trotting colts and geldings with a son of Muscle Hill, Bee Forever. The win came in 1:54.0 in a close finish to the line.  On the big night of racing Down Under trainers and drivers won 8 of the 13 races.    Monday 16th November Northfield Park OH Elrama N – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $5,500 Rycroft N – Time: 1:55.1, Stake: $5,500   Pompano Park FL Risk N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $3,200   Yonkers Raceway NY Somwherenbrookln N – Time: 1:55.4, Stake: $9,500 Hudsen A – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $14,000 Globaldomination N – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $18,000 Abraxas Blues A – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $11,000   Tuesday 17th November Monticello Raceway NY Ohoka Johnny N – Time: 1:56.0, Stake: $7,200 Kenrick N – Time: 1:57.2, Stake: $6,200 Im A Director N – Time: 1:56.2, Stake: $6,700   Northfield Park OH Strawb’s Chippie N – Time: 1:56.2, Stake: $4,400   Saratoga Harness NY Nerve Of Steel N – Time: 1:56.3, Stake: $5,200 Make A Statement A – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $5,850 Pasultimatedelite N – Time: 1:55.4, Stake: $5,850 Down Under First 4 – 2nd Miss Irish Rose A, 3rd Bontz N, 4th Glenferrie Blade A   Yonkers Raceway NY Mossdale Lottee N – Time: 1:56.1, Stake: $12,000 Donegalartchokin N – Time: 1:56.0, Stake: $14,000 Demeter N – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $17,000   Flamboro Downs CA Bettor Trix N – Time: 1:56.1, Stake: $10,500   Wednesday 18th November Dover Downs DE Western Secret A – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $6,500   Harrahs Philadelphia PA Misty Memory N – Time: 1:54.1, Stake: $6,800 Its Mesmerise N – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $10,000 Jossie James A – Time: 1:52.2, Stake: $6,800   The Meadows PA Dream Out Loud N – Time: 1:52.1, Stake: $9,500 Cocosfella A – Time: 1:52.2, Stake: $6,000   Thursday 19th November Dover Downs DE Glengarry Knight N – Time: 1:51.4, Stake: $6,500 Mister Ohanzee N – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $6,500 Trojan Banner N – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $8,000 Itsrockandroll A – Time: 1:51.1, Stake: $22,000   Monticello Raceway NY Alta Jerome N – Time: 1:58.4, Stake: $2,800   Plainridge Park MA Rock Diamonds N – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $17,500 Mach Doro A – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $9,000   Yonkers Raceway NY Seaswift Joy N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $20,000   Friday 20th November Harrah’s Hoosier Park IN Bechers Brook A – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $14,200   Meadowlands NJ Bettors Heart N – Time: 1:50.3, Stake: $16,000 Mighty Mr Sharkey N – Time: 1:50.2, Stake: $12,500 All American N – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $10,000   Yonkers Raceway NY Kerford Road A – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $11,000 War Dan A – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $11,000   Woodbine Mohawk Park CA The Bandit Queen N – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $22,000   Saturday 21st November Cal Expo CA Dependlebury A – Time: 1:58.1, Stake: $4,600   Harrah’s Hoosier Park IN Majestic Player A – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $21,500 Miss You N – Time: 1:51.2, Stake: $22,250   Meadowlands NJ Bracken Storm A – Time: 1:51.0, Stake: $15,000   Northfield Park OH American Empress N – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $12,500   Scarborough Downs ME Holy Grail N – Time: 1:56.3, Stake: $4,400 The Bus A – Time: 1:56.1, Stake: $5,200   Yonkers Raceway NY Speed Man N – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $30,000 Raukapuka Ruler N – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $17,500 Tin Roof Raider A – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $17,500   Woodbine Mohawk Park CA Mongolian Hero N – Time: 1:51.2, Stake: $16,000   Sunday 22nd November Harrahs Philadelphia PA Iammrbrightside N – Time: 1:51.3, Stake: $12,000 Let It Ride N – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $8,800 Sevens Hope A – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $8,800   Northfield Park OH Celestial Arden N – Time: 1:54.1, Stake: $7,200 Brigadierbronski A – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $8,800     Click here for previous weeks articles     by Carter Dalgety  

Dancing With Flo, Harness racing

Filly gets chance to Flo from go to whoa

Tonight may well provide something of a crowning moment for Rick Cashman, who’s rapidly improving filly is perfectly drawn to give her trainer a chance at a career best result. After lady luck had shunned her through the TAB Breeders Crown, Dancing With Flo gets her chance tonight in the Pryde’s EasiFeed silver pace for three-year-old fillies, drawing gate one while her lead rivals were disadvantaged. Cashman said a good result “would be huge”, adding “we got the draw, now she gets the opportunity to produce”. The $30,000 Group 3 would be clearly the trainer’s biggest result since he had his first starter on October 1, 2012, at Yarra Glen, when Modern Saint ran fifth and collected a cheque. Not long before Cashman attended Gippsland Harness Training Centre to learn the fundamentals of the sport and then, when Cranbourne’s training centre opened in September 2012, he had a pathway into training. “I had finished cricket and football and like many men and women I was looking for something to continue to drive me,” Cashman said. “I had never sat behind a horse until I was 45.” With the support of those around him he’s since trained 168 starters for 23 wins, and tonight Dancing With Flo presents the chance to carve out a career highpoint. Cashman bred the filly, having been given her unraced dam, Narree Rose, by Arthur Fulwood, who he paired with Rocknroll Dance. He welcomed “half a dozen new owners into the group” and they patiently waited as the filly readied for racing. “She was lightly raced as a two-year-old, when she showed she had ability but needed to strengthen up,” he said. “She had four starts earlier this year and then when Breeders Crown and Vicbred were pushed back we had another eight weeks to bring her up. She just got bigger, stronger and quicker.” She first won on her home track in April and again at Kilmore on May 13 before the freshen up, then returned to salute first-up on October 1. Dancing With Flo was then given her opportunity to shine in the $24,000 DNR Logistics Argent 3YO Classic at Melton on October 23, and shine she did, running second to Maajida. “I was certainly confident she was an above average horse, but it’s another thing to show it against the better ones,” Cashman said. “It was not until her race against them in the Argent Classic before she confirmed that. I wasn’t surprised, but it was just confirmation that she could produce given the right opportunity.” It meant Cashman and reinswoman Lisa Miles entered the Breeders Crown series with confidence she’d acquit herself well, and she was outstanding in her heat when flying late from the back of the field to advance to the semi-final. She then again drew poorly and on this occasion it would prove too difficult to overcome. “Her effort at Bendigo was sensational, it was just unfortunate that she couldn’t get the draw in the semis,” Cashman said. But her luck changed for tonight’s Silver Pace, when Dancing With Flo will start from gate one. “There are a couple of quick horses drawn outside, so she won’t get it all her own way,” he said. “The favourite for the Breeders Crown (Maajida) is in this race, there’s Iolanta, Rockingwithsierra has very good gate speed. We go in full of belief she’s well and given every opportunity she will be thereabouts.”   Michael Howard

Anthony Butt—now here to stay in Victoria, Harness racing

Aussie stable snippets

It won’t really come as a surprise...but champion harness racing horseman Anthony Butt has declared that Victoria is once again home on a permanent basis. Butt, who has been preparing a big team at Menangle for Emilio Rosati and his wife Mary, headed south recently with some quality horses, predominantly trotters. And he’s been on fire! Butt, a former Kiwi, made no secret that the visit was aimed at the rich races that were on offer, saying it was easier to place horses at a plethora of meetings within one or two hours from his temporary base at Melton. “There are so many trotting races programmed down here and Emilio is heading more and more in that direction,” Butt said. “We thoroughly love Melbourne. We’ve made a lot of friends over the years here during our trips and then when we lived here.” When it comes to Butt’s Midas touch with square gaiters, the past champions in Lyell Creek and Take A Moment come to mind, both trained by his brother Tim. ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Hard-working Romsey trainer-driver Chris Svanosio is sure to remember his last weekend’s Breeders Crown triumph for many years to come. The win with Watts Up Majestic (Majestic Son-Rainbow Maori (Maori’s Idol) was his first Group One success since relocating to his new base from Bendigo nearly 12 months ago. Watts Up Majestic, raced by his breeder Bradley Watts, finished full of running to claim the Skyvalley @ Aldebaran Park Breeders Crown $100,000 event for 2yo trotters. “He’s a lovely horse and I got him when his regular trainer Rickie Alchin couldn’t make it down due to the travel restrictions in Syndney,” Svanosio said. “I’ve been friends for years with Rickie and his brother Jarrod. I first met Jarrod when he was a junior driver and drove for a good mate in Bruce Morgan at Bendigo and Rickie was down in Victoria working there for a while with John Ryan,” he said. Svanosio, who worked as a scientist in Tasmanian aquaculture before getting the harness racing “bug”, has now landed four G1 winners in a successful career as well as being victorious with three he trained. “I’m on a lovely 40-acre property with girlfriend Elizabeth (MacLean) and we’re doing a team of 33 horses at the moment,” he said. “We’re lucky to have Michelle Phillips, Tayla French, my dad Peter and a few others giving us a hand because there’s also nearly a dozen rising two-year-olds that need to come in.” Svanosio drove 55 winners and 113 placings in 2019-20. He has won another 12 races and 22 placings in the extended season. In the training ranks, he chalked up 56 wins (12 metro) and 93 placings. The extended season has seen an additional 18 wins and 22 minor placings. Chris Svanosio and Watts Up Majestic (Photograph Stu McCormick)  ****************** Shepparton-based David Moran helped himself to a personal training/driving double at Cobram yesterday—and in addition landed three other winners for three different trainers. Meanwhile, 740kms away, champion South Australian reinswoman Dani Hill also posted five victories for the day at Globe Derby Park. For Moran, of Lochinvar Art fame, it was the second occasion in his career that he’s driven a “high five”. The first time he achieved the feat was at Albury, back in February of 2015. He was successful yesterday with Redbank Cooper (Art Major-Lettucedance (Western Ideal) and Angelic Miss (Shadow Play-Heavenly Hiraani (Fake Left), both prepared at his Kialla stables. Moran also tasted success with Russell Jack-trained Major Angel (American Ideal-Mattie Angel (Art Major); Geoffrey Allan bay mare Sassyfeet (Julius Caesar-Symphonic Jade (Strong Life); and a gelding trained by his partner Kasey Kent in Reckon Im Smart (American Ideal-Pacing Grace (In The Pocket). It’s incredibly the seventh time Dani Hill has bagged five at a meeting. And incidentally she has gone one better on three occasions, the most recent at Globe Derby in August with a big six. Dani combined with her father Gary to record a treble for the popular trainer-Bettaminethanyours (Alta Christiano-Bettainmypocket); Citysiren (Mr Feelgood-Ima Golden Girl) and The Queen Of Heart (Four Starzzz Shark-Couldbeagoodone). She was also successful with Shane Loone-trained pair Jake’s Sportswriter (Sportswriter-Tina) and Pay Me Interest (Gotta Go Cullen-Pay Me Girl). While over the Bass Strait to Tasmania, Ben Yole has kept kicking goals with four winners at Burnie on Friday, followed with a double at Hobart on Sunday. Seven-year-old gelding Jakes A Joy carried the winning flag at each meeting—firstly Taylor Ford got him home by a head, and then Mark Yole won by a neck on the pacer. “High five” for David Moran at Cobram. (Photograph Cobram HRC)   Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

Gee Up Neddy, Harness racing

Gee Up Neddy looks to defy history

Catch up on the week’s harness racing action in our weekly review, thanks to Darren Clayton. THE GOOD Queensland’s signature event for square gaiters - the Darrell Alexander Memorial - will be run this coming Saturday night; with the 14 finalists decided after six heats. There were five winners of the six heats - Our Overanova, BD Khaosan, Musculus and Majestic Simon, with Gee Up Neddy the only finalist to claim victory in both heats he contested. However, if Neddy is to claim victory in the Group 2 Final, he will need to overcome history. The 2020 edition will be the 14th running of the DJA and in the previous 13 renewals, no trotter has been able to win both heat rounds and the Final. But this year has been a year like no other in so many ways, so will this be the year that a trotter can sweep the series? Gee Up Neddy has certainly found form at the right time to make it a reality, and from the 10-metre handicap combined with his great manners, has the chance to re-write history. In in the fifth heat on Saturday night, Gee Up Neddy was safely away to settle closer to the rear as Godofthunder moved up outside the leader Im The Commando to ensure an even tempo throughout. BD Khaosan had the one-by- one trail and looked poised to strike as the field swung for home, however, Gee Up Neddy kept coming down the outside to claim victory by a half-neck. That pair had broken away with the third placed Havana Magic a further 14 metres astern. Owner, trainer, and driver Hayden Barnes will be hoping that he can go one better than the 2019 Final. In last year’s series, Gee Up Neddy was a narrow 2nd in the Final after looming up strongly, only to be grabbed in the closing strides along the passing lane behind Wee Man Trouble. Versatility could be the key to victory in 2020, with Gee Up Neddy possessing that attribute. Clean manners from the tapes along with the ability to work or be saved for a closing sprint will hold the nine-year-old in good stead. Back in August, Barnes listed his season highlight as bringing up his 400th career victory aboard Gee Up Neddy. That statement may be up for debate later this Saturday night if Barnes can become the first to sweep the DJA Series. If by some bad luck Gee Up Neddy is runner-up again, there is probably only one horse that Hayden hopes can beat him home - Needabacardi. To be driven by his brother Brendan, the chestnut has been runner-up in both rounds of heats. Trained by Jack Butler, listed as a part owner - Hayden Barnes, it would certainly be a season highlight. THE BAD American politician Frank A. Clark once quipped “It’s hard to detect good luck — it looks so much like something you’ve earned.” That is a statement that certainly would resonate with owner Mick Andreadis. Owning horses in several states spread across various trainers, Andreadis has certainly had his resilience tested, and here in Queensland, the trotter I Asked Nicely is one such test. Starting just nine times since arriving in Brisbane with trainer Travis Mackay back in March, the eight-year-old has won two races. Yet such are his problems, he has trialled on 15 occasions in that same period under enforced embargos to correct his manners. Another horse owned by Andreadis is Major Mucha, a horse that has been plagued by bad luck in landing a good barrier in recent months. Joining the Mackay stable back in July, the four-year-old Art Major gelding has started on 20 occasions. Heading into his latest assignment, Major Mucha had started from gate 4 or wider in 17 successive starts. From gate one on Saturday, he made his own luck when leading throughout to claim victory with Dannielle Veivers taking the reins. Luck may be turning for Andreadis, with another of his pacers scoring at Mildura on Thursday. Laser Major - now a 10-year-old - was successful in the opening race, ending a win drought that had extended back to 2016 and over 50 race starts. With that sort of drought, it is fair to say that any luck has certainly been earnt.   THE MILESTONE There were three age track records at Marburg on Sunday, with the warm weather and settling track proving ideal for fast times. The first of those records came in the opening event of the day when the Peter Greig-trained Straytothepoolroom was successful. Marburg does not tend to have a great deal of two-year-old events on their programmes, however on Sunday a mixed age event was the catalyst of the new record. Driven by Angus Garrard, the Cammibest gelding was put on the front-end early and once in control, held on to take the victory and surpass a record that has stood since 2008. Maywyn Gold, trained and driven by Shane Sanderson, has held the record for 12 years, with the win of Straytothepoolroom taking 0.9 seconds off the old mark. Two weeks ago, Voodoo Fella provided Jordan Topping with her first victory as a driver and with his latest victory, Jordan can also boast the three-year-old colts and geldings record. Twice within a month this record has been bettered - Major Fernco setting a new mark on October 25, with Voodoo Fella eclipsing that mark with his victory at the weekend. Wide in the closing stages, it was a well-timed drive by Topping, arriving to claim a half-head margin and set a record of 1.58.4 with the win. It also provided the Russell family with a quinella - David training the winner with son Dan training the runner-up - Abercrombie Tab. The third and final record was the victory of Gina Tarantella, setting a new benchmark for the aged mares of 1.57.8, taking 0.3 seconds off the previous mark held by Ale Ale Kai.   THE WILDCARD Gina Tarantella was having her first start for Jonah Hutchinson after joining his stables from New South Wales. The four-year-old Million Dollar Cam mare arrived in Queensland after 20 starts that had failed to net a return down south. After a sound trial at Menangle in mid-October, she was on the move North where Hutchinson opted to send her straight to the races on Sunday at Marburg - without a further trial. Powering out of the pack from the start, Hutchinson had the mare freewheeling in front, running the opening splits in close to even time with identical 30.1 second quarters. Dialling it up down the back, Gina Tarantella put up a big margin on her rivals when running through the third split in 28.3 seconds. With the race shot to bits, Hutchinson had not moved on the mare, cruising home in 29.8 seconds for the last 400 metres, setting the 1.57.8 mile-rate for the 1850-metre trip and establishing a new aged mare track record. In the demolition process, the winning margin could likely be a new record for the Marburg track - the 73.2 metre margin back to second also close to a Queensland record. Searching through mountains of results, the victory could possibly be the second biggest in Queensland behind the 77-metre debut win of Viking Reign back in 1987. Stablemates Greg The Great and Archilles - trained by Graham Dwyer - both won races by 55.3 metres last season but hitting into 70+ metres looks rarefied air. That is not the only big win in recent weeks for the Hutchinson stable, with the arrival of some new horses to the barn bringing some good success. Rousey claimed victory by 51.7 metres at her first outing for the stable, the mare remaining undefeated in Queensland after four starts. With the manner of the win by Gina Tarantella, Jonah Hutchinson and connections could have some fun times ahead.   THIS WEEK The TAB Queensland Harness Racing Summer Carnival officially starts on Saturday at Albion Park with the night jam-packed with feature racing. Headlining the on-track excitement is the Group 3 Be Good Johnny Sprint where Colt Thirty One and Turn It Up look set to do battle. After two rounds of heats, the Darrel Alexander Memorial Trot at Group 2 level will see a capacity field of square gaiters look to secure Queensland’s biggest trotting event. QBRED three-year-olds are set to do battle, with a pair of Group 3 races - for the colts and geldings and for the fillies - in the new QBRED for Life race to be conducted at 2138 metres. Support races on the card include the APHRC Members Cup, the Changeover Queen of the Creek for mares and a two-year-old feature. The racing week will include the regular schedule of Tuesday through Saturday, with Albion Park on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday along with Redcliffe hosting Wednesday and Thursday. Sunday will see grass track action from Kilcoy where three races will be conducted alongside the gallops meeting at the track known as Moonee Valley of the North.   Darren Clayton for Racing Queensland

FORMER Kiwi reinsman Jack Trainor must wish that 2020 never ends. Despite the travel restrictions due to COVID-19, Trainor is having the season of his life and continues to rack up the winners with 126 this season to sit in sixth place on the overall premiership. Trainor is the man to follow at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Tuesday when he partners three of the seven favourites, as well as two other handy drives at the south-western Sydney circuit. “This season has been extended so I guess my winners have been inflated a bit – “normally we’d be into the next season by now but it has been a terrific run and I’m loving it,” said Trainor. His best drive on Tuesday does appear to be Red Reactor for local Menangle horseman David Thorn in Race 4. “He’s been a great horse since he’s come over although he probably races best when he can be saved up for one run,” said Trainor. “But he does look the one to beat there, for sure. Let’s hope so. “Christmas Toyboy [Race 3] also went well last start. He should be able to lead again and he’ll go well. “Navua Star [Race 6] has plenty of ability and early tactics might be the key in this race. “He does have a mind of his own sometimes, this horse, but he’s still a pretty nice pacer and I reckon he’ll run first or second.” Trainor agreed Red Reactor did shape as the best of a good book of drives. The young trainer-driver branched out on his own recently and now has five in work at the Menangle Training Centre, including Chrissy Chic, who won well at Bathurst last week. “They’re all honest and it’s a nice little team,” he said. “Jason Grimson and I work together, and we have 12 between us and it’s all going well.” Trainor is also good friends with Dexter Dunn who has become the No1 reinsman in the US in the past couple of seasons. “He’s just killing them over there,” said Trainor. “I’d love to go over there for a holiday and follow the boys around for a week or two and see what it’s all about. “But at this stage I am happy with the way things are going here. “Hopefully, this run rolls on into next season.”   HRNSW MEDIA

An excerpt from "Time To Hail Group One Gav" by John Peck (February 2020)   Nicknames are just so Australian. In horse racing one must be exceptional to be afforded a nickname that will have you remembered forever. Fans across Australia would instantly recognize “The Pumper”, “The Professor”, “Big Red”, “Cups King” and even the initials “T.J.” Similarly Harness Racing aficionados would have no difficulty in putting names to “The Puppet”, “Ginger”, “Bathurst Bulldog”, “Mr. Inter Dominion” and the initials “V.J.” There is another - Group One Gav - a moniker earned by champion reinsman Gavin Lang, the first driver to win 5,000 races in Australasia and now after exhaustive research, it can be confirmed that Gavin indeed was, and will forever be, the first Australian driver to win 100 Group One races. The always humble Gavin kicked off his skein of Group One victories in style, when he piloted the Graeme Johannesen trained champion True Roman to success in the 1988 Inter Dominion Trotters Final at Moonee Valley. His 100th Group One was achieved with Delight Me in the Vicbred Super Sires final for 4YO pacing mares at Tabcorp Park (Melton) on 2nd July 2016. Every State jurisdiction is represented in Gavin’s first 100 Group One wins – Victoria (68), New South Wales (17), Tasmania (6), South Australia (5), Queensland (3) and Western Australia (1). The beauty of Gavin’s first 100 Group One wins was that he was never permanently tied to any leading stable and exemplified by the fact that the 100 Group One winners he drove were prepared by 24 different trainers (including himself).

Fresh from Chicago Bull's scintillating win in Friday's RetraVision Fremantle Cup connections are contemplating a raid on Victoria's famed Del-Re National A. G. Hunter Cup. The first Saturday in February has been circled by trainer Gary Hall Snr, who was further buoyed by his multi-million dollar pacer's first Group 1 win since the 2017 WA Cup. "(Friday night) was a great thrill," Hall told RSN 927. "He's been to hell and back that little horse and to actually come back to the very, very top, that speaks wonders for how good a horse he is." Chicago Bull's only ventured once outside of Western Australia, a trip that started with a bid to win the 2018 Victoria Cup. On that occasion he ran second to a rampant Tiger Tara before crossing the Tasman to pursue the New Zealand Trotting Cup, winning his only Auckland start before suffering a career-threatening injury and a long road back to the track. Now seemingly back to his best, Hall Snr said he'd love to take on Australia's leading pacers at Tabcorp Park Melton, but first of all "I've got to convince the owners". "They're a bit gun shy about going away with him (again), but I'd love to come over after Christmas for the Hunter Cup with him if I could and if he's still in the form that he's in," he said. "I think he's still got something to prove. Not to me, but probably to everyone else in Australia. You seem to need to be able to win on the eastern seaboard before anyone starts to think that you are a great horse. I think he's a great horse, but I'd love to come over there and win a Hunter Cup or something like that." Chicago Bull improved his record to an extraordinary 60 wins from 89 starts and $2.2 million in stakes won with Friday's victory. "He's definitely the most consistent horse I've ever trained. Even (Im themightyquinn) had his days when he put in an ordinary one, this horse never does. He always goes out there and gives his best. It's just amazing. He's a pretty easy horse to train. He really hasn't got any faults at all."   Harness Racing Victoria

Ignatius continued on his winning way in Hobart on Sunday night when he took out the open class event on the nine-race card. The Roll With Joe gelding sat outside the leader and second placegetter Ryley Major to defeat him by two-metres. After a slow lead time for an open class of 35.1s and a first quarter of 32.2s the pace quickened over the final 1200 metres in quarters of 30.0s, 28.2s and 27.7s for a mile rate of 1m 58.0s. Call Me Hector, who ended up behind the leader, was a further 7.4 metres away third. Watch the replay click here Ignatius was driven by Gareth Rattray who was replacing regular driver and trainer Todd Rattray who is currently serving a driving suspension. “He went terrific racing outside Ryley Major in what was a strong last half mile, and he ran through the line well,” said Todd Rattray about the win. “He has pulled up well and hasn’t stopped running around in his paddock this morning,” added the trainer. It was a great entree to a host of feature races over the upcoming months in Tasmania including the heats and final of the $30,000 Tassie Golden Apple in December. Then in January, the state has the $25,000 Hobart Pacing Cup and the $30,000 Devonport Pacing Cup, with some Victorian trainers indicating strong interest for these races. Todd indicated he might look at a regular free for all in Hobart in two weeks, before the heats of the Golden Apple in Launceston the following week. The win of Ignatius was a part of a driving double for Gareth Rattray who scored on Bonacci earlier on in the night. He now has a two-win lead for the state’s drivers title on 67 over Rohan Hillier and Conor Crook on 65, followed by Ricky Duggan 61 and Mark Yole 60. Earlier in the night, Jakes A Joy chalked up his second win of the weekend, after scoring in Burnie on Friday, winning a rating 50 to 54 event. It was the fourth win in a row for the Mister Big gelding who had a lovely three-wide cart into the race. Another pacer to make it four wins in a row was Victoria Pass who was too strong for his rivals after working forward to race outside the leader in the middle stages of the race.   Duncan Dornauf for Tasracing

Chicago Bull is simply the best Just over two years ago Chicago Bull cheated death in a freak stable accident in New Zealand, and at Gloucester Park on Friday night the superstar seven-year-old reinforced his standing as Australia’s best pacer with an incredible victory in the $300,000 Retravision Fremantle Cup. It was a notable triumph for the chunky little gelding as well as for champion trainer Gary Hall snr and reinsman Gary Hall jnr, who can lay claim as the country’s finest driver. Chicago Bull, presented in outstanding condition by Hall snr and driven in masterly fashion by his son, was favourite at $1.80 and he thrilled an excitable crowd with his sheer brilliance as he stormed to an effortless victory, beating $23 chance Galactic Star by just under two lengths, with up-and-coming star Shockwave ($2.65) a gallant third. “Chicago Bull was on the floor and we all thought he was taking his last breath,” said Hall jnr as he recalled the devastating moments after the gelding suffered an anaphylactic reaction to an intravenous injection in Auckland in October 2018 and fractured eight bones in his wither region. “I got a bit emotional in the cool-down lap tonight because memories came flooding back about what happened in New Zealand. To go from there to here, there’s so many people to thank. The horse has a heart bigger than himself and he’s an absolute marvel. “I think he is now as good as he was then, if not better, and it’s all credit to Dad, who has done a super job to get him back to this form. Hopefully, we will be able to take him away again (with the Hunter Cup in Melbourne next year the likely target).” Hall snr was ecstatic after Friday night’s magnificent performance, saying: “He’s unbelievable; he won so easily tonight, and I’m happy for Junior because he was nervous , and it was devastating for him to be over there in New Zealand when he was caretaking him. The accident wasn’t his fault. “This makes up for it now. Chicago Bull is running to the line better and is running away from them (his rivals). Before, he used to wait for them, but tonight it was amazing the way he went to the line. “I’ve won a few Fremantle Cups and I’m surprised at how overwhelmed I am the way Chicago Bull went tonight. He never ceases to surprise me. He’s the smallest horse I’ve trained, and he’s got a heart like a lion.” Friday night’s victory gave Hall a record tenth win in the Fremantle Cup, and his fifth success in the past six years. It was Hall junior’s ninth win in the big race. Vampiro ($31), from barrier four, was the smartest to begin, but the polemarker Bletchley Park set the pace for the first 300m before Colin Brown sent Vampiro to the front soon after Vampiro had locked sulky wheels with stablemate Mighty Conqueror, causing that pacer to break into a fierce gallop and drop back to the rear. Shockwave settled down in sixth position in the one-out, one-back trail, before Aiden de Campo urged him forward, three wide, 600m after the start, with Chicago Bull in ninth place in the one-wide line. Shockwave moved to the breeze, and after a lap of the 2536m journey had been completed, Hall sent Chicago Bull forward, three wide. The champion raced three wide for about 500m before he wrested the breeze position from Shockwave. Chicago Bull forged to the front approaching the home turn before he burst away to leave his rivals floundering in his wake. He rated 1.56.9 after a final quarter of 28.3sec. Galactic Star, who had raced in the breeze briefly in the early stages and was sixth in the one-wide line at the bell, finished powerfully to be second, with Shockwave in third place ahead of Bletchley Park. Vampiro wilted to finish sixth. Chicago Bull, who improved his record to 89 starts for 60 wins, 14 seconds, nine thirds and stakes of $2,228,843, will now tackle the $450,000 WA Pacing Cup next Friday week.   Balcatherine does it tough Four-year-old New Zealand-bred pacer Balcatherine warmed up in fine style for the $125,000 Westral Mares Classic next Friday night with a powerful performance in the 2130m Retravision, Your Fujitsu Air Conditioning Specialist Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The victory was a just reward for the aggression shown by champion reinsman Gary Hall jnr, who set Balcatherine the daunting task of pouring on the pressure on the pacemaker and $1.95 favourite Somebeachparty throughout the race. Somebeachparty was smartest into stride from barrier four, and Hall wasted no time from out wide at barrier eight to ensure that Somebeachparty, driven by Emily Suvaljko for Busselton trainer Barry Howlett, was able to have an easy time in front. With Balcatherine challenging Somebeachparty for ascendancy in the early stages, the lead time was a fast 36.8sec. before the four quarters of the final mile whizzed by in 29sec., 28.9sec., 27.9sec. and 28.7sec., with the mile rate a slick 1.54.3. The two mares were locked together in a titanic struggle over the final 400m before Balcatherine drew clear in the closing stages to win by a head. Angel In White, a $13 chance who trailed the pacemaker all the way, finished a sound third. Hall was well aware of Somebeachparty’s ability, having driven her three times for three wins. “I know she is pretty classy, and I knew that I had to put it to her,” said Hall. “Balcatherine is tough and I was pleasantly surprised the way she performed after doing all that work in the breeze.” This was Balcatherine’s third start after resuming from a spell and she now has had 16 starts for eight wins, four placings and $95,638 in prizemoney. The win completed a treble for Hall and a double for trainer Gary Hall snr.   Eldaytona is a Derby hope Smart Somebeachsomewhere colt Eldaytona emerged as a formidable player in the rich WA Derby next year when he gave a stylish frontrunning display to score an emphatic victory in the 2130m Retravision, 60 Day Price Promise Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Trained by Sue Wiscombe and driven confidently by Lindsay Harper, Eldaytona, third favourite at $5.50, had his rivals under pressure a long way from home when he sped over the second and third quarters of the final mile in 28.6sec. and 27.2sec. He covered the final 400m section in 29.2sec. and defeated the $3.30 favourite Lavra Joe by two lengths, rating 1.56.7. Robbie Rocket ($12) rattled home from seventh at the bell to be an eye-catching third, with Sugar Street ($8) fighting on to be a sound fourth after working hard in the breeze. Lavra Joe, a winner at his four appearances after resuming from a spell, was not bustled out from the outside barrier (No. 9) and settled down in tenth position. Chris Lewis sent him forward, three wide, approaching the bell and he sustained a spirited run. Eldaytona, named after Daytona Beach in Florida, is raced by Wiscome, Harper and the colt’s breeders Kevin and Annette Charles. “He keeps improving and has gone to a new level at each of his past four or five runs,” Harper said. “He’s not just a frontrunner, and I’m sure he can do it from behind.” Charles entered the colt in the 2019 Perth APG yearling sale and Wiscombe and Harper outlaid $15,000 to obtain a 75 per cent share, with Charles and his wife retaining a 25 per cent ownership. Eldaytona, the seventh foal and sixth winner out of Artsplace mare Hearty Franco, has now raced 13 times for three wins, seven seconds and $28,832 in stakes. He is a half-brother to Lady Luca, who won the group 1 Diamond Classic at Gloucester Park in 2016 and was retired with earnings of $134,568 from nine wins and eight placings from 65 starts. Lady Luca has just produced her first foal, by Captain Treacherous. Lady Luca and Eldaytona’s maternal granddam Heather Franco produced Franco Hat Trick (191 starts for 30 wins, 66 placings and $659,210) and Franco Heir (83 starts for 19 wins, 16 placings and $392,272).   Braeview Bondi enhances Cup prospects Braeview Bondi, a big, strong five-year-old enhanced his claims for a start in the $450,000 WA Pacing Cup next Friday week when he gave a splendid frontrunning performance to win the 2130m Pride Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Trained by Michael Brennan and driven by Michael Grantham, Braeview Bondi, favourite at $1.55, dashed over the final 8900m in 55.2sec. and won by a half-length from $8 chance American Brave, rating 1.56.1. American Brave, prepared by Gary Hall snr, impressed at his first appearance for eight months when he was sixth at the bell before charging home with a spirited late burst. “I reckon he is definitely in the top 12 to contest the Pacing Cup,” said Grantham. “I was impressed when he went 27.3sec. down the back. He’s versatile; he can come from behind and also can do it tough.” The Victorian-bred Braeview Bondi has had 28 starts in Western Australia for eight wins and nine placings, and his career record stands at 75 starts for 17 wins, 24 placings and $192,201.   To Fast To Serious sparkles West Australian-bred four-year-old To Fast To Serious continues his rise towards the top and reinsman Aldo Cortopassi confidently predicts he will be a star of the future. To Fast To Serious, prepared at Mt Helena by Ray Williams, was not extended in setting the pace and winning the 2536m RAC Members Save 5% Everyday at Retravision Pace by three lengths from Gran Chico and Sangue Reale at Gloucester Park on Friday night. “He is untapped,” said Cortopassi. “I’d love to see him sitting on the good horses before reeling off one quarter at them. He’s explosive and if he gets a chance in the big races, they’ll know he’s there. “His forte is his sit-sprint ability. He has that one devastating turn of foot. But when you get a barrier (like No. 1 tonight), you take advantage of it.” To Fast To Serious dashed over the first three quarters of the final mile in 29.4sec., 29.2sec. and 29.2sec. before sprinting over the final 400m in 27.9sec. to win at a 1.57.7 rate. To Fast To Serious is still comparatively inexperienced, with his 19 starts producing 13 wins and three seconds for stakes of $143,223.   First double for Wiscombe Former equestrian rider and trackwork jockey Sue Wiscombe notched her first training double in the sport of harness racing when Lindsay Harper brought outsider Beach Skipper home through a needle-eye inside opening to snatch a nose victory over the $1.60 favourite Headline Act in the 2130m Retravision, For All The Electrical Stuff You Love Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Beach Skipper, a $46.90 chance on the tote, started from the inside of the back line and trailed the pacemaking Headline Act throughout before Harper was able to squeeze the six-year-old New Zealand-bred gelding along the pegs to gain a last-stride verdict. Wiscombe and Harper had combined to win with Eldaytona earlier in the night. Wiscombe, in her first full season as a trainer of pacers, has enjoyed good success, with her 131 starters producing 20 wins (16 at Gloucester Park and four at Pinjarra). “I bought Beach Skipper for $20,000 from Melbourne in August last year and he has had issues with his feet and has been a little bit disappointing,” she said. Beach Skipper had won at two of his nine New Zealand starts and had raced 52 times in Victoria for five wins and 19 placings. His 20 West Australian starts for Wiscombe have produced three wins and two placings for stakes of $26,982.   Suvaljko’s bargain buys Byford trainer-reinsman Callan Suvaljkjo recently was looking to increasing the size of his team, and he has no regrets that he purchased experienced campaigners Extreme Prince and Tuas Delight. He paid just $5000 each for eight-year-old Extreme Prince and seven-year-old Tuas Delight. “I was looking for some town horses and I spoke to one of the owners of Tuas Delight,” he said. “I used to train some horses for him, and I mentioned to him that if Tuas Delight came up for lease or for sale, I would be interested. “The next day Gary Hall snr phoned me and said I could come and pick up Tuas Delight and Extreme Prince. They’re quite handy horses.” Extreme Prince was favourite at $1.90 at his third start for Suvaljko when he led all the way and won by a head from the Hall-trained Mister Bushido in the 2130m Retravision.com.au Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Extreme Prince also ran a third for Suvaljko, and at his three runs for his new trainer-reinsman he has earned $11,870. Tuas Delight has had five starts for Suvaljko for a dead-heat for first with Where Ya Bin and a second behind Caruba for stakes of $8126. Suvaljko has given both Extreme Prince and Tuas Delight to his wife Mandy as Christmas presents. He has always been successful in identifying handy horses, and pacers Franco Novella and Earl of Locksley and trotter Nacokee have been wonderful bargains for him. “I claimed Franco Novella for about $5000 in New Zealand and outlaid almost another $10,000 to get him to Perth,” he said. Franco Novella had 44 starts for Suvaljko, earning $113,985 from 20 wins and eight placings from 44 starts. Earl of Locksley cost Suvaljko $15,000 before he went on to race 158 times for him, amassing $251,797 from 22 wins and 45 placings.     Talkerup surprises his driver Veteran mare Talkerup went into the Retravision, Lowest Price Guarantee Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night an outsider at $32.50 from the back line and she surprised driver Emily Suvaljkjo when she raced in the breeze, took the lead 300m from home and won convincingly from the fast-finishing Whozideawasthis and the $1.55 favourite Liam Neil. “It was a surprise to me, and I think she had plenty left on the line,” said Suvaljko. The seven-year-old mare, owned and trained by Tony Svilicich, has been an iron horse and was having her 64TH start for the season on Friday night. She has raced 137 times for 13 wins, 29 placings and stakes of $176,054. Another oldtimer, nine-year-old Whozideawasthis, was an $11 chance who showed that he should pay to follow by unwinding a spirited three and four-wide burst from last in the field of 12 at the bell to be second.   Fast start paves the way for Tiffany Rose Three-year-old filly Tiffany Rose returned to her best form at her third appearance after a spell when she revealed sparkling gate speed from barrier eight before setting the pace and scoring an easy victory in the 2130m Retravision, 50 Months Interest Free Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Trained by Mike Reed and driven by his son Mark, Tiffany Rose was third favourite at $4.40 and she enjoyed a comfortable lead time of 38sec. and opening quarters of 30.2sec. and 29.8sec. before dashing over the final quarters in 28.6sec. and 29.1sec. to win  by just under two lengths from $20 chance Miss Eerie. The consistent Star Fromthepalace ($3.20) raced in the breeze and fought on gamely to finish third, with the $3 favourite Misstiano battling on to dead-heat for fourth place with Fifty Five Reborn. The New Zealand-bred Tiffany Rose has been a handy performer, with her 26 starts producing nine wins and ten placings for earnings of $149,148.   Bar shoes help Disco Under Fire The decision of owner-trainer Giles Inwood, in consultation with his farrier, to fit bar shoes on the front feet of Disco Under Fire is paying handsome dividends. The WA-bred seven-year-old is no longer affected by foot soreness and he notched his second all-the-way victory in the space of five days when Gary Hall jnr drove him to a comfortable victory in the 2503m Retravision, We Love Our Customers Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Disco Under Fire, favourite at $1.70 after his easy win at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon, relishes standing-start events and he impressed in covering the final 800m in 57.2sec. However, it was not all plain sailing, with Hall revealing that the gelding took a while to get his mind on the job. “He had trouble in switching on and he also was distracted when he had a good look at a horse (Gonzos Shadow) who had been pulled up early in the race and was on the outside of the track,” Hall said. Disco Under Fire has been an honest performer and has a record of 105 starts for ten wins and 42 placings for earnings of $95,466.   Ken Casellas

YOU hope to leave a night like Breeders Crown having seen some potential superstars and that was certainly the case on Saturday night at Melton. The series was built to showcase the emerging young stars of the sport and, despite being COVID compromised like so many of our feature events this year, the Crown still delivered in spades. Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin had 20 runners across the 10-race card, won four of the finals and produced the two brightest stars in juvenile winners Ladies In Red and Major Moth. You could argue their four-year-old Hurricane Harley, who downed Lochinvar Art in track record-equalling time, and their unbeaten three-year-old trotter Cover Of Darkness rounded-out the top four performances of the night. But it was the filly Ladies In Red, a Mach Three half-sister to Our Little General, who left everyone in awe after doing all the work and stretching her unbeaten record to seven wins in the $300,000 2YO fillies’ final. Ladies In Red’s clash with star stablemate Tough Tilly, who looked a certain leader, was billed as THE showdown of the night and it delivered in spades. As hard as Tough Tilly tried in front, Ladies In Red had all the answers and overpowered her late to win by 2.4m in a brilliant 1min54.5sec mile rate for 2240m. “She’s some sort of filly,” driver David Moran said. “When I got outside the leader I wanted to eye-ball her and I was able to do it on my terms. It took some work to get past the leader, but my filly was still strong on the line. I think she’d have found more again if something had come at her.” Ladies In Red’s lethal combination of speed and strength have stamped her as one of the best juvenile fillies we’ve seen in Australia for many years. She capped a big night for Bill and Anne Anderson’s Lauriston Bloodstock, who also raced Hurricane Harley. As powerful as Ladies In Red was, stablemate Major Moth turned heads more for his sheer brilliance in arrogantly winning the $300,000 2YO colts and geldings finals for Stewart and Tonkin with Damian Wilson aboard. Major Moth had the run behind the leader, main danger and stablemate Act Now, but it was the ease with which he roared past the leader in a 26.5sec last quarter (Major Moth ran his in 26.2sec) which astounded onlookers. It marked a career high for Wilson, who has been in-and-out of the game and only had the drive on Major Moth through the 20 years of support and loyalty owner-breeder Len Parker has shown him. “All thanks to Len. We’ve had some good moments together with some nice horses, but this tops them all,” he said. Wilson’s previous biggest win was the 2009 Kilmore Cup on Ohoka Nevada. Cover Of Darkness led throughout to take his unbeaten record to six wins for Stewart/Tonkin and driver Jodi Quinlan in the $80,000 Group 1 3YO trotting colts and geldings finals. Despite his relative inexperience and scaring Quinlan pre-race by bucking and kicking in the warm-up, Cover Of Darkness led from gate two and never really looked in danger on his way to a two metres win in a 1min57sec mile rate for 2240m. “He’s sort of come from nowhere a bit to win this and when you considered he’s nowhere near as seasoned as most of these horses, he should just keep getting better as well,” Quinlan said. ________________________________________________________________________________________________ NSW trainer Paul Fitzpatrick added some interstate flavour to the Crown when his talented former Kiwi colt Zeuss Bromac led throughout to win the $200,000 3YO colts and geldings final. The son of Bettors Delight had to burn to hold the lead early then overraced throughout the middle stages for driver Kerryn Manning, but still ripped home in 54.7 and 27.2sec to win by five metres over Jilliby Nitro. Zeuss Bromac was Manning’s third Crown final win, following three-year-old trotter Djerriwarrh (2000) and three-year-old pacer Emmas Only (2004). “He got a bit keen after the early burn and I tried to bring him back to me without cutting off his wind. It was really only at the bell he settled better so he did a good job. He battled on really well,” Manning said. COVID meant Fitzpatrick couldn’t campaign the horse in the Victoria, so his good friends Noel and Ruth Shinn were caretaker trainers for the stint. It was a similar story, but more official with Watts Up Majestic’s win in the $100,000 2YO trotting colts and geldings finals. Rickie Alchin of Tough Monarch fame wouldn’t been in Victoria were it not for COVID, but sent the youngster to Chris Svanosio to train and drive for the Crown series. Svanosio drove Watts Up Majestic superbly and pounced late for a runaway win. ________________________________________________________________________________________________ IT wouldn’t be a Breeders Crown trotting series without the powerhouse Yabby Dams team snaring a big one. This time it was lightly-raced Quaker Jet filly Im Ready Jet who went back-to-back, adding the three-year-old fillies’ title to the two-year-old crown she won last year. It came thanks to an inspired Jason Lee drive, seizing the gaps and opportunities while others galloped and weaving through from an inside back row draw to take the lead.  ________________________________________________________________________________________________ NOT even all the experience and genius of Chris Alford would lift gifted but wayward three-year-old filly Sweet Louise to a fairytale win in her $200,000 Crown final. She’s just one of three horses trained by hobbyist Phil Chircop and raced by John Dorrington, who has owned horses for decades without winning a Group race. Sweet Louise worked to lead from the pole but raced greenly and switched on-and-off at times, eventually being out-dashed along the sprint lane by Greg Sugars aboard The Panthiest, who won by 1.7m in a 1min54.7sec mile rate for 2240m. ________________________________________________________________________________________________ THE night finished on a high for the Caldow family with wins in the last two races courtesy of Sangreal and No Win No Feed. Sangreal, raced, trained and bred by the Caldows, caused a huge upset when pick-up driver Daryl Douglas weaved through the field late in an incident-packed race to win by a neck as a $50.60 outsider. The race was over at the start for star Kiwi raider Mexicana when she galloped away from the pole and lost all hope. John Caldow then made the most of a pick-up drive on NSW raider No Win No Feed for Craig Cross when he blasted to the front and gave nothing else a chance in the $60,000 Group 2 Crown 4YO Mares’ final. Glamour former Kiwi mare Our Princess Tiffany moved around to sit parked, but never really looked a hope and just battled into third spot.   by Adam Hamilton

Tasmanian horseman Wayne Yole knew deep down he had a natural trotter on his hands in pacing-bred youngster Bullapark Beno, but the family team tried everything possible to convince him to be a pacer. "We left no stone unturned-he wasn't any value to us as a square gaiter over here because we don't cater for two-year-old trotters in Tassie," Wayne said. "Of course, his breeding said he should pace, but he didn't know that, and he wouldn't have paced too many steps, if any, in his life!" he said. But Bullapark Beno knew what he was born to do, and with a last-start win and an encouraging third from just four outings, appears to have a bright future in Victorian square gaiting ranks. Prepared at Romsey by astute horseman Chris Svanosio, he didn't put a foot wrong with an all-the-way win at Bendigo recently when handled by in-form driver Michelle Phillips. Watch the race replay click here Bullapark Beno (Changeover-Jomeka (Village Jasper) was purchased by Yole at last year's Adelaide yearling sales for $5000 from breeder Danielle Helbers. Wayne said he picked the horse out of the catalogue, due in no small measure to the sensational racing credentials of his pacing sire Changeover. Changeover, by In The Pocket, won 29 races including such G1s as the NZ Derby, Noel Taylor Mile, NZ Cup and Len Smith Mile. He finished with over $2M in stakes and now stands at Burwood Stud, Qld. Wayne said he sent Bullapark Beno to Hamilton to be handled and broken-in by father-and-son team, Jim and Rod Barker. "I lived at Hamilton for years before shifting over to Tasmania nearly five years ago. They are not only personal friends of ours, but excellent breakers and I regard them as the best in the business," Wayne said. "I can clearly remember the day that Rod rang me to say I had a trotter. I sort of argued with him, saying that's not right, I'd definitely bought a pacer!" he laughed. "I'm not a big fan of trotters and have never had one before. When I was with the Barker team, I did drive a couple-but it wasn't very often. So in the end I told Rod to send him over to us." Wayne is the father of the leading Tasmanian family team Ben, Mark and Tim, and despite their combined expertise and "trying everything", Bullapark Beno only wanted to trot. "Unfortunately, that was really obvious from day one. But I don't know how many times we threw hopples on him trying to convince him!" Wayne said. "It just wasn't happening, though and because he was eligible for a VicBred bonus I decided to give him his chance with trotting. I rang Chris because I've always liked him as a trainer," he said. Chris Svanosio                                          (Courtesy Cobram HRC) "I actually had Bullapark Beno advertised for sale before his win. I got a few nibbles, but they were a bit short of what I wanted. I've decided to leave him on the market though, because his future really isn't over here in Tassie." Wayne said the name Bullapark Beno came from his grandmother's name Ellen Bulla combined with one of his son's names, Ben. "My property is named Bullapark. My grandmother was a fantastic lady and was from the Stolen Generation era. Obviously Beno is the nickname that Ben has picked up around the stables," he said. Wayne is getting back to good health after a stable accident two years ago put him in hospital for nine months. "It's been slow, and I've still got a bit of a limp, but I was lucky. A horse tipped me out and I landed on my back, squashing all the nerves onto my spinal cord. I was told I'd never walk again," he said. "I was so determined when I was confined to a wheelchair-and three months after the accident I walked back into the hospital. "I've had three back operations, and when I was in hospital for one of them, I got Golden Staph and was given about half an hour to live. I was flown from Launceston to Hobart hospital and pulled through." Wayne said despite the setbacks, life in Tasmania was "just great." "I do as much as I can to help the boys with the horses. The stable continues to tick over nicely." For the record, Bullapark Beno is not Changeover's first square-gaiting winner - five year old mare Heart of Change (Changeover - Bravest of Hearts (Big Band Sound) claimed that honor in August of last year. Heart of Change was a multiple race winning pacer before being converted to trotting after almost 12 months on the sidelines.   Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

TRAINER Ryan Bell is looking for positives out of the news his emerging superstar Shockwave was banned from racing for three month after a bleed in last Friday night’s Group 1 Fremantle Cup. The three-month ban for bleeding from both nostrils ends his WA Pacing Cup dreams and beyond that, derails plans for a Hunter Cup and Miracle Mile raid early next year. Bell suspected something wasn’t right when Shockwave seemingly ran below his best despite finishing third to local megastar Chicago Bull in last Friday night’s feature. “I thought he went unders at the time and he came back with a high heart rate, but was back to normal pretty quickly. I was scratching my head how he’d got way on me in five days since his run,” Bell said. “Then 30 minutes later it (the blood) started coming out, but it’s not all doom and gloom as I got him straight to my vet. He said he’d had a bleed, but there was mucous as well so he treated him and we’ll scope him again in 7-10 days. “You can’t believe it after the build-up we had and races we had planned, but I could not be more proud of the horse to run third. It’s proof the good ones run through brick walls for us. “He’s still a relatively young horse and we’ve got time on our side.” Shockwave’s setback leaves Chicago Bull an absolute standout for the $450,000 Group 1 WA Pacing Cup on Friday week (December 4). _________________________________________________________________________________________________ VICTORIA Cup winner Lochinvar Art is likely to stay home rather than head to Queensland.Trainer-driver David Moran said he would cement plans this week after the superstar pacer’s mighty effort when second to the brilliant Hurricane Harley in track record-equalling time in the Group 2 Breeders Crown free-for-all at Melton on Saturday night. Lochinvar Art was clocked to run his last mile in 1min50.3sec as he moved three-wide around the field sat parked and still kept coming to got down by just a neck to the leader, Hurricane Harley. The 1min51.4sec mile rate for 2240m equalled the record Lochinvar Art posted winning the Victoria Cup last month. Amanda Turnbull rated Hurricane Harley superbly, running home his splits of the last mile in 28.2, 27.4, 27.4 and 27.9sec. “I couldn’t asked any more of him,” Moran said. “He did all the work and just kept coming. You have in the back of your mind not wanting to give him gut-busters every time, but you’ve got no choice when you draw outside the back. “I’ll give him an easy week and use the time to decide what’s next. “While Queensland is an option, I’m leaning towards staying home for races leading towards the Hunter Cup.”  Hurricane Harley will also be set for the Hunter Cup, via the Vicbred series. “He’s an unreal horse. He just doesn’t feel like he’s going as fast as he is,” Turnbull said. That’s two wins from their past three meetings now for Hurricane Harley over Lochinvar Art, albeit the former has drawn much better and led for both those wins. _________________________________________________________________________________________________ EVEN if Lochinvar Art stays home, next month’s Group 1 Blacks A Fake at Albion Park is shaping as a beauty. On the home state front, Colt Thirty One made it five wins on end when he sat parked and scored comfortably in a 1min54.7sec mile rate form 1660m. Colt Thirty One now boasts 46 wins and 20 placings from his 76 starts and is edging close to $1 million in earnings. The other major “local” player is former top All Stars’ pacer Turn It Up, who hasn’t been seen since brilliantly winning just his second start for trainer Vicki Rasmussen at Albion Park on October 24. Miracle Mile and Hunter Cup winner King Of Swing continued his build-up towards the Blacks A Fake with a dominant Menangle 2300m win on Saturday night. He worked across from a wide draw to eventually take the lead from gifted stablemate Balraj and pulled right away in the run home to win as he liked by 7.9m in a slick 1min53.5sec mile rate for 2300m. Balraj, first-up since having a bout of the “thumps” in the Victoria Cup last month, raced flat in patched, but did keep rallying late to run second. Balraj and Bling It On are other Cross/McCarthy pacers being considered for tilts at the Blacks A Fake. _________________________________________________________________________________________________ NO wonder Anthony Butt has such a huge opinion of the emerging Wolf Stride. He scored his most important win, albeit not biggest, so far when he worked to the front and blazed a 1min53.9sec mile rate for 2240m to win the Group 2 Breeders Crown free-for-all at Melton last Friday night. Butt has been raving about Wolf Stride’s potential since he won the Group 1 NSW Regional Metropolitan Championship final at Menangle earlier this year. He toyed with a Victoria Cup tilt, but Butt opted to go through the grades a look a little further ahead to the Hunter Cup and Carnival of Miracles in the new year. Once Butt found the front he just kept rolling through splits of the last mile in 28.6, 29.2, 27.8 and 27.5sec. “He’s a lovely horse who was slow to mature, but it’s all starting to come together now. We’ll head towards the Hunter Cup,” Butt said. The other highlights of the Friday night Crown meeting at Melton were trotters. Yabby Dams’ Always Ready used a slightly better draw to lead main danger Mattjestuoso and that proved the difference in the Group 2 Crown 4YO Trotting final.  As hard as Mattjestuso tried outside the leader throughout, Always Ready powered home in a remarkable splits for a trotter of 55.8 and 27.5sec to win by 3.8m in a 2min0.5sec mile rate for 2240m. Always Ready, by Ready Cash out of former handy mare Class Of Her Own, boasts 13 wins and five placings from just 20 starts. Yabby Dams was denied the big double when their pin-up mare Dance Craze was nabbed on the line by the rejuvenated Gus An Maori in the Group 2 Crown trotting free-for-all. Dance Craze worked around midrace to take the lead and looked the winner on the home bend before Gus An Maori emerged from the packed and stormed home to snatch victory for former Swedish driver Sofia Arvidsson. It continued the big season with trotters for trainer Matty Craven off the back of the major wins with Pink Galahs.   by Adam Hamilton

A winning double a Manawatu Raceway, New Zealand, a 1:51.8 winner in North America and a Gloucester Park winner were the highlights of a busy harness racing week for Burwood Stud’s flagship stallion Changeover. The former Kiwi champion led in eleven individual winners for the week in three different countries! Boilover, a debut winner by an amazing 15 lengths, and About Turn ($70,000) provided a winning double for Changeover at Manawatu, while Glengarry Knight NZ (1:51.8) and Risk NZ (1:53.8) won at Dover Downs, Delaware and Pompano Park, Florida respectively. Talkerup, a NZ bred daughter of Changeover, sat parked throughout before notching her 13th success and increasing her stake tally to $175,000 at Gloucester Park, while Change Of Address posted win No.8 at Bunbury. Changeover was represented by three winners in Victoria in Change The Print NZ, who made it six wins from nine starts this season with his 1:54.7 effort at Ballarat, Awayovernight NZ and the two-year-old trotting gelding Bullapark Beno. A further two NZ winners sired by Changeover were Deus Ex (Winton) and Pete’s Dash (Oamaru). Changeover has already produced 16 individual winners of more than $200,000 in stakes in NZ this season and is ranked sixth on the All Aged list.   By Peter Wharton

There was a twist in the tale with tonight's Breeders Crown finals finishing with a surprise as No Win No Feed ripped to the front from gate seven and then held all challengers for a resounding win.  The Nutrien Equine Breeders Crown Championship would have surprised many speed maps as John Caldow rattled from the gates in his maiden drive of Craig Cross's four-year-old mare, which would prove a decisive move in the Group 2 win. "She's a wonderful mare and when I got the opportunity to jump on her tonight I thought I might surprise a few and find the front," Caldow said. "I didn't think they'd expect me to do what I did." No Win No Feed got the jump on favourite Miss McGongall with her early zip, with James Herbertson settling for leader's back and then Caldow was able to dictate the pace, getting a breather with a 31.5-second first quarter. Chris Alford loomed to the breeze on Our Princess Tiffany and made his challenge, but No Win No Feed had all the answers, getting home in a 55-second last half to win by five metres. Matt Craven's Itzamajorsurprise ran into second, with Our Princess Tiffany finishing third. "She just burns and drops the bit, so you can do what you want to do and rate it how you want," Caldow said of the winner. "When Chris came around I thought we'll get rolling again. She had an easy enough first half, so I was just hoping the early burn didn't take the edge off her. "They're good mares, they just keep going. When you drive these good horses they just do their best and keep trying their hearts out like she did. The last 100 she was putting her head between her chest and she'd had enough but she kept running."   HRV - Michael Howard

Maree Caldow has the holy grail in her hands after Sangreal captured an eventful Aldebaran Eagle @ Aldebaran Park two-year-old fillies’ title on Breeders Crown night. The trainer and Trots Vision trackside host Rob Auber couldn’t help but think there was a little divine intervention involved in the surprise win, with reinsman Daryl Douglas flashing home late to nose ahead on the line and claim the Group 1 crown. It was a performance reminiscent of late reinsman Gavin Lang, a close friend of Maree and John Caldow, whose outstanding career was celebrated tonight. “If we had a little (divine intervention) tonight, well, thanks Gav, I know you love us,” Maree told Trots Vision. "We love you and we miss you. This is just awesome.” The script was thrown out from the outset when $1.80 favourite Mexicana galloped out of contention at the start, which enabled Queen Elida to comfortably lead. There was little movement in a moderately run affair until Queen Elida spaced her rivals heading into the final turn, but she tired with 100 metres to go. Triple-figure chance Thats Not My Gait then looked set to pinch it for Josh Duggan, but Douglas came from the clouds on Sangreal to nose ahead in the final stages and win, with Chris Lang’s Evas Image beaten into second by a neck. Maree dedicated the win to her fellow owner-breeders of the filly, who’s by Father Patrick out of Solar Flash. “I’m just so grateful,” she said. “Denis and Vali (Hall), Chris and Allan Spalding, we bred this horse together. They’ve been long-time clients of ours. I’m just so proud. “To get two horses in a final, (Tipsy Turvy) did a wonderful job as well getting stuck in the death seat, but all credit to Sangreal. “I really want to thank my staff, Olivia Weidenbach and Jeremy Quinlan, it’s a great team at Caldow stables and I’m just so happy and so proud.”   HRV - Michael Howard

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Super Star Down Under Mare wins first race in her American harness racing career. Bettors Heart N didn’t waste any time when getting back into the winners circle since relocating to the US to purse her racing career. Friday night at the Meadowlands in New Jersey was the night, where the daughter of Bettors Delight wore down race rivals late in the home stretch to pick up a win in the $16,000 pace. With Down Under blood running through every part of her body the mare is handled by Down Under trainer/driver combination in Nifty Norman and Dexter Dunn. She is also still partly owned by her New Zealand breeders the Bagrie Family. Bettors Heart N showed her real toughness late in the race when getting into clear air at the top of the straight but really rallying late to win in 1:50.3. Finishing a very gallant 2nd place was another Down Under Pacer in Tango Dancer N for Kelvin Harrison. Bettors Heart N made a name for herself Down Under when visiting Menangle Raceway in Sydney where she won the $200,000 Lady Ship Mile in 1:49.7. Following that win she raced the $1 million Miracle Mile against the boys but not placing. Her Down Under career stats stand at 9 wins and 11 placings for over $270,000 in prize money. An intriguing note of this race was that of the 8 trainers contesting in this race, 7 of those were Down Under trainers and those 7 finishing from 1st to 7th. There were also 3 Down Under drivers and 3 Down Under horses in the race. Dexter Dunn sends Harness racing Equine masterpiece out in style. Saturday night at the Meadowlands in New Jersey was the running of the TVG Finals. Being the last big event for top stakes horses of the year in the US. It was a large night for Down Unders Dexter Dunn, with three of his superstar horses having their last career start before pursuing a career in the breeding sector. Todd McCarthy, Nifty Norman and Chris Ryder had a night to remember also. First came freakish trotting mare Manchego who competed in the $320,000 TVG Open Trotting Mares Final. Settling 4th of the pack she angled first over just after the half to make her move and getting to the outside into the stretch with hardly any persuasion from Dunn the daughter of Muscle Hill made a mess of rivals to salute in 1:51.3. Shortly after the win one of the greatest Harness Racing trainers Jimmy Takter labelled her, “In my opinion best filly ever.”.  Next up for Dunn came the mare on a win streak Kissin In the Sand in the $150,000 TVG Open Pacing Mares Final. Coming off the gate Down Under mare Shartin N was the leader but Kissin In the Sand soon took over the lead and that was that, she kicked away up the straight to win in a new stakes record of 1:48.0. Now in the $371,900 Governors Cup for 2yo Pacing Colts and Geldings Nancy Takter and Dexter Dunn picked up their third big win of the night with Always A Miki, a son of first season sire Always B Miki who scored a very tough win in 1:50.2. Motoring for the 2yos.  To really top off he night the Down Under duo of Chris Ryder and Dexter Dunn took Bettors Wish out for his last race start and he was as fast as ever. Dunn taking the Bettors Delight Colt to the lead off the gate saying post-race, “we weren’t going to die wondering tonight”. From then running even splits until three quarter where he powered away to win in fitting fashion of 1:48.1.     A personal favourite of Dunns the big salute over the line was appropriate.  A huge victory came on the night for Down Under Duo in Noel Daley and Todd McCarthy. The pair teamed up with 2yo trotting filly Anoka Hanover to win the $451,800 Goldsmith Maid in 1:53.2. A huge win for the pair and driver Todd McCarthy’s biggest win since relocating to the US. Down Under trainer Nifty Norman also scored a large success on the night in the $398,650 Valley Victory for 2yo trotting colts and geldings with a son of Muscle Hill, Bee Forever. The win came in 1:54.0 in a close finish to the line.  On the big night of racing Down Under trainers and drivers won 8 of the 13 races.    Monday 16th November Northfield Park OH Elrama N – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $5,500 Rycroft N – Time: 1:55.1, Stake: $5,500   Pompano Park FL Risk N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $3,200   Yonkers Raceway NY Somwherenbrookln N – Time: 1:55.4, Stake: $9,500 Hudsen A – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $14,000 Globaldomination N – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $18,000 Abraxas Blues A – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $11,000   Tuesday 17th November Monticello Raceway NY Ohoka Johnny N – Time: 1:56.0, Stake: $7,200 Kenrick N – Time: 1:57.2, Stake: $6,200 Im A Director N – Time: 1:56.2, Stake: $6,700   Northfield Park OH Strawb’s Chippie N – Time: 1:56.2, Stake: $4,400   Saratoga Harness NY Nerve Of Steel N – Time: 1:56.3, Stake: $5,200 Make A Statement A – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $5,850 Pasultimatedelite N – Time: 1:55.4, Stake: $5,850 Down Under First 4 – 2nd Miss Irish Rose A, 3rd Bontz N, 4th Glenferrie Blade A   Yonkers Raceway NY Mossdale Lottee N – Time: 1:56.1, Stake: $12,000 Donegalartchokin N – Time: 1:56.0, Stake: $14,000 Demeter N – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $17,000   Flamboro Downs CA Bettor Trix N – Time: 1:56.1, Stake: $10,500   Wednesday 18th November Dover Downs DE Western Secret A – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $6,500   Harrahs Philadelphia PA Misty Memory N – Time: 1:54.1, Stake: $6,800 Its Mesmerise N – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $10,000 Jossie James A – Time: 1:52.2, Stake: $6,800   The Meadows PA Dream Out Loud N – Time: 1:52.1, Stake: $9,500 Cocosfella A – Time: 1:52.2, Stake: $6,000   Thursday 19th November Dover Downs DE Glengarry Knight N – Time: 1:51.4, Stake: $6,500 Mister Ohanzee N – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $6,500 Trojan Banner N – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $8,000 Itsrockandroll A – Time: 1:51.1, Stake: $22,000   Monticello Raceway NY Alta Jerome N – Time: 1:58.4, Stake: $2,800   Plainridge Park MA Rock Diamonds N – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $17,500 Mach Doro A – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $9,000   Yonkers Raceway NY Seaswift Joy N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $20,000   Friday 20th November Harrah’s Hoosier Park IN Bechers Brook A – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $14,200   Meadowlands NJ Bettors Heart N – Time: 1:50.3, Stake: $16,000 Mighty Mr Sharkey N – Time: 1:50.2, Stake: $12,500 All American N – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $10,000   Yonkers Raceway NY Kerford Road A – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $11,000 War Dan A – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $11,000   Woodbine Mohawk Park CA The Bandit Queen N – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $22,000   Saturday 21st November Cal Expo CA Dependlebury A – Time: 1:58.1, Stake: $4,600   Harrah’s Hoosier Park IN Majestic Player A – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $21,500 Miss You N – Time: 1:51.2, Stake: $22,250   Meadowlands NJ Bracken Storm A – Time: 1:51.0, Stake: $15,000   Northfield Park OH American Empress N – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $12,500   Scarborough Downs ME Holy Grail N – Time: 1:56.3, Stake: $4,400 The Bus A – Time: 1:56.1, Stake: $5,200   Yonkers Raceway NY Speed Man N – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $30,000 Raukapuka Ruler N – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $17,500 Tin Roof Raider A – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $17,500   Woodbine Mohawk Park CA Mongolian Hero N – Time: 1:51.2, Stake: $16,000   Sunday 22nd November Harrahs Philadelphia PA Iammrbrightside N – Time: 1:51.3, Stake: $12,000 Let It Ride N – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $8,800 Sevens Hope A – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $8,800   Northfield Park OH Celestial Arden N – Time: 1:54.1, Stake: $7,200 Brigadierbronski A – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $8,800     Click here for previous weeks articles     by Carter Dalgety  
Tonight may well provide something of a crowning moment for Rick Cashman, who’s rapidly improving filly is perfectly drawn to give her trainer a chance at a career best result. After lady luck had shunned her through the TAB Breeders Crown, Dancing With Flo gets her chance tonight in the Pryde’s EasiFeed silver pace for three-year-old fillies, drawing gate one while her lead rivals were disadvantaged. Cashman said a good result “would be huge”, adding “we got the draw, now she gets the opportunity to produce”. The $30,000 Group 3 would be clearly the trainer’s biggest result since he had his first starter on October 1, 2012, at Yarra Glen, when Modern Saint ran fifth and collected a cheque. Not long before Cashman attended Gippsland Harness Training Centre to learn the fundamentals of the sport and then, when Cranbourne’s training centre opened in September 2012, he had a pathway into training. “I had finished cricket and football and like many men and women I was looking for something to continue to drive me,” Cashman said. “I had never sat behind a horse until I was 45.” With the support of those around him he’s since trained 168 starters for 23 wins, and tonight Dancing With Flo presents the chance to carve out a career highpoint. Cashman bred the filly, having been given her unraced dam, Narree Rose, by Arthur Fulwood, who he paired with Rocknroll Dance. He welcomed “half a dozen new owners into the group” and they patiently waited as the filly readied for racing. “She was lightly raced as a two-year-old, when she showed she had ability but needed to strengthen up,” he said. “She had four starts earlier this year and then when Breeders Crown and Vicbred were pushed back we had another eight weeks to bring her up. She just got bigger, stronger and quicker.” She first won on her home track in April and again at Kilmore on May 13 before the freshen up, then returned to salute first-up on October 1. Dancing With Flo was then given her opportunity to shine in the $24,000 DNR Logistics Argent 3YO Classic at Melton on October 23, and shine she did, running second to Maajida. “I was certainly confident she was an above average horse, but it’s another thing to show it against the better ones,” Cashman said. “It was not until her race against them in the Argent Classic before she confirmed that. I wasn’t surprised, but it was just confirmation that she could produce given the right opportunity.” It meant Cashman and reinswoman Lisa Miles entered the Breeders Crown series with confidence she’d acquit herself well, and she was outstanding in her heat when flying late from the back of the field to advance to the semi-final. She then again drew poorly and on this occasion it would prove too difficult to overcome. “Her effort at Bendigo was sensational, it was just unfortunate that she couldn’t get the draw in the semis,” Cashman said. But her luck changed for tonight’s Silver Pace, when Dancing With Flo will start from gate one. “There are a couple of quick horses drawn outside, so she won’t get it all her own way,” he said. “The favourite for the Breeders Crown (Maajida) is in this race, there’s Iolanta, Rockingwithsierra has very good gate speed. We go in full of belief she’s well and given every opportunity she will be thereabouts.”   Michael Howard
It won’t really come as a surprise...but champion harness racing horseman Anthony Butt has declared that Victoria is once again home on a permanent basis. Butt, who has been preparing a big team at Menangle for Emilio Rosati and his wife Mary, headed south recently with some quality horses, predominantly trotters. And he’s been on fire! Butt, a former Kiwi, made no secret that the visit was aimed at the rich races that were on offer, saying it was easier to place horses at a plethora of meetings within one or two hours from his temporary base at Melton. “There are so many trotting races programmed down here and Emilio is heading more and more in that direction,” Butt said. “We thoroughly love Melbourne. We’ve made a lot of friends over the years here during our trips and then when we lived here.” When it comes to Butt’s Midas touch with square gaiters, the past champions in Lyell Creek and Take A Moment come to mind, both trained by his brother Tim. ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Hard-working Romsey trainer-driver Chris Svanosio is sure to remember his last weekend’s Breeders Crown triumph for many years to come. The win with Watts Up Majestic (Majestic Son-Rainbow Maori (Maori’s Idol) was his first Group One success since relocating to his new base from Bendigo nearly 12 months ago. Watts Up Majestic, raced by his breeder Bradley Watts, finished full of running to claim the Skyvalley @ Aldebaran Park Breeders Crown $100,000 event for 2yo trotters. “He’s a lovely horse and I got him when his regular trainer Rickie Alchin couldn’t make it down due to the travel restrictions in Syndney,” Svanosio said. “I’ve been friends for years with Rickie and his brother Jarrod. I first met Jarrod when he was a junior driver and drove for a good mate in Bruce Morgan at Bendigo and Rickie was down in Victoria working there for a while with John Ryan,” he said. Svanosio, who worked as a scientist in Tasmanian aquaculture before getting the harness racing “bug”, has now landed four G1 winners in a successful career as well as being victorious with three he trained. “I’m on a lovely 40-acre property with girlfriend Elizabeth (MacLean) and we’re doing a team of 33 horses at the moment,” he said. “We’re lucky to have Michelle Phillips, Tayla French, my dad Peter and a few others giving us a hand because there’s also nearly a dozen rising two-year-olds that need to come in.” Svanosio drove 55 winners and 113 placings in 2019-20. He has won another 12 races and 22 placings in the extended season. In the training ranks, he chalked up 56 wins (12 metro) and 93 placings. The extended season has seen an additional 18 wins and 22 minor placings. Chris Svanosio and Watts Up Majestic (Photograph Stu McCormick)  ****************** Shepparton-based David Moran helped himself to a personal training/driving double at Cobram yesterday—and in addition landed three other winners for three different trainers. Meanwhile, 740kms away, champion South Australian reinswoman Dani Hill also posted five victories for the day at Globe Derby Park. For Moran, of Lochinvar Art fame, it was the second occasion in his career that he’s driven a “high five”. The first time he achieved the feat was at Albury, back in February of 2015. He was successful yesterday with Redbank Cooper (Art Major-Lettucedance (Western Ideal) and Angelic Miss (Shadow Play-Heavenly Hiraani (Fake Left), both prepared at his Kialla stables. Moran also tasted success with Russell Jack-trained Major Angel (American Ideal-Mattie Angel (Art Major); Geoffrey Allan bay mare Sassyfeet (Julius Caesar-Symphonic Jade (Strong Life); and a gelding trained by his partner Kasey Kent in Reckon Im Smart (American Ideal-Pacing Grace (In The Pocket). It’s incredibly the seventh time Dani Hill has bagged five at a meeting. And incidentally she has gone one better on three occasions, the most recent at Globe Derby in August with a big six. Dani combined with her father Gary to record a treble for the popular trainer-Bettaminethanyours (Alta Christiano-Bettainmypocket); Citysiren (Mr Feelgood-Ima Golden Girl) and The Queen Of Heart (Four Starzzz Shark-Couldbeagoodone). She was also successful with Shane Loone-trained pair Jake’s Sportswriter (Sportswriter-Tina) and Pay Me Interest (Gotta Go Cullen-Pay Me Girl). While over the Bass Strait to Tasmania, Ben Yole has kept kicking goals with four winners at Burnie on Friday, followed with a double at Hobart on Sunday. Seven-year-old gelding Jakes A Joy carried the winning flag at each meeting—firstly Taylor Ford got him home by a head, and then Mark Yole won by a neck on the pacer. “High five” for David Moran at Cobram. (Photograph Cobram HRC)   Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura
Catch up on the week’s harness racing action in our weekly review, thanks to Darren Clayton. THE GOOD Queensland’s signature event for square gaiters - the Darrell Alexander Memorial - will be run this coming Saturday night; with the 14 finalists decided after six heats. There were five winners of the six heats - Our Overanova, BD Khaosan, Musculus and Majestic Simon, with Gee Up Neddy the only finalist to claim victory in both heats he contested. However, if Neddy is to claim victory in the Group 2 Final, he will need to overcome history. The 2020 edition will be the 14th running of the DJA and in the previous 13 renewals, no trotter has been able to win both heat rounds and the Final. But this year has been a year like no other in so many ways, so will this be the year that a trotter can sweep the series? Gee Up Neddy has certainly found form at the right time to make it a reality, and from the 10-metre handicap combined with his great manners, has the chance to re-write history. In in the fifth heat on Saturday night, Gee Up Neddy was safely away to settle closer to the rear as Godofthunder moved up outside the leader Im The Commando to ensure an even tempo throughout. BD Khaosan had the one-by- one trail and looked poised to strike as the field swung for home, however, Gee Up Neddy kept coming down the outside to claim victory by a half-neck. That pair had broken away with the third placed Havana Magic a further 14 metres astern. Owner, trainer, and driver Hayden Barnes will be hoping that he can go one better than the 2019 Final. In last year’s series, Gee Up Neddy was a narrow 2nd in the Final after looming up strongly, only to be grabbed in the closing strides along the passing lane behind Wee Man Trouble. Versatility could be the key to victory in 2020, with Gee Up Neddy possessing that attribute. Clean manners from the tapes along with the ability to work or be saved for a closing sprint will hold the nine-year-old in good stead. Back in August, Barnes listed his season highlight as bringing up his 400th career victory aboard Gee Up Neddy. That statement may be up for debate later this Saturday night if Barnes can become the first to sweep the DJA Series. If by some bad luck Gee Up Neddy is runner-up again, there is probably only one horse that Hayden hopes can beat him home - Needabacardi. To be driven by his brother Brendan, the chestnut has been runner-up in both rounds of heats. Trained by Jack Butler, listed as a part owner - Hayden Barnes, it would certainly be a season highlight. THE BAD American politician Frank A. Clark once quipped “It’s hard to detect good luck — it looks so much like something you’ve earned.” That is a statement that certainly would resonate with owner Mick Andreadis. Owning horses in several states spread across various trainers, Andreadis has certainly had his resilience tested, and here in Queensland, the trotter I Asked Nicely is one such test. Starting just nine times since arriving in Brisbane with trainer Travis Mackay back in March, the eight-year-old has won two races. Yet such are his problems, he has trialled on 15 occasions in that same period under enforced embargos to correct his manners. Another horse owned by Andreadis is Major Mucha, a horse that has been plagued by bad luck in landing a good barrier in recent months. Joining the Mackay stable back in July, the four-year-old Art Major gelding has started on 20 occasions. Heading into his latest assignment, Major Mucha had started from gate 4 or wider in 17 successive starts. From gate one on Saturday, he made his own luck when leading throughout to claim victory with Dannielle Veivers taking the reins. Luck may be turning for Andreadis, with another of his pacers scoring at Mildura on Thursday. Laser Major - now a 10-year-old - was successful in the opening race, ending a win drought that had extended back to 2016 and over 50 race starts. With that sort of drought, it is fair to say that any luck has certainly been earnt.   THE MILESTONE There were three age track records at Marburg on Sunday, with the warm weather and settling track proving ideal for fast times. The first of those records came in the opening event of the day when the Peter Greig-trained Straytothepoolroom was successful. Marburg does not tend to have a great deal of two-year-old events on their programmes, however on Sunday a mixed age event was the catalyst of the new record. Driven by Angus Garrard, the Cammibest gelding was put on the front-end early and once in control, held on to take the victory and surpass a record that has stood since 2008. Maywyn Gold, trained and driven by Shane Sanderson, has held the record for 12 years, with the win of Straytothepoolroom taking 0.9 seconds off the old mark. Two weeks ago, Voodoo Fella provided Jordan Topping with her first victory as a driver and with his latest victory, Jordan can also boast the three-year-old colts and geldings record. Twice within a month this record has been bettered - Major Fernco setting a new mark on October 25, with Voodoo Fella eclipsing that mark with his victory at the weekend. Wide in the closing stages, it was a well-timed drive by Topping, arriving to claim a half-head margin and set a record of 1.58.4 with the win. It also provided the Russell family with a quinella - David training the winner with son Dan training the runner-up - Abercrombie Tab. The third and final record was the victory of Gina Tarantella, setting a new benchmark for the aged mares of 1.57.8, taking 0.3 seconds off the previous mark held by Ale Ale Kai.   THE WILDCARD Gina Tarantella was having her first start for Jonah Hutchinson after joining his stables from New South Wales. The four-year-old Million Dollar Cam mare arrived in Queensland after 20 starts that had failed to net a return down south. After a sound trial at Menangle in mid-October, she was on the move North where Hutchinson opted to send her straight to the races on Sunday at Marburg - without a further trial. Powering out of the pack from the start, Hutchinson had the mare freewheeling in front, running the opening splits in close to even time with identical 30.1 second quarters. Dialling it up down the back, Gina Tarantella put up a big margin on her rivals when running through the third split in 28.3 seconds. With the race shot to bits, Hutchinson had not moved on the mare, cruising home in 29.8 seconds for the last 400 metres, setting the 1.57.8 mile-rate for the 1850-metre trip and establishing a new aged mare track record. In the demolition process, the winning margin could likely be a new record for the Marburg track - the 73.2 metre margin back to second also close to a Queensland record. Searching through mountains of results, the victory could possibly be the second biggest in Queensland behind the 77-metre debut win of Viking Reign back in 1987. Stablemates Greg The Great and Archilles - trained by Graham Dwyer - both won races by 55.3 metres last season but hitting into 70+ metres looks rarefied air. That is not the only big win in recent weeks for the Hutchinson stable, with the arrival of some new horses to the barn bringing some good success. Rousey claimed victory by 51.7 metres at her first outing for the stable, the mare remaining undefeated in Queensland after four starts. With the manner of the win by Gina Tarantella, Jonah Hutchinson and connections could have some fun times ahead.   THIS WEEK The TAB Queensland Harness Racing Summer Carnival officially starts on Saturday at Albion Park with the night jam-packed with feature racing. Headlining the on-track excitement is the Group 3 Be Good Johnny Sprint where Colt Thirty One and Turn It Up look set to do battle. After two rounds of heats, the Darrel Alexander Memorial Trot at Group 2 level will see a capacity field of square gaiters look to secure Queensland’s biggest trotting event. QBRED three-year-olds are set to do battle, with a pair of Group 3 races - for the colts and geldings and for the fillies - in the new QBRED for Life race to be conducted at 2138 metres. Support races on the card include the APHRC Members Cup, the Changeover Queen of the Creek for mares and a two-year-old feature. The racing week will include the regular schedule of Tuesday through Saturday, with Albion Park on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday along with Redcliffe hosting Wednesday and Thursday. Sunday will see grass track action from Kilcoy where three races will be conducted alongside the gallops meeting at the track known as Moonee Valley of the North.   Darren Clayton for Racing Queensland
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