Day At The Track

My Kiwi Mate continues his comeback

09:56 PM 22 Aug 2019 NZST
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My Kiwi Mate,Harness racing

Craig Demmler is taking a "day by day" approach with his star pacer My Kiwi Mate, who continues the comeback from serious injury this Friday night.

The son of Bettors Delight made his long-awaited return from a hairline fracture to a pastern bone with a fast-finishing fourth at Tabcorp Park Melton on August 10.

He has pulled up well from his first start in almost a year and is down to run again in the Always B Miki Breeders Crown Graduate Pacers Free For All (Group 2) at the same circuit.

"I don't have any big set plans, I'm just happy he is back and going," Demmler said of his long-term goals with the horse.

"I've just got to make sure I keep him sound and happy. I'll just pinpoint the races as I go along.

"Ideally your good races is where we will be heading, but he'll tell me where we are heading after Friday night."

Demmler is determined to make sure the injury, which is believed to have occurred during the Kilmore Cup last September and derailed a campaign that would have included some of the country's biggest feature races, doesn't lead to any further problems.

"I'd hate anything to go wrong with him," he said. "I always want to be one step ahead. I've seen horses that have had screws (in a leg) over the years and they have ended up breaking down in their other leg.

"One thing I'm always mindful of is that he has gone in one leg so you have always got to keep an eye on his other leg."

Demmler isn't bullish about victory this Friday night, but will be pleased if My Kiwi Mate, a winner of the 2017 Bendigo Cup and more than $300,000 in prizemoney, can hit the line hard like in his first-up assignment.

"I've got Zac (Butcher) on him and he is drawn a bit wide (barrier six). He is going to have to look for a bit of luck to get in at some stage," he said.

"I'll be just rapt if he is running up the back of them at the end. Being so long off, this is his second run back and it's a great field, so hopefully he is just getting home at the end."

The Parwan-based Demmler has two other runners engaged on Friday night's program.

In-form Somebeachshadow will go in search of four-straight wins when he lines up in the TAB Multiplier Pace, while Smile Lyle looks a longshot chance in the Allied Express Pace later on the card.

Butcher is down to drive both My Kiwi Mate and Somebeachshadow, while master reinsman Chris Alford is booked to partner Smile Lyle.


Tim O'Connor

HRV Trots Media

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