Day At The Track

Exciting pacer eyes off Menangle feature

05:00 AM 12 Oct 2020 NZDT
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Private Eye, harness racing
Hes Watching youngster Private Eye – the easiest of winners in track record time in the Breeders Challenge heat at Bathurst
Bathurst HRC Photo

Three-year-old excitement machine Private Eye could not have been more impressive in his short, but sensational harness racing career.

In just three race starts the Victorian-owned youngster has not only been unbeaten, but in two of those runs has smashed the clock, setting new track records along the way.

Now Private Eye (Hes Watching-Oh Eye See (Armbro Operative) is eyeing off the rich Group One NSW Breeders Challenge series. Semi-finals of $20,000 will be held this Saturday at Menangle, culminating with a $125,000 final seven days later.

Previously prepared by the astute Taiba team at Sunbury, near Melbourne, the gelding was sent north recently to join the Rob Xerri barn at Cobbitty.

Private Eye was purchased at the Sydney yearling sales by Lauren Wilson, partner of Hass Taiba. The pacer was bred by Success Stud, owned and managed by the Gibson family, who have a wealth of experience with over 50 years in the breeding industry.

Stable spokesman Hass Taiba said Private Eye, despite showing enormous potential from his early days, had been treated like a baby all the way through.

"Amy Day, who breaks in all our youngsters and does a super job, was straight up with us and told us while the horse had the x-factor, he could also be very naughty," Taiba said.

"He would get his rear end across in the sulky and had a mind of his own. Amy convinced us to geld him, which was a good call.

"When we got him going again later, he wanted to run 100 miles an hour, or jump out of his gear. One of my brothers Ahmed put a lot of work into the horse and everything he did was in a relaxed way.

"Ahmed believed that by doing this, along with maturity, he would settle down and he has - he's become a gentleman."

Private Eye made his race debut at Geelong on January 22 of this year and despite nearly throwing it away, put up an incredible performance to win.

"He was travelling okay, but about 200 metres from the finish, went into a gallop. He picked himself up and was able to get going again and win in a super effort. We had the vets go over him, but they couldn't find anything amiss," Taiba said.

To watch this race at Geelong click on this link

A month later Private Eye started in the $25,000 George Croxford Tribute at Gunbower and after an early three wide race move, posted an impressive victory in 1.54-6, a new track record.

To watch this race at Gunbower click on this link

"With Covid-19 restrictions, we weren't sure where we were going to race him. He's been well looked after, but we thought we may have been a bit behind the eight ball with the Menangle series," Taiba said.

Rob Xerri has taken care of training duties for Private Eye in his Breeders Challenge tilt

"But Rob, who is good friends with Ahmed, was quite happy with a trial at the track which he won in 1.54-3. The Bathurst meeting on October 7 was actually our last chance to qualify so to go there and get the win was great."

And Private Eye probably couldn't have been more convincing, winning by a huge 37 metres in a time of 1.53-2, which broke the track record set one hour before by Jerulas Grin (Jason Turnbull).

To watch this race at Bathurst click on this link

"He's capable of doing things that a special horse can do. But you wouldn't believe it if you watched him do fastwork at home-he barely gets out of a jog!" Taiba said.

Hes Watching, a multiple world record holder (1.46-8 and $1.1 million), is standing this season for Luke Primmer at Tipperary Equine Stud, at Young.

Terry Gange

NewsAlert PR Mildura

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