Champion harness racing reinsman Dexter Dunn has chased the double century the past two seasons and come up one win short on both occasions.
“It was disappointing, especially considering I got so close both times,” said Dunn. “I would have rather finished those two seasons on 195 wins because seeing as I finished on 199 I couldn’t stop thinking what if I had done this differently or what If I had done that?”
So to avoid disappointment again Dunn set himself different goals this season and just tried to drive every race as well as he could.
And as so often happens, by not chasing it or even thinking about, Dunn brought up that elusive milestone. And he did it in style tonight at Forbury Park in what was their last race of the season.
Dunn headed to Dunedin’s Forbury Park, which has been a happy hunting ground for him all season, with 197 wins under his belt and not really expecting to bring up the double century.
But while Dunn drives plenty of winners for ‘the big guys’ like boss Cran Dalgety and father Robert Dunn, he also drives a fair few winners for the ‘battlers’. And it was one of them, Steve Lock of Invercargill, who provided him with an unexpected early double.
Dunn brought up win 198 for the season aboard Snow Boy, a battling pacer come trotter, who finally broke maidens at start number 58.
He then doubled the dose when winning aboard Lock’s in form pacer Blazing Bracelet, who remarkably gave Lock just his third win at Forbury Park in the past seven years - all three of them this season and two of them tonight.
Dunn then produced a peach of a drive to extricate the Paul Kerr trained Whozideawasthis out of a tricky posisition and into the clear, allowing his charge to steam home for a narrow win to keep his unbeaten record at Forbury Park intact and give Dunn the magical milestone.
Fittingly, Kerr forgot his colours so the win was brought up with Dexter wearing the colours of his father Robert Dunn.
Dunn has now driven 200 winners in a season on three occasions, having also achieved the amazing feat in 2011 and 2008.
Meanwhile, in form trotter Monnay overcame one of the biggest handicaps ever in recent years – 70 metres – when winning the feature trot race at Forbury Park.
By Mitchell Robertson