Art Major 2yo wins first heat of Young Guns

08:34 PM 13 Dec 2013 NZDT
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Mark Purdon West Melton trainer Geoff Dunn
Mark Purdon - co-trainer of Follow The Stars amoung many others.
West Melton trainer Geoff Dunn - is the man of the moment
Duane Ranger photo

Mark Purdon and Natalie Rassmusen look set for another tremendous season with the juveniles after Art Major debutant Follow The Stars took out heat one of the Young Guns at Alexandra Park tonight.

Given an economic run in the trail by co-trainer Mark Purdon, Follow The Stars peeled off the back of Tembi late in proceedings and raced on by to win by a length over the fast finishing Ardee (Jeremes Jet) and Tembi, who held third gamely after crossing the face of the field from the outside of the gate and setting the tempo in front.

Tembi, like Follow The Stars, is by Art Major, giving the Artsplace stallion first and third in the race.

Follow The Stars is rich in American bloodlines, being out of Cam’s Card Shark mare Smyrna Duruisseau.

Follow The Stars paced the 1700 metre journey in a slick 2-04.3, with slick sectionals of 57.4 and 27.9. He is owned by formidable Purdon owners Mrs G J Kennard, P I Kennard, N Pilcher, G R Douglas, P J Creighton, and Mrs M C Creighton.

Meanwhile, Prime Power made it five wins on end when winning the first race on the card, while Geoff Dunn continued his remarkable run by winning the Northern Trotting Breeders Stakes with Whitney and heat four of the Sires Stakes with superstar filly Venus Serena. The latter was a narrow victor over Libertbelle Midfrew, who was mammoth in defeat after being pushed off the track down the back straight.

Venus Serena paced the 1700 metre journey in 2-01.9, which is just 0.4 of a second  outside of Lancome's New Zealand record.

By Mitchell Robertson

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