Day At The Track

Aussie News - May 15

09:57 AM 15 May 2017 NZST
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The Orange Agent.jpg
The Orange Agent

TWO down, one to go.

That’s the story with mighty mare The Orange Agent’s Aussie raid so far.

As good as she was winning the Make Mine Cullen last Saturday week, she raised the bar again with a display of complete dominance from a potentially tricky draw in the Angelique Club Cup (2240m) at Melton last Friday night.

The five-year-old blew away some top notch mares to win by 9.6m in blistering 1min53.7sec mile rate, which was just 1.2sec outside the track record Lazarus set winning the Victoria back in January.

Next up is the race she really came to Melbourne to win, the $100,000 Group 1 Queen of the Pacific at Melton next Saturday night.

Given the form she is in and fact she is such a great stayer, the 2760m next week will be ideal and the race looks at her mercy.

Another Kiwi mare, Our Golden Goddess, was heavily-backed to beat The Orange Agent, but ran the worst race of her career. She sat parked in quick time, but was spent before the home bend and weakened to finish almost 50m from the winner in 10thspot.

It raises question marks about the Queen of the Pacific and a planned return to NZ for the Harness Jewels 4YO Diamond.

Chris Alford, who drove The Orange Agent, also won another of the features at Melton last Friday aboard Emma Stewart’s emerging three-year-old filly in the Argent 3YO Classic (2240m).

EMERGING NSW star Anything For Love will raid Melton on Saturday night.

Co-trainers Shane and Lauren Tritton are chasing the $75,000 Group 2 4&5YO Championship.

“It’s a good chance to give him a run at Melton in a big race ahead of the Vicbred series, which we are setting him for,” Shane Tritton said.

Anything For Love, who started his career in Victoria, has roared through the grades and emerged as one of NSW’s most exciting pacers since being bought by clients of the Trittons.

The four-year-old has raced 11 times for the Trittons for five wins, four seconds and a third. His only unplaced run was a luckless fourth to Lazarus in the Chariots of Fire.

He has won his past two starts, including the Group 2 Carousel at Menangle in a 1min55sec mile rate for 2300m two starts back.

IT would be remiss not to pay tribute to the mighty Beautide after his official retirement last week.

The former Tasmanian pacer climbed to the height of the sport with wins in the 2014 and ’15 Sydney Inter Dominion finals.

Additionally, Beautide won the 2013 Miracle Mile and ran second to Christen Me in the same race the following year.

Trained and driven by Jimmy Rattray, he retired with a record of 81 starts for 49 wins, 13 seconds, seven thirds and earnings of $2,183,132.

“What a ride he took us on … so many great moments,” Rattray said.

The untold story was the fantastic with Rattray did behind the scenes to nurse Beautide through a string of serious injury issues.

STILL on Rattray and he had a tonic in an otherwise sad week with a winning pick-up drive for the All Stars’ stable at Menangle last Saturday night.

Rattray took the reins on last-start Carousel runner-up Motu Premier, pushed forward to take the front from a wide draw (gate eight) and win stylishly.

Talented sit-sprinter Mach Doro challenged strongly on the final bend, but Motu Premier found plenty in closing splits of 55.6 and 27.4sec for a 1min54.4sec mile rate over the longer 2300m trip of the Group 3 Joe and Michael Illsley free-for-all.

Motu Premier’s NSW raid has so far returned three wins and a second from just four starts.

IT is looking more likely by the day that buzz Victorian juvenile Lumineer will head back to Sydney at the end of the month.

Trainer Ange McDowall said the recent Australian Gold winner had continued to thrive during a freshen-up following his Gold triumph just over two weeks ago at Menangle.

“He seems quite well and is ticking all the boxes for a return trip (to Sydney), but we haven’t locked it away yet. The signs are positive though,” she said.

Lumineer would tackle the last heat of the NSW Breeders Challenge, set down for Menangle on May 30 with the semis on June 10 and final on June 26.

His major threat in the series would be Shane Tritton’s exciting youngster Divine State, who won his first starts before a weakening seventh in the Bathurst Gold Crown final when found to have been sick.

Divine State sharpened-up for a racetrack return with a 1min55.6sec mile win in a Menangle trial last Tuesday.

A SWITCH to standing-start racing and some fantastic early manners were the key to former classy Kiwi pacer Hughie Green’s return to winning form at Albion Park last Saturday night.

The Art  Major five-year-old began brilliantly from a 10m handicap and worked his way to the lead after 300m, which effectively meant the race was over.

Trainer-driver John Cremin cruised through a comfy 60.7sec middle half, then powered down the back straight in 27.6sec and home in 28.1sec to win the Flashing Red Discretionary (2647m) by 7.8m in a 1min59.1sec mile rate.

 Hughie Green’s had seven starts in Australia for Cremin for four wins, two seconds.

JUST when it seemed the old boy had lost his mojo, remarkable Queensland veteran Destreos returned to the winners’ circle at his favourite track, Albion Park, last Tuesday.

It was his 93rd win and 70 of those have been at Albion Park.

The rising 14-year-old, who has raced a staggering 426 times, had gone almost three months without a win.

Destreos returned to form in style, sitting parked and strolling clear to win the free-for-all by nine metres in a slick 1min53.4sec mile rate for 1660m.

EXCITING NSW three-year-old Atomic Red keeps showing his upset NSW Derby heat win over Ultimate Machete was no fluke.

The Steve Turnbull-trained colt drew poorly and ran fifth in the NSW Derby final and has been unbeaten in three runs since.

The latest came in narrow but impressive style at Menangle last Saturday night in a 1min51.3sec mile.

IT has been a very satisfying few weeks for husband-and-wife team Andy and Kate Gath.

First came the return to form of their one-time emerging star Burnaholeinmypocket, who has won his past three starts.

Then came another free-for-all win from their giant, but injury-plagued former Kiwi pacer Maximan.

The rising nine-year-old again showed how hard he is to beat in front when he led throughout to upset in-form pacer Major Crocker in a 1min55.7sec mile rate for 2240m in the Bold David free-for-all.


Adam Hamilton

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