Day At The Track

Aussie stable snippets

02:00 PM 14 Jan 2020 NZDT
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Brittany Graham with her mate Big Bang Leonard,Harness racing
Brittany Graham with her mate Big Bang Leonard
Dan Costello photo

POPULAR Sky Channel harness racing presenter Brittany Graham swapped "gigs" recently with great success at Albion Park.

The accomplished on-track interviewer and studio anchor slipped into her harness racing silks to steer Big Bang Leonard for her trainer sister Stephanie - and a short time later was the toast of punters, at 4/1.

And she did it with aplomb! After being near the tail of the field for most of the way, Big Bang Leonard (Art Major-Finest (D M Dillinger) stormed home four and five wide down the extreme outside to snatch victory with at "The Creek" on Thursday.

The pair were eight lengths from the leader Chapter One (Grant Dixon) at the bell with the race being run at a fast clip. Sections of 27.3, 28.8, 28.8 and 28.5 tell the story.

It was the fifth win in a row for the 9yo gelding who is racing in near career best form. He now has 19 wins and 40 placings from 139 starts for $147,000.

Brittany is the owner of Big Bang Leonard but due to work commitments she's been able to handle him on only two of his most recent triumphs. Skilled reinsman Adam Sanderson has taken the reins on the other occasions.

For the 17 race drives she's been able to fit in this season, 23-year-old Graham has managed four wins - and before giving up the driving game professionally, she had more than 250 winners to her name.


THERE'S a handy combination emerging around Sydney harness racing circles at the moment.

Talented young reinswoman Ashley Hart is something of a quiet achiever but as a talented junior, she's putting the runs on the board for Menangle's Tim Butt stable.

Young Ashley has taken the reins for Tim on four occasions for a 100 percent return.

The latest of her four wins was Mac Almighty (Mach Three-Dollys Daughter (Beach Towel) at Bankstown, giving her bragging rights over her better-known brother, Cameron, who finished runner-up on Abitmorebliss.

Mac Almighty has now had 44 starts for eight wins and 17 placings for $60k.

Ashley Hart (Ashlea Brennan photograph)


MENANGLE based horseman Rickie Alchin made a successful trip home to Temora at the weekend.

Alchin, one of the most energetic people in the industry, cut his teeth in the well-known harness racing town in the NSW Riverina. With a population of about 6000, it's 400kms south-west of the State capital.

Alchin won at the annual cup meeting with 4yo Regulus (Christian Cullen-Sheez Not Perfect (Perfect Art), sent out a warm $1.22 fav. He later finished sixth in the $15,000 Pacers Cup with Little Change-the winner being Rusty Crackers, trained by Brooke McPherson, and driven by her boyfriend Thomas Gilligan.

While back home, Alchin took his well-known "Pop" Russell Harpley out to Yirribee Pacing Stud to check on a few of his future stars. He says his "Pop" and Nanna Pam are his greatest supporters.

Alchin reports his star trotter Tough Monarch has been freshened after a gruelling NZ Inter campaign and he's looking at the Great Southern Star event at Melton.

And while Rickie is doing his best to put Temora on the map, it's still perhaps better known for the "Temora Tornado" - aka Paleface Adios. The flashy chestnut pacer with the unbelievable never-say-die attitude mesmerized trots fans from 1972 to 1981 with 108 wins.

Rickie Alchin made the most of a recent trip home to Temora with Regulus


MORE and more heartfelt support continues to come from our industry for those hit by the shocking bushfires still devastating our country.

Manuka Health New Zealand has donated a shipment of high grade manuka honey with aloe vera as well as boxes of wound dressings for horse owners.

Many competitors, including Robert and KerryAnn Morris, of Sydney, are giving a portion of their winning earnings to appeals, while the Tassie Yole stable has gone past the $1100 figure in donations with five meetings to go.

HRNSW and Club Menangle have so far pledged over $26k to bushfire relief. Donations to WIRES (NSW Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service) of $15,400 and Red Cross, $11,200, will steadily increase during the month.

For every odd-numbered horse that wins, $200 goes to WIRES, and for every even numbered horse, a similar amount goes to Red Cross.

Matt and Jackie Peterson horse transport in Stanhope have been amazing, moving 325 horses free of charge from fire danger zones. They can now also pick up donations of hay in their travels. A big pat on the back to drivers Steph, Tim, Loz, Ebony and Peter.

Team Yole in Tasmania is keeping the till ticking over for bushfire victims


Terry Gange

NewsAlert PR Mildura

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