Day At The Track

Craig Ferguson ventures into the unknown

09:22 AM 05 Apr 2016 NZST
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Craig Ferguson, harness racing
Craig Ferguson

Wyndham based junior driver Craig Ferguson ventured into the unknown on Sunday at Invercargill Harness Racing Club meeting when he lined up his first two starters as a trainer. Whilst it wasn’t the dream result of two winners, it wasn’t far behind with both of Ferguson’s runners placing 2nd.

Harnesslink sat down with Craig to talk about his runners & future plans.

A maiden on debut named No More Change was Craig’s first starter in Race 4. The mare was given to Ferguson’s good mate Jamie Campbell by his relation Ivy Keenan.

“Ivy Keenan was nice enough to give us the mare on the condition that we take her out for a meal and a bit of a party if we were to win a race,” said Craig.

Jamie organised a bunch of owners, including several first time owners, who were seen to be loudly cheering their charge home. “The highlight for me was not only the horses performing so well, but seeing the excitement of all the owners. They were over the moon. I can’t wait to see what they are like when we win a race!”

Beaten only ½ a length by Happy Lou (Trained by Malcolm Hunter), No More Change looks to be one worth following over the next few weeks. Coincidentally the driver of Happy Lou, Brendon McLellan was Craig’s first boss and the previous trainer of his starter in Race 5 Havinaravup.

Starting from an awkward barrier, Havinaravup was able to punch through from the second line before finding himself in the 1-1 down the back, when extricated to the outside by Ferguson, the 7yo Washington VC gelding charged home for a smart 2nd to Hank Bromac (Trained by Murray Brown) driven by Craig’s partner Sheree Tomlinson.

“Sheree beating me home wasn’t part of the plan; it’s safe to say she has the bragging rights for a few days”

Craig actually won on Havinaravup back in June of 2014 and jumped at the chance to lease him when he became available.

“I always thought he was capable of winning more. My good friend Rory McCall came in with me and I also gave Mum a share for all her help”.

Rory is so keen he has even taken shares in a few others with Ferguson.

With the use of a swimming pool, grass track and Sheree’s riding ability, Craig is able to offer something different for all sorts of horses.

“Sheree helps me with the team, and Jamie pops in when he gets time away from teaching, also Mum and Dad are a huge help”

‘I haven’t made too many plans for the future. I’ll just take it one step at a time”.

Side note: Known as one of the leading junior drivers in the country, Ferguson is currently sitting 3rd on the Premiership table with 23 wins for the season-

(31) wins behind tear away leader Brad Williamson with Kyle Marshall (29 wins) in 2nd.

Andrew Fitzgerald

 

 

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