Day At The Track

Dunn's new trotter lines up

10:04 AM 03 Mar 2017 NZDT
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Robert Dunn Racing Stables
Robert Dunn

Yagunnakissmeornot’s new trainer Robert Dunn thinks the 5-year-old mare can go close in tonight’s Group Three $25,000 Northern Trotting Breeders Stakes at Alexandra Park, but deep down thinks she might be a run short.

“Even though we are giving Idle Bones (40m) a 20m head-start, the Brent Mangos runner still looks the horse to beat. Our mare had two to three weeks off when we got her and we haven’t been able to get a suitable trial into her since then.

“Don’t get me wrong she’s a classy animal and has been working well. She’s a beautiful looking horse and a natural athlete and can win, but the lack of racing is a slight concern,” Dunn said.

Dunn obtained Yagunnakissmeornot off Sean McCaffrey, who after living in Cambridge for 50 years, this month takes up a position with Yabby Dam Farms in Ballarat.

Yagunnakissmeornot last raced raced on January 26 at Alexandra Park when she finished a six-and-a-half length eighth (of 11) in a $15,000 Dunstan Mares R60 to R116 handicap trot.

Tonight she will be driven by John Dunn for the first time.

The daughter of Love You and Dutch Annie will be attempting to win her 13th race from 35 starts in the Sims Pacific Metals-sponsored 2700m standing start event - a distance she has been victorious five times from 15 attempts.

In fact all 12 of her wins have been at 'The Park' and Dunn said he can see why.

“She’s a lovely gaited trotter and it’s a pleasure having her in our barn. It comes as no surprise to us that she’s one of the favourites. Even though she’s not quite 100 per cent I think she can still measure up,” he said.

Idle Bones was paying $1.70 favourite when the New Zealand TAB's fixed odds market opened mid-week. Yagunnakissmeornot was quoted at $3.30 and Sunset Peak (10m) was at $8.50. The remaining seven were all paying double figure dividends.

Unlike the other two favourites Yagunnakissmeornot doesn’t have the unruly tag beside her name.

“We really like the way she steps and have been impressed by her fluent gait. It’s just a matter of getting work into her and progressing along until the Rowe Cup next month (April 28),” Dunn said.

He said that McCaffrey had told him the mare hadn’t been finishing off her races the way he wanted to and that was something Dunn had been looking at.

“Sean just couldn’t put his finger on it. He said she was starting to wilt in her last 50 metres. He vet-checked her and there was nothing come from it, so it is something we will monitor and work at closely.

“I think the little break will have done her the world of good. She gives me the impression that she is getting back to the form that saw her get to open class,” Dunn said.

Yagunnakissmeornot finished a one-and-a-half length third in this race last year behind All Royal Girl and Whitney. She was the favourite that night and started from 30m behind.

Meanwhile, Dunn had no hesitation labeling his two-win Bettor’s Delight gelding, Wrangler, as his best winning chance at Alexandra Park tonight, despite starting from four on the second row in the first event.

The 3-year-old will start one of the favourites in the $20,000 Brancott Estate Mobile for the up to R63 pacers.

“He’s a nice gelding and I was really happy with the way he went last start. That was a nice third and he’s back in grade now. That was a big strong run and I’m expecting him to do even better on Friday, even from out there,” he said.

Duane Ranger

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