The Gunbower Harness Racing Club held a compact eight event meeting at Echuca on Tuesday December 17.
Kyabram trainer Mick Blackmore combined with Bendigo basedto land the opening race on the program - the Gunbower Electrical 3-Y-0 Pace over 1755 metres with Sutter Hanover/Grace Anatomy gelding Sutter Man.
Beginning best from gate two, Sutter Man led throughout to score by a half neck in a rate of 2-01.2 from Glen Alpine Drive along the sprint lane after trailing from gate three, with Billy Mack third after following the pair.
Orrvale trainer's quality /Nuclearaccelerator four year old gelding Almost El Eagle notched up his 13th victory in 30 outings, when victorious in the Northern Herd Development Pace Final for C1 class over 1755 metres which qualified in the heats held at the Wangaratta fixture at Shepparton on December 8.
Driven once again by, Almost El Eagle from inside the second row was given a sweet passage trailing the well support pole line leader Khaleesi, before using the sprint lane to gain the day by 5.2 metres in advance of Sicilian Slumber (one/two) and Forever Arma which raced in the open. The mile rate 1-59.
Campbells Forest husband and wife Greg and Julie Ryan were successful with 4-Y-0/Princess Kiara gelding Bronco Apache in the James Godden Designer Tanks Pace for C0 class over 1755 metres in a rate of 2-02.4.
Bred by the pair and driven by, Bronco Apache was trapped four wide from outside the front line as the starter released the field, with Jack angling to be three back in the moving line as In Jet Spirit retained the front running from the pole.
Not happy with the tempo, Bronco Apache was sent forward to park outside the leader racing for the bell, allowing Jack to dictate the terms for the final circuit.
Surging clear prior to the home turn, Bronco Apache won as he pleased, cruising to the wire 8.7 metres clear of Direct Art along the sprint lane off the back of the leader, with Warrior Mac (one/one last lap) third.
Narrandera'sloves coming to Echuca and has a pretty good record on the track, adding another winner to his tally there when tough 4-Y-0 /Dainty Lea gelding Brown Rice snared the Mawsons Pace Final for C0 class over 2160 metres which qualified at the Wangaratta meeting.
Driven by the stable's, Brown Rice after starting from the extreme draw settled at the tail of the field, with the almost unbackable favourite Major Meggs leading from the pole.
Set alight mid-field to park outside the pacemaker, Brown Rice was able to drop to the back of Major Meggs approaching the home turn askicked away.
Asked for a supreme effort on straightening, Brown Rice showed a "never give in" attitude to wear down the leader and score by a half head in a rate of 2-00.7, with Miss Tanami running on late from the rear to finish third 17.3 metres away.
Jot down the nameas a reinsperson to follow as she is likely to be based in Victoria after joining a partnership with .
Amanda was successful aboard Marong trainer Trevor Patching's 8-Y-0/Westmoor Elegance gelding Sherpa Star in the Joe Newitt's Service Centre Pace for C1 class over 1755 metres.
Breaking his duck at start number eleven at the last Echuca meeting, Sherpa Star from the pole repeated the dose on this occasion after a cosy trip three back the markers from the pole as Lerrad Maharg led out before handing over to the heavily supported Mrs Devine a former NSW mare having her first outing in Victoria for Dylan Marshall.
Extricated into the clear on the home turn, Sherpa Star finished strongly to defeat Goldiedomic (one/one at bell) through the centre by a half head in 2-00.3, with Look At Russo close up in third place after racing in the open from the bell.
Nyah trainer Malcolm O'Bree is no stranger to Echuca meetings and landed the Steve Oliver Plumbing & Gas Pace for C2 & C3 class over 2160 metres with Cashisking, a five year old gelded son ofand Better Motoring who has done most of his racing north of the border.
Taking a concession for Melton based, Cashisking led throughout from gate two, accounting for Hezfullarunning which shadowed him throughout.
Border Patrol finished third off a three wide trail last lap. The mile rate 2-04.2.
Yanco trainerwas successful with 4-Y-0 /InThe Corner gelding Street Meets in the Brian & Lyn Wills Santa Claus Pace for C4 & C5 class over 2160 metres.
Beginning on equal terms with both Double Happy and Gangster Boy inside him, Street Meets was eased to take a one/one trail on the back of Gangster Boy.
Becoming pocketed at the bell as the favourite Quadentate moved forward three wide,angled Street Meets into the clear three wide on the final bend and he ran on best to nose out a game Gangster Boy in a mile rate of 2-01.3.
Life Of Ted used the sprint lane off the back of the leader to finish third a head away.
Bet Bet (Swan Hill) breeder/part-owner/trainer Greg Fleming was in the winners stall at Echuca, when 4-Y-0/Tiny Gigi gelding Oils Jay Bee broke his maiden status in the Gunbower Committee Pace for C0 class over 1755 metres.
Driven by Ararat's, Oils Jay Bee making his 15th race appearance began swiftly from outside the second line to lob one/one trailing Fiddlers Lane, with 's Reckless Valour burning away from outside the front row to lead.
Sent forward three wide along the back straight on the final occasion, Oils Jay Bee proved too strong at the business end of proceedings to register a 15.9 metre margin over Kiss ToLive(one/two) and Say Cheese from last in a mile rate of 2-00.4.
By Len Baker