Day At The Track

Ex-Kiwi horses performing well

05:35 PM 09 May 2020 NZST
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Super Fast Pat,Harness racing
Super Fast Pat
Bruce Stewart photo

Two horses with a strong southern connection are earning some good Australian dollars in New South Wales at the moment.

Trotter Super Fast Pat, and pacing mare Havtime, both of whom began their careers in Southland, now race out of the Menangle stable of KerryAnne Morris.

Super Fast Pat, which was bred by Central Otago identity Ginger Woodhouse and developed by Winton trainer Lauren Pearson is currently progressing through the grades under the care of Morris.

He’s had six starts for the stable, finishing tenth in his Australian debut.

“We didn’t have his gear 100% right at his first start. We went back to what they had on him in New Zealand and ever since then he hasn’t looked back. He wears an under draw, a head check and a nose flap to help him concentrate. Most of our trotters here don’t have head checks and we try to use jog brindles,” said KerryAnne.

Super Fast Pat steps up a grade tonight when he takes on some of the better graded trotters on his home track.

“He hasn’t been pushed to his limits yet. He’s got to step up in grade. Tonight will be a good test for him because it’s his first Saturday night race. It’s a standing start and there’s a few nice ones in it.”

Morris says both she and husband Rob are happy with where the five year old’s at.

“He’s in a really happy place at the minute and very comfortable with the way we’ve got things set up with him. He has got a few quirks but when he puts it together he’s a very nice trotter. Fingers crossed he can continue that tonight.”

Morris says Super Fast Pat’s style of trotting is very deceptive.

“Rob has said to me that you can think you’re going a 30 second quarter and it’s a 28 quarter. He said he just gets over the ground a lot better than you think he is.”

She says the wide open spaces and smaller fields suits a lot of the trotters that come from New Zealand.

“It seems to help them a lot. With the long straight (at Menangle) you can really get them balanced up.”

And the she says Super Fast Pat will get better as he gains more race day experience.

“I think after a bit of a let up, when we get him going again we’ll probably see a better horse. He probably needs to get a wee bit more seasoned to race against the better trotters but I can’t see why he won’t do that.”

From twelve starts for Winton trainer Lauren Pearson, Super Fast Pat recorded three wins with the last being a New Zealand record of 2-56.6 for a 2400 metre mobile at Winton when he won by seven and a half lengths.

Pearson was very patient with the gelding, knowing he could easily lose the plot. There was no doubting his raw ability and he was always destined to race in Australia where there are more mobile starts for trotters on a regular basis.

Under the care of KerryAnne Morris, Super Fast Pat from six starts, has won his last four races in a row.

He was bred by Ginger Woodhouse and was raced by Woodhouse and Neil Edge in New Zealand. He races under Edge’s name in Australia.

“Neil’s a terrific guy. You never hear from him. He just likes to watch his horses going around. He sent over Our Smart Caesar and he did a good job for us.”

Super Fast Pat is out of the eight win Sundon mare Turbo Pat.

Another horse with a southern connection in the stable is quality mare Havtime.

The four year old Mach Three mare is owned by Murray, Malcolm and Sarndra Little and has been in New South Wales since former trainer Barry Purdon took her to Australia in February.

“Barry brought her over for the Ladyship Mile. I think he spoke to the owners and it just made a lot of sense to leave her here in Australia. She had a low assessment and there were a lot more opportunities here for her. There’s a few more mares races for her with a little bit more money up for offer.”

Since being in Australia Havtime has won three races from nine starts and paced a mile in 1-50.0. Her lifetime record is now nine wins and $339,957.

Her biggest win in Australia has been the Group Three Tanyia Harris Four Year Old Mares Stakes at Menangle where she beat Our Princess Tiffany and Belle Of Montana. She ran a good sixth in the $200,000 Group One Ladyship Mile won by Bettors Heart.

“She showed in the Ladyship she was right up there with the better mares and we were very happy for Barry to leave her with us.”

In her last start at Menangle last weekend she ran a close second to Sounds Of Terror – beaten by half a head.

“We thought she should have won last week. Rob believes we may have been a wee bit light on her. She’s a funny horse. There’s a happy medium with her. You can have her too revved up or you can have her too quiet. Last week Rob thought he had her too quiet. She’s a lovely mare who has good gate speed and she loves to race. I can’t wait to see what she can do later on down the track.”

KerryAnne says she generally has fifty horses in work and likes to aim at winning 100 races each season. She recently passed the 1000 lifetime winners mark.

“We haven’t had that pinup horse but we get our fair share of winners from our bread and butter horses.”

One of her best horses was Charlaval – a Four Starzzz Shark gelding which won the 2016 Gold Coast Derby beating Southland bred Stanley Ross Robyn. Charlaval won eighteen races and earned $345,181.

Other good horses the Morris’s have raced are Aztec Bromac (20 wins) and Iam Mr Brightside (34 wins and $445,000.

It was great to talk to KerryAnne and we wish her all the best for tonight.

 

Bruce Stewart

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