Day At The Track

Great Southern Star rivals to battle

06:43 PM 23 Feb 2021 NZDT
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Tornado Valley, Harness racing
Stuart McCormick photo

The TAB Australian Trotting Grand Prix shapes as a rematch of the Great Southern Star, with the first eight horses across the line in that event backing up in this Saturday night's Group 1.

Andy Gath's star Tornado Valley tipped out Rob O'Connell-trained Magicool in a thrilling GSS on February 5, but will need to be at his very best to repeat the dose after drawing unfavourably on the back row in nine as the latter secured barrier four.

New Zealander Majestic Man was third in that race and will find it tough from barrier 10, while fourth place-getter Pink Galahs, for Matthew Craven, has five.

Monaro Mia (Wayne Potter), Robbie Royale (Brent Lilley), Sparkling Success (John Meade), Always Ready (Anton Golino and Jack MacKinnon), Sundons Courage (Brad Angove), Red Hot Tooth (Kari Males), McLovin (Andy Gath) and Tough Monarch (Rickie Alchin) have also accepted for the $100,000 event, which is one of four Group 1s on Saturday night's Tabcorp Park Melton card.

The TAB opened Tornado Valley as a $2.40 favourite on Tuesday afternoon.

Other highlights of the meeting include the Lyn McPherson Memorial Breed For Speed Gold Series Final, the IRT Australia Need For Speed Princess Final and the Alan Mance Need For Speed Prince Final.

Of course, the night will be dominated by the WomenCan Team Teal 'Night at the Trots' function.

Meanwhile, a strong field of nine sprinters have accepted for the Geelong Rocket on Friday night.

Stars such as Shakamaker, Blatant Lie, Smoken Up and Melpark Major have won the race, which has not been contested since 2013.

The 1609m dash will carry $24,000 in prizemoney and is for the fast class pacers rated between 90-120.

After a stack of Victorian-trained horses tackle Group 1s in a big feature meeting at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night, attention then turns to Sunday's Boort meeting.

The eight-race card includes the Councillor Neil Beattie and Family Boort Pacing Cup and The Honourable Peter Walsh Boort Trotters Cup, both worth $14,500.


HRV - Tim O'Connor

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