What a great way to start the new harness racing season at Addington on Friday night. (August 8th)
Three $23,500 Alabar Super Series finals have been carded and all three have drawn outstanding fields with numerous chances in each final.
The club must be thrilled with the fields as they have put a lot of effort into this series.
So we thought we would do a preview of each of the finals.
Race 5 - 4 year olds + older C1-C4 over 1950 meters.
With the preferential draw in operation the three main chances in this final have all drawn poorly but still look to have a class edge on their opposition.
Major Bubbles has won eight from nine to date and looks to have the all round game to claim this race even from the outside gate of nine.
Having Dexter in the bike is a big plus with both horse and driver being in great form of late.
The Purdon + Rasmussen pair of Someardensomewhere and Vice Consul are both huge chances with both being in sublime form.
Someardensomewhere has won five and been placed eight times in just seventeen starts in the best company and Natalie Rasmussen has been in great touch for the last twelve months.
One second line is not a great draw but Natalie in the bike negates that and he looms as a live chance.
Vice Consul went through a rough patch a while back but has won three of his last four and the horses he beat in his last two in Madiba Magic and Mighty Major have both gone on to win their next start.
He lacks nothing in the driver stakes either with Mark Purdon in the bike and from two on the second line he has more options than his stablemate.
Just because she has been driving in such unbelievable form for so long, we have gone for Someardensomewhere and Natalie to come out on top.
Major Bubbles and Vice Consul for the minors with Provocative Prince the next in line.
Race 7 - 5 year old + older C1-C5 Discretionary 2600 Meters stand.
Another outstanding form race with the four most tightly assessed trotters off the back mark of 20 meters.
Although there are numerous trotters in good form off the front and 10 meters marks, the four trotters off 20 meters hold a distinct class edge over their rivals.
Idle Bones has won five of her last six and looks headed for open class in a hurry.
Brent Mangos , who has driven her in her recent starts in the North Island has treked south for the drive which is a big plus.
Free Dreams has been in great touch and is better off this week being off level marks with his main rivals which he hasn't been the case in his last few starts.
Johnny Cox has him humming and he is a major player.
Spell has always looked a open class trotter in the making and with three wins in her last six starts she is finally starting to fulfill her potential.
She can't make her own luck and does need a sit but can be lethal if she gets the run to suit and Sam Ottley and Spell seem to get on well together.
Jayceekay was one of the finds in the trotting ranks in the latter part of last season.
Johnny Boylan has done a great job of getting the Monkey Bones mare to relax and learn a bit of ringcraft and she looks capable of winning a few more yet.
Tough call but Idle Bones is in such great form it is hard to go past her.
Of the other three we fancy, we rate Free Dreams a fraction ahead of Spell and Jayceekay.
Aile Rouge from the Robbie Holmes stable looks the pick of the rest.
Race 8 - 4 year+older C0-C3 1950 meters
The third of three great races on the night and yet again with the preferential barrier draw in operation the better assessed horses have drawn poorly.
Dalton Bromac has impressed everyone since Benny Hill brought him out of the Butcher barn a few months back.
A winner of four from seven, he reeled off a half of 54.7 last week at the end of a quick 2600 meters which makes him awfully hard to roll here.
Ricky May has stuck with the ship which only raises the confidence levels even more.
The danger for us is Mighty Major which has come on in leaps and bounds in his last two starts.
Two starts back he was stuck three wide from the 600 meters in a quickly run race over 1950 and only went under by a nose to Vice Consul with Dalton Bromac third.
At his last start, he looped the field early from a second row draw and held on in a quick time for 2600 meters.
Blair Orange takes the drive and the Barron/Orange combination is already proving to be a winning one.
Explosive Art has been in great touch and but for drawing the outside of the front line may have proved a handful for the other two we like.
We really can't separate Dalton Bromac and Mighty Major in this one although there will be a big difference tote wise.
Blair Orange is driving like a man possessed since joining the Ken Barron barn and that might be enough to even the contest up.
Explosive Art has to come into calculations along with Lord Baltimore and Ideal Act for the minors.
All in all, three great fields to help kick off the 2014/2015 season at Addington.