Jones pulls plug on North Island campaign

01:45 PM 09 Dec 2013 NZDT
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Master Lavros 001.jpg
Master Lavros and Mark Jones pictured after winning the $200,000 Dominion

Mark Jones has decided to freshen Dominion winner Master Lavros after he galloped twice and finished down the track in yesterday’s Green Mile at Methven.

“I drove Choise Achiever a couple of races prior to the Trotters Green Mile and didn’t think the track was that bad, but by the time his race came along it had really deteriorated,” said Jones. He didn’t handle it at all and if I had of known it was going to be that bad, I wouldn’t have bothered starting him,” he added.

Jones said that Master Lavros’s Australian campaign is his main priority which is why he will now briefly spell the five-year-old Sundon gelding before preparing him for feature racing across the Tasman in February and March.

“I think pressing on to the Auckland carnival and then going to Australia would just be too much as there wouldn’t be any chance to give him a let-up.

At this stage of his career I really want to look after him.” He added.

“The Glenferrie Farm Challenge in Sydney on the 3rd of March is his main  target but provided things go well there he could press on to the Great Southern Star in Victoria later on in that month.”

That could see the giant trotter race for in excess of $500,000 during his Australian sojourn.

Master Lavros will be accompanied during his Australian raid by Jones’s pacing stable star Saveapatrol, who will look to gain automatic entry into the $200,000 Chariots Of Fire by winning the Pelorus Classic at Waterlea Raceway early next month.

“I think I will test my training skills and bring him into the Pelorus fresh,” said Jones. “There is the Grass Track Championship Final on the 29th of the month at  Motukarara but  the field selection is done by points on grass tracks and we have only had one start for one win, so I’m not sure if we will get a start,” he added.

Jones said that even if Saveapatrol doesn’t gain automatic entry into the Chariots through winning the Pelorus, he will still head to Sydney.

“There will be plenty $20,000 races for him in Sydney anyway and there isn’t a lot for him at home during the time he will be away, so at this stage he is definitely going,” Jones concluded.

By Mitchell Robertson

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