Keystone Del might have drawn the inside of the second row but after staking his claim as one of Australia’s best trotters in the Glenferrie Challenge, nothing may stop his run towards the Pryde’s EasiFeed Great Southern Star.
Clocking an Australasian record less than a week ago (which was subsequently broken), Nicole Molander’s six-year-old is on the verge of stepping to the next level.
And after winning his second Glenferrie Challenge in two years, he booked himself a place in Australasia’s richest trotting race.
After an interrupted preparation last season, his trainer is convinced the team have a vastly superior squaregaiter now.
“Mentally he is a lot stronger, the racing and age under his belt has helped him manners-wise. He’s got a better rhythm in his gait and he is trotting a lot strong this time in,” Molander said.
“He got a really good track in last week and a super cool drive by Blake (Fitzpatrick) but he hit the line really well.”
Tackling The Knight Pistol on Friday night at Melton, Keystone Del will simply be keeping up to the mark as we head into the second running of what is quickly becoming a world-renown race.
Molander explained that a similar plan was in the wings 12 months ago but after being struck down he never had the chance to show his best to Victorian trots fans.
“We brought him down at the same time last year and planned to have a race before the Great Southern Star but his leg blew up so he missed an important lead up race last year whereas this time we will hopefully get a lead up run or two into him,” She said.
The starting point of his Pryde’s EasiFeed Great Southern Star campaign has seen him come up with barrier eight. Being inside the second row may turn out the place to be with Kiwi Boizel drawn the pole.
The draw itself hasn’t dented the camp’s confidence, in fact she need only look back to the Group 1 Dullard Cup in January as a guide to her gelded son of Dr Ronerail can excel.
“Initially I thought oh no; but that’s what he drew in the Dullard Cup where he never saw daylight until the last little bit and being behind Boizel hopefully he can hold a forward position or we can find some gaps early,” Molander said.
For more information on the Pryde’s EasiFeed Great Southern Star you can visit the website at www.greatsouthernstar.com.au.
by Blake Redden
Harness Racing Victoria