Day At The Track

Mangos & Herlihy worth following

09:00 AM 02 Mar 2017 NZDT
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Grass track racing,harness racing
Grass track racing at Taranaki

Taranaki Trotting Club secretary Carey Hobbs has rated this afternoon’s (Thursday) fields as the strongest compiled in the Central Districts this season, and gave a hint as to who to follow at the nine-race New Plymouth meeting.

“Even though Brent isn’t down to drive, the Mangos stable is really firing on all cylinders at the moment and Tony Herlihy (MNZM) doesn’t usually come all this way for nothing.

“Tony has three in and I really like Walkinshaw in the feature event – the Revital Fertilisers Taranaki Cup. He’s a class horse taking on lower rated pacers,” Hobbs said.

Walkinshaw hasn’t raced in the 2017 North island Country Cup Series yet. In fact the 4-year-old Mach Three entire hasn’t raced this year. He was spelled after finishing 10th in a $20,000 R67 to R85 pace at Alexandra Park on New Year’s Eve.

That 2700m stand was won by last Saturday night’s Group One $200,000 New South Wales Derby winner, Vincent.

Walkinshaw, who will be driven by Scott Phelan for the first time, has an R81 rating and will start from four on the second row.

Only the Andrew and Lyn Neal trained Beyond the Silence (R85) is rated higher than Walkinshaw in the $11,000 feature pace.

Walkinshaw goes into the Taranaki Cup with a fair four-length fourth behind The Orange Agent and Sir Richie in an R73 and faster 2500m mobile workout at Pukekohe on February 18. There were seven starters.

Herlihy last won the Taranaki Cup when he trained and drove Swift Therapy to a length victory in 2011.

After winning five of the 11 races at Alexandra Park last Friday night, it would be silly to discount another winner from the Mangos barn today.

He hasn’t trained a Taranaki Cup winner but he did drive the David and Catherine Butt trained Sweet Courage to victory in 2008.

Mangos will be represented by Bouton (race two) Saint Michel (race three) and Alta Roulette (race four). The trio will be driven by Kyle Marshall.

Marshall will also drive the Arna Donnelly trained Eldolar in the Taranaki Cup.

“He’s been racing really well and has already won four races this season. He meets a nice field here, but with luck in the running he’s certainly good enough to get some of it,” Marshall said.

Marshall, who has eight drives, said the Mangos trained first-starter Alta Roulette would be his best drive at the meeting.

"He's been trialling real good and won his qualifying trial at Cambridge well under time (6.4 seconds) on February 3. He's a real nice type and has a good draw (3) to work with. I think he will be real tough to beat," the 23-year-old said.

He also thought the Mangos trained Bouton and Saint Michel could go also close.

“Bouton is another first-starter who has placed in all four of her Auckland and Cambridge Workouts. She’s also drawn three and the grass will be good for her first-up.

“Saint Michel (4) can definitely get some of it. The mobile will help him and I think he can run in the first two, but in saying that I think Mighty Sunny is the horse to beat," said Marshall.

Duane Ranger

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