Ex-pat Kiwi harness racing trainer Nicole Molander believes recent stable addition – Mingara has the potential to be one of Australia’s best standing start trotters.
The New South Wales horsewoman said she only had to add the finishing touches to the former Jason and Megan Teaz trained mare, who arrived in Sydney on June 12.
“She’s won all four of her races easily – beating the best trotters going around at this time of year at Menangle last Saturday. You have to put those wins down to Megan and Jason,’’ Molander said.
“The horse came to us in absolutely immaculate condition. I have been very impressed with Megan. Everything we have asked about the horse Megan knew the mare’s traits back to front.’’
Mingara has now recorded four consecutive victories at Tabcorp Park Menangle on June 21, July 8, July 12, and July 26 for her Kiwi owners and breeders Graeme and Barbara Wisnewski.
Molander believed Mingara had the potential to possibly match it with Group One-winning stablemate, Keystone Del one day. He will be back jogging next week in preparation for his 2014-2015 campaign.
“This mare doesn’t quite have the same zip as Keystone Del but she has been very impressive winning all three of her standing starts.
“Megan and Jason have done a splendid job with her. She has immaculate manners and a really nice gait. She gets to the front not long after the start - even off handicaps.’’
Teaz (Megan) deflected the praise saying Mingara’s time was up in New Zealand merely because she had to race off long handicaps against stern opposition.
“Nicole is a very good trainer and has rounded her off nicely. We always thought Mingara would go well in Australia,’’ Teaz said.
“She was the best of the six we’ve got in work. She would run the fastest sectionals in most of her races but had too much ground to make up off her handicaps.
“Potentially, King Of Cool isn’t that behind her. We’ve got a lot of time for him.’’
Mingara was the $1.40 favourite in Saturday’s $20,000 Glenferrie Farms Trotters Handicap.
Blake Fitzpatrick had Mingara in front after 30m from her 10 metres handicap. That brilliant start saw her dictate all the pace to win the 2300m event by an increasing 18 metres.
She stopped the clock in 2:56.5 with a 2:03 mile rate. She trotted her first quarter in 31.7, second quarter in 31, third in 28.7 and home in 28.3.
In New Zealand Mingara raced 27 times for six wins and nine placings from November 2012. Her Kiwi bank balance stood at $46,464. She’s won an extra $25,500 for her four wins at Menangle.
The 5-year-old Thanksgiving – Sporty Spice mare won three of her New Zealand assignments this season. Molander said she would now race her throughout the winter and autumn before spelling her in the summer.
“We will take her to Victoria if we have to because they have lots of open class standing start events there. We would not be scared to travel with this mare,” Molander said.
Meanwhile Teaz, who is in her fourth season of training with husband Jason, has now won 10 races from 79 starters. They have also placed 22 times for $73,152 in stakes.
In the sulky junior driver Teaz has won 12 races from 243 starters since 2008.
“I prefer training to driving these days. I do love driving the trotters but I really love conditioning horses for our owners,’’ she said.
“We are nothing without our owners. I’d like to thank them all very much, especially people like Tony Armstrong, Wayne & Carol Aylward, and my father-and-mother-in-law, Basil and Helen Teaz.
“I really enjoy training horses and I get that opportunity because of our owners. Jason and I are very grateful to the people who support us.’’
The 24-year-old horsewoman said the household’s training and broadcasting lifestyles were working well despite her husband Jason being based in Dunedin.
“Jason comes back all the time to help me. I also owe a lot to Ray Bradley and Kayla Sharp, who both help me out. We work our team from Ray’s track at Ohaupo.’’
Teaz’s husband Jason was appointed the New Zealand Racing Board’s race-caller in Otago, the West Coast and Tasman in November Last year.
By Duane Ranger (Harness Racing New Zealand)