Day At The Track

McMullen returns from North America

01:32 PM 02 Nov 2015 NZDT
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Narissa McMullen at Flamboro Downs in Canada
Narissa McMullen at Flamboro Downs in Canada

Champion young Queensland harness racing driver Narissa McMullen returns from a six week North American sojourn to drive at the Redcliffe Paceway on Melbourne Cup day.

A co-winner of last season’s  RQ/Mercedes Benz Toowong Young Achiever Award, McMullen last drove in Brisbane on 19 September but she has kept her skills tuned while overseas, driving  just last week at Canada’s Flamboro Downs track.

McMullen, who turned 21 while she was overseas, has a four drives for her return and she said she can’t wait to get back into the swing of things.

“I missed the driving while I was away, it was an awesome trip and I got see some good races but I really missed driving all the time,” McMullen said.

McMullen travelled North America and got to see the Breeders Crown, the Little Brown Jug and the Red Mile races on her journey.

“The Jug was the highlight, such a great atmosphere, it’s a big party and everyone just has a great time at a great raceday,” she said.

Late last month Narissa caught up with her sister Danielle and Hayden Barnes who had been staying with Natasha Day in Canada.

“It was good to all get together and to also experience what Hayden and Danielle did, driving at Flamboro was really good and it was very nice of Tash to give me a drive in a race on one of her horses while I was there."

McMullen said its now back to the real world.

“I was up at five this morning and I have all of my seven horses in work, I spent too much money while I was overseas so I need to get some winners,” she said.

Murano, her stable home at Redcliffe tomorrow could be her first deposit back into her bank account.

The Redcliffe Club has a five race program with the first race timed to go at 12.20pm and McMullen has three drives for Tamborine trainer Richard Hutchinson in addition to driving her own horse Murano.

Five-year-old Bettors Delight gelding Murano will be well fancied in the fourth race, the Might And Power Pace.

The pacer has raced six times this season for two wins and two minor placings including a win and second placing this month at Albion Park with Narissa’s brother Pete at the reins.

The Hutchinson stable horses will be at much more generous odds.

Diabolo Star (Race 2) is resuming from a long spell. Life Sign gelding Diabolo Star, a seven-year-old, hasn’t raced since March 2013. He is a winner of three races with the last win at Marburg in 2012.

Hutchinson’s six-year-old Bettors Delight gelding Cheyanne Warrior (Race 3) is also chasing its first win in more than two years. Cheyanne Warrior has raced eight times this season for two minor placings including a third placing at Redcliffe this month.

Veteran In The Pocket gelding Barney Maguire will start in the last race on the program for the McMullen/Hutchinson combination.

The 11yo's form has been poor at his last four starts but he has drawn the pole position and in September he did notch a win over this distance at Redcliffe after following the speed and using the sprint lane.

by David Aldred

Racing Queensland

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