The North Island has won the fifth annual ‘Island Of Origin’ series at Alexandra Park.
The Peter Ferguson captained team of six beat the South Island by 25 points to 11 tonight (Friday August 29th).
Points were awarded on a 3-2-1 basis for first, second, and third.
Ferguson was rapt with the victory.
“We didn’t come here to run second. It’s a great concept and I’m rapt to have won it. We all did our bit. 3-2 sounds very nice,” Fergie said.
South Island captain Ricky May, who replaced the suspended Anthony Butt as skipper, enjoyed the night.
“It’s a great concept especially with owners getting penalty free wins.
We were going pretty good early on and then we faded a bit," May said.
The North Island paid $1.80 for their third victory.
“I really enjoyed it and am always proud to represent the South Island,” he added.
Zac Butcher won the Individual title and paid $4.60 on the New Zealand TAB.
He amassed eight points thanks to two wins and a second. Blair Orange (six points) finished second with two wins, while Tony Herlihy (MNZM) was third with five points from two seconds and a third.
‘The Postman’ aka Orange delivered in the first heat with a win behind the Andrew and Lyn Neal trained Lucky Fortune.
Butcher then won the second heat behind the Stephen Doody trained Te Kawau, while Ferguson led the way with a third heat victory behind the Richard Brosnan trained Torbjorn.
The fourth heat went to Orange and the Roni Lauren trained I Got Rhythm before Butcher won the fifth heat behind the Stewart Ashworth trained Machinegun Kelly.
The last heat was won by Todd Mitchell and the Peter Scaife trained Rip Roaring.
The teams were:
North Island: Peter Ferguson (c), Tony Herlihy (MNZM), Todd Mitchell, Philip Butcher, Zac Butcher, and Scott Phelan.
South Island: Ricky May (c), Gerard O’Reilly, Dexter Dunn, Blair Orange, Jim Curtin, and Mark Jones.
The Island Of Origin winners:
2014: North Island.
2013: North Island.
2012: South Island.
2011: South Island.
2010: North Island.
Courtesy Of Harness Racing New Zealand