Day At The Track

Port Pirie Drivers Invitation preview

09:47 AM 22 Jun 2018 NZST
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Kate Gath,Harness racing
Kate Gath

The unofficial queen of Port Pirie Kate Gath returns home on Sunday to take part in the annual Elders Insurance Mid North Drivers Invitation.

The entire six-race Port Pirie program are invitation races featuring a host of top drivers from across Australia.

Wayne and Danielle Hill along with Jayden Brewin will represent South Australia competing against Victorians Michael Bellman, Anthony Butt and Kate Gath. Western Australia has Nathan Turvey and Shannon Suvaljko, Queensland’s rep is Pete McMullen and Chris Geary from New South Wales completes the invitation field.

Gath tied with Ryan Hryhorec in the 2013 Elders Insurance Invitation and won outright in 2016.  Anthony Butt is a previous winner having scored in 2015.

The 2018 version looks tight with no standout having scored the best of the drives, but Gath does look to have a good chance of taking out the series.

She will partner the Heather Stevens-trained Bettorhavtime in heat one over 1609m which from gate two should get a good run and looks an each-way hope and an excellent chance of running into the placings.

Gath drives Timansi for Greg Sims in heat three over 2050m and a place would appear the best hope.

The Dale Afford-trained Cheersbigears is her drive in heat four over 2050 metres and again the gelding looks a place chance at best in a tough heat.

Top Port Pirie trainer Lyndon Hall has Two Kays in heat five over 2050 metres. The three-year-old filly has failed to flatter in seven starts and is resuming from a break.  Two Kays did show improvement in a recent Port Pirie trial and might surprise.

Gath will partner the Les Harding-trained The Shooting Star in the sixth and final event.

The Shooting Star will come from gate five in a field of six where the Claire Goble-trained Clarenden Valour looks her strongest rival.

Clarenden Valour will be driven by Shannon Suvaljko, currently Western Australia’s leading reinsman.

Suvaljko has a number of handy drives in the Elders Insurance series and must be considered as a possible victor.

His other drives are Goodtime Scout (heat one), Hez Declan (heat three), Quadentate (heat four) and Little Growl (heat five).

See how form expert Ben Harding has analyzed the Elders Insurance Mid North heats at trotsguide.com.au with comments, selections and speed maps for all six races.


Graham Fischer

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