Day At The Track

Premiership battle down to the wire

04:16 PM 24 Aug 2018 NZST
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Luke McCarthy,Harness racing
Luke McCarthy

THEY have all had a taste of winning a premiership before and drivers Luke McCarthy, Todd McCarthy and Lauren Tritton are all going head-to-head at Menangle on Saturday night to try and claim another.

The trio have dominated the metropolitan driving ranks for the past six seasons and this term is no different.

With only one win separating the three of them and Saturday night marking the last metropolitan meeting for the season, any win will be vital for the top drivers to claim New South Wales’ Metropolitan Drivers’ Premiership for 2017/18.

Seasoned reinsman Luke McCarthy is leading the charge on 40 wins while Todd McCarthy and Lauren Tritton are close behind in equal second with 39 wins each.

“It’s pretty good that it’s still so close considering we’ve all had some time away this season,” said Luke.

“It certainly makes it interesting.”

Having won this Premiership twice before and tied with his younger brother Todd in the 2014/15 season, Luke knows what it takes to lead the charge.

The 35-year-old reinsman has seven drives on Saturday night and so does Todd while Lauren, the 2013/14 Metropolitan Drivers’ Premiership winner, has five.

And one of the best chances he believes he has this Saturday night is War Dan Destroyer in Race Nine.

Luke has driven the trotter 14 times to nine victories and three placings.

“War Dan Destroyer is going well and does well in these sorts of races,” said Luke.

“This race suits his style of racing.”

Luke has also been assigned the drive on War Dan Destroyer’s stablemate Mister Brazil in Race Two.

“Mister Brazil has been racing well and has a good chance,” said Luke.

“Out of my other drives, Epaulette (Race One) drops back from free-for-all class and with scratching of Shannonsablast he should go close.

“Also I’m driving Izzy Dagg for Tim But in the two-year-old (Race Eight) and on paper looks reasonably good.”

The Garrards Ready2Run Stakes (1609m) is one of the main features on Saturday night and Lauren will drive the favourite Petes Big Jim.

The gelding is resuming from his third-placed effort in the Vicbred Super Series Final last month and recently won a trial at Menangle in 1:53.2 – almost four seconds faster than any winning time he has rated before.

Meanwhile, the other feature is the Group 3 Vic Frost Cup where Todd’s drive, Tiger Tara, is the $2.60 TAB Fixed Odds favourite.

Lauren will drive My Alpha Rock ($4.80) in that event while Luke is assigned to Cash N Flow ($4.80).


Amanda Rando

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