Day At The Track

Stevens looking for win number two

08:39 AM 03 Nov 2016 NZDT
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The Scruff and Dylan Ferguson

Australian horsewoman Jo Stevens works for Waikato galloping trainer Gary Alton during the day, but on Thursday night the 25-year-old hopes to train her second harness racing winner at Manawatu Raceway.

Stevens also works three standardbreds with her partner, and one of the leading North Island junior drivers, Dylan Ferguson.

Cambridge-based Stevens will line up the good each-way prospect – On The Razzle (12) in the third event at the Manawatu Harness Racing Club’s meeting, while The Scruff (11) will also start from the outside of the front row in race four.

“On The Razzle is the best of my two chances on Thursday but I wouldn’t be taking The Scruff down to Palmerston North if I didn’t think he could win.

“If they both do things right and they can get good a good trip then they can both figure,” Stevens said.

On The Razzle is likely to start one of the favourites but don’t be surprised if The Scruff gets up at odds. He’s done that before.

“The Scruff provided me with my first training success at Alexandra Park in July. He started from 10m behind and Dylan got him up at $24 odds. Both horses are having their first starts in about a month, and they have both been working well,” Victoria-born Stevens said.

On The Razzle has won two of his eight starts at Manawatu and placed in three others. He’s also won once and placed three times over tonight’s 2,000m mobile.

“It isn’t going to be easy for him from that draw especially over the sprint journey, but he’s been a good horse in the past and is still very consistent. Much more consistent than the trotter,” Stevens said.

On The Razzle was a nice second behind Stunin Banner at Cambridge from barrier 11 on September 8. The money was on that night and he is sure to have those same followers again.

‘Dylan used to have a lot to do with him when he worked for Graeme Rogerson and then the horse got claimed and then we re-claimed him for $6,000 off David Butcher,” said Stevens.

The Scruff and On The Razzle finished third and fifth respectively at the Cambridge Raceway Workouts on Saturday.

On The Razzle (R85) is 16 points higher than any of his 11 opponents in the $8,000 Scott & Lydia Dickson Racing Stables R58-R85 Pace.

Stevens has had 18 starters to the races since 2015 for one win, five seconds and a third. This year she has had one second (On the Razzle) from her five starters.

She hails from a small Victorian town called Mansfield, which boats a population of about 4,500. She came to New Zealand with Ferguson not long after meeting him in Australia in 2014.

“Dylan will drive On The Razzle and his Dad will drive The Scruff. I wanted to try something different with the trotter. Peter has driven him before when he was at the Rogerson stable,” Stevens said.

Thursday’s meeting is the first night of a two-day meeting at ‘The Raceway’. Day-two will be run on Saturday night.


Duane Ranger

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