Day At The Track

Tritton sets sights on NZ Derby and Jewels

08:00 AM 28 Jan 2019 NZDT
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Muscle Factory,Harness racing
Muscle Factory
Dan Costello

AUSTRALIAN Pacing Gold purchase Muscle Factory has registered his second record from three starts this season.

Stopping the clock in a brilliant 1:49.6 three weeks ago when first-up from a five-month spell, Muscle Factory became the only three-year-old in the southern hemisphere to break the magical 1:50 barrier.

At Tabcorp Park Melton last night (Saturday) the son of Roll With Joe produced a bold front runner performance to capture the Victoria Derby in 1:54 over 2240 metres.

As such Muscle Factory equalled Our Waikiki Beach’s age track record set in the 2016 Breeders’ Crown.

Thrilled with the colt’s performance, co-trainer Shane Tritton revealed a trip across the Tasman is being considered for Muscle Factory.

Tritton has set his sights on the New Zealand Derby on April 5 and the Harness Jewels on June 1.

First Muscle Factory will return to Tritton’s New South Wales base to prepare for his home state Derby, which begins with heats in Menangle on February 23.

Should all go according to plan, Muscle Factory will then contest the $200,000 Final on March 2.

“We paid the nomination fee for the New Zealand Derby during the week, so it is definitely on the cards,” Tritton said. “He has owners in New Zealand so they’d like to see him over there to race.

“There is also the Jewels before being back in Melton for the Breeders’ Crown towards the end of the season, so there are plenty of options for him.

“He’ll head home now have a couple of easy days then get ready for the Derby at Menangle.”

Driven by co-trainer Lauren Tritton, Muscle Factory began brilliantly to lead from barrier six as Max Delight and then Hurricane Harley worked on his outside.

Striding clear of the pack leaving the back straight, Muscle Factory scored by four-and-a-half metres from Im Anothermasterpiece, with Lochinvar Art four-and-a-half metres away third.

“He was driven a little more conservatively in the heat and during the week we realised it was to his detriment as being driven for speed suits him better,” Tritton said.

“Lauren rated him perfectly and he showed he can maintain his speed over a longer distance than a mile.”

APG Media

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