Mildura always presents exciting racing and Tuesday's (October 3) harness racing fixture was no different, with the action on from start to finish in most races.
Prolific winning 9-Y-0 Sports Town/Halady gelding Mister Rhys trained and driven by Ararat’s Michael Bellman, registered his 27th success, when victorious in the $5500 Mildura Sports The Big Boys In Sport Pace for C7 or better class over 2190 metres.
Driven with aggression three wide from outside the front row to cross both Master Waratah and Samara Knight on the first turn, Mister Rhys got in easy through the middle stages, before scorching home in a last half of 57.2 – quarter 28.8 to score from Jukebox Music (one/two – four wide home turn) in a rate of 2-02.8.
Raced by Michael and partner Tamara Lane, Mister Rhys backed into a $3.00 second favourite behind Jukebox Music was making his 144th race appearance.
Leading Sunraysia trainer Shayne Cramp continues to chalk up the winners on his home track and provided a rough result in the Asics Sporting Goods Pace for C1 class over 1790 metres, when 8-Y-0/Chameleon Dream gelding Elite Fella scored at Supertab odds of $16.20.
Taking a concession for Merrigum’s Bec Bartley, Elite Fella began very fast from outside the front line, but was unable to head off the polemarker and last start Mildura winner Duminy.
Taking cover on the hot favourite Black Cracker which had swapped position at the bell, Elite Fella eased three wide on the final bend and finished all over the top of the two favourites to win well in a rate of 2-02, with Duminy and Black Cracker dead-heating for second.
Local trainer Terry Gange snared the Get Well Soon Councillor Max Thorburn Pace for C1 class over 1790 metres with 5-Y-0 Kiwi bred/Eastwood Ladyship gelding Eastwood Ember in a rate of 2-01.4.
Driven by Tooleen based Nigel Milne, Eastwood Ember from gate two on the second line sat back in the field while the leaders Eastwood Galahad and Smart Cecil burnt out of the gate.
Moving three wide to park in the open at the bell, Milne dictated the terms of the race to a nicety, with Eastwood Ember cruising to the front on the final bend.
Holding a margin to the wire, Eastwood Ember first up since July, scored untouched by 4.8 metres over Sign Of Spring which led and Eastwood Galahad which trailed the leader.
Another New Zealand bred winner on the night was 4-Y-0/Its Showtime mare Our Chelsea Girl for Merbein father and son Ian & Luke Watson in the Get Well Soon Councillor John Arnold Pace for C0 class over 2190 metres.
Driven by Luke, Our Chelsea Girl from outside the front row raced outside the pacemakerLassie for the entire journey, before defying a strong challenge by the South Australia visitor Clarenden Regent (one/three - three wide solo from the bell) going down by a nose in 2-04.6, with Dallas Valentine coming from last for third.
Stawell trainer Owen Martin and son-in-law Michael Sullivan went home on a happy note after landing a stable double, having an easy victory with both Blissful Hall/Karamea Vedetta 4-Y-0 gelding Farmersntradies in the $5250 Reebok Zigtech Pace Final for C1 & C2 class over 2190 metres and 5-Y-0 Lake Hills Jeb/Wrap Around gelding Hellovanite in the $5000 Adidas Australia Pace for C2 & C3 class over the same journey.
An easy winner of his heat a week earlier, Farmersntradies from gate two strode past Flight To Barbados on the first turn to lead and was never out of second gear, coasting to the wire 14.3 metres in advance of Givsirabone which shadowed him throughout, with Bobjacks Angle running home late for third from last. The mile rate 2-02.1.
It was Farmersntradies 11th success in 41 race appearances.
Hellovanite did virtually the same in his race, leading throughout from gate three to win by a space over the roughie Tarleton Matt (three back the markers) and Glacial which followed the winner in a mile rate of 2-03.3.
The Puma Kingline Agencies Pace for C4 to C6 class was the most thrilling event on the program, with victory going the way of the Shayne Cramp trained and Nathan Jack driven 5-Y-0/Nolarama gelding Forest Falcon in a rate of 2-00.3.
Starting from inside the second line, Forest Falcon bided his time at the rear of the field after his stablemate Dream Catch Me was driven hard to try and arrest the lead away from the noted sit/sprinter Whos Mistake which led from outside the front row but surprisingly wanted to hold it, with Transformation one/one .
Latching to the back of Low Down three wide in the last lap, Jack weaved a passage in-between runners approaching the home turn and when taken into the clear on straightening, Forest Falcon ran home strongly to record a runaway victory over a game Dream Catch Me which ran past the leader in the last lap and Transformation which only battled.
Mister Rhys winning at the Mildura meeting: