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The second heat of this years Sires Stakes heats for 3 year old fillies is up for decision at the harness racing meeting at Addington tonight and it is chock full of talent. Leading the charge is one of last years top 2 year old fillies in Fight For Glory who has drawn perfectly at barrier four in the 1950 metres race and is to be driven by co-trainer Natalie Rasmussen. The daughter of Art Major won $83,936 as a 2 year old and has come back in fine fettle according to her other co- trainer Mark Purdon. " Fight For Glory is very forward for Friday night. "She has been in work a long time and has come up really well," he said. But Fight For Glory is going to have to do just that with several talented race hardened fillies lining up against her. Cran Dalgety has four involved and they all have form on the board and are ready according to Cran. “Its a good race being worth $25,000 so we thought we’d go for numbers.” “On paper, Delightful Lana is going the best of ours and has the one draw but you have to respect Fight For Glory from the four gate” he said The winner of her last two races including a brilliant last start effort to score in 1:55.9 for the mile in trying conditions, Delightful Lana will have the leading reinsman Dexter Dunn in the bike. Of his other three runners Cran is leaning towards Lightning Mach who has won three from five lifetime and won her season debut at Tuapeka last Sunday. In form reinsman Blair Orange will take the drive. "Lightning Mach has drawn one on the second row and ideally if Delightful Lana can lead she could trail and be our next best.” " Our other two runners in Margarita and Bettor Think Twice are both capable of featuring too, but they’ll probably have to fight out for whats left from where they have drawn,” he said. An interesting runner is the Mark Jones trained filly Twice The Delight who has looked very promising in a brief career to date and will have her trainer in the bike tonight. "She is a really nice filly in the making but is still at the learning stage. "This is a massive step up so I will be interested to see how she competes,” he said. On paper Fight For Glory looks hard to roll but Delightful Lana, Lightning Mach and Margarita all look capable of upsetting the favourite. Harnesslink Media

Harness racing 3 year olds in the North Island always have a hard road to the Sires Stakes Final at Addington on Cup day with few suitable races to get them race hardened for the big day. Hence it is no surprise that on Friday night at Alexandra Park we find the three leading North island hopes lining up in a C2-C6 pace over 2200 metres. First and foremost is Hughie Green who has been in exceptional form this season and is rated the North's best hope of taking home the silverware on Cup day. However South Auckland trainer Ray Green has two 3 year olds that he thinks are more than capable of holding their own in the Sires Stakes Final in the Bettor's Delight colt, Strike The Gold and the Mach Three colt, Chachingchaching. The pair ran the quinella in the Sires Stakes heat at Alexandra Park a fortnight ago and did it in the style of horses who are right at the top of their game. Strike The Gold had a head to spare on that occasion over Chachingchaching as they cut out the 1700 metres in a very fast 2:02.3, a mile rate of 1:55.8 with closing sectionals of 56.3 and 27.4 It was a performance that suggested that the duo will be very competitive come the Final on Cup day. Ray is happy with both of them heading into Friday night. "They are both well enough heading into Friday night but in saying that the run will help to tighten both of them up looking towards the final,"  Ray told Harnesslink today. "We are up against Hughie Green on Friday night  but there is no point in ducking him so I'm looking forward to the race actually," he said. Safely through Friday night, Ray's pair of top 3 year olds will not head south until late in the piece. " They can both have a run at the trials after Friday night just to top them off for Addington. "The plan at this stage is to fly them down a couple of days before the final,"  he said. Ray Green has fashioned a great record in the Sires Stakes final in the last five years, winning it with Sir Lincoln and running fourth with Besotted while Hawkeye Bromac was unplaced last year. Ray knows what it takes to takes to win the Sires Stakes Final and in Chachingchaching and Strike The Gold he has two 3 year olds capable of doing just that. Harnesslink Media  

Some harness racing horses always seem to be ignored by the punters around the country regardless of how they perform. Armazem would definitely qualify as she always seems to start at long odds regardless of how she is going at the time. Twelve days ago at Timaru she was sent out at odds of $41 to one and after leading early and then trailing, Armazen got home well for second to the smart filly Delightful Lana. When Delightful Lana backed that up with a win in the first race last night in 1 :55.9 for the mile, you would have thought that Armazen in race 2 would have attracted some support. But alas the punters ignored the run at Timaru and let Armazem go out at the ridiculous odds of $59 to one against a field that included several runners that she had beaten home at Timaru. Restrained from barrier eight by driver Ross Payne, Armazen settled last early in the running line and didn't move until 1000 metres from home when she joined the three wide line on the back of Twitter Bromac. Given a lovely run up to the leaders, Armazen peeled three wide as they turned for home and sprinted clear and then withheld a late charge from Stopandstare to win by a neck. Armazen paced the 1950 metres in 2:25.2, a mile rate of 1:59.8 with closing sectionals of 60.5 and 27.9. Ross was stunned by the winning tote divvy. "I'm not a betting man but I thought she would have been a $10 shot in that field" " She is a lovely mare to do anything with and on her work I thought she would be hard to beat, " he said. Trained at West Melton by his brother Grant, Armazen is under offer but Ross is hoping that no business is done. "The way she is going, I am sure there is another win or two in her pretty quickly. "Grant has done a great job with her and she is really on the up at the moment," Ross said today. The win has come at a timely point for Ross as he looks to re-establish himself amongst the open driving ranks in Canterbury. Ross has spent the last 14 months as the stable manager at the all conquering All Stars stable but left recently to get back to doing what he loves most, driving. He is looking forward to teaming up with the very talented All Star Man who makes his season debut at Ashburton on Monday but is not overly confident. " We have struck Fly Like An Eagle, Arden Rooney and Tiger Tara on Monday but he is very well and won't disgrace himself. "Whatever he does on Monday, he is a horse to follow in the next few weeks,"  Ross said. One thing that must surely happen in the near future is that any runner involved with Grant and Ross Payne will treated with a lot more respect by punters. Harnesslink Media     

A treble of wins for the All Stars team was highlighted by memorable results for Mickey Ward and the Patterson family and for Neil Pilcher who posted a win on his 77th birthday - as well as Matt Anderson posting his first win at Addington watched by his sponsor and family friend, Ray Coupland.  Mickey Ward has spent a good part of his life following or racing horses. His biggest moment was winning the Messenger with the Jack Smolenski -trained  OK Royal with Jack and Mickey racing him in partnership. Royal Mach raced out of All Stars for the Wards after Jack retired  but  The Royal Garden has tested his patience after a paddock accident sidelined him for a long time. Mickey wasn't travelling that well either with a serious bout of ill health which has put him in a wheelchair.  In typical humorous style Mickey loved the win but was a bit septic on the $1.50 win dividend ! "Pilch" has sold the smart Holy Grail this week but Alta Orlando who he races with Jim and Ann Gibbs won the 5th heat of the Sires Stakes anyway. Neil's record with the stock of Courage Under Fire  is outstanding and Alta Orlando, a big two year old winner last season, has proven a bargain. Heres a review of how the All Stars runners went: Stopandstare (2nd) Nathan) "Had to do a bit of work caught three wide and she fought on well (last quarter 27.9)  " - Nathan Alta Ronaldo (2nd) Natalie "He just missed away a little, not bad, but in those short races from a stand it never helps. He went good after that, fought on well. He just doesn't have that real sharp speed at this stage" - Natalie. Have Faith in Me (galloped in run up) Tim "The gate was going a bit slow for him and he started looking around and stargazing then bumped one outside him and that was that"  - Tim. (Forbury revisited !) Change Stride (4th) Mark "I wouldn't say he was disappointing. He got a good enough run but he wanted to hang and that made it hard for him. He is green yet. He will probably line up here again next Friday" -  Mark Alta Orlando (1st) Natalie "He didn't leave any excuses for them but he still does a few little things wrong. But he's tough and has the ability " - Natalie. Holy Grail (3rd) Matt "He went really good. He can sprint home and we had a good enough run but it was a good effort",- Matt. (Sold to Australia but likely to stay at Rolleston until after Sires Stakes finals) Hot Pants (1st) Matt "Yes that is my first win at Addington. Quite a thrill. We had to work a bit early but then we got a nice run and she did the rest"  The Royal Garden (1st) Tim "I thought we had got beaten. He kicks strongly though and that made the difference because he had to do a bit of work into the wind" -Tim. Courtesy Of All Stars Racing Stables - Check site here            

Colourful racecaller Mark McNamara described dramatic pacer Cody Singer as a “weirdo” after making hard work of winning his second race in six starts at Addington on Friday, October 24. “He’s a wierdo . . . in the nicest possible way,” was Mr McNamara’s summation after Cody Singer won the C1 Lindauer Lawn Cup Day Limited Tickets Available Mobile Pace. Mr McNamara was elaborating after his discription over the concluding stages when he said Cody Singer “turns on and off like a light switch.” Mr McNamara explained Cody Singer waits for others to come alongside him then goes again. Cody Singer, a massive Christian Cullen gelding with a motor to match his size, chooses to be eccentric. His two Addington wins have been far from conventional. They’ve been achieved in the most difficult fashion but the day ‘Cody’ learns to be an agreeable racehorse his opponents should be in for a severe spanking. He galloped off the unruly from a stand for his maiden win on October 10. He looped the field and looked like he was going to run fourth before hitting the go button and pulling away. His latest win came in similar circumstances. Trainer Cran Dalgety had reservations after Cody Singer drew the ace for the mobile start. The big horse was in trouble 100m after the start, tangling but soon settling at the tail of the field. Driver Dexter Dunn let the favourite roll impressively round the field four and five wide to take control with 1400m to run. However, the $2 favourite looked in danger of being run down with 100m to run, firstly by former stablemate Cracklin Rosie (trail), then Eastburn Mara (three back), along the markers. But after drifting out and balancing up, he had more to give when asked by Dexter, drawing away by three-quarters of a length. Cody Singer paced the mobile 2600m in 3:17.8 (2:02.4 mile rate), running his last 800 in 58.6s and final 400m in 27.9s. Considering his mid-race burn, it was a terrific win. Cody Singer was placed with a second warning over his mobile manners by stewards. His first came after his mobile race debut on September 5. He also became claustrophobic after being crossed drawing the one barrier there, galloping and being pulled up. Cody Singer, despite the drama that surrounds him, will have a big following if he draws anywhere but the inside for the $32,400 Graphite Developments Show Day Futurity Mobile Pace (2600m) on November 14. Kentuckiana Lodge trainer Cran Dalgety notched a winning double at Addington’s Labour Weekend meeting. He opened proceedings when hot $1.50 favourite Delightful Lana showing her class by coming out on top despite racing in the gale-force cool easterly breeze throughout the Cup Day - Only 18 Days To Go Mobile Mile. The promising 3YO Bettor’s Delight-Long Live Lana filly earned herself a 1:55.9 mile mark in the process. She was caught wide in the early rush from the four gate, pressing to the parked position with just over 1200m to run. Delightful Lana held the attentions of Betabcool, who tracked her on the outer, in the run home, holding by half a length, with Abbey Cullen, three back on the outer, finishing on wide for third, a further three-quarters of a length away. The winner breezed over the last 800m in 57.1s and 400m in 27.2s. She racked up her fourth win from eight starts for her Melbourne owners and is unbeaten in both spring 3YO starts. Resuming 3YO filly stablemates, Supriya (fourth) and Bettor Think Twice (fifth), were sound without luck in their respective engagements. Supriya worked hard from the nine gate three wide, surging to the front with 850m to run, then getting swamped over the last 100m. Bettor Think Twice tangled away first-up from the stand start, settling second last, and did well, making ground for fifth. Courtesy Cran Dalgety Racing  - Check site here        

The All Tars team have eight runners in tonights harness racing meeting at Addington and the following is how they see their runners chances. 5.55 Stopandstare (5) C0 fillies and mares Ideally placed against own sex. Nathan takes the drive and Stopandstare is owned by Michael and Natalie so the pressure will be on. Dexter's driver Supriya hardest to beat, Rating 8-Improved since Timaru debut and should go close $3.60 FF 7.25 Alta Ronaldo (9) C1 2000m Natalie Hasn't quite matched the top ones but competitive in 1.55 mile rate at Forbury well up to this class and doing well. Awkward draw should not bother from a stand but its his first and he can be a trifle headstrong at times so start crucial. Rating: 9 Should win on form but short odds first stand, $1.40 FF 7.55 Have Faith In Me (1) (Tim)Holy Grail (4) (Matt) Alta Orlando (7)  (Natalie) Change Stride (Mark) Natalie "They are all well though Holy Grail is a bit below the others at this stage. Alta Orlando and Have Faith In Me -not a lot between them. Change Stride is still improving and he got held up here last time and did well late. Have Faith In Me went terrific at Forbury and has the draw. Orlando can beat himself at times but the small field should suit him. He pulled hard last time here and that cost him. The one to beat overall if he does things right. Rating: Lead/trail scenario possible for Orlando ($1.80) and Have Faith In Me ($2.40) gives them the edge on paper and likely quinella. Change Stride looks good e/w bet at the odds just in case. 8.55 Hot Pants (8) C1-C3 trot for Junior Drivers. Matt Won well last time, first from a stand, and trotting solidly. Looks very hard to beat to add to Matt;s JD record but fixed odds price skinny for this sort of race. Rating: Only has to do things right early to be in this. $1.60 FO not great tho. 9.25 The Royal Garden (5) 4yo+ maiden Tim Just cuffed on debut and was coming back at the end.  Natural improvement from that race makes him the one to beat here. $1.40 FO says it all and tote price will be odds on too by race time. Rating: Ready to add to Tim's impressive tally this week Courtesy Of All Stars Racing Stable         Check site here

The blue silks with the grey stars of the All Stars team is to harness racing what the All Blacks are to rugby. When ever they have runners in a race you need to show them the utmost respect.  So it is no surprise that a Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen quartet look set to call most of the shots in the fifth heat of the Sires’ Stakes Series tonight night at Addington. The champion stable have four runners engaged in the heat – spear-headed by the talented Alta Orlando. Second behind stable mate Hug The Wind when fresh up a fortnight ago the impressive, but sometimes unruly pacer will be looking to confirm himself a spot in the final by snaring a victory tonight.  The big pacer tends to race rather ungenerously in his races and has a tendency to want to do things wrong a lot of the time. But when on song the Courage Under Fire gelding is devastating – as he showed when winning the Sales Series Final at Addington as a two-year-old. He’s met with some resistance by his opposition including Have Faith In Me who showed he’s got more than his fair share of the family genes with an impressive effort at Forbury Park behind the low-flying Art Union. The full-brother to Adore Me has the use of an inside barrier draw and will be handy to the speed throughout which gives him perfect opportunity to showcase his blistering turn of foot. Natalie Rasmussen will drive Alta Orlando while Tim Williams is aboard Have Faith In Me. The stable’s two lesser lights, if it’s even possible to call them that, are impressive fresh-up winner Holy Grail and Change Stride who was third in behind Hug The Wind and Alta Orlando when last produced. The charge to beat the Purdon quartet will most likely be led by Mighty Flying Major. The talented three-year-old was very good when winning at Addington last week and when on song he is more than capable of footing it with any horse in the Series currently. Expresso Martini and Smithy are the other two contenders in the race. Tonights meeting could turn into somewhat of a Purdon/Rasmussen show with the All Stars stable floating an impressive line-up of horses down the Southern Motorway. Hot Pants will look to make it back-to-back wins in the junior drivers trot later in the night. The Trevor Casey owned trotter was very good when winning last time out and has the added bonus of the mobile to help her cause again tonight. Matt Anderson will do the driving. Stopandstare and The Royal Garden, who both ran solid placings on debut, look grand chances on their first up performances and Alta Ronaldo will take on a modest C1 stand field which should be well within the capable three-year-old’s reach. Courtesy Of Harness Racing New Zealand

Progeny of former 2001 Australasian Breeders Crown 3YO filly champ Sparks A Flyin (1:52, US) won within hours on both sides of the Tasman on Friday night October 17, 2014. Smart colt Art Union took another stepping stone towards the $170,000 NRM Sires’ Stakes Final at Addington on November 11 at Addington, while older half-brother Bettors Fire returned to winning form at Gloucester Park, Perth. The Cran Dalgety-trained Art Union justified his hot $1.40 favouritism in the C3-6 pace at Addington, but he didn’t dominate from the outset as many anticipated. Driver Dexter Dunn, from barrier three with the Art Major colt, elected not to race second favourite Mighty Major (ace) for the early lead, settling him into a perfect one-one trail. When a move from the back came a lap out, Dexter was on the move, letting Art Union stride past Mighty Major at the 900m. The favourite kept up another strong run to hold Mighty Major by a length in a 1:57 rate for the 1950m, quickening over his last 800m in 56.1s and final 400m in 26.8s. Jim and Dr Susan Wakefield’s home-bred stretched his record to seven wins from 12 starts for $83,403, and remains unbeaten in three 3YO appearances. Bettors Fire justified his $1.70 favouritism in the $17,500 Demon Adios Discretionary Handicap in Perth. The Cran Dalgety-trained Art Union justified his hot $1.40 favouritism in the C3-6 pace at Addington, but he didn’t dominate from the outset as many anticipated. Driver Dexter Dunn, from barrier three with the Art Major colt, elected not to race second favourite Mighty Major (ace) for the early lead, settling him into a perfect one-one trail. When a move from the back came a lap out, Dexter was on the move, letting Art Union stride past Mighty Major at the 900m. The favourite kept up another strong run to hold Mighty Major by a length in a 1:57 rate for the 1950m, quickening over his last 800m in 56.1s and final 400m in 26.8s. Jim and Dr Susan Wakefield’s home-bred stretched his record to seven wins from 12 starts for $83,403, and remains unbeaten in three 3YO appearances. Bettors Fire justified his $1.70 favouritism in the $17,500 Demon Adios Discretionary Handicap in Perth. Despite start off the 30m line in a Class D pace, Bettors Fire played the iron horse, moving up parked outside fellow ex-Kiwi Bartowski over the final lap for trainer-driver Kyle Harper. The 6YO Bettors Delight gelding was too strong from the home turn, holding out fellow NZ-breds, To Transcend and False Promise, in a 2:04 rate over the 2503m. He scored by 2.4 metres, the leaders running their last 800m in 56.6s and final 400m in 28.3. Bettors Fire, who lowered his best mile rate to 1:53.8 in Perth last term, lifted his career earnings past the $A244,000 mark with his 19th win from 45 starts. Safedra (1:56.3 mile rate, 1700m), a successful half-sister to Art Union and Bettors Fire, has returned to New Zealand after an Australian stint in recent months, where she added a further two wins to her tally. The 5YO daughter of Mach Three is to commence a breeding career this term. Safedra’s best racetrack efforts have been a second to Adore Me in the 2013 Group One New Zealand Oaks, and winner of the Group Two $40,000 Southland Oaks Final. She is the winner of eight and has been 13 times placed in 35 starts for $135,577. Safedra rated 1:56.3 in a 1700m heat of the Nevele R Fillies Series at Forbury, while she has rated 1:59.8 over 2600m to win at Addington, and 1:58.7 to win over 2400m at Ashburton. Sparks A Flyin’s first five foals have all been well above average. Earlier foals from the Sands A Flyin-Belle Glade mare were Diomedes (1:57.5, Aust), the winner of 12 in Australasia, and Empyrean (1:56.2), the winner of 10 and $121,302. Bungalow Bill, the first of two Cran Dalgety-trained winners at Addington on October 17, delivered narrowly but well to beat favourite Matty Groves by half a head in the Murney Family Trust & Mid Canty Catholic Parish Mobile Maiden Pace. Driver Dexter Dunn settled him handy on the outer, then was denied the front by Ask Me Mach when having a dash for the lead a lap out. Bungalow Bill, a 3YO Bettor’s Delight gelding and the first foal from four-win 1:58.6 mare Strawberry Fields (Presidential Ball-Penny Lane), lengthened out when asked inside the final 100m to stick his head out in a three-way finish, rating 1:58 (1950m). The leaders ran their last 800m in 59s and final 400m in 27.5s. Bungalow Bill is raced by Chrissie Dalgety with Small Car World principal Graham Beirne. Chrissie gained her second win of the weekend when Margarita led over the last 900m as a $1.40 favourite to win her C1-2 fillies & mares mile at Winton in 1:57.1. Margarita, a 3YO Bettor’s Delight-Holloway filly, was the sixth consecutive winning drive on the Wairio card on a wonderful day for catch driver Tim Williams. Tim was unable to make it seven in a row in the final race with Kentuckiana Lodge debutante Tenacious Bromac, but they did well to hold third after being pressured strongly mid-race for the front by favourite Lookofalegend in a 1:56.7 mile. Courtesy Cran Dalgety Racing Stables - Check site here  

There’ll be a new spin on an old classic this year. One of the world’s greatest ever cricketers Shane Warne will be Guest of Honour at this year’s Christchurch Casino New Zealand Trotting Cup in November to add further glamour to this country’s biggest race day. Despite already attracting regular crowds exceeding 22,000, the New Zealand Metropolitan Trotting Club (NZMTC) sought to take the event to new levels of entertainment by inviting a celebrity with huge appeal and a personality that would complement the occasion. “While Cup Day is a renowned showcase for the best harness horses in Australasia, it’s important to keep adding value to the day out for all those attending,” says NZMTC Marketing Manager Ged Mooar. “A colourful character like Shane who loves a punt and a good time will get people talking about Cup Day long before November 11 and long after.” Warne, the first bowler to capture 700 test wickets, was a dominant figure in international cricket for more than a decade and is widely regarded as the best spin bowler of all time. Outside of the picket fence, the ‘Sheik of Tweak’ continues to lead a high profile lifestyle that makes regular headlines. Warne is also known for his support of great causes notably through the Shane Warne Foundation that assists seriously ill and underprivileged children. “This seemed a great innovation by the club and I’m delighted to help out. It’s an event that has a terrific reputation this side of the Tasman and I’m very much looking forward to being part of it.” says Warne.  Apart from this international guest appearance, The Christchurch Casino NZ Cup Day will play host to an array of stars from the worlds of fashion and entertainment. While not forgetting the other superstar turn on the day - Terror To Love’s attempt to be the first horse to win four Christchurch Casino NZ Trotting Cups. NZMTC will be hosting a media conference for Shane Warne on Cup Day, 11 November. Ticketing and event information is available at For further details or interview requests pertaining to Warne’s visit please contact: Ged Mooar, NZMTC on 0274 736 753

One of the notable withdrawals from the Holy Grail of harness racing, the  New Zealand Cup is the Steven Reid trained pacer, Easy On The Eye. Ranked ninth on the list for entry into the Addington feature in November, the connections of Easy On The Eye weren't that keen on a Cup start according to trainer Steven Reid. " He is not really a two miler and we weren't that serious about starting to be honest. We nominated him in case there was a high attrition rate amongst the top handful but that didn't happen so we took him out when the sustaining payment was due," he said. Easy On The Eye had his first start for the season in last weeks Holmes D G Pace at Alexandra Park and performed up to his trainers expectations. "He really needed the run so to finish third at this stage of his preparation after sitting parked is about right for where he is at this point of his campaign" Steven told Harnesslink this week. Even though Easy On The Eye is not heading south for the New Zealand Cup, he will still be at Addington for Cup Day. Steven plans on taking a two pronged attack to Addington for supporting races during Cup week and is confident they will be very competitive. "Easy On The Eye will race on Cup Day in the Junior Free For All and then then go into the New Zealand Free For All on Show Day. "The two mobile sprints are right up his alley and as he proved last year he can be very competitive over the sprint trips. We have had an offer for the horse so these plans may change," he said The other horse that is making the trip south is the stable star Gold Ace and Steven gives him a real chance of winning the New Zealand Free For All. "I won't start Gold Ace on Cup Day and will kick off his season in the Free For All on Show Day. "He goes super fresh and a lot of the Cup horses struggle to go as good on Friday after a hard run in Tuesday's Cup so I think we are a real chance" he said. Gold Ace has come back from Australia in great order and Reid is looking to trial him before his resumption. "The Cup trials before Cup Week is where we are aiming to start him prior to the Free For All if everything goes to plan" he said. Both of the Reid team excel over shorter distances and will attract solid support during their Cup Week engagements. Harnesslink Media

Addington is pleased to report that in the seven harness race meetings in the 2014-15 season to date, combined turnovers of both on and off course are up on the corresponding time period last year. On course figures are up a significant 15% and combined figures for off course and fixed odds betting are up 4.4% on the seven harness meetings up to and including 10 October.  Total turnover is up 5% even though there have been five fewer races in the season to date.  A considerable contributor to the improved on course figures is the new Kiwi Punters Championship – (KPC) that was introduced on 5 September and has been run at five meetings through September and October to date.  This initiative has obviously attracted punters on course with substantial cash prizes up for grabs throughout the championship. With a total of seven KPC heats at Addington and the winners of each heat receiving $2,000 cash, team numbers taking part have been excellent as they punt to gain a spot in the KPC Final on Show Day, Friday 14 November where’s there’s $80,000 to be won.  Just last Friday there were 34 Teams taking part. Organiser Richard Bromley commented “numbers and turnover for the competition have been pleasing and with just three heats left to gain a spot in the final there’s sure to be good numbers competing.” Two heats remain at Addington and one at Alexandra Park before the final.  It’s just four weeks to go to Christchurch Casino New Zealand Trotting Cup Day and tickets are selling well. The 11th of the 11th could be a very special day as champion pacer Terror To Love shoots for his fourth consecutive Cup win and would write his name in the record books.  For Cup Week tickets and details on the KPC visit GED MOOAR MARKETING AND COMMERCIAL MANAGER  

Meticulous was supposed to be sold before he raced at Addington on Friday -but his connections are glad now that he wasn't. Syndicate manager, Phil Kennard, was at All Stars stable before 7 am on Friday to decide with Mark and Natalie what course they should follow. An Australian offer was on the table, Meticulous had passed vet tests and he seemed set for sale. But the prospective buyers wanted to check out another detail and wanted the horse scratched pending the sale. "It was a $20,000 race and we didn't want to do that. Then it came to maybe a late scratching and we weren't happy with that either. It was indicated that if he won the sale would be off. I didn't think it was fair on our partners to scratch and we decided to go ahead. The way things are we are not worried whether we sell him or not" Meticulous has now won four on end and the latest was as easy as the rest. Tim had him cranked out from the outside of the gate and got the front from Backup which was happy to trail. Tim dictated but Meticulous still ran home in 27.9 to win untested. It was a great fillip for the syndicate who have had more than their share of troubles with Meticulous who had more than one smackup on raceday and then a wind problem. But he has staged a great comeback. Oh and one who was very pleased about the failure of the sale ? Ashleigh (to the right of the winner). Meticulous is just her favourite horse in the stable and she is more than happy he is to stay. Courtesy Of All Star Racing - Check site here    

The Group 2 harness racing Canterbury Classic at Addington tonight drew most of the best horses in commission in New Zealand but once again Terror To Love showed that at Addington he is just about unbeatable. Slow away for regular driver Ricky May, Terror To Love settled five back on the outer as the tear away leader Pure Power went for broke from barrier rise and skied away to a big lead. Christen Me ended up in the death seat outside Franco Ledger and had the job of slowly dragging the field up to the leader into a stiff head wind. Pure Power still had a 5 length advantage over Christen Me with 800 metres to go while Terror To Love was  still third last. Christen Me mastered Pure Power at the 400 metres mark at which point Ricky May set the "Terror" alight from the back. Pushed four and five wide on the corner, Terror To Love boomed home, grabbing Christen Me 100 metres out and then staved off a late finish from Franco Nelson who had sat on his back the whole way. Christen Me stuck on really well for third after doing all the donkey work while Hands Christian went huge for fourth in his first race for over 27 months. Driver Natalie Rasmussen thought she was a touch unlucky with Hands Christian. " But for locking wheels on the last bend with Pass Them By, Hands Christian would have been right with them," she said. It was Terror To Loves 30th lifetime win and his 15th on his favourite track, Addington. Ricky May was full of praise for the 7 year old entire. " He paced away then galloped for a few strides when things got tight but he settled really quickly. He was a long way off them at the 500 metres but they had gone quick the whole way and when I moved he really sprinted around them," he said. "He knocked off a touch after hitting the front but grabbed the bit again when he heard Franco Nelson coming. "They were never going to beat him" he said. Even though it appeared a dominant win by Terror To Love, Ricky thought the run of Christen Me was also full of merit. " He had to drag the field up into the teeth of that strong head wind so I thought he went super," he said. The lead up to the Cup action now moves to Methven next weekend and then to the Flying Stakes at Ashburton. At this stage Terror To Love looks a big chance to do the unthinkable and win four New Zealand Cups in a row. Harnesslink Media    

The New Zealand Metropolitan Trotting Club has released its annual report for the 2014 financial year. In a pleasing result, the club has announced an operating surplus of $347,276. Combined with other revenue, including net fair value gains on investment and development property, a final surplus of $2,579,836 was posted. Chairman Barry Dent stated: “Given the context of general industry returns, an average 2013 Christchurch Casino Trotting Cup Day weather-wise and increased competition in the functions and events business this result is one the club is very proud to have achieved.” In what was a sensational result for the industry as a whole, the club also increased stakes by six per cent, with $6.9million distributed. Other notable developments during the year were the opening of Spectators Bar and Bistro, starter numbers increasing from 10.58 to 10.98 per race, the Functions and Events Centre continuing to play a key role for the club, and strong returns from commercial property interests. “These developments reflect our Strategic and Business Plans to future proof our club,” Dent decalred. The Club’s Annual General Meeting will be held on Monday, October 13. The Annual Report can be viewed at NZMTC Media

This Friday's Addington meeting features two interesting runners for the Robert Dunn stable in Wesley Silcox and Superintendent. Wesley Silcox is having just his 5th race start and already has an inpressive formline of three wins and a second from just four starts. Contrastingly, Superintendent is a six start maiden that started his career in the north, headed to Australia after an ownership change, before being "sacked" and ending up at the Woodend Beach stable of the Dunns. Having tasted defeat for the first time last start, (a good second to the highly rated Dalton Bromac) Wesley Silcox was then given a let-up before coming back in a month ago. He has worked towards Friday night's resumption with a workout last week and then a very impressive trial win at Rangiora yesterday. "He was pretty impressive alright," reflected co-trainer John. "We really ran some time down the back with the tailwind (a 26.7 quarter), before completing a last 800m in a tick over 55 seconds." "He has strengthened up nicely, even after only a brief break. He should definitely give a good account Friday." John has labelled Wesley Silcox as a real watch horse for punters following the stable over the next couple of months. Going back nearly two years ago, Superintendent was picked out as a promising 2yr old for the "Bunty" Hughes stable. He was good enough to run third in a heat of the Young Guns. This promise was duly noted and the horse changed hands for "big money" before heading to Australia and to the powerful McCarthy stable. To put it bluntly, the horse failed to measure up and was eventually "sacked". "Having paid the money that they had, the owners figured that it was worth another shot and sent the horse over to us," said John. "He'd had his last race in July so he didn't take a lot of work to be honest." Despite the horse's somewhat checkered career, his new trainers are quite upbeat about what he has shown to date. "Yea I like him," said John. "He's not a real speed horse and it is his size and strength that are standing out with him at the moment."   Superintendent has been fitted for his reappearance with two workouts, the most recent of which saw him run a convincing winner by 4 lengths. His closing sectionals of 800m 57.3 and 400m 28.6 would suggest that his maiden win should be close at hand. Like Wesley Silcox, he too is one to follow closely on Friday and over the next couple of months.   Courtesy Of Robert Dunn Racing - View site here             

The system of setting up a ranking order for the New Zealand Cup which gave all horses a pathway to gaining entry has a lot of merit. It means all the Cup aspirants know where they stand and what they have to do to gain a start. Where it has the potential to fall down is when there is no form from the current season and subjective judgments have to made on performances from last season. The criteria as announced earlier in the season goes like this. Horses shall be ranked in the following descending order: Horse   -   Name   -   Winner   -   Details Winner 2013 New Zealand Trotting Cup - Terror To Love Winner 2014 Interdominion - Beautide (Not nominated) Winner 2014 Auckland Cup - Terror To Love Winner 2014 Maurice Holmes Vase - Christen Me Winner 2014 Avon City Ford Cup - Terror To Love Winner, 2nd, 3rd 2014 Canterbury Classic - ..................... *Then competitiveness and performance in this seasons Group races leading up to the 2014 Cup. *The competitiveness and performance in previous seasons Group races. *The competitiveness and performance in non black type races this season. Most of the rankings would seem straight forward but two struck us as being debatable so we thought a closer look at the reasons and rational for the list was warranted. Easy On The Eye - Rank 9  Hasn't raced this season so his ranking is solely based on his performances from last season. Last season Easy On The Eye had 14 starts for two wins and three seconds for stakes of $102,871 *Won the Group 2 Franklin Cup *2nd in the Group 1 New Zealand Free For All *2nd in the Group 2 City Of Auckland Free For All Of the races identified as being part the road way to the Cup, he won the Spring Cup at Alexandra Park but was unplaced in the Canterbury Classsic, Kaikoura Cup and ran tenth in the New Zealand Cup itself. Fly Like An Eagle - Rank 15 Hasn't raced this season so his ranking is solely based on his performances from last season. Last season Fly Like An Eagle had 15 starts for 1 win and two seconds for stakes of $154,324 *Won the Group 2 Kaikoura Cup *2nd in Group 1 New Zealand Cup *2nd in Group 3 Methven Cup Of the races identified as being part of the road way to the Cup, he won the Kaikoura Cup and was beaten a neck in both the Methven Cup and the New Zealand Cup itself. A difference of six places would seem hard to understand going by last seasons performances so we went to HRNZ for an explanation. Chief handicapper Andrew Morris agreed that looking from the outside there would appear to be little between the pair but it wasn't as straight forward as that. " When considering form from last season, the panel looks at the whole season of each horse involved and not just the races in the road way to the Cup from last year, he said. "Easy On the Eye carried on after Cup week and won a Group race after that and was placed in another Group race whereas Fly Like An Eagle's form fell away badly after the Cup meeting and he was disappointing for the rest of the season" he said "The horses between Easy On The Eye and Fly Like An Eagle all won Group 1 races last season and it was just a matter of where we slotted them in." 'Having said all of that their fate is in their own hands really and good performances in the remaining races before the Cup could see either horse quickly rise up the rankings" he said. The panel of six have an unenviable job in our view and why we may not agree with all the decisions, in the main they do a great job. To view the latest rankings click here. Harnesslink Media 

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