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The plan to take The Paua Diver to the front by trainer driver Allan Beck worked perfectly at Ascot Park today when the four year old cleared maiden ranks at his fifth harness racing start. The Live Or Die gelding showed promise early when he ran third behind the talented Zinny Mac at Winton in mid December, pacing the 2400 metres in 2-56.2. “After that first run he got himself a bit worked up. Before that he was a perfect natured horse. He’s been a bit disappointing in a couple of his runs,” said Beck who part owns the gelding with breeders Ben and Karen Calder. From Gate Six Beck used the horse’s natural early speed and took The Paua Diver to the lead. From that point he ran good solid even quarters before Flaming Jim made a lightening quick move to challenge inside the last 800 metres. Duty Bound, driven by Robin Swain, which had trailed The Paua Diver for most of the way pulled out and forced Flaming Jim three wide before taking the lead. “They showed a bit too much speed for me so I just let them go in the finish. Robin’s one was going alright.” Once Duty Bound had taken The Paua Diver to the passing lane Beck pushed the go button again and the gelding showed he was too good for his rivals, beating Duke Of Dundee by two lengths with Flaming Jim another length back in third. “He’s like his sister (Bettor Enforce). You just have to let them go. The harder you go the more they seem to enjoy it.” Coming back to the birdcage                                  - Photo Bruce Stewart Beck trained The Paua Divers dam Their Excuse which won her first race but was unplaced in three further starts. The win with The Paua Diver was one of two for Beck today. He also drove the Brian Nicol trained Cast A Shadow to win the Sheet Metalcraft Mobile Pace.   Bruce Stewart

Slate justified the decision of his Winton breeder owner and trainer Des Baynes to be patient, when the four-year-old won in 1:56.7 at just his second start. “He was big, all legs and a bit weak, I didn't do much with him at two or three,” Baynes explained. In November last year, Slate went to his first workout. Later in the month he had his one and only trial, qualified impressively and continues to improve. “He's shown high speed but is green and inclined to over- race so has led. He's had two front row draws, needs a few trips in behind, they go harder in the next grade so he should get them now.” By Changeover, Slate is the third foal of Dress to Impress. “She had a drop of speed but bad feet,” Baynes said. “Her first foal Granite was a nice horse but got injured. Her latest is an American Ideal filly and she shows a bit.” Sheree Tomlinson didn't know she was driving Fire Bug on Saturday until she saw the fields but didn't waste the opportunity, winning in 1:55.3. Drawn just one spot in from the outside of the second line, they went back at the start but then found a passage up the poles to soon be three back on the inner. Off the poles near the turn, the three-year-old on debut took time to work clear before finishing hard late. “I didn't want to push her forward in her first start so went back, I was lucky to get up the inside,” Tomlinson said of the Mach Three filly, “everything was stopping on the turn so I got her out, she did it really easily.” Fire Bug, from the stable of Mark Jones, was the first of three Canterbury visitors on the day. Second of the Cantabrians was Classy Kid whose 2:00.3 was the fastest of the winning stand-start times. The striking grey six-year-old, driven by Amber Lethaby - who in partnership with husband Jason also trains the son of Klondike Kid – led out but soon trailed Kiwi Bloke who held the advantage until late in the race. “He's never been far away and I would have led but the right horse to follow came round,”Amber Lethaby said. “I could have taken the lane but he hasn't sprinted so well in there in previous races so I chose to come off.” Lethaby named the good stake and shortage of stand-start races in Canterbury as reasons for making the trip south. Arden Lustre made it three wins for the visitors when winning the final event in 2:01.9. In the hands of Blair Orange, the winner of seven flew out when the stand-start tapes were released and was never headed from then.   Mac Henry for Southland Harness Racing

I went to school with Graeme Anderson. We were in the same class at James Hargest High School in Invercargill back in the early 70’s. I can tell you first hand that the Turf Digest was the most read book he ever opened in those formative years and I can tell you he was in charge of the sweepstake on Melbourne Cup day – not that he got my money. He always had talent on the sports field too whether it was cricket or rugby and he always had an air of confidence about him. Those attributes have been well utilised to carve out a successful sporting and harness racing career. Graeme caught the racing bug at a young age through his connection to Riverton; his father Bill lived there for some of his life. “Riverton was a big thoroughbred area in those days and Dad’s sister ended up marrying Jack Cleaver. Jack trained a very good mare back in the sixties called Shangri-La. We would always go to the Easter races at Riverton. It was a family thing and mum would buy us new clothes. Other members of the family didn’t love it so much but I got hooked from a young age,” he said. Shangri-La’s many wins included the 1961 Winton 80th Anniversary Cup ridden by Rodney Marsh, the 1961 James Hazlett Gold Cup and the 1962 Wyndham Cup when ridden by Graeme Wright carrying 9lb 6oz. She was by Kurdistan out of Mystic. Kurdistan left 256 winners including Bagdad Note the winner of the Melbourne Cup, and Sydney Cup victor Gay Master. He also left versatile gallopers like Eiffel Tower, Kumai and Koral. Anderson was a pretty good rugby player as well. He played for the first fifteen at Hargest, was part of a successful Star senior side that won a few Galbreith Shields and also played for Central Pirates near the end of his playing career. “It was a bit of a change. Out there, there were Skinners, Browns, Deverys and Hunters. Brent McIntyre also played for us as well as Craig Hamilton. Wayne Adams played and coached us so there were plenty of harness boys.” He also played representative rugby for Southland. “We beat the Aussies in 1978 and French in 1979. Players like Leicester Rutledge, Ken Stewart, Brian McKechnie and Steve Pokere were around. One day we had seven to eight All Blacks playing for Southland so that was a pretty good side. There were also great trips away on the bus and a lot of the boys had a racing connection.” Later on, he had success as a coach, winning three Dunedin Rugby Premierships with the Taieri prems. “We started with nothing. We had a great group of managerial staff. I think fifteen of those boys played for Otago. There was Hayden Parker, Charlie O’Connell and Kieran Moffatt. We had a lot of high class players.” Some of that knowledge he gained throughout his rugby career he adapted in his horse training business. “I use a lot of the sports ideas when training.  I like to keep the legs fresh before playing rugby on Saturday. If you knocked yourself around on a Thursday or Friday you’d have dead legs. So with racehorses you get them fit the week before and just leave them alone. We do heart rates all the time and keep a comprehensive diary.” Although initially interested in gallopers he was also keen on the trotters and ventured into harness racing through Southland trainer Gary McEwan. “He taught me to drive and use a watch properly. He got me a trip to America on the horse plane. I went over with Donny Hayes. We stayed in California back then which was the centre of harness racing. It had three or four tracks. I had about six weeks over there and met a whole lot of people and that started my buying and selling career.” In the early years he also worked with Central Otago trainer Murray Hamilton. “We had a business together which didn’t last long. We shipped horses on the boat out of Bluff.” Early on Anderson also formed a good working relationship with legendary Gore galloping trainer Ted Winsloe. “I was training Standardbreds when I had Whisper Jet (galloper) and Ted had a few Standardbreds as well so I’d train his trotters and he trained my gallopers which was a nice arrangement. I ended up working a few (thoroughbreds) up. We got a few down from the North Island and had a bit of luck with them. It’s a bit tougher now (training gallopers). You can’t get the staff and the horses I used to buy at the South Island Sales have tripled in price. I’m not saying I won’t get another one but you just need to have the right people to work them.” One of the first pacers Anderson owned was the Fernside Bachelor gelding King Red. He was bred by John Higgins and trained by Bryce Buchanan. Fernside Bachelor was an unraced stallion by Bachelor Hanover out of Queen Ngaio. Queen Ngaio left good pacers Waratah (8 wins) and Trio (16 wins). King Red’s win was at Forbury Park in October 1988 and was the first winning drive for Doug Buchanan. “He was a claiming horse. We claimed a few back in those days. We’d take them to Addington because there was no racing down here in the winter. Tank Ellis and Tony Stratford were working for me back in those days. We used to have some great trips and we’d carry on to the Nelson and Blenheim circuits.” Anderson officially started training on his own account in 1998 and his first winner was Connor at Oamaru in October driven by Clark Barron. He also trained Ando’s Prospect to win three races. She later became a good source of winners for him leaving Southern Boy (5 wins), Southern Prospect (5) and Bonvoyage which won two races for him and another nine races in Australia. He ran second to Monkey King in a heat of the Interdominions at Harold Park in 2010. Another horse Anderson owned and trained was Good Prospect. By Son Of Afella out of Majestic Chance mare Karma, Good Prospect won three races and provided junior driver Belinda White with one of her six career winners. At that point he was mixing training with a fair bit of travel. “I was selling a lot of horses to Perth to guys like Greg Harper. One of the Australian guys decided to buy yearlings and leave them with me. I tried to farm them out but ended up buying a property at Rimu and building a big barn and doing them myself for him. Because I was also travelling a bit and selling I was only doing it when I was at home. “ At that point Tony Barron started to work for Anderson after a stint with Barry Purdon. The high point of Anderson’s buying and selling came in 1985 when he purchased Jay Bee’s Fella and Arden Meadow. “They quinellaed the 1986 West Australian Derby. They were two Son Of Afella’s I sent away to Greg Harper. That was the catalyst for me doing a lot of buying and selling of horses in Australia. On my trip to America I met a couple of boys from Perth who were over there trying to do the same thing. They’d run out of money. I didn’t have much but I lent them a couple of hundred bucks to get them home. They said that they would ring me. They did and it was through them that I sold Arden Meadow and Jay Bee’s Fella.” After Rimu, Anderson moved out to Winton where the success continued and he was able to train gallopers there. Xstream was one thoroughbred he trained there. He owned the mare in partnership with another harness trainer Allan Beck. She was good on dead to heavy tracks and won three races (all in a round), ridden each time by Riverton jockey Kerry Taplin. “We had success with Xstream, Carver (3), Feel The Heat (3) and Dusty Girl (5).” Anderson says training thoroughbreds gave him a good insight into training the modern day pacers. “We train pacers like thoroughbreds now. They’ve all got five or six generations of American blood in them and they just don’t take a lot of work.” After Winton he moved to Cambridge where he continued to train gallopers and travelling around Australia and Asia. In 2003 he headed back south and set up at Wingatui and from there re-established himself as a harness trainer at Westward Beach, adding another dimension to his training regime. “We’re lucky we’ve got the beach. It’s almost a three mile straight run. Sometimes it’s very difficult to work there but you’ve just got to get up and do it. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea. The other night we got home at 6:30pm in the dark because of a late tide. We don’t have a track so we can’t cheat ourselves. We just have to get out and do it.” He says horses get bored with just running around the same training track and the beach provides a different environment every day as the surfaces and vista changes with each tide. “You can do different things with them. We ride a few and canter a few. We have a couple of secrets when we work them which I’m not going to tell ya. If a horse is on R n R, he may have a paddle or trot in the sea for half an hour rather than work.” His Westward Beach stable isn’t flash – it doesn’t have any barns or boxes so the horses live outside. “They’re all out in the open. They’re all sand yards. It was Brenda Harland’s old place. She hadn’t trained for a long time and it was by fluke that I ended up there and I’ve never left. There are shelter sheds and plenty of trees and loopins to get their bums backed into. They’re all double rugged. With the sand hills around us it’s a lot warmer than you’d think. ” He actually came across the facility when he took a thoroughbred that had cut a leg in a fence to the beach. “I went out there to give it a bit of sea water treatment. That’s how I came to training at Westward Beach.” Since then his success rate in training horses and resurrecting careers has been outstanding. “95% of them you can improve but there’s 5% you can’t help. As long as they want to be with us we can help them.” Despite having a straight line sand surface it’s surprising that Anderson doesn’t train too many trotters. “This is a great environment for straight line training and we should have more trotters. They by pass me a go to Phil Williamson’s (laughter).” Anderson also likes to adopt a completely fresh approach when taking on tried horses. “We take off all the gear, ignore everything they’ve done before and start again. We have our tests. They’ve got to work a certain time and to have a certain heart rate at the end of that to know if they’re any good.” It’s also been noticeable over the years that a lot of his horses run without an over check. “That came from West Australia. I went over there and the great trainers like Fred Kersley, Greg Harper, Ray Duffy and the likes never had over checks and the horses were really relaxed and muscled up in the front. I came home here and saw guys pulling their horse’s heads up and the horses would be throwing themselves on the ground. I got criticised in some quarters when I did it originally because it wasn’t the done thing but there’s a few copying me now so I’m happy about that.” In recent times he’s gathered around him a loyal bunch of owners who have raced some of his better horses. Names like Brian Sceat, Ray Chalklin, Tony Dow, Stephen Pulley, and more recently Pauline Gillan. “They’re loyal but we’ve had a bit of success which helps keep them in.” And in those early years he trained for the much famed Essemdee (Sunday Morning Drinkers) Syndicate who raced gallopers Carver and pacers Ballindooly and Eb’s Fella. “It’s all fun when those guys are on the job.” Two of his best horses have come along in the last five years – Titan Banner and Eamon Maguire. “Titan was a tough horse but wasn’t as fluent in his gate as Eamon. Eamon has that high speed and beautiful gait and that helps you go a long way.” Eamon Maguire after his Supremacy Stakes win at Ascot Park   - Photo Bruce Stewart King Kenny is one of the few trotters he’s trained. “He came to me with a high suspensory problem. Then he went again then I got him back. When he was sound he was just a beast. He could work better than any of the pacers could. He could have been anything if he hadn’t succumb to an injury as a young horse. We never saw the best of him.” King Kenny won nine races from just twenty seven starts – two for Tim Butt and seven for Anderson. Anderson was also one of the first trainers to use World Champion reinsman Dexter Dunn and that partnership has proved formidable particularly at Anderson’s home track Forbury Park. “I remember the first day he drove. It was Front Page Girl. Cran had it and I was looking after it. He said to me he had this boy who had come back from Australia to work for him and the clients won’t put him on so he sent him down. I’d never met him. I said to him this horse will probably win tonight. He said ‘Mr Anderson this horse has been breaking at home.’ Big Stephen (Stephen Pulley one of Andersons owners) said to him ‘listen son, if Mr Anderson says it’ll win it’ll win.’ That’s how it started. He came down here as a junior and had a hell of a strike rate with me. I’m rapt to think that I was one of the catalysts for him being famous. We have that association and understanding and don’t have to say one word.” Dunn’s first winner for Anderson was the aptly named Dayinthepub on 19th June 2008. The winning margin was seven lengths. Dunn has driven 111 winners for Anderson as a solo trainer and 51 for Anderson and training partner for four seasons Amber Hoffman. Included in that tally were five winners on one night – Forbury Park 16th June 2011 when the Anderson/Dunn partnership scored with No Courage Russell, Grace Rex, Terrorway, Raven and Tom and Grace. Terrorway was one of the really good horses Anderson’s trained in the last decade. He bought the colt at the 2008 Sale of the Stars for $26,000 and raced him with Brian Sceat and Wendy Muldrew. He raced five times in New Zealand, winning at every start. He was sold to Aussie in July 2011 and won his first five races there. He went on to win 13 races in Australia including the Group One $100,000 The Blacks A Flake and Group One $100,000 Cranbourne Cup. He ended up posting a 1-52.6 mile. “He was a difficult horse to get going. He never raced until he was a four year old. He was a fizzy horse so we just took our time with him. We’d turn him out, bring him back and didn’t put any pressure on him. He was a good challenge.” Another one that Anderson was able to rejuvenate and get the best out of was Belkmyster. “He arrived as a four win horse and we got him to Cup class. He was one that we had to strip everything off. He was a Mach Three and he was a bit ‘sweaty’. We went back to basics and didn’t over work him. He came from Cran’s in great order but didn’t need to be a number. He just needed a bit of individual treatment. A lot of the Mach Three’s don’t have great feet so that’s where the beach training helped. It takes away a lot of the concussion.” But its Anderson’s UDR rating that is a true testament to his skill as a trainer. In the past five seasons he’s been one of the top three UDR trainers (UDR 20 + wins in the season). In 2017 he topped the UDR rating with .4706. In 2014 he finished third behind Mark Purdon and Geoff Dunn while in 2015, 2016 and 2018 he finished 2nd behind the All Stars stable of Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen. Over the years Anderson has been a solid supporter of the national yearling sales. Some haven’t made the grade, but a good portion have. Successful racehorses he bought at the Sales included: Terrorway $26,000 (2008), Highview Anwell $29,000 (2011), Mako Banner $20,000 (2012), Sovereign Banner $13,000 (2013), Titan Banner $80,000 (2013) and Eamon Maguire $34,000 (2015). At this year’s sale he brought Vintage Crop (Mach Three – Queen Of The Crop) for $14,000 and Celebrating (Mach Three – Rejoicing) for $17,000. Anderson still lives at Wingatui but the property has been reduced in size and some of it’s used as an agistment farm. “It was 20 acres when we bought it but we sold 10 acres to a developer about three or four years ago. We have a house there. That’s where the horses go after they’ve raced and need rest and recreation. When they’re ready to go again we take them back to the beach.” Below is a list of wins from his best horses which Anderson trained either on his own or in partnership with Amber Hoffman. Pretty impressive. Titan Banner (13) Starsky’s Dream (9) Eamon Maguire (9) Tartan Rover (8) Yokozuna (8) Ballindooley (8) Highview Anwell (8) Blechnum Grove (7) Expresso Martini (7) King Kenny (7) Belkmyster (7) Sovereign Banner (6) No Courage Russell (6) Ants (5) Motu Moonbeam (5) True Macatross (5) Graeme Anderson has trained some very good horse flesh over the years. He’s had the ability to get the best out of horses that appeared to be at the end of their careers, and he has a good eye for young stock. He’s realised the importance of looking after a core group of owners and he’s been able to provide them with winning racehorses. His record to date is impressive and we expect his UDR to be up there for more years to come.   Bruce Stewart

It was a case of the ‘old firm’ when Bettor Enforce won at Winton today for trainer driver Allan Beck and the This Time Syndicate. “They’ve had Tact Halsey and Black Print with me. It looks as though they could play for the front row of Southland now but may lack a bit of speed these days,” said Beck, commenting on some of the group of owners who are mates. Tact Halsey won thirteen races while Black Print won five of his twelve starts before he was sold to Australia. He won another fourteen races there. In today’s race Bridesdale Robyn and Raksbet ensured the pace was on early and this played into the hands of Bettor Enforce who was three back on the inside. Beck got her off the running line early to sit parked for a short time before Raksbet popped out of the trailing position to challenge Bridesdale Robyn. Beck was able to get off the back of a tiring Raksbet and Bettor Enforce let down with a good staying effort winning by three quarters of a length from Loma Jaccka, which came off Bettor Enforces back. Winning connections - Photo Bruce Stewart. The overall time was 1-56.6 with the last 800 metres run in 60.0. Beck said the win didn’t surprise him. “She’s been racing a better class and ran third in the Equine Stakes at Christmas. She’s such a good stand horse so we might target the Country Cups series.” From thirty one starts the mare has now won four races and banked nearly $34,000. Bruce Stewart Southland Harness racing    

Popular Southland horseman Allan Beck reached a harness racing milestone at Winton on Sunday when he drove his 800th winner - Gotta Minute. He said he was aware he was getting close to the mark and that it was possible he'd achieve it on his home track.  “I thought I would (go close) because my own team was starting to go good. Then Des (Des Baynes) was on a roll, winning with his three and that helped the tally a bit. I thought Alfie Romeo would be my best chance (on Sunday) with the way it’d been trialling. But it was that wee fella (Gotta Minute) that won the last. He went a good race when he won three weeks ago but he wasn’t impressive. He jumped up in grade quite a bit. I thought it might have been out of his league but he got the good run and it worked out good,” he said. Beck began his career under the guidance of his father Bob who was training at Winton at the time. Allan's  first win came in February 1984 when he guided the classy filly Josephine Bret home to win by two lengths at Gore. He drove eleven winners in his first season as a Junior - all for his father. They included Josephine Bret (3), My Girl (2), Free Bret (2), Beaudiene Scott (2), Awakite and Paleface Bret.  Also in his first season of driving, he won four races in one day. It was at Winton in March 1984 when he reined home Josephine Bret to win the Southland Oaks Final, and Awakite, My Girl and Beaudiene Scott to win their respective races. His second, and what was to be his last season as a Junior, produced nine winners. In 1986 he joined the Open Drivers ranks and also started his career as a trainer after his father relocated to Ashburton. "I was up there too and we worked together. He had a job at the works in Ashburton. I was going to get one as well but couldn’t. I still had my job at the Freezing Works down here so I came back and leased land off Roddy McFarlane right beside where I’m living now. I ended up with a few horses so decided to stay and train them. I had Beaudiene Byrd in that first season and she won five of her seven starts. That got me going. I stayed at the works for a few years and did the horses. When I applied for my Trainers Licence they took my Junior Drivers Licence off me so that’s why I was only a Junior for two seasons.” In the early days Beck also had a Jockeys Licence.  “I had an amateurs licence for one year. When I left school Hunter McHugh had a jumper and he talked me into getting an amateurs licence so I could ride it.”  Alongside driving has own horses, he started to drive for Ray Faithful in the early 1990s, with his first winner for Faithful being Oberoni at Forbury Park October 1991. It was a partnership that was to win many provincial cups and Tartan Lady was to provide Beck and Faithful with a Group One winner in Tartan Lady which won the New Zealand Breeders Stakes in 1999. “I drove all his horses when he was at Lochiel. Tartan Lady ran out of her class down here and went to Cran Dalgetys. Then he got Feverish and she won about six.” Of all of the 800 winners, Josephine Bret his first winner stands out.  “Your first one is always special. I think the most precious one was with Shortys Girl when she won the Breeders the second time. She hadn’t raced for quite a while and went into the race fresh. She won and broke the track record.” Beck has also had a good association with a handful of good trotters over the years and he developed multiple group winner Diamond Field. He also trained handy intermediate square gaiter Prince Whiz which won the Forbury Park Trotting Cup. “That was always a good race and he was only a three win horse. Eastburn Grant was in it and he’d come back from winning the Rowe Cup.” Tact Tar was one horse Beck trained and drove that he says never reached it's potential. The Boyden Hanover gelding raced for one season as a six year old, winning three of his twelve starts including a double at Ashburton in June 1988. “He had a lot of issues but was unsound. He would have gone a lot further.” As Beck looks back at his long career in the race cart, he reflects on the many changes. He says one positive change has been the number of younger drivers that are involved in the industry.  "When I started there weren't the same amount of young fella’s in the game. Now they’re all younger." Another change has been the way races are run. He says an uncontested lead for a horse is very much a thing of the past. “Those days are gone.” He also says the standardbreds are more durable now. “The horses seem to be able to work a bit more and they don’t seem to stop. Once upon a time if you worked a horse too hard it would only run home in 30 seconds. Now they can work and still run home in 28. The Standardbreds have improved so much. When you go back forty years in the galloping side they used to go 1-08 to win the Telegraph Handicap at Trentham. They still only go 1-08. Forty years ago in the Standardbreds they were flat in going 1-55 (for a mile). Now they’re going 1-50. We can get the best artificial semen in the world for our mares but all the gallopers are served naturally, so if you want the best you have to send your mare over to England to get them served. The race carts have improved, so that’s made a difference.” He says the country now has a very good depth of young driving talent.  “When I started off Henry (Skinner) was the best. Southland’s probably blessed with a lot of good drivers like the Williamson boys and Brent Barclay. You wouldn’t be disappointed to have any of them driving for you. Dexter’s just another dimension. He’s just a freak and we’ll probably not see another one like him again. He’s just like the Chris Johnson of the racing world. Dexter’s just got a gift and they seem to run for him.” Beck freely admits that he's not an overly aggressive driver, something that was instilled in him early on. "It was something I was brought up with. If you burnt them out you couldn’t back up with them the next week.” And like many drivers in those earlier years he was pretty much self taught.  “You just picked it up yourself. Dad hardly ever drove. You’d sit down after a race and talk about the drive with him but you’d know yourself what you'd done wrong.” In thirty four seasons of driving he says he's been lucky to have escaped any major injuries. In January 1988, in a heat of the Forbury Park Four Year Old Series, seven horses went down or were pulled up including his drive Black Print. He walked away injury free from that smash but wasn’t quite so lucky when Franco Cuisine, in a heat of the Sires Stakes at Invercargill in October 1994, fell. Beck was away from driving for six weeks after that accident. He rates Josephine Bret and Shortys Girl as the best female pacers he’s driven, Bee Bee Cee as the best male pacer and Diamond Field as the best trotter. Shortys Girl was the horse he drove to win the most races (11), followed by Bee Bee Cee and Tartan Lady (10). Other trainers he drove successfully for were Graham Bond (23), Des Baynes (22), Ian Wilson (16), Peter Davis (11), John Keenan (10) and Derek Dynes (10).  “Graham had a good team when he was at Drummond and I did all his driving. In the last ten years I haven’t been chasing the drives - now that I’m a bit older.” Beck has won the Southland Drivers Premiership five times; 1989,1992,1993,1997 and 1999. His best season as a driver was in 1999 when he drove 42 winners for a UDR of .2348.    Summary: First winner: Josephine Bret at Gore February 18th 1984. 800th winner: Gotta Minute at Winton December 31st 2017.    Beck driving stats: Trained by Allan Beck  295 Ray Faithful 70 Graham Bond  23 Des Baynes  22 Bob Beck (father) 16 Ian Wilson  16 Peter Davis  (EJP) 11 John Keenan 10 Derek Dynes 10 Beck has won most Provincial Cups and Finals in Southland and Central Otago including: Southland Oaks: Josephine Bret (1984), Adrenalin (1989), Tartan Lady (1998) and Shortys Girl (2001). Wyndham Cup: Tact Halsey (1996), Feverish (2000), Franco Novella (2003) and Flamin Tact (2006) Central Otago Cup: Horatius (1990), Admiral Smooth (1992), Preiswert (1996) and Tartan Lady (1999) Roxburgh Cup: Imperiora (1997), Brydone (2004) and Seelster Blue Jeans (2005). Group One wins: New Zealand Standardbred Breeders Stakes: Tartan Lady (1999), Shortys Girl (2002 and 2003)  Group Two wins: Southland Oaks Final - Shortys Girl (2001), Law Courts Hotel Trotting Cup at Forbury Park - Prince Whiz (1998), Southland Oaks Final - Tartan Lady (1998) and Forbury Park Four Year Old Championship Final - Bee Bee Cee (1994). Group Three wins: Southland Oaks Final - Adrenalin (1989)  Pacing winners: 728/800 Trotting winners: 72/800 Total stakes won: $4,846,019   Biggest winners (by wins) Shortys Girl 11 Bee Bee Cee 10 Tartan Lady 10 Tact Halsey 8 Amiable Popular 6 Diamond Field 6 Preiswert 6 Prince Whizz 6 Feverish 6 Imperiora 6 Cordon Hops 5 Black Print 5 Mavora Boy 5 Glen Atom 5 Gotta Minute winning at Winton Bruce Stewart Southland Harness Racing  

Winton horseman Allan Beck has driven twenty three winners for Browns trainer Des Baynes and three of those were at the Winton meeting today (Sunday) when Gotta Minute, Quartz and Better Buy It all won for the combination. Beck's first winning drive for Baynes was at Forbury Park in April 1998 when he reined home Blow The Whistle.  On the training front, Baynes has trained two winners in one day eight times before but this was the first time he's trained three winners on the same day. His first double came at the Forbury meeting in January 1994 when Out All Knight and Toss The Dice both won. His second double came a week later on the same course with the same pair. The first of the three winners today was Gotta Minute in Race Three. From barrier six Beck was caught wide early before he was left parked. He finally got cover with 1000 metres to run. Turning in, Beck angled Gotta Minute three wide to make his challenge. The Badland's Hanover gelding came resolutely down the middle of the track to hang on and beat Gunslinger Bromac by a head. Gotta Minute, which is owned by Baynes, is out the Armbro Operative mare Jay Bee's Snap and is closely related to the Southland bred Jay Bee's Fella the winner of thirteen races including the Lion Red Four Year Old Mile Grand Final at Alexandra Park. In the that race he won by eight and a half lengths beating another Southland bred pacer in Lord Lenny. Jay Bee's Fella also won another four races in Australia.  Gotta Minute winning at Winton                            -- Photo Bruce Stewart. "He's (Gotta Minute) normally the sort of horse that needs a bit of cover. Well, I thought he did. He showed a bit of guts today," said stable representative Ian Jamieson.    The second winner was six year old Mach Three gelding Quartz. He too was parked early before he got cover with a lap to run. Beck was looking for room prior to turning in, as TC Business which he was following, was under a hard drive. At the top of the straight he pushed Quartz out to the middle of the track and he came with a stayers run to beat Broadway Banner by a half a length. It was only the gelding's third start. "He's had feet problems but we're on top of it now. We've put him out in the paddock and let the feet grow right out because he had a couple of bad quarter cracks. We weren't surprised at the win today because he's gone good at the workouts," said Jamieson.  Quartz winning at Winton                            -- Photo Bruce Stewart Bettor Buy It capped of a great day for Baynes and Beck winning the feature pacers race of the day the PGG Wrightson Sale Of The Stars Mobile Pace. Beck slotted him three back in the inside. With 500 metres to run the pair moved off the markers and followed through Jayedgar before Beck decided to duck down into the vacant passing lane. The seven year old let down nicely to beat a game The Big Boss by a length and a quarter with another two and quarter lengths back to Jayedgar. "He's also been going good at the workouts. He's a 100% sound."  Bettor Buy It is raced by The Test Syndicate - a group of old rugby mates from the Edendale Rugby Club of which Baynes was a member of. He's also a part of the syndicate. Bettor Buy It had been going well at local workouts before today's run - winning once and running a close second to the smart Nota Bene Denario in the other. The horse's last win at the races was at Kurow in August 2016 when he was trained by Greg and Nina Hope. Today was his fifth win from only twenty four starts. He was injured during the running of the 2014 Southern Supremacy Stakes at Gore and he missed the whole of his four year old season. The injury has restricted his career. The three successes today put driver Allan Beck on 798 career wins.  Meanwhile Des Baynes's cousin Kenny was in the money at Winton as well when his Pegasus Spur four year old trotter War Machine impressively won his third race in a row. He looks destined for higher honours for trainer Tony Stratford, driver Dexter Dunn and owners Kenny and Jo Baynes. The win was his seventh and third for Stratford. His other wins came in the North Island for Derek Balle. Today he beat an improving Grey Power by three quarters of a length.   Bruce Stewart Southland Harness Racing Bettor Buy It winning at Winton  

On Saturday at the Riverton harness racing meeting, the Aparima Trot field was lead out by 30 year old gelding Diamond Field. He won 33 races and $536,607 in stakes. Amongst his wins were the 1994 Rowe Cup, 1994 Interdominion Trotting Championship and a number of Free For All trots. He was presented at the races by his first trainer Allan Beck and Michelle Blackie - daughter of Bob Blackie who was part of the Southland Standardbred Number Two Syndicate that raced the Yankee Jolter gelding.  The Neil Munro trained Jayceekay easily won the Neville Cleaver Fishing Aparima Handicap Trot in the hands of Blair Orange. Jayceekay winning in the hands of Blair Orange                Photo by Bruce Stewart The seven year old Monkey Bones mare who last won at Addington in December 2014 took the lead with a lap to run before handing up to De Vito. Orange sent her off down the middle of the track at the home turn and she sprinted too well for a game De Vito winning by two and a half lengths. The race time of 3-29.2 was a new race record. The previous record was held by The Fiery Ginga which trotted 3-30.0 when winning in 2012. Jayceekay returning to the birdcage after winning                  Photo by Bruce Stewart It was the second time Munro has won this race. He also won it back in 2005 with Ado's Angel which was driven by Billy Heads. The run of the race came from the runner up De Vito. Having his first start of the season he was posted three wide for half a lap and battled home nicely for second.   Bruce Stewart Southland Harness Racing

On the back of good harness racing workout form and with a moderate opposition, Bettor Enforce delivered at Gore yesterday for Winton trainer/driver Allan Beck. “She had trialled well at the workouts and to be fair it wasn’t an overly strong field. It was a good start for her,” he said, summarising the win. In a typical Beck drive, the four year old stepped well and lead all the way to win comfortably by two and three quarter lengths. After a promising beginning last season to her career her form tapered off and Beck puts that down to her inability to handle the smaller Southland tracks, but she was racing quality horses like Nek Time, American Tart, Mackenzie and Stanley Ross Robyn.  “Last season she raced good on the bigger tracks but then started to pace rough on the smaller tracks but she went good on Sunday.” Owned by the This Time Syndicate, which  includes R L McNaught, L R Drake and J J Kane the trio are long time clients of Beck and raced Admiral Halsey gelding Black Print which won five of his twelve starts in the late 1980’s and his full brother Tact Halsey which won thirteen races in the mid 1990’s - including eight for the Beck stable. "We’ll look at going to the Riverton Cup in a fortnight and if she goes good we’ll look at the South of the Waitaki race at Addington.” The win was Alan Beck's 791st and he's very likely to reach the 800 milestone before the season's end. His first winner was Josephine Bret at Gore in February 1984.  Allan Beck     Photo Bruce Stewart Bettor Enforce was bred by Ben and Karen Calder and is closely related to millionaire pacer and dual New Zealand Cup winner Just An Excuse.   Bruce Stewart Southland Harness Racing

Harness racing star Diamond Field is set to mark the milestone of his 30th birthday on October 13th The winner of the 1994 Interdominion Trotters Grand Final and Rowe Cup had an illustrious racing career winning 33 races from 150 starts with 29 seconds and 20 thirds. Though, all standardbred and thoroughbred horses officially celebrate their birthdays on August 1st, owner Michelle Blackie wanted to mark Diamond Fields foal date, as a day of celebration. The 30 year old is booked to parade at the Riverton clubs meet on October 29th before the feature trot, in which he was beaten by a nose in 1990 by Maggie Blue. Diamond Field was produced by North Makarewa breeder Grant Sim from Yankee Jolter and Robyn Evander. Sim recently visited the horse after an 18 year interval. Sim was impressed with the horses appearance and relayed stories of the horse as a youngster and the nature of his dam Robyn Evander. Diamond Fields racing career began at the stable of Allan Beck where he won his first eight races. He was then transferred to the stable of Roy and Barry Purdon in Auckland to open up more opportunities. The Purdon stable prepared him for his Interdominion win at Harold Park and the Rowe Cup win at Alexandra Park. Tony Herlihy the successful driver in both starts. Diamond was then transferred to the stable of Mark Purdon. As a nine year old he won two heats of the Interdominions at Moonee Valley and the City of Sails free-for-all in Auckland. As a ten year old, Diamond Field was placed in the South Australia stable of Neil Cavallaro where he begun his Australian campaign winning at Globe Derby Park. Four minor wins followed in Australia before returning to New Zealand. On return to New Zealand, the then 11 year old had his final win at Addington Park from a 40m handicap. His last race he finished 2nd ,beaten by a neck by Sundowner Bay from a 45m handicap. Diamond Field was retired to the property of the Blackie family and has been there ever since. The family was part of the syndicate that raced Diamond Field. Owner Michelle, was a child at the time and enjoyed the spirited nature of the race horse. Diamond Field was introduced to saddle and even ventured over some low fences. As an elderly horse, not a lot seems to have changed from reports of his earlier antics. Breeder, Grant Sim, as reported in the 1994 Harness Racing Annual, described the horse as a hyperactive type and recalled a scene at the 1988 yearling sales. While the horse was being prepared, the attendents struggled to settle the horse, a vet was asked to administer a tranquilizer to quieten him down. The horse was tranquilized twice, and became more difficult to handle with each shot. Diamond Field smashed the rail he was tethered to, taking the attendents out in the process. Trainer Allan Beck recalled Diamond Field as hyperactive,difficult to settle, spooks at anything and can see a rabbit 200 yards away. Diamond Field has been retired and in the care of the Blackie family in Southland since the late nineties. He spends his days lazily grazing the paddocks of his Southland home. Every now and then owner Michelle, will perch upon him bareback with only a halter and lead for security. Perhaps a far cry from earlier antics, Michelle reports he can still be a handful. He is hard fed three times a day and is all to happy to let anyone in the vicinity know if his meals are slightly late. Diamond Field as a 29 year old. While sufficiently getting on in years, after his daily walk around the bottom paddock, the gelding can be seen galloping when released and enjoying a good roll in the dust. The 30 year old is immensely loved by owner Michelle, who even has two tattoos dedicated to the champion trotter. Happy Birthday Diamond Field.   Harnesslink Media

Invercargill harness racing winner Real Love is no world beater but with claiming races coming on stream as the season goes into Winter mode Allan Beck thinks she can be nicely placed in the next month or two.   "We've mainly targeted the claimer with her where the opposition is not so strong. In saying that she did go a good race at Winton last week in that mile going 1-57 on a wet track so she's probably a bit better than a maiden," said Beck.   From gate seven Beck worked the five year old Real Desire mare to the lead and stayed there for the whole trip holding on to beat a late charge from Vera Mac who got within a neck of the winner.    "She felt good out there today. She got a breather and didn't have to go too hard. She was probably battling a bit at the finish but she was holding them."   Real Love started her career with Canterbury trainer Ray Jenkins and from three starts for Beck has now won twice and finished second in her only other start for the Winton trainer.  Bruce Stewart www.southlandharness.co.nz    

Des Baynes has always had a handy horse in his stable and judging from the way Galactic Star won at Ascot Park on Sunday it looks as if he has another.   His last potentially top liner Better Buy It which has been side lined with injury after running a gallant fourth in the 2014 Alabar Southern Supremacy Stakes, is owned by The Test Syndicate the same syndicate that races Galactic Star.   “His debut run at Winton was good and he’s backed up a couple of weeks later and done it nice today,” said driver Allan Beck.   After the early rush for positions Galactic Star settled four back on the outside. He was second last inside the 800. Beck then moved the three year old gelding out of a trailing line and progressed three wide. At the 400 he was three wide and challenging. In the run home he quickly reached the front and held on by a length and a quarter from the late finishing Better Go Hurry. “He’s a nice striding horse." "He’s not a big horse and still lacks a bit of strength." "Once he gets to the autumn he’s going to get stronger and I think he’s got a big future,” Alan said   Galactic Star is by Better’s Delight out of the three win Christian Cullen mare Petra’s Star. He has Ermis (17 wins) and Iraklis (22 wins) in his pedigree.   “It’s all ahead of him. He won today with a leg in the air.”   Baynes paid $16,000 for the colt at the 2014 Christchurch sales.   The dilemma later in the season for his driver will be when  quality three year old gelding Shortys Mate trained by Beck, clashes with Galactic Star. Bruce Stewart Southland Harness Racing - Check site here

Allan Beck plans to look after Riverton TC maiden winner Shortys Mate.   That’s because he knows that if he progresses the way he thinks he will, he could be a runner in the end of season feature for three year old colts and geldings in the province, the Alabar Southern Supremacy Stakes.   “He’s quite tough and has a good engine." "We’ll see how he handles the C1 grade before we make any plans." "He’s pretty inexperienced and only had a couple of run at the workouts as a two and three year old." "Some of the horses in that grade have won three to four races,” said trainer Allan Beck.    Shortys Mate is by Art Major out of the classy mare Shortys Girl. She won eleven races including the Group One New Zealand Standardbred Breeders Stakes in 2002 and 2003.   “She’s been a bit disappointing as a broodmare but he (Shortys Mate) appears to be the best of them." " She has a two year by Rocknroll Hanover." "A lot of his horses in New Zealand touch a knee but his fella (Shortys Image) is good gaited." "He won’t make a two year old but he goes good." "I actually sent a mare to Rocknroll Hanover who has semen at Macca Lodge." "He’s one of the top stallions in America and was $20,000 when he first stood here but now he’s $8,000 which is pretty good value.”   Shortys Mate is owned by Moira Bell whose late husband Graham bred him.   Moira’s son John Murchison who worked in the harness racing industry from the mid 80’s to mid 90s as a stable hand and driver was also on-course the share in the win.   Murchison worked and drove for the late Bryce Buchanan when he ran his successful stable at West Plains. He drove thirteen winners including twelve as a junior horseman. Bruce Stewart Reproduced with the permission of Southland Harness Racing   -   Check site here  

Harness racing returns to Invercargill on Friday afternoon and the best race of the day is race eight for the 3 year olds and older over 2200 meters. Three first starters who have drawn barriers one, two and three look set to dominate the betting and the finish. Number one is Jetsdream who is a 3 year old by Jeremes Jet who has been burning up the tracks at trials and workouts in Southland. He won his qualifying heat by 7 lengths, last 400 meters in 28.1 and then won a CO heat on September 10th by 2 lengths with smart closing sectionals of 56.4 and 27.6 Trained by Hamish Hunter at Ryal Bush, Jetsdream is to be driven by the talented southern reinsman Shane Walkinshaw. Drawn right beside him in barrier two is Costa Del Magnifico who is a 3 year old son of Mach Three who has also impressed at trials and workouts leading into his debut. He qualified in January as a 2 year old over a mile in 1:59.3 and has had two recent trial runs to get him ready for Friday. In the first of these Costa Del Magnifico ran second to Jetsdream and then came out three days later on September 13th and showed quick improvement winning a C0-C1 heat with quick closing sectionals of 56.7 and 27.8. Trained at Invercargill by Brent Shirley, Costa Del Magnifico is to be driven by leading reinsman Nathan Williamson. Drawn at barrier three is Macs Man, a 3 year old son of promising sire Panspacificflight who has also been going great guns at recent trials. He raced very greenly when he qualified but improved quickly to win a C0 trial shortly after with smart closing sectionals of 56.5 and 28.4 At his next trial Macs Man ran a close third to Jetsdream and Costa Del Magnifico after doing plenty of work. Trained by Kirk Larsen at Branxholme, Macs Man is to be driven by champion reinsman Dexter Dunn. In the end we have gone with Jetsdream due to the fact that he has been running time at the trials but  has yet to be really tested. Costa Del Magnifico for second just in front of Macs Man who has the bonus of the "Dexter " factor. To round out first fours throw in the Allan Beck trained and driven Run to Hide. Harnesslink Media    

Trainer Bruce Negus, who has been the driving force behind tomorrow’s Youth Vs Experienced meeting at Waikouaiti , is excited about tomorrow’s concept and expects the series to bring in plenty of interest Australasian wide. “I’m not expecting a huge crowd on course but I am expecting plenty of off-course interest,” said the trainer, best known for his feats with Champion youngster Courage Under Fire. “It will be 10am in Australia when the meeting starts and there won’t be a lot else on for them to watch,” said Negus. “So having Lance Justice and Amanda Turnball over here should create plenty of Australian interest in the meeting.” Negus said that no driver looks to have a standout book on paper, so consistency will probably be the decider. “We are scoring the Series a bit differently than usual, with the winner of the race only getting a few more points than the reinsman that finishes fourth or fifth,” revealed Negus. “So it will probably take four of five good finishes to take the gold rather than say a couple of wins, two lasts, and a ninth.” Negus said that he expects the T.A.B to open various betting options on the series and T.A.B Bookmaker Stephen Richardson later confirmed that there would be two books opened – Youth or Experienced and Overall Winner. The age for the experienced reinsmen was set at 50 and over, while the youthful reinsman have to be 25 or under. The teams are as follows: Team Experience: Lance Justice (Aus), Allan Beck, Peter Ferguson, Tony Herlihy and Maurice Mckendry. Team Youth: Amanda Turnball (Aus), Zac Butcher, Samantha Ottley, Craig Ferguson, Dexter Dunn, and Matthew Williamson. All races in the series are penalty-free, while the winner of the eighth race will receive a free service fee to Betterthancheddar on top of the stake money courtesy of Alabar, who are sponsoring the meeting. “We are hugely grateful to Alabar and have had a piece of artwork done on Betterthancheddar which will be in the background of all the winning pictures,” said Negus. While Negus, who is the Vice-President of the Waikouaiti Trotting Club, has plenty on his hands with the series tomorrow, he also has a strong team of his own engaged to race. “Delightful Dash should win the first,” he said matter-of-factly. “And Highland Reign who is in the same race should finish in the money.” “Goodboy Tiger and Merilane are both in form trotters and love the grass, so they also have good chances.” Negus also said that his brother-in-law’s horse Martini could be worth a dollar at good odds, while Alexy, who he is driving himself in the Amatuer Drivers event, is in a similar boat. “Martini was going to demolish a good field before he galloped last start and Alexy can surprise at odds if he gets the right trip.” The track is currently in great condition and as long as there is no more rain, it should provide a tip-top racing surface. By Mitchell Robertson    

Southern star Franco Ledger is primed and ready for Saturday’s Interdomion heat at Addington after he obliterated his own Waikouaiti track record by more than 4 seconds on Sunday. After starting from a 50 metre handicap, the biggest handicap ever overcome in the 59 year history of the race, Franco Ledger boomed down the outside to beat Donegals Guest by 1 & ¼ lenghts in an unbelievable time of 4-02.9 for the 3200 metre journey on a grass surface. It was Franco Ledger’s second win in the race in the last three years. Last year the race was taken out by Glencoe VC, who finished third in this year’s edition. The 6-year-old entire has now won 18 races and $369,000 in stakes for Hunter and the What Ever syndicate, who once again attempted to shake the grandstand down as their pride and joy steamed down the outside of the track. The Waikouaiti Trotting Club will race again on Tuesday, March 18, where some of the veterans of Australasian harness racing will take on the industry’s rising stars in an additional Waikouaiti meeting dubbed the ''youth versus experience''. The age for the experienced reinsmen was set at 50 and over, while the youthful reinsman have to be 25 or under. Lance Justice and 23-year-old Amanda Turnball have been invited to compete in the series from Australia, while the two members of the New Zealand 3000 win club, Tony Herlihy and Maurice McKendry, have also been invited to compete. Allan Beck, Ricky May, Peter Ferguson are other experienced New Zealand reinsman invited, while the youth will be represented by Zac Butcher, Samantha Ottley, Craig Ferguson, Dexter Dunn and Matthew Williamson. Waikouaiti trainer Bruce Negus has done much of the work in making the list of invited drivers, who are likely to compete in five penalty-free races on the card. By Mitchell Robertson

The New Zealand Racing Laboratory Services has advised the Racing Integrity Unit of an irregularity in the urine sample taken from pacer Call Of Duty following its second placing in Race 3, the McKnight and Brown Mobile Pace at the Invercargill Harness racing meeting on Tuesday 20 September 2011.

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