Day At The Track
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Goulburn horsewoman Amy Day had more than one reason to celebrate when she piloted Atomic Bombshell (Auckland Reactor-Art Asset (Artsplace) to a harness racing victory at Orange. Day, 28, drove a well-judged race last Sunday afternoon to break Atomic Bombshell’s maiden status; and the filly did it while racing on a grass track for the very first time. And if that wasn’t enough for some sort of celebration, the talented trainer-driver posted her 300th winner as a driver. “I didn’t realize I was close to such a nice milestone until a friend told me,” Day said. “I’d been stuck on 299 wins there for a while, so it was fantastic to finally make it, and I was so proud of the horse because she’s a bit of a favorite of mine,” she said. “She has a turn of speed, but without doubt her greatest attribute is an unbelievable attitude, she’s willing to do anything.  And along the way I’ve found that to be so important in a horse.” It was also an outstanding day for exciting Alabar sire Auckland Reactor, who, in his racing days, had the nickname “The Reactor Factor” because of his utter dominance.  Auckland Reactor progeny landed the quinella at the Orange event, with Whata Reactor finishing runner up to Atomic Bombshell.  Auckland Reactor has now sired 39 winners in Australia.  In New Zealand he has 34 winners with superstar Chase Auckland leading the way for stakes of $405,329. Day shares a property and training facilities owned by her father Neil to prepare her team of about 13 and has predicted a bright future for Atomic Bombshell. “I raced outside the leader to win on the grass at Orange and the mile rate of a tick over 1.58 was pleasing,” she said. “Racing on the grass is a bit different but the track is the home of the Orange gallops and it was in good condition. “We thought Atomic Bombshell would give us a good sight, because her form as a two-year-old was okay and she has come back stronger after a three-month spell.” Day has been driving for 10 years but has been involved in the training caper for five years. “I’m enjoying it and there’s always some family help in close reach when needed. I work in well with dad and my mum Vickie is always ready to lend a hand.  My brother Justin takes care of the farrier side of things,” she said. Day said being in Goulburn was a great base for harness racing in NSW. “It’s so central to a stack of tracks.  The Riverina racing is perhaps two or three hours away; Canberra is an hour down the road, and Menangle is around a one-and-a-half-hour trip.” And as for a favorite win during her short career? “Any success is a good one because there’s such a lot of hard work involved,” Day said. But she did say she fondly remembers May 5, 2012 at Wagga when she took out the Cup with 40/1 shot Marooned (Hare Hare – Greek Jewel (Golden Greek), trained by Frank O’Sullivan, and then landed the Derby with Armalife (Life Sign – Arma The One (Badlands Hanover), prepared by her father Neil. “Yes, that was surreal, but we didn’t get involved in any crazy celebrations of course – we probably all had horses to train or trial the following day!” Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

AMBASSADOR KerryAnn Turner kick started the ‘Team Teal’ campaign in New South Wales with success over the weekend. Landing two training wins with Smokey Quartz and Our American Princess at Menangle on Saturday night, Turner’s results saw $200 donated to the Women’s Cancer Foundation. This complimented wins by reinswomen Lauren Tritton, Isobel Ross and Amy Day who all drove winners at harness meetings across the state on the weekend. Tritton claimed a double at Menangle on Saturday night with Picard in the Group 2 Hondo Grattan Stakes and Grand Circuit pacer Maximan. Meanwhile, Ross also drove a Menangle winner with Dream To Share before driving another winner in teal at Orange on Sunday with My Secret Beach. Day added to this winning with her pacer Atomic Bombshell and subsequently $1200 was donated to the WCF by Harness Racing NSW. It is the fourth year NSW has participated in the ‘Team Teal’ campaign and the third year Turner has held the honour of being an ambassador. “For the last few years my stable have been fortunate to wear the teal colours and it’s a privilege to be named the ambassador again,” the premiership winning trainer said. “Hopefully we can get a few winners in this time and not only raise awareness of ovarian cancer but also raise some money.” Each time a female driver wins a race in NSW during the campaign HRNSW will donate $200 to the WCF, which is then matched by Tabcorp. For each of Turner’s training wins in the state during this campaign, HRNSW will donate $100 and if Turner drives the horse herself, HRNSW will donate a further $100 to the cause. The 2019 ‘Team Teal’ campaign began on Friday where lady drivers across Australasia will wear teal coloured driving pants until March 10 to raise awareness of ovarian cancer. Head to https://teamteal.blackbaud-sites.com/ for more information. #GetRealSupportTeal Harness Racing NSW (HRNSW) is the controlling body for harness racing in New South Wales with responsibility for commercial and regulatory management of the industry including 33 racing clubs across the State.  HRNSW is headed by a Board of Directors and is independent of Government. AMANDA RANDO MEDIA & COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER (02) 9722 6600 •  arando@hrnsw.com.au •  @Amanda_Rando

The eyes of Australian trotting fans will focus squarely on Menangle this Sunday for Inter Dominion Final Day. There will be much interest north of the Tweed in the 7 Group 1 races and 3 Group 2 events to be held on the amazing 10 race card, as Queensland has plenty of representation. The Queensland interest starts in Race 2 where Narissa McMullen will be out to defend her title in the Lady Drivers Invitational that she won last year and she has drawn barrier 1 aboard Saloon Passage for trainer Nathan Hurst. With third placings at his last 2 Menangle starts, McMullen will be hoping to emulate her performance last year in taking the prize. Hoping to thwart McMullen’s chance at a repeat victory will be the Grant Dixon trained Major Moment. Qualifying for this race with an all the way Heat win 2 weeks ago, Goulburn based Amy Day will be entrusted with the drive. The next combatant for Queensland will be Corporal Luna who will take his place in the NSW Derby for trainer/driver Grant Dixon. The gelding made his way into the blue riband feature with a 5th placing in his heat held last Saturday night and will need to bring his best artillery after landing barrier 7. Race 6 is the 4YO Classic, the Chariots Of Fire and Dixon will be hoping for a scratching to allow his runner Alleluia to gain a start. Currently the 1st Emergency, should he gain a start, the wide barrier has not helped his chances as he will carry saddle cloth 11. Race 7 is the big one, the Inter Dominion Final and is set to jump at 2.42pm Queensland time. There will be dual representation for the Sunshine State following the Heats held a fortnight ago and the issuing of wildcards. Majestic Mach has drawn barrier 8 and Grant Dixon has achieved a unique milestone with his stable star. Razzle has the distinction of lining up in successive years in New South Wales biggest events, the Derby, the Chariots and now the pinnacle event, the Inter Final. The other Queenslander is the fairytale story of Avonnova. Being granted a wildcard, the Ian Gurney trained hulk has not fared well in the barrier draw and will start from barrier 13. Will it prove to be an unlucky number or will it be the lucky blessing for the reigning Queensland Horse Of The Year? The way the Avonnova story has unfolded, there is every opportunity that there is another chapter to be written. The Bohemia Crystal Free For All is Race 8 and features the biggest Queensland participation. Narissa McMullen will saddle her first Group 1 runner as a trainer/driver when she partners the rejuvenated Bettor Draw from barrier 2. A luckless 3rd in the Brisbane Interdominion Heat will ensure that Bettor Draw is well supported after the favourable barrier in this event. Forever Gold starts from barrier 8 for trainer driver Darren Weeks and will be hoping for more luck than last year’s Interdominion Final. Like Majestic Mach it will be the third year in succession that Forever Gold will line up in a Group 1 race on Final day at Menangle. Majestic Major will start to the immediate outside of Forever Gold in his first ever taste of Group 1 competition and will be hoping that the staying journey of 2400m will better suit his constitution than the hard and fast mile racing that Sydney’s premier track presents. The Trotters have their moment in the Group 1 spotlight in the penultimate race of the day. Queensland interest here lies with the Dixon trained and driven Our Overanova. Stopping in Sydney for 2 starts before heading further south to the Great Southern Star Series in Victoria, he will line up for just the 2nd time in his career in a Group 1 event. Connections will be hoping that history does not repeat, as at his only Group 1 performance Our Overanova galloped when under pressure and a repeat of that will not help his cause. Formerly trained in Queensland, Supper Waltz Wilson is still owned by a Queenslander, Lawson Cockburn. Wilson’s former trainer and Lawson’s grandson Bart Cockburn will take the drive on the gelding that will face the starter in a Group 1 event for the first time at his 131st race start. The last race on the day is the Group 2 Carnival Stakes and the Grant Dixon trained Only The Brave is the 2nd Emergency and will be relying on scratchings to force his way into the field. Add to these Queensland trained or driven horses mentioned above will be at least 7 other horses who boast Queensland based ownership interests. They are Our Hi Jinx, Smooth Showgirl, For A Reason, Bettor Bet Black, Lochinver, Pub Blitz and Gaius Caesar. It all shapes well for a Queensland assault on Super Sunday. Racing Queensland

With more than one third of the harness racing season now completed it is no surprise to see the two leading drivers in New South Wales are females. Lauren Panella and Amanda Turnbull have already driven more than 140 NSW winners between them this season and with fellow driver Amy Day, the trio dominated the big meeting at Goulburn on Monday afternoon driving six of the eight winners. The girls started out strongly with Panella driving the first winner when Salty Robyn proved too fast for his rivals and set a new track record for 2yos in the process. Panella made it two from two when former kiwi filly Miss Riviera Belle won the second race. The daughter of Bettors Delight will now be set for the NSW Oaks at Tabcorp Park Menangle next month. Amanda Turnbull won race three when she drove Last Man Out for her father Steve while Amy Day drove the second placegetter Ten In Command. Day went one better in race four when the Treuer family owned Audrey Maree proved too strong. Day made it a training/driving double in race five when Ponderena stormed home to win, the daughter of Ponder beating another two mares as the female dominance continued. Trainer Belinda McCarthy tried valiantly to keep females in the winners' circle in race six, her two runners Mister Bling and Epaulette finished second and third in a very close finish. Panella was back to her winning ways in the feature event when she drove Easy On The Eye to victory in the Frank and Edna Day Goulburn Cup. Panella took the seven year old straight to the front and he was never troubled in recording his 17th career victory. Amanda Turnbull drove the second placegetter Heza Thrill. So while the lady drivers were successful in six of the eight races on the card, they also drove three quinellas between them and took home the major share of the spoils at the Carnival Of Cups meeting. With a number of feature races to be run in NSW over the next six weeks, the female drivers have not been forgotten. The Gr 2 Lexus International Lady Drivers Invitational will be run on Inter Dominion Grand Final day at Tabcorp Park Menangle with ten talented reinswomen competing. By Greg Hayes

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