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Victorian harness racing trainer Andy Gath will make the trip north with Padrisimo to compete in a New South Wales Derby heat at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night.  Padrisimo has only had nine starts, but two of those have been at Menangle and he did win the Rod Fitzpatrick Memorial on the circuit last year. “Padrisimo was only a little horse when he won the Fitzpatrick Memorial as a two-year-old and I think since then he has probably grown about a millimetre,” Gath joked. “He’s a gross colt, but he has done plenty of work despite not racing for a month, so it won’t be fitness that is his worry on Saturday night.” Padrisimo has drawn wide in barrier 11, with Gath stating the son of Bettors Delight wil be driven ‘cold’. “He has shown that he is best when he is driven quieter, and from out there, we don’t really have much choice, so we are in the laps of the Gods to some extent because he will need a few things to go his way,” Gath said. “The Derby has always been a target for him this season because he is owned in New South Wales and he has raced well at Menangle in the past.” Gath also has Burnaholeinmypocket in another heat, while C C Chevron will compete in a an Oaks qualifier. “Burnaholeinmypocket has only had the one run back from a spell, he did a fair bit of work on that occasion at Bendigo and from the good draw he should get his chance to qualify,” Gath said. “C C Chevron is my surprise package. I didn’t think she would be able to win a race like the South Australian Derby, but she just keeps on improving. “She is probably my best winning chance of the night despite missing a run at Ballarat last week.” GREG HAYES

Promising youngster C C Chevron joined an elite harness racing ‘sorority’ at Globe Derby last Saturday night. Taken to Adelaide as “an afterthought”, C C Chevron upstaged the ‘boys’ in the South Australia Derby. As such, the Andy Gath-trained pacer became just the sixth filly to capture the classic since its inception in 1938 and the first in almost two decades! Carol Dillon was the ground breaker in 1954, with Medorina matching the feat the next year, followed by Pearl Queen (’57), Fiery Miss (’62) and No Frolicking (’96). “I was actually planning to spell her after her win on New Year’s Eve, but kept her in work for the Derby as an afterthought,” Gath said. “The plan was to bring a couple over for the race, but they fell by the wayside, so I kept her in work. “She had about a 12-hour spell before her plans got changed. I didn’t think she’d beat the boys, especially from the draw, but brought her across as a travel companion.” Driven by Gath’s wife, Kate, C C Chevron overcame a second row draw to score by a half-head from the favourite, Jilliby Royal, with local filly, Whats Emma Got, nine-and-a-half metres away third. “This win is certainly a bonus with her,” Gath declared. “As soon as we got home she will have that two-week spell.” Rating 1:57 for the 2230 metres, the daughter of Art Major extended her record to five wins and a second from seven starts for Gath. Pleased with the three-year-old’s progress, Gath is already planning a return trip for the South Australia Oaks on February 21. “I’m pretty keen to bring her back to Adelaide for the Oaks in about six weeks,” Gath said. “After that I will aim her towards the Victoria Oaks and see how she goes against the real top ones.” PAUL COURTS

Harness Racing's Inter Dominion champ Beautide is back on song. Trainer-driver James Rattray was pleased with today's third in a Melton trial behind Andy Gath's former Kiwi pacer Maximan. "He needed the trial, but it was always going to be a soft one. I dropped him out, started a move at the 700m and never let him go. He felt good," Rattray said. "I'll take him to a Geelong trial next week and get a lot more serious." Rattray has ruled-out Saturday week's SA Cup, opting for the Bendigo Cup on January 17. "That'll be his one lead up run for the Victoria Cup (January 31). With a Geelong trial and the Bendigo Cup run, I can have him 100 per cent for the Victoria Cup," he said. Rattray again reiterated Beautide would not contest the Hunter Cup on February 7. "No, nothing's changed there. He's having that week off and going straight from the Victoria Cup to the Inter Dominion heat in Sydney (February 14)," he said. Maximan thrilled Gath with his trial win and is SA Cup-bound for a clash with the exciting Philadelphia Man and others. Meanwhile, get ready for Shane Tritton mania. The leading NSW trainer has been virtually unsighted for the past month, but is about to unleash an awesome team of horses. "I've got the biggest and best team I've ever had. I've got 55 horses at the moment," he said. "In the past we've only run horses at Newcastle and Menangle, but we'll be going everywhere around NSW from next week. We have to with these numbers." Tritton is planning a Victorian raid with Suave Stuey Lombo and Easy On The Eye for the Victoria Cup. He's also particularly excited about his three-year-old pair Artistic Flite and Controversial. "They are going super. They are both a league above any other three-year-olds I've had. Opinions vary in the stable as to which is better. Time will tell," Tritton said. "Artistic Flite is about to resume. He'll have one run then head to Melbourne for the Victoria Derby, where I'm sure he'll be very competitive." Tritton said he also had a "new batch" of Kiwi imports and all we're progressing well in training. "You'll be seeing us everywhere and winning plenty of races over the next few months, I can assure you," he said. Courtesy of Adam Hamilton - Harness Racing New Zealand

Talented trotter Elegant Image will continue to be taken along slowly ahead of harness racing’s Trotting Masters. Successful at Tabcorp Park Melton last night, Elegant Image has been aimed at several majors by trainer Andy Gath, who is confident the son of S J’s Photo can make his presence felt at the highest level. With events such as the Bill Collins Mile and Dullard Cup on the agenda, Gath’s primary target is the Great Southern Star in March. “At this stage I will race him in the free-for-alls, which are on about every fortnight, as we prepare for the better races close to Christmas,” Gath explained. “Long term, I’m looking at the Great Southern Star.” With Gath’s wife, Kate, in the sulky, Elegant Image was driven with extreme confidence outside the leader, El Paco. Overpowering the front runner on the home turn, Elegant Image appeared to be set for an easy win before Cold Sister issued a late challenge, only to fall a half-head short. I See Icy Earl, which raced two-back in the running line, was 11 metres away third. “It’s never easy to win in the breeze in this company, especially at Melton, but he’s done well again,” Gath said. “It got close on the line, but he was holding off the other one. “I’m pretty happy with his run and he will continue to improve.” Covering the last half in 57.3 seconds, the squaregaiter rated 2:00 for the 2240 metres. “They don’t go much quicker for the distance and he’s done it in the breeze at only his second run back,” Gath said. “Like I said, I’m happy with where he is at.” PAUL COURTS  

Lightly-raced trotter Elegant Image will be aimed at some of harness racing’s biggest features this season. Scoring a first-up win at Tabcorp Park Melton last night, Elegant Image will be eased along by trainer Andy Gath, who has earmarked several majors for the son of S J’s Photo. With events such as the Bill Collins Mile and Dullard Cup on the agenda, Gath’s primary target is the Great Southern Star in March. “He has come back in great shape,” Gath said. “He is a first-up specialist, so I expected a very forward showing from him tonight. “At this stage I will race him in the free-for-alls, which are on about every fortnight, as we prepare for the better races close to Christmas. “Long term, I’m looking at the Great Southern Star.” With Gath’s wife, Kate, in the sulky, Elegant Image showed his customary gate speed to find the lead from barrier six as My High Expectations worked at his wheel. Striding clear of the pack along the home straight, the gelding completed a three-and-a-half metre win from El Paco, with Cold Sister three metres away third. “Once he found the front I was pretty confident they wouldn’t run him down,” Gath said. “In the end he did it quite easily. “That run will tighten him up a bit and he will be better again next time around.” PAUL COURTS

Rising harness racing star Maximan maintained his unbeaten Australian record with a ‘Smoken Up style' victory at Tabcorp Park Melton tonight. First-up for seven weeks, Maximan registered his third win for trainer Andy Gath, who is thrilled with the gelding’s performance. Driven by Gath’s reinswoman-wife, Kate, Maximan began brilliantly to lead from barrier six but was given no peace in front as in-form gelding, Exciteusinthecity, applied pressure from the ‘death seat’. Fending off the initial challenge turning for home, the son of Armbro Operative was passed by Cut For An Ace along the sprint lane during the latter stages before fighting back to score by a head. “That was a super run,” Gath said. “He is first-up from a spell and is in need of the hit out. “To be headed like he was and fight back the way he did is pretty impressive. “It was a Smoken Up type performance and if he can be a quarter as good as Smoken Up I’ll be rapt.” Covering the last half in 57 seconds, Maximan rated a slick 1:55.5 for the 2240 metres, taking his record to 12 wins and 12 placings from 34 starts. Citing next month’s Kilmore Cup as the six-year-old’s first major target, Gath believes Maximan can make his way to some of the major races during summer. “I will aim him at the Kilmore Cup via the Nyah Cup,” Gath said. “I’m not sure if he will have a run before then. “I’ll just wait and see how he pulls up.” PAUL COURTS

Following last week’s exclusive on leviathan harness racing owner Emilio Rosati, harnesslink can reveal the first two Victorian trainers in line to receive the majority of his team. Just to recap, Rosati has decided to transfer his horses out of New South Wales as a result of his disappointment with the integrity of the local industry. While a few have already been sent south of the Murray River – and also to Queensland – the majority of his stock are yet to be moved interstate. The remainder of Rosati’s team will begin being shipped next week, with trainers Jayne Davies and Andy Gath to receive the bulk of the ‘deliveries’. It is believed South Australia’s David Harding will also have his stable numbers increased within the month. Rosati’s horses carry the ‘Stride’ prefix, with former stars Excel Stride and Idol Stride among his best performers. Rosati’s stock is estimated to be between 30 and 40 horses, with star youngster Allblack Stride headlining the crew. “Although they haven’t raced yet, a lot have moved and the rest will be moved soon,” Rosati said. “I won’t put a number on how many horses I have, but it’s a lot.” Rosati’s decision to vacate New South Wales is based on his ‘principles'. When asked to elaborate, Rosati stated he’d “leave it at that.” “I have no problem with the people running the sport, I just have a problem with the integrity of it,” Rosati said. “I don’t want to harm the industry, I’m just frustrated with the way it is at the moment. I’m not doing this because I want to...I have to, based on my principles. “Ideally I’d prefer to be in New South Wales and hopefully the problem gets fixed and I will return them. “I will still stay on as a sponsor there.” Paul Courts

He was named, by majority owner Rob Nalder, after one of the greatest cricketers of the twentieth century – the explosive West Indian batsmen Viv Richards. The Aussie Caribbean Blaster certainly didn’t let anyone down and especially not the great man Viv Richards. Two people who he did leave an indelible impression on are the husband and wife team Andy and Kate Gath. “He’s the most perfect horse I’ve ever trained” said Andy recently. “He’s everything you want in a horse – great gaited, a great constitution and amazing recovery rate after a tough run, perfect conformation and always gave 120% in all his races.” Sadly Caribbean Blaster suffered a suspensory injury in late July and he will now commence a new chapter in his best selling life story – a stud career at Yirribee Stud in Southern NSW, under the management of his part owner Alabar Bloodstock. The “Blaster” displayed the attributes of a top horse right from the start, albeit he raced rather greenly in his three starts as a two year old. As a three year old, there were signs that he could develop into a “Big Time” horse – second in the Group One South Australian Derby, a fast closing second to Sushi Sushi in the Breeders Crown Semi Final and then a close up fourth place finish from the 12 hole in the Breeders Crown Final – his own mile rate being 1:54.9 for the 2240 metres. Just five days later Caribbean Blaster won The Graduate, a 2240 metre standing start race, in a 1:57.5 mile rate – an Australasian record which remains to this day. “The turning point in Caribbean Blaster’s career came when he triumphed in the Chariots Of Fire at Menangle” said Andy Gath. That night he defeated Sushi Sushi, Excel Stride and the hotshot Kiwi Hands Christian in 1:52.6, last quarter in 26.6 seconds. The defining victory in his career was the 2012 Victoria Cup when he was handed the number 13 saddlecloth to start with. Aided by a brilliant Kate Gath steer, the Blaster defeated Australia’s best including Im Themightyquinn, Smoken Up, Mah Sish, Washakie and The Gold Ace to name a few. Caribbean Blaster raced on 79 occasions in a predominately four season career for 24 victories and prizemoney of $1,113,678 – he passed the million dollar mark when defeating the mighty warrior Smoken Up in the 2014 South Australian Cup. He was driven in every one of those starts by the effervescent Kate Gath. As impressive as Caribbean Blaster was on the racetrack, he has a pedigree that could be described as glittering as diamonds. His sire Bettor’s Delight as a champion stallion and has dominated the Leading Sires lists in the Southern Hemisphere for the past three years. Caribbean Blaster is from the Safely Kept mare Kalypso and was bred and sold at the 2009 APG sales for $70,000 by the Bathurst based Brooklyn Lodge. He is thus a half brother to four winners including Protikori ($212,109), placed in four Group One events, and the $125,000 winning Kalypson Kid 1:56.4. Caribbean Blaster will stand at Yirribee Pacing Stud for a debut Service Fee of $2,750 (incl GST). All booking enquiries can be directed to Alabar Bloodstock – (03) 5859 2201. Harnesslink Media        

Mojo Major thrust himself into Breeders Crown betting calculations with a tough repechage win at the harness racing meeting at Geelong on Wednesday night. The Amanda Grieve trained two-year-old son of Art Major sat parked outside leader Avalon Castle before putting him away with a 28.6 third quarter, sprinting to the lead at the 300m and holding off a fierce late challenge from Andy Gath’s rising star, Burnaholeinmypocket. Mojo Major held on by a neck, Burnaholeinmypocket the other key runner to follow out of the race as he attacked the line impressively. The winner went 1:59.5 for the mile rate and came home with a last half of 57.5 seconds, his time the quickest of all the two-year-old repechages on the night. The favourite, Mach Doro, sensationally galloped out of contention at the start of the race. Highly rated New South Welsh colt Birdy Mach won repechage two by 3.7 metres over Stening in 2:00.8 for Luke McCarthy. Down the back the first time McCarthy launched his claim on the odds-on favourite, sending Birdy Mach ($1.60) around the field in a lightning move to grab the lead off early pacemaker Feeling Arty. Birdy Mach kicked away on the top turn as Iceobar gave chase for Chris Alford. In the home straight the sprint-lane run opened up for Feeling Arty and Stening, but the McCarthy son of Mach Three fought on for a comfortable win. Stening ran second for John Caldow and Feeling Arty was third, with Iceobar close-up fourth. Two top-notch New Zealanders took out the two-year-old fillies’ repechages, with Cyclone Kate getting the job done for Gareth Dixon and John Caldow in repechage one before Katy Perry roared to a 3.4m win in the second repechage for Cran Dalgety and Dexter Dunn. Cyclone Kate made her move down the back the final time after McCarthy and Smooth Showgirl had softened up the early leader Gotta Glow at the 1000m mark. Smooth Showgirl hit the lead as the field headed off the back straight but her lead was short-lived as Cyclone Kate descended and shot to the front around the home turn. At the finish Cyclone Kate had 6.9 metres to spare over the runner-up, fast-finishing Ameretto, who scorched home out wide, with Lettucesomewhere finishing third for Kerry Ann Turner. Smooth Showgirl held on well for fourth after sitting in the breeze. Tatlow Stakes winner Katy Perry took out the second of the fillies’ repechages, the daughter of Bettors Delight 3.4 metres too strong for Missed By Red for Amanda Turnbull, with Glamour Art third for Alison Chisholm. Cody Winnell - Harness Racing Victoria

Caribbean Blaster will be given the opportunity to return to the racetrack after a minimum six-month layoff. Trainer Andy Gath confirmed today Caribbean Blaster would stand at stud, as reported by Jason Bonnington yesterday on Gait Speed, and said the Victoria Cup, Chariots of Fire and South Australian Cup champion would be given the opportunity to come back from a suspensory injury. “He’ll stand at stud and that means a minimum six months off,” Gath said. “But he’ll get an opportunity to race again. “You never know. A lot of horses do come back and race after having his type of injury.” Caribbean Blaster is part-owned by Alabar Bloodstock and has won 24 races from a 79-start career for in excess of $1.1 million in stakes. Cody Winnell - Harness Racing Victoria  

Harnesslink has learned that the outstanding racehorse, Caribbean Blaster has suffered a career ending injury which has brought a premature end to his harness racing career. The super consistent and talented entire faced the starter on 79 occasions for 24 wins, 21 seconds and 14 thirds for $1,113,677 in stakes. Trained throughout his career by Andy Gath and driven in every start by his wife Kate, Caribbean Blaster finished in the first three in 59 of the 79 races he contested in Australia while he also contested two New Zealand Cups at Addington. He has a string of great performances to his name but two of the better ones would be his win in the $200,000 Chariots Of Fire in 1:52.6 over Excel Stride 1:50.3 ($769,464) and Sushi Sushi 1:54.1 ($1,103,327) and his win in the Victoria Cup in a 1:53.7mr (2240 meters) over Im Themightyquinn 1:50.4 ($4,567,456) and Mah Sish 1:55.4 ($800,911). Part owned by Alabar Bloodstock, the rising seven year old son of champion sire Bettors Delight has all the ingredients to make a successful sire now his racing career has ended. Not only does he have a great racetrack record, but Caribbean Blaster is by a great sire from a very strong maternal family. His dam is the Safely Kept mare in Kalypso 2:00.8 ($30,110) who apart from Caribbean Blaster has also produced such smart types as Protikora 1:59 ($212,109) and Kalypson Kid 1:56.4 ($125,351). Kalypso is a half sister to six winners including the classy Grand Stride 1:52.4 ($324,658) while his third dam has left nine winners including smart types such as Heezgotattitude 1:56.8 ($157,987) and Zaneden 1:56.6 ($123,500). With his sire Bettors Delight in such hot demand, it may well be an opportune time for one of his best performed sons to start his stud career. Harnesslink media

Maryborough was a happy hunting ground for trainer Andy Gath today – the Long Forest harness racing horseman qualifying two horses for the two-year-old trotting fillies Breeders Crown final. Gath’s rising stars Endsino (by Angus Hall out of Jauriol) and Naked Majesty (by Majestic Son out of Starcus) both saluted in their crown heats, with Andy’s wife Kate driving both winners. Endsino started long odds-on in her heat and never looked like getting rolled, leading all the way in a mile rate of 2:04.2 to score a 7.7-metre win over Glenferrie Burn. Naked Majesty won by 3.3m in her heat, overpowering early leader Meadow Valley Road late in the race. Gath sat quietly aboard Naked Majesty behind the leader, the filly peeling to the outside in the stretch to win in a rate 2:05.7. Fabrication recorded a half-neck win in the second heat of the two-year-old colts and geldings crown, defying a fierce challenge from runner-up Kyvalley Boomerang in the home stretch. Driven by Daryl Douglas for Tatura trainer David Abrahams, Fabrication found the front early and controlled the race before Kyvalley Boomerang launched his claim late. Kyvalley Boomerang got on terms with the leader 100 metres from home but it wasn’t to be, the early leader kicking on gamely to earn a ticket into the crown final. King of the trotters, Chris Lang, prevailed victorious with One Over Da Moon in the three-year-old trotters second heat. The colt by Majestic Son cruised around the field early to find the lead before going to the line with a 2.1-metre advantage over runner-up Four Lillies, with underrated Coimadai Lodge hitting the line hard out wide for third. Shared Interest announced himself a major player in the two-year-old colts and geldings’ division with a comfortable heat win over race favourite Eljaykay Phoenix. Driven by Nathan Jack, Shared Interest cruised up to the long odds-on elect at the 400m, eventually peeling into the sprint lane to shoot clear for a 3.3m win. Eljaykay Phoenix battled on for second, but has clearly come back to his rivals somewhat after dominating throughout the Vicbred Super Series, while Illawong Armstrong was third beaten 22.1m. Our Twentyten took out the final Breeders Crown heat for the day, the Brent Lilley trained and Rodney Petroff driven son of Muscles Yankee 3.7 metres too strong for Claudys Princess in their three-year-olds heat. Filly Claudys Princess punched the breeze throughout and battled on gamely for second, while Asdenro secured a beaut run on the leader’s back and was a clear third. by Cody Winnell Harness Racing Victoria

The form from last weekend's Tabcorp Park Melton Cup heats carried through to the series final last night. Maximan and Exciteusinthecity, both heat winners, finished one-two in the 2240-metre final last night with Kate Gath piloting Andy Gath trained Maximan to a 4.8-metre win in 1:56.8. Maximan led from gate three with Exciteusinthecity straight to the breeze for Tim McLean from four. From the back row Ginger Bliss carved through early to be one-one but then galloped and was retired from the race. The two pacemakers dictated terms before Maximan upped the ante down the back stretch and had Exciteusinthecity being driven along at the home bend. The chasing brigade of swoopers tried valiantly in the home straight but Maximan pulled out plenty, while Exciteusinthecity fended off the late challengers to finish second. Emma Stewart trained pair Metro Mike and The Good Times clocked in third and fourth. David Aiken's My High Expectations took the win in the Group 3 Sumthingaboutmaori Trotters Free for All over 2240m earlier in the night, the seven-year-old defeating Sunset Invasion by 2.4m in 1:59.1. The Aiken stable had a winning double on the night, with eight-year-old Falcon Seelster horse Smudge Bromac taking out the Homestead Stud Claiming Pace with Josh Aiken in the cart. Meanwhile, Terang star Keayang Cullen continued his winning form by capturing the Blacks A Fake Free for All over 1720m with Jason Lee aboard. The six-year-old son of Christian Cullen has now won five straight races and his winning mile rate of 1:53.8 is the quickest he’s gone since his Inter Dominion heat win at Melton in February. Cody Winnell      

Andy Gath’s rising star two-year-old Padrisimo has been scratched from tomorrow night’s Breeders Crown heats at Shepparton. Gath told Harness Racing Victoria this morning the horse would be scoped and is possibly suffering a cold, which is the affliction that ruled him out of the Harness Jewels in New Zealand earlier this year. “It is bad luck but you’ve just got to put the horse first,” Gath said. Birdy Mach spearheads the line-up for the three Breeders Crown two-year-old colts and geldings heats at Shepparton. Belinda and Luke McCarthy’s colt will line up in gate four in heat 11 of the series (Race 7 at Shepparton), hoping to bounce back after a shock defeat in the Tatlow Stakes last start. Birdy Mach took a two-from-two record into the Tatlow and was heavily backed before having his colours lowered by Kept Under Wraps. Team McCarthy has huge wraps on the son of Mach Three though, and if he can reproduce his Sydney form he will be very hard to beat. Kept Under Wraps is back for another crack though and has drawn pole in his bid to beat Birdy Mach again. The Brent Lilley trained son of Bettors Delight will be driven by in-form reinsman Greg Sugars and another victory would thrust him to the top of betting calculations for the Crown finals. Gath-trained Burnaholeinmypocket will contest the same heat as Birdy Mach but is drawn seven and will find it tough, his trainer says. “He’s a very quality racehorse but the way the numbers have fallen realistically there’s no way he can run in the first two,” Gath said. “But we’re not too deterred because realistically the first five or six in the repechage can usually make their way into the final.” The first of the three heats tomorrow will feature Vicbred Super Series champion Feeling Arty. Trainer-driver Cameron Maggs is hoping Feeling Arty can bounce back after dropping out badly in the Tatlow last time out. “I followed through OK last time but I just couldn’t get in unfortunately and when they run those times it makes it tough,” Maggs said. “I was a bit disappointed. His recovery wasn’t real good on the night but he ate up afterwards and has worked good since.” Maggs said although Feeling Arty led throughout his Vicbred campaign the horse had previously raced off the speed. “I’ll probably have to follow through again … but the only time he’s led in his races are in those Vicbred races,” he said. “He can sit in behind them and come with a run at the finish if he needs to race that way.” By Cody Winnell (Harness Racing Victoria)

Australian trotters are getting faster every year as a result of smarter breeding and modern training techniques. And the fact the Group 1 Seelite Windows and Doors Group 1 Redwood Classic at Maryborough field gets better every year is a direct correlation to Australia’s burgeoning passion for the squaregaiter. David Aiken-trained Eljaykay Phoenix is the favourite for Sunday’s $50,505 two-year-old Classic despite a second-row draw (gate 10) in the stand-start race. The standing start will be relatively new to most of the runners, who have been contesting mobile-start races of late as they look to etch their names among the country’s leading juvenile trotting ranks in races such as the Vicbred Super Series. Eljaykay Phoenix won the colts and geldings’ Super Series final with panache, comfortably accounting for runner-up Illawong Helios and third placegetter Black Valley – both of whom he meets again on Sunday. Eljaykay Phoenix has won five out of six starts but interestingly his only defeat has come at his only stand-start race. New Zealand’s champion two-year-old trotter My Arya has drawn gate one on Sunday, the Brent Lilley-trained, Mark Purdon-driven daughter of Angus Hall out to follow in the footsteps of previous Redwood filly winners Lady Thor (1987), Truscott Dawn (1995), Lacey Truscott (1997), Petite Morley (1998), Jauriol (2004), Elusive Charm (2009), Maidstone Miss (2011) and Daenarys Targaryen (2013). My Arya comfortably won her Australian debut race at Melton’s Tabcorp Park last weekend off a 10m handicap in a stand-start race. Early money has come for New South Wales raider Twice As Much, which is unbeaten in two runs to date at Menangle and will be driven by gun reinsman Luke McCarthy. Twice As Much opened $12 and had shortened into $8 as of Thursday with TAB fixed odds. Andy Gath has two runners entered in this year’s Redwood, impressive last-start Super Series fillies’ winner Endsino, which has drawn gate eight and will be driven by Kate Gath, and Naked Majesty, which will start from gate five for John Caldow. “It’s a bit of a tricky draw for Endsino and being a filly taking on the boys is always a bit hard,” Gath said of Endsino, whose mother Jauriol is a past Redwood champion. “These races can be about being in the right place at the right time. If you trot the best on the day you’re always a chance. “Naked Majesty bombed the start last time but she went really good after that. If she gets away good, there’s probably not much between my two.” Trainer-driver Jodi Quinlan will start Illawong Armstrong in the Classic, the impressive gelding finishing second to Eljaykay Phoenix in the Super Series Final. Illawong Armstrong has won four of six starts and Quinlan has a huge opinion of him, but his manners can be a worry. If he trots, he’s a huge chance. The Redwood Classic is Race 5 on Saturday’s Maryborough program and is scheduled to start at 2.06pm. By Cody Winnell (Harness Racing Australia)

As brilliant as Birdy Mach might be, harness racing punters won’t be ignoring the undefeated Andy Gath-trained Burnaholeinmypocket in the Garrards Horse and Hound Tatlow Stakes for 2YO colts and geldings on Saturday night at Tabcorp Park Melton. The son of Bettors Delight boasts impeccable form lines; beating subsequent Group 1 winners despite starting from awkward draws and working in the run at both his starts to date. Burnaholeinmypocket sprouted wings late in his debut race, beating Justbritell (winner of the Shakamaker Classic at Melton in March) by 1.9m and Feeling Arty (winner of the Group 1 Vicbred Super Series colts’ and geldings’ final) by 7.3m. At start number two, Burnaholeinmypocket drifted a long way back early from gate seven before getting caught three-wide with no cover on the last lap. Despite covering a stack of ground from the bell to the finish post, Burnaholeinmypocket still proved 1.7m too good for Waves Of Fire, who would go on to win the Group 1 Nursery Final at Albion Park in 1:58.4. “He’s pretty gifted,” Gath said of his fledgling gelding. Asked if gate one was a definite bonus, the Long Forest trainer responded: “Always”, adding: “He had the second row at his first start and then seven at his second. I think he’ll hold his own out of the gate. Whether or not he can hold out Birdy Mach, we’ll wait and see, but my bloke’s shown he’s very strong.” Birdy Mach is the likely thorn in Burnaholeinmypocket’s side; the Sydney colt unbeaten in two runs at Menangle and from the powerful Belinda McCarthy yard at Cobbitty. Such is the boom about the son of Mach Three that champion reinsman Luke McCarthy said on Tuesday: “He’s right up there with the best two-year-olds I’ve ever driven”. Birdy Mach has blitzed his rivals in two runs so far, and on debut last month he clocked a 1:53.8 mile rate (last half 55.7secs). Saturday’s Tatlow field is full of top-quality youngsters including Kept Under Wraps, winner of three of five starts and a member of the Brent Lilley team, David Aiken-trained Show Me The Bling, runner-up in his Vicbred Super Series semi-final and the final, and Feeling Arty, who provided trainer-driver Cameron Maggs with his maiden Group 1 success recently in the Super Series at Melton. Gath will line up Looks Like Heaven in the fillies’ Tatlow Stakes and, like her stable-mate in the boys’ section, she’s drawn sweetly. The daughter of Lombo Mandingo will begin from pole if emergency Bubbling Gypsy fails to gain a start. Looks Like Heaven won on debut at Kilmore before trekking north on a Bathurst Gold Tiara mission. She won her Tiara heat by 8.8m but galloped in the final and finished down the track. “She’s going through a growth spurt at the moment ... We’ll see how she goes on Saturday and make a decision on the Breeders Crown after that,” Gath said. Team McCarthy filly Smooth Showgirl resumes in this race from gate 12 after winning the Group 1 Nursery fillies’ final at Albion Park in May. Also off the back row will be highly rated Kiwi Katy Perry, to be steered by Dexter Dunn, and Michael Stanley’s exciting Soho Tokyo, who ran second beaten a head by Tricky Styx in the 2YO Diamond Classic at Gloucester Park last time out. Hamilton trainer David Lewis will line up Luvumum in the Tatlow, the daughter of Grinfromeartoear boasting a one-from-one record after a sensational debut win at Melton in the Sapling Stakes. Luvumum was backed into $1.70 before scoring by 15.2m over Viva Safari in 1:57.6 in the February race. She’s pretty good. Punters aren’t generally a forgiving lot, so one suspects Lovelist might be on the drift. The Emma Stewart-trained Always A Virgin filly was rolled in the Vicbred Super Series semi-final after being sent out a $1.20 pop and then was beaten 11.8m in the final. Her previous form (four wins from four starts) was solid. The Tatlow Stakes races will be Races 5 and 6 at 7.32pm and 8.05pm. by Cody Winnell Harness Racing Victoria Related Links Fields for Tabcorp Park Melton, Saturday 19 July 2014 Form guide for Tabcorp Park Melton, Saturday 19 July 2014

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