Peter Manning’s Armbro Invasion/Free Rider 3-Y-0 gelding Weregonnarock brought up four wins in a row by taking out the Seelite Windows & Doors Vicbred Trotters Mobile for T0 class over 2190 metres at Maryborough on Friday November 22, but not before giving his supporters heart flutters. In what was a superb performance, Weregonnarock galloped away from the pole as the start was effected settling a long last, with Thekiwikid working to the front. Commencing a forward move three wide racing for the bell, Weregonnarock was left on a limb until he exploded to the front on the final bend and raced away to record a brilliant 18.6 metre victory in advance of Ships Shui (three back the markers) and Ballan Road from mid-field in a rate of 2-03. Western District (Hawkesdale) trainer Graham Gee’s very smart Blissful Hall/Weona Rena 4-Y-0 entire Bliss Man chalked up his 6th victory when successful in the Redpath Tyres & Battery Service Pace for C1 class over 1690 metres. Taking a concession for Terang young gun Jason Lee, Bliss Man was sent forward from outside the front row to lead for the majority of the trip in easily accounting for Zedaguy which trailed after leading out, with Rosy Ogrady Lombo (one/one) last lap third. The mile rate 1-55.1. Jason was to finish the day with a double after piloting cousin Matt Craven’s Kiwi bred 5-Y-0 Real Desire/Explosive Franco gelding Dont Tell Jim to victory in the Bristol Hill Motor Inn Pace for C1 class over 2190 metres. First up since July, Dont Tell Jim enjoyed a cosy passage on the back of the leader Rapid Art Beat after the favourite Bettor Move galloped in the back straight on the first occasion. \Using the sprint lane, Dont Tell Jim sailed to the front in the shadows of the post to score from the pacemaker and a death-seating Exsalont in a rate of 2-00.6. Congupna trainer Danny Ferris has a potential top liner in Bacardi Lindy/Strapon filly Barefoot Sally who made it two from three when successful in the Yield Boko @ Aldebaran Park 3-Y-0 Trotters Mobile over 2190 metres. Driven by Chris Lang (Jnr), Barefoot Sally starting solo on the second row, possied one/one trailing the favourite Spidergrace (gate six) which shadowed the pacemaker Riegle Deception (gate four). Easing wide on straightening as Spidergrace got the better of the leader, Barefoot Sally ran home stylishly to register a 1.2 metre victory over Spidergrace, with Rumbaron third after trailing the front runner. The mile rate 2-03.8. Eight year old Dream Vacation/Maori Princess gelding Maori Vacation snared the Red Samurai Trotters Handicap for T3 or better class over 2190 metres for veteran Stanhope trainer Malcolm Shaw. Driven by Gavin Lang, Maori Vacation first up since August settled mid-field in the moving line after starting from 20 metres, with old timer Kingofthedesert leading from the pole. Set alight three wide racing for the bell, Maori Vacation had little difficulty in parking outside the leader and was always travelling kindly. Surging to the front approaching the home turn, Maori Vacation had plenty in hand at the finish, winning by 1.7 metres from Balletto (four wide home turn after a bad beginning) and Imagunnadogood (three wide last lap) in a rate of 2-06. The Adam Kelly/Gavin Lang (Coimadai) combination were successful with Kiwi bred 6-Y-0 In The Pocket/Lite Jade mare Lite Jagermeister in the Maryborough & District Advertiser Pace for C5 & C6 class over 1690 metres. Taking advantage of a mares concession, Lite Jagermeister (gate four) was sent forward to obtain the front running racing for the bell off the pole marker Night Affair. Travelling smoothly for the rest of the journey, Lite Jagermeister coasted to the wire 5.3 metres in advance of Night Affair in a rate of 1-56.3, with The Unionist (three wide last lap from last) running home strongly for third. Len Baker
Great Western trainer Peter Manning’s promising Armbro Invasion/Free Rider gelding Weregonnarock after three consecutive seconds, finally cracked it for a victory when successful in the Oktoberfest At Lord’s Raceway 19 October 3-Y-0 Trotters Handicap over 2150 metres at Bendigo on Wednesday October 2. Driven by daughter Kerryn, Weregonnarock led throughout from barrier two to score by a nose over her nemesis Dell Boy which trailed after coming from a 20 metre backmark (Dell Boy had beaten him on the last two occasions), with Girls Go First a gap away in third place. The mile rate 2-07.6. Wahring’s Daniel Jack was successful with Mach Three/Shards A Flyin filly Shards Secret who greeted the judge in the Johnny Tee Bendigo Horse Of The Year 3-Y-0 Pace over 2150 metres. Making her second race appearance, Shards Secret was driven with plenty of vigour from the pole to hold out all challengers at the start and was never headed, defeating Stunning Grin (one/one) which switched to the sprint lane on turning and the hot favourite Eliseos Falcon which had a torrid passage outside the winner. The mile rate 1-59.2. Nagambie’s Chris Lang (Jnr) is making a name for himself, especially with the trotters and landed the Flying It At Springvale Stud Castlemaine Trotters Mobile for T2 to T4 class over 2150 metres with former Kiwi Lysenko. Sent forward from gate four to park outside the speedy pacemaker Mister Gunsen, Lysenko a 6-Y-0 gelded son of Sundon and Dispride outstayed his rivals to score a strong victory over Just Call Me Earl along the sprint lane from three back the markers and Im Demimondaine which trailed the leader, moving away from the markers to be one/one on straightening. The mile rate 2-02.2. Avenel trainer Wayne Potter combined with Shepparton’s Nathan Jack to land the Chris Alford Premier Driver Pace for C2 class over 2150 metres with 5-Y-0 Armbro Operative/Eve Of Eden mare Tombstone Eden in a rate of 1-59.2. Taken back off the gate from barrier six to settle with most of the field ahead of her, Tombstone Eden gained a beaut ride home three wide on the back of Fergus Mactavish in the final circuit and when taken four wide at the straight entrance, rushed home at a great rate to score from a death-seating Drivingwithtess and Dusty Smiles which led. Another Avenel winner of the night was consistent 4-Y-0 P Forty Seven/Our Lifes A Ball gelding Luke Hobbs for David Aiken in the Haydon Gray Premier Concession Driver Pace for C1 class over 1650 metres. Driven by Greg Sugars, Luke Hobbs led for most of the journey in accounting for Who Broke Our Halo which moved to face the breeze, with Gohardorgohome third after leading out from gate three, before taking a trail on the winner. The mile rate 1-59.4. By Len Baker
Victorian trotting was held at Kilmore on Thursday September 19, with three of the seven events on the card being for the squairgaiters. Four year old Armbro Variable/Maoris Dream mare Bella Cheval registered her third victory in 13 race appearances when successful in the George & Win Brosnan Memorial Trotters Mobile for T0 & T1 class (mares) over 2180 metres. Trained by Sutton Grange (Bendigo District) mentor Ross Graham, Bella Cheval with Daryl Douglas in the sulky led throughout from the pole, streeting her rivals to score by 16 metres in 2-05.5 from Charliesbaby along the sprint lane from three back the markers, with Packed Up Early third after following the winner. The Last Chance To Buy Club 200 3-Y-0 Trotters Handicap over 2150 metres saw smart Armbro Invasion/Belle Kiri gelding Dell Boy bring up a hat-trick of wins. Trained at Diggers Rest by Carlo Corso and driven by veteran Peter Wells,Dell Boy began brilliantly from the 10 metre mark to trail the running pole line leader Weregonnarock and was always travelling kindly. Eased outside Weregonnarock on the final bend, Dell Boy ran to the wire strongly to score a comfortable 5.6 metre victory in 2-06.3 over the leader, with Girls Go First running home late from five back the markers to finish third. Very honest 6-Y-0 Wind Cries Maori/Salute The Rain gelding Salute The Wind chalked up victory number seven when greeting the judge in the Down Under Muscles Standing At Eldarin Park Trotters Mobile for T2 to T4 class over 2180 metres. Trained and driven by Echuca/Moama's Ron Gilligan, Salute The Wind enjoyed the run of the race one/one from gate four, with the speedy beginner Mister Gunsen flying away from gate two to assume control, a role he relishes. Although momentarily pocketed in the last lap when Chipmont Lad made a short lived three wide forward move, Salute The Wind when taken into the clear on straightening, motored to the post out wide to nab Mister Gunsen in the last stride ( a head the winning margin). Conchs Critter finished third after trailing the winner. The mile rate 2-03.4. Whittlesea trainer/driver Mark Peace has a promising mare by the name of Joelles Dream which brought up two wins in a row by taking the Mr Rental Thomastown Pace for C1 class (mares) over 1690 metres in a rate of 1-59.9. Unable to cross the speedy Statelyness (gate five), Joelles Dream (gate three) was trapped in the open until Linga Longa Lass circled the field from near last to join the leader at the bell. Given a breather for the final circuit, Joelles Dream a 4-Y-0 daughter of Browning Blue Chip and Above The Rest when taken wide on straightening, ran home stylishly to score by 8.1 metres over Isabelle Delacour along the sprint lane after following the leader, with Three Gold Bars (one/two - three wide last lap) third. Len Baker
Stig could race until he’s 14 according to co-owner Jim Boyd. For now trainer Paul Nairn is just taking one race at a time with the 2012-2013 Trotter-of-the-Year. The 11-year-old gelding makes his return to racing at Addington This Friday night (September 6) in the $12,000 Sims Metals Handicap Trot. Stig will start from the 30m mark. “This will be his lead-up to the Ordeal Cup. He’s pretty sound at the moment. Any little niggles he’s had in the past certainly haven’t got any worse. “We’ve had no hiccups in his preparation so there’s no reason why he can’t carry on from where he left off last season. He’s certainly showing no signs of his age or soreness,” Nairn said. “And he’s still got that will to win which is encouraging,” he added. Nairn said Stig was in the same condition as what he was this time last year, but was starting his racing a month earlier. He said he would be better for the run but his natural talent would take him close to winning. The more seasoned fellow 30m back-markers The Fiery Ginga and Sovereignty will be toughest for Stig to beat. The son of Armbro Invasion started last season with a second behind Sovereignty at Addington on October 5 and then went on to win six of his 12 starts and $227,029 – including the Rowe Cup in May. Now the winner of 23 of his 53 starts and $816,486 Stig is looking to make amends of his second behind I Can Doosit in last year’s Dominion. His Hamilton based co-owner Boyd, who is renowned for writing and then singing a song about Stig after each of his victories, said he was set to put pen to paper again this season. “I wrote one when he won Trotter-of-the-Year and I also wrote one when he won the Rowe Cup. I’m getting one ready for the Dominion,” Boyd said. Nairn has won two Rowe Cups with Inspire in 2006 and Stig this year. He will have a three-pronged attack on the Group Ones this year with Dr Hook and Raydon also representing the stable. “Dr Hook is also coming along nicely and Raydon was sent to us from up north from Matt Hickey and is progressing well. We should see him at the end of the month,” Nairn said. As for another Australia mission with Stig, Nairn replied: “I’m playing that one by ear. There are not many 2700 races over there and he would have to line up in sprint races against much younger horses. “There’s also not as much money on offer over there for the trotters as what there is here. We’ll attack the Dominion and then head north for the racing at Alexandra Park and Cambridge again. We worry about Australia then,” Nairn said. As for Boyd: “I just want to keep writing songs about him,” Boyd said. Stig is also owned by Tim and Andrea Butt, Mrs R.I. Boyd, R.G. Thomas, and Mrs J.A. Gordon. He was bred by Jessleigh Harness Bloodstock. By Duane Ranger (Harness Racing New Zealand)
The Maryborough HRC again showed their support for the squaregaiter by staging four trotting events on a nine race card on Wednesday August 28, with all races over 1690 metres. The program was the annual "Humbletonian Day" sponsored by Harness Breeders (Vic) for horses which have not won a race. Majestic Son/Steffi Jay gelding Majestic Jess at start number eight was successful in the Two Year Old Vicbred Trotters Mobile. Trained at Nagambie by Chris Lang and driven by Chris Alford, Majestic Ess Jay spent most of the race in the open from gate five, before dropping to the back of the leader Suavemente approaching the home turn. Moving outside the pacemaker on straightening, Majestic Ess Jay raced clear when Suavemente galloped allowing him to register a 7.6 metre victory over Weregonnarock (one/one) and Sister Of Sonoko from last in a rate of 2-01.1. Consistent Armbro Invasion/Kwik Kiss filly Secret Kiss making her fourth race appearance snared the Three Year Old Trotters Mobile for Bolinda trainer Kari Males. Driven by co-trainer husband Paul, Secret Kiss was given a sweet trip one/one from gate three and was always travelling kindly. Dashing clear on turning, Secret Kiss just lasted by a half head from the fast finishing Desert Spur (one/three - three wide last lap) in a rate of 2-01.2, with Aldebaran Etta (three back the markers) third. . Wedderburn trainer Nick Youngson's 6-Y-0 Keystone Crosby/Lochlee Navara gelding Lochlee Jacob at start number eight landed the Vicbred Trotters Mobile for T0 class. Trapped three wide from gate six, Lochlee Jacob driven by Mark Hayes was able to work his way forward to lead and was never headed, scoring by a half neck in advance of the favourite Caledonian Breeze in 2-02.7 which had his chance along the sprint lane after trailing. Aye Rodrigues was a further metre away in third place after racing in the open. . Bacardi Lindy/Figment gelding Did I Imagine That landed the second Three Year Old Trotters Mobile at start number ten. Trained and driven by Chris Lang for the Abrahams Family under the banner of Veritas Holdings, Did I Imagine That was given the run of the race from the pole trailing Speedy Rambo (gate four). Taken to the outside on turning, Did I Imagine That finished strongly to score by 3.6 metres from the leader in a rate of 2-00 even, with Jay Gee third from mid-field. Len Baker
Veteran Sunbury reinsman Peter Wells landed a unique driving double at Bray Raceway Ballarat on Saturday August 24, when stablemates Dell Boy and Donkiri both from the Safely Kept mare Belle Kiri, scored in their respective races. Dell Boy a gelded son of Armbro Invasion coming from the 10 metre mark in the Lofra 2-Y-0 Trotters Handicap over 2200 metres, peeled wide off a three wide trail on the back of Coimadai Lodge on the final bend, proving too strong at the finish for Coimadai Lodge by 1.5 metres in a rate of 2-06.9 and in doing so, eclipsed .3 of a second of Blitzthemcalder's juvenile track and class record. Waikare Aviator (one/two) finished third. Five year old Sundon mare Donkiri a former smart juvenile herself, returned to form with a tough victory in the Rinnai Trotters Handicap for T1 or better class also over 2200 metres. Despite doing it tough in the open for the last lap, Donkiri made a late lunge at Action Kosmos which led from the bell to register a last stride head decision in 2-04, with Paris Rose third after following the winner throughout. Peter could easily go into the Guiness Book Of Records for this (age) achievement. It was a week to remember for little known Diggers Rest trainer Carlo Corso who prepares the pair, as he was also successful at Horsham the previous Thursday with Just Call Me Mac in the Get Well Tony Logan 2-Y-0 Pace over 1700 metres. It was also a great week for owner/breeder John McHugh who has a share in all three winners. Peter Wells rising 80 years of age, first came to Australia from New Zealand to compete with a mare named Super Royal in the 1959 (Melbourne) Inter Dominions prior to making Melbourne home and has been involved with a number of smart horses including the great Cardigan Bay, Waitaki Hanover, Koranui and Super Scope Len Baker
West Melton based harness racing trainer Ken Ford never goes too long without a handy trotter in the stable and looks to have found another one in the form of Rebma.
The Maryborough meeting held on Monday June 3 belonged to the Melton area, with no less than six of the eight race harness racing card having a connection.
Champion third generation Condell Park harness racing reinsman Darren Binskin will target the Allied Express 2013 Probus Clubs Cup at 1.54 pm on Monday, May 20th - the first event on the Bankstown Paceway fixture card as part of the 29th Schweppes Sydney Cup Carnival of Harness Racing.
The Shepparton harness racing meeting on Saturday May 11 was huge for the Bolinda/ Monegeetta area, with Lisa and David Miles almost pulling off the quaddie only to be stopped by neighbour Paul Males.
Three years ago it appeared Stig's harness racing career was over. A leg injury had left him doing promotion work for dual sulkies. Fast forward 36 months and the rising 11-year-old is now the Group One $150,000 Rowe Memorial Cup champion for free-for-all trotters.
Great Western trainer Peter Manning and reinswoman daughter Kerryn have long been the dominant force in the western part of the state and it was no different at the Stawell harness racing program held on Monday February 18, with the pair chalking up a treble of winners.
The man who worked for world famous harness racing conditioner Jimmy Takter has brought his own training techniques to New Zealand and now he wants Kiwis to buy into his philosophies.
With I Can Doosit, Escapee and Dr Hook in Australia already, and Sovereignty not in the field, the Paul Nairn trained Stig looks all but a harness racing certainty in race three, the Seelite Window & Doors Summer Trotting Free-For-All (Gr3) at Addington on Friday night.
Here's the news from the midst of a crazy holiday harness racing schedule:
Feet and shoeing problems have ensured a stable change for 15-win open class trotter Raydon. The 8-year-old gelding will now join the Pukekohe harness racing stables of Dave and Clare McGowan after spending the last three years with Barry Purdon at Clevedon.