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Ryley Major capped off a massive 2019-2020 season by capturing the Tasmanian Horse of the year title. The announcement was made in front of a packed house at the Hotel Grand Chancellor in Launceston on Saturday night. The Rohan Hillier trained pacer races 22 times during the 2019-2020 season for 14 wins and seven placings. His feature wins included the Group 2 Tasmania Cup, the Group 3 Tassie Golden Apple and the Listed Hobart Pacing Cup. Phillip Young was rewarded for his significant contribution to the states harness racing industry over many decades when awarded with the states highest honour, the Edgar Tatlow Medal. The full list of winners were; Edgar Tatlow Medal Phillip Young Hall Of Fame inductees Horse’s: Tassy’s Gamble, Napoleon Stone, and Speedy Ben, Trainer: Rupert Peck, Trainer and driver: Rohan Hadley. Participant awards Leading Female Driver: Hannah Van Dongen, Leading Female Trainer: Juanita McKenzie, Leading Junior Driver: Taylor Ford, Leading Driver Gareth Rattray, Leading Trainer Ben Yole, On Camera Performance Award: Ricky Duggan, Welfare Award: Brooke Hammond, Mini Trot Award: Alec MacDonald. Horse of the year awards 2YO Colt and gelding of the year: Agouda Ruler, 2YO Filly of the year: Melnrowley, 3YO Colt and gelding of the year: Kohannah, 3YO Filly of the year: A Spanish Dance, 4YO and older Horse of the year: Ryley Major, 4YO and older Mare of the year: Still Hungover, Tasmanian Horse of the year: Ryley Major, Broodmare of the year: Dead heat between Tania Maree and Shez Ryleymak. BOTRA Awards Beautide Medal: The Shallows, Halwes Medal: Rohan Hillier, Young Achiever: Lachlan Dakin, Achiever: Audrey Hamer.   Duncan Dornauf for Tasracing

The husband and wife team of Greg Sugars and Jess Tubbs start their Tasmanian Autumn Carnival raid on Sunday with two runners from their stable in the island state. 2019 Inter Dominion finalist and multiple Group winner Triple Eight will contest the final heat of the Tasmania Cup, while Momentslikethese will contest the Three Year Old Fillies Championship ahead of Saturday’s Tasmanian Oaks. Triple Eight has won 12 of his 59 starts, with most of those efforts being across the Tasman and will be stepping out for the third time since joining the Jess Tubbs stable after contesting the Hunter and Terang Cup’s his last two outings. “He has performed at the highest level in New Zealand for most of his career. It is very exciting to have him enter our gates,” said Sugars. The gelding looks very well placed in the second and final heat of the Group 2 Tasmania Cup in Hobart tonight, where the American Ideal gelding has a 30-metre back mark to overcome. “He has done a lot of his racing over the long trips and in standing starts, so the conditions are right up his alley,” said Sugars. Triple Eight will start one of the shortest price favourites of the night, opening up at $1.40 this morning over rising local star Cool Water Paddy who is resuming from a break. The first seven horses home qualify for the $75,000 Group 2 Final on Saturday night. Sugars will also take the reins on Momentlikethese in the Three Year Old Fillies Championship, where they will be out to end the winning run of local filly Bridwood Bella who is undefeated after three starts. Momentslikethese has won two of her 14 starts and has been placed on six occasions, and has been racing at the top two-year-old level in Victoria. “She is a bit unlucky as she is in the crop of fillies that is a very strong group that we have seen for some time, last years two-year-old racing was unbelievable really, but she held her own in a lot of the races and made a lot of Group 1 finals, said Sugars. “We are very happy with what she has done, and she seems to be maturing now she has turned three, and hopefully she can bridge the gap on the better ones from last year this year,” added the driver. The filly was narrowly defeated in a Melton trial on 1 March when coming from last to be beaten a head in a solid last half mile. “She has had that one trial, and she did that comfortable, so we thought we would bring her down with Triple Eight,” said Sugars. The filly will stay in the state for Saturday’s Tasmanian Oaks. Tonight's card also sees the running of the Tasmanian Guineas, the final lead-up race ahead of next week's Tasmanian Derby. Meanwhile, Victorian trainer Dean Braun is represented by multiple Group 1 winning mare Our Princess Tiffany and former New Zealand three-year-old filly Annerie in two trials that will be held before the race meeting.   Duncan Dornauf for Tasracing

He’s done it again. Hulking pacer King Of Swing has recorded back-to-back victories in Australasia’s premier speed test, the $1 million Garrards Miracle Mile at TABCORP Park, Menangle last night (Saturday) leading basically all of the way in a time of 1:49.2 defeating his stablemate Expensive Ego and Wolf Stride. The Rocknroll Hanover entire becomes the seventh pacer to record back-to-back victories in the feature sprint joining the likes of Westburn Grant (1989/90), Chokin (1993/94), Holmes DG (1999/2000), Sokyola (2003/04), Be Good Johnny (2005/06) and Smoken Up (2010/11). Only King Of Swing and Smoken Up have gone back-to-back at Menangle when the race was moved from Harold Park back in 2009. West Australian Village Kid also won two Miracle Miles, but the wins were split by New Zealand pacer Master Mood. The victory provides trainer Belinda McCarthy with her second Miracle Mile trophy after scoring with Baby Bling back in 2013 while her husband driver Luke also registered his second win after partnering King Of Swing last year. Their pair of victories places them alongside John (father & father-in-law) as dual winners of the famed sprint. King Of Swing becomes the first pacer to record back-to-back victories for two different trainers, Craig Cross prepared him last year while McCarthy put the polish on the six-year-old last night. McCarthy becomes the most successful female trainer in the event’s history with two victories although Natalie Rasmussen was part of both Have Faith In Me (2016) and Spankem (2019) but not officially recognized as part of the training combination back in 2016. Also, it’s the second straight year where Luke McCarthy has beaten David Moran (Expensive Ego) in the feature following King Of Swing downing Lochinvar Art last year. With the McCarthy stable providing three (3) of the eight (8) starters, they finished 1st, 2nd and 5th while the last stable to have three starters in the race was the All Stars (Mark Purdon & Natalie Rasmussen) back in 2019 and they finished 1st, 2nd and 4th. King Of Swing becomes the 15th richest Australia/New Zealand bred pacer with earnings of $2,298,796. The list of pacers ahead of him includes Blacks A Fake, Im Themightyquinn, Lazarus, Smoken Up, Monkey King, Lennytheshark, Christen Me, Bit Of A Legend, Shartin (mare), Smolda, Terror To Love, Tiger Tara, Chicago Bull and Changeover. The list of pacers he leapfrogged includes Shakamaker, Our Sir Vancelot, Beautide, Village Kid, Westburn Grant, Elsu, Flashing Red, Holmes DG, Master Musician, Sokyola, Bling It On, Yulestar, Washakie, Chokin, Auckland Reactor, Have Faith In Me, Christopher Vance and Luxury Liner. Also, he has become the 7th highest earning stallion behind Lazarus, Lennytheshark, Bit Of A Legend, Terror To Love, Tiger Tara and Changeover. With early fireworks expected, The Black Prince used his inside draw to repel Alta Orlando while King Of Swing floated forward without being chased hard. By the end of the first quarter, King Of Swing had found the front and assumed full control on the race. The first quarter was timed in 26.6 seconds. Heading by the half, King Of Swing dictated terms in front while Expensive Ego moved up on his outside leaving The Black Prince in the trail with Alta Orlando sitting one, one back. The second split was timed in 28.6 seconds with the first half covered in 55.2 seconds. It was the slowest opening half of a Miracle Mile since 2013 (Beautide) when they paced a 55.4 opening half. Since being staged at Menangle, other slower opening halves include Smoken Up (x2 – 56.6 & 56.2) and Monkey King (55.6). Approaching the home turn, King Of Swing was in full control. The third quarter was timed in 28.1 seconds. In the home straight, King Of Swing defied running down and held a game Expensive Ego while Wolf Stride producing another great effort to snatch third. The final split was timed in 25.9 seconds. The winning time was 1:49.2. Last year, King Of Swing clocked a career best time of 1:48.0. Since switching from Gary Hall in Perth, King Of Swing takes his Menangle record to 12 wins from 14 starts. Under the care of Cross and now McCarthy, King Of Swing has won 14 of his 18 starts while banking more than $1.8 million He was placed in the four defeats. Amongst his 14 victories, nine have been recorded in sub 1:50 time with a ‘PB’ of 1:48.0. King Of Swing is raced by Beth Richardson, Mark Congerton, GO Racing (Mick Harvey), Karen Hall, Glen Moore, Sylvie MacGregor plus Rob and Frank Patriarca. The victory also catapults King Of Swing back into the lead of the Australian Pacing Gold Grand Circuit after two races, Lochinvar Art won the opening leg (Hunter Cup) with King Of Swing finishing third before gaining maximum points last night. As the reigning APG Grand Circuit champion, King Of Swing now has 140 points while Lochinvar Art has 100. The next leg of the 2021 APG Grand Circuit is the Gr.1 $250,660 TAB Blacks A Fake at Albion Park on July 24 – another race he won last year!   Chris Barsby

Going back-to-back in Australasia's greatest harness racing sprint race was never going to be easy. Yet King Of Swing made it look that way with another remarkable Group 1 success in tonight's $1m Garrards Miracle Mile at Tabcorp Park Menangle. The Belinda McCarthy-trained and Luke McCarthy-driven superstar did everything he had to in surging to a two-and-a-half metre win over stablemate Expensive Ego (David Moran) and Wolf Stride (Anthony Butt). The predicted early fireworks never really eventuated as The Black Prince held the front from gate one before King Of Swing moved up to his outside and quickly worked past him to take the lead. Watch the race replay click here! To be honest the rest of them were never a chance to run down the superstar son of Rocknroll Hanover as he rated 1:49.1 to win virtually as he pleased. "He's such a smart horse . . . and he's a pleasure to drive," said Luke. "He's had a fairly easy week with plenty of swimming and a few canters and he was right on his game tonight." McCarthy explained that as a professional driver he had a job to do and like the other drivers had to keep his mind on the job and not let the pressure be a factor. "I have so much confidence in this horse . . . he's just a superstar," he said. "He has stamina, he has speed and is just so strong and we really haven't found the bottom of him yet. "Winning a race like this is just such a thrill. "I know it's hard to compare horses from different eras and I've driven some good ones. "But King Of Swing is close to being the best horse I have driven. "And he just keeps getting better; he's unreal." While the race is renowned for the speed it brings, King Of Swing didn't let the others into the race. After a 26.6s first split of the mile he was actually able to 'walk', by his standards in the second split, which was a leisurely 28.6s. That left plenty of fuel in the tank as McCarthy upped the ante with a 28.1 third split before zooming home in 25.9 to give nothing else a chance. Expensive Ego tried hard and lost no admirers with his plucky second while Wolf Stride was one of the few to make ground late for third, albeit four and a half metres behind the second horse. For Menangle racing results click here!   Mandy Madern Club Menangle

IF ever there was a consolation win more deserved at the business end of the Carnival of Miracles, it occurred tonight in the $200,000 APG NSW Derby. No-one has handled the disappointment of losing his stable star Lochinvar Art to injury better than Victorian harness racing trainer-driver David Moran. And the popular horseman, who came here hoping to win a Miracle Mile with 'Locky' will instead go home with another Group One in his baggage after his up-and-coming youngster Patsbeachstorm scored a runaway four-metre win in tonight's 'second' major feature. Most would agree that the Derby had several top chances, but Moran left them all lamenting as the son of Somebeachsomewhere sprinted quickly in the straight to beat Jacks Hawk (Greg Sugars) and local hope Watts Up Sunshine (Cameron Hart), rating 1:55.9 for his final mile. Watch the race replay click here! While Moran would never have the temerity to suggest Patsbeachstorm could ever take the place of Lochinvar Art, he is sure proving a terrific fill-in. "At least that will give us a good reason to have a celebratory drink later tonight," grinned Moran, who gave a relieved salute as he crossed the line. "It's been a tough 12 months, but this fellow is just a beautiful horse . . . he's the type of mate that no-one dislikes. "Seriously, he's just the perfect animal. "These owners have raced a lot of terrific horses and have had a lot of fun doing it. "We had such big plans for this bloke as an early two-year-old but then we nearly lost him. "He was so sick it really was 50-50 there at one stage whether or not he would make it through the night. "So, we had to forget all about the big races there for a while and just work on getting him right." Moran drove the perfect race on Patsbeachstorm and managed to land a one-one trail with fellow Victorian Act Now settling in front and Idyllic enduring a hard run outside the leader with Captain Crusader sitting right behind them. Turning for home Patsbeachstorm stormed to the front and won going away in just the sort of style that Moran would have been hoping his injured superstar Lochinvar Art was tipped by many to do in the $1m Garrards Miracle Mile later in the night. For Menangle racing results click here!   Mandy Madern Club Menangle

ALL week the harness racing experts have been lamenting his absence from the $1m Miracle Mile. And Mach Shard certainly added to that argument with a scintillating win in tonight's $100,000 Ainsworth Free-For-All at Tabcorp Park Menangle. The Belinda McCarthy-trained and Luke McCarthy-driven former Kiwi raced right up to expectations when he romped away from stablemate Star Galleria (Jack Callaghan) and Burnham Boy (Blake Fitzpatrick), rating 1:53.2 in a four-metre win which had class written all over it. Watch the race replay click here! It was a nice consolation success for the six-year-old and Luke later paid tribute to champion New Zealand trainer Barry Purdon for sending the horse across to their stable to chase some of the rich plums on offer here. "With a little bit of luck, he'd have been in the Miracle Mile but he didn't get a clear shot at them until too late last week," he said. "The way he was travelling I knew he would be in the finish and just needed a clear shot at them; he followed Bright Energy and had a lovely run into the race. "I knew he'd finish really well. "He's here to stay and hopefully he'll continue to improve, and we can chase some of the big races along the way. "He's just a lovely horse." McCarthy would agree he might be the perfect horse for next year's Miracle Mile. And the way he put this field of stars, with the race normally regarded as a Miracle Mile consolation race, no-one would argue his credentials. The speed went on early over the mile with One Change, Kowalski Analysis and Balraj jostling for the front and the early honours. While One Change (Shane Graham) held firm, Balraj settled third before coming one off and racing without cover for the rest of the journey. Stablemate Bright Energy landed a one-one trail and Mach Shard finished up with a charmed run in the box seat. From there he looked the winner a long way from home and had little problem rounding them up in the straight. Star Galleria ran home well for second spot with Burnham Boy coming from three back on the pegs t o grab third, just ahead of the fast-finishing Western Sonador. For Menangle racing results click here!   Mandy Madern Club Menangle

HE came, he saw and he conquered. That was the simple equation when superstar New Zealand trotter Majestic Man put paid to Australia's harness racing best trotters with a stunning win in tonight's $50,000 Aquagait Equine Centre Trotters Mile at Tabcorp Park Menangle. And he did it easily. Majestic Man made it three Group 1 successes on this trip to Australia and even facing two weeks in quarantine when he heads home won't dent the joy of showing Australia what they are up against if they have any hope of heading over there later in the year to take on Majestic Man on his home turf. It was a race of changes and as usual it never went the way many expected when Arnold (Luke McCarthy) and Red Hot Tooth (Chris Alford) both missed away at the start while Majestic Man and Victorian visitor Pink Galahs did just the opposite. Pink Galahs forced Brad Williamson and Majestic Man to lower the handlebars probably earlier than they had expected - or wanted to - as the pair went straight into battle when the starter said go. Yet Majestic Man was on his best behavior and was able to hold the lead from barrier three and turned the race into a procession when he won with ridiculous ease, beating another Victorian Always Ready (Blake Fitzpatrick) by six metres, with Pink Galahs (Matthew Craven) a nose away in third place, in a 1:53.5 mile rate. Watch the race replay click here! Earlier Pink Galahs became unsettled in the parade ring and almost landed on her backside when she reared up before going on to the track. That resulted in a vet check with meant the race went a little later than expected. But really there were no excuses for the beaten brigade . . . Majestic Man was just too strong. "That was great and just the icing on the cake for our trip to Australia," said Williamson. "It's been a really nice trip for both of us. "It's never easy winning Group 1s and I must admit Mark Purdon has relegated me to second place in a few of the big ones back at home in New Zealand. "To come here and win a few is just so good and we're over the moon with the way the horse has gone since we've been here in Victoria and now in New South Wales." For Menangle racing results click here!   Mandy Madern Club Menangle

They say patience is a virtue and it's something harness racing trainer Chris Cain has in spades. His persistence finally paid off when Travelnpastyou recorded a breakthrough win in the NR 55 to 65 pace at Echuca last week. The win was the Pyramid Hill hobby trainer's first ever harness racing success. Cain has held a trainer's licence since 2009 and had his first starter in 2011. In the years since, his four horses Barnetts Best, Tobias James, Thunder Buddies and Travelnpastyou had combined for 53 starts for no wins and five placings. That was until last week when the eight-year-old son of Blissful Hall, with young Bendigo driver Jayden Brewin in the sulky, broke through for his first win in eight starts for Cain. Watching Travelnpastyou cross the line in front, 2.8m ahead of Bettor Star, the 43-year-old could not disguise his delight at scoring his first win as a trainer. "I've owned a couple of gallopers that have won before, but I'd never been at the track when that happened, so getting the first win as a trainer was very exciting," "I was fortunate to have my wife (Rachel) and kids (Fletcher, 10, and Harry, 7) on-course, so they had a ball. "The kids were the most excited because when the horse runs a place, they get an ice-cream on the way home. "We only ever have the one horse in work, it's only really a hobby that we have taken on after getting too old for football and with cricket on the wane, so I've needed to find something else to do. "We've poked around with a few - we've only had four horses that we've taken to the races, he just happened to be the first winner." No slouch, Travelnpastyou, who was formerly trained by Charlton's Greg Norman, and before that Scott Stewart and David Miles, has won seven races and been placed nine times in 47 starts. Three of those wins have been at Echuca and three others at Shepparton. On the advice of Brewin, who had driven Travelnpastyou in his previous two starts at Melton and Bendigo, Cain headed to Echuca confident the gelding could sneak a place. "He'd been running well ... I wouldn't say without luck, but he had been going better than people had been giving him credit for," he said. "I've been around long enough to know that you never assume something is going to happen, but I was hoping with a bit of luck he might snare a place. "Young Jayden was pretty confident a win wasn't far away after he first drove him for us. "I was blown away with how much homework Jayden had done when he first jumped on - he pretty much predicted what would happen and it happened to a tee." Chris Cain with recent Echuca winner Travelnpastyou (Kieran Iles Photo) Cain, the son of the late legendary sport and racing journalist Bob Cain and originally from Kilmore, ventured to Pyramid Hill in 2004 to play football close to where his mother grew up at Mologa. He quickly met Rachel - a school teacher - with the couple going on to establish a property on the outskirts of town. They have been dabbling on and off with horses ever since. "We have a 940m track out in the front paddock, which seems to do the trick," Cain said. Travelnpastyou will line up in this Sunday's Birchip Pacing Cup (2150m) and will be driven by Sam Barker. As with each start, Cain said he was just hoping for a bit more improvement from the horse. "It might be hard to beat Greg Norman's horse (Cee Cee In America), but as long as he comes back in one piece we'll be happy.," he said. "We have fun no matter where he finishes. We're pretty lucky, we have a great group of friends who are all in the ownership, so we just want to have a bit of fun with him. "When we got him from Greg (Norman), he was adamant he had a win or two left in him, so hopefully we can keep him up and going." By Kieran Iles Reprinted with permission of The Bendigo Advertiser

James Herbertson is sure to sleep well after what shapes as one extremely busy Sunday of country harness racing in two parts of the state. Firstly, the talented young driver will head to Birchip for six races and then zip over to Shepparton where he has two bookings, including one in the North East Fastners Wangaratta Pacing Cup. If he is able to secure a winner at Birchip, it will make the three-hour drive a much more pleasant one, particularly if he can snare the $4500 Sharp’s Bakery Mallee Bull Pacing Cup with Cee Cee In America for trainer Greg Norman. “He’s first up for a little while, but by far the best horse in the race on form and ability…,” Herbertson told Trots Talk. “He’s drawn inside the back row which isn’t going to make it any easier for him, but he’s got the ability, he’s got the speed and he’s a nice little horse who handles half-mile tracks really well. “He’s got a few things against him, but his ability is definitely there.” Cee Cee In America will face some stiff opposition from the likes of Carload (Michael Laugher), Dot The Eye (Denis McIntyre) and Travelnpastyou (Christopher Cain), who are also off the back row. Herbertson won last year’s Wangaratta Pacing Cup aboard Amanda Turnbull-trained Think About Me and will this year team up with Kevin Wheatley’s Are Doubleyou in the $14,500 event. The horse is a last-start Wagga winner and has come up with gate four in a quality field of 12 runners, which includes Glenn Douglas-trained Major Jodi, Wayne Potter’s Boy From Bondi and Brent Lilley’s I Cast No Shadow. Earlier in the night, Kate Hargreaves’ beloved gelding Well Defined goes for four-straight features when he lines up in the $14,500 Reflex Glass / J & T Joinery Wangaratta Trotters Cup. Again, he has a 30m handicap to deal with, but will have a 10m headstart on backmarker Monaro Mia, who flashed home for third behind Majestic Man in the Group 1 TAB Australian Trotting Grand Prix last weekend. The Birchip card, which includes the TMC enviro Mallee Bull Trotters Cup, kicks off with race one at 12.45pm, with the first at Shepparton for the transferred Wangaratta meeting scheduled to go at 5.45pm. View the full fields click here! The Birchip Harness Racing Club is asking those keen on attending the Sunday meeting to book by emailing LISTEN TO HERBERTSON ON THIS WEEK'S EDITION OF TROTS TALK Trots Media - Harness Racing · Trots Talk: James Herbertson     HRV - Tim O'Connor

Tony Herlihy has never been involved in a group one like it and most of us have never seen one like it. But Krug’s tearaway win in Friday night’s NZ$200,000 Woodlands Northern Derby at Alexandra Park was a thing of raw power and beauty matched only by it shock value. The fact the Dalgety-trained colt won the Derby was no surprise, after he was heavily backed in from $3.20 to $1.80 and the punters who took those odds would have been feeling pretty good after 200m as he strolled to the front. But after a lap things started to go badly wrong as Krug got keener and keener, racing between 12-15 lengths clear with a lap to go. When a high class horse with our greatest ever driver aboard does that you think gear malfunction or he must be striking the sulky with his hind legs but Herlihy says that wasn’t the case. “He just got very stirred up and the further we weren’t the worse he got. I realised after about 200m of trying to calm him down he wasn’t interested so I just went with him,” said The Iceman. “Usually when something like that happens they can’t hold on and win but Cran had him so fit and he did a huge job. “I bloody glad he did cause I would have looked silly otherwise. I can’t ever remember having that happen quite like that before.” While horses who race that clear rarely hold on at the highest level it was obvious at the 400m the chasers weren’t chasing fast enough and it was Luke John who closed the gap to three and a half lengths with American Dealer his usual brave third. But all anybody could talk about was Krug’s tactics and the drama of the win, which firmly cements him back at the leader of the three-year-old pack, especially after the early favourite for Fridays classic It’s All About Faith dropped out to run last. He will head back to Addington to try and add another Derby, with Ragazzo Mach and a few others waiting to join the fight but with Krug pacing 3:18 for the 2700m mobile, the sixth fastest in Derby history doing so much wrong, he deserves to be favourite for the NZ Derby as well. Not quite so dramatic was Copy That’s win in the Co-Op Taxis City of Auckland Free-For-All as he worked to the front, albeit it in a quick opening 600m, and was never challenged after, holding out a huge late run from Kango. The winner now heads to the Easter Cup meeting while Kango and third-placed Christianshavtime have done enough to suggest they can be open class forces next season as the north looks to replenish those stocks. The other shock of the feature races came in the Greenlane Trotting Cup where Temporale finally got one over Bolt For Brilliance. The race looked as good as over in the middle stages when the hot favourite worked to the lead but he was grabbed on the line by Temporale who sprinted magnificently from the one-one for a no excuses win considering he gave the winner a 10m start. It was one of the biggest wins of young driver Tony Cameron’s career as Temporale downed his former stablemate, reminding us all what a wonderful trotting warrior he is for Michelle Wallis and Bernie Hackett.   Michael Guerin

DAVID Moran came to Sydney planning to deny Team McCarthy tonight’s $1million Garrards Miracle Mile at Menangle — now he wants to win it for them.  Australasia’s richest harness race hasn’t panned out exactly how Victorian-based Moran hoped after he was forced to scratch his long-time favourite Lochinvar Art because of hoof trouble.  But Moran has been stabled at Belinda and Luke McCarthy’s property and got the surprising call from his frenemies to drive second favourite Expensive Ego in tonight’s great race.  “Sure, I’d love to be out there with Arty but he is actually still a a bit sore so we made the right decision pulling him out,” says Moran.  “And now I am on a really good chance thanks to Belinda and Luke and when I roll onto to the track I won’t be thinking about what could have been, I’ll be trying to win.” Expensive Ego was driven by Luke McCarthy to win the Chariots Of Fire two weeks ago and appeals as the greatest danger to stablemate and hot favourite King Of Swing tonight, sitting close to the speed and finishing hard.  For Moran the last few weeks have opened his eyes to just why Team McCarthy is so dominant.  “What they have build on this property is incredible,” explains Moran.  “They have a jog track on an incline, as well as a straight track on an incline, water walkers, normal walkers so the horses are rock hard fit but they get that way without too much pressure being put on their legs.  “So you can see why they are so successful, it is unlike anything else I have seen.” For all the usual pre-Miracle Mile tactics chat the reality is it will take something special to stop King Of Swing defending his title.  He has much higher gate speed than he is usually asked to show and he is likely to be in front after 400m in a race that appears to lack attackers. Even allowing for the class of the swoopers like Expensive Ego, Wolf Stride and Stylish Memphis the sectionals may play against them.  “All three of ours are exactly where they need to be but King is the clear one to beat. And I am confident he will get the lead,” says McCarthy.  The champion horseman rates Mach Shard (R5, No.3) is next best of the night while Moran can get further compensation in the $200,000 NSW Derby with Patsonthebeach (R6, No.8).   by Michael Guerin

King Of Swing’s quest for back-to-back $1million Miracle Mile wins headlines a stellar Menangle card on Saturday night. Our Australian correspondent Adam Hamilton previews the key races, including Majestic Man's tilt at a third Group One victory. RACE 7 – MIRACLE MILE Impossible to tip against KING OF SWING (6). Most likely scenario is ALTA ORLANDO (5) crosses them early and then takes a sit on KING OF SWING, which suits both horses. KING OF SWING is a more complete horse than when he won last year and should be too good. ALTA ORLANDO was good leading last week, but is certainly more lethal with a sit. He looks back to his best was an unlucky third last year. WOLF STRIDE (7) is really on the rise. He’ll need a few things to go wrong for KING OF SWING, but can take advantage if that happens. EXPENSIVE EGO (4) was awesome in the Chariots Of Fire win and winners of that race have been placed in the past three Miracle Miles. STYLISH MEMPHIS (10) is flying, but will be last from the draw and need the race run upside down to have any hope. IGNATIUS (2) could place if he crosses THE BLACK PRINCE (1) early and finds the pegs. Suggested bet: KING OF SWING (6) to win if he touches $1.60 or better. Otherwise, take the KING OF SWING and ALTA ORLANDO quinella. RACE 6 – NSW DERBY Good Derby with depth at the top. PATSBEACHSTORM (8) lacks experience, but oozes speed and potential. Stunning heat win when he gave ACT NOW (6) a big start and easily beat him. By far the fastest heat win. Sure to be further improved, but will need a touch of luck from wide draw. TASTY DELIGHT (3) is the best local. Soft heat win and drawn well, but may be crossed by ACT NOW early. Still a major factor. IDYLLIC (12) is all class and very strong. He’ll need to be from a horror draw though. ACT NOW (6) looks the leader, is tough and will give a good sight. Suggested bet: PATSBEACHSTORM (8) to win at $3 or better. RACE 5 – GROUP 1 AINSWORTH FREE-FOR-ALL Fantastic race where the Belinda McCarthy runners hold the key. MACH SHARD (3) is clear favourite and the probable leader. No luck last week when flashed along the inside late. Stable says he’ll improve a lot for the run as well. STAR GALLERIA (7) had no room at a crucial stage last week, recovered and hit the line well. Real value. BALRAJ (11) is hard to catch, but he came from last out wide and smashed the clock late last week. Sure to be driven forward this time. Respect. WESTERN SONADOR (9) was never in the mix last week, but Newcastle run massive. Extra trip suits. ONE CHANGE (1) tried hard last week and draws well. TURN IT UP (5) is hard to assess. Ripper Queensland form, but disappointed at Newcastle then just OK last week here. Fast out. KOWALSKI ANALYSIS (2) will appreciate the better draw. MAX DELIGHT (12) was disappointing last week, but previous two runs excellent. Can turn it around. Suggested bet: Think STAR GALLERIA (7) is the each-way value at $10 or better. RACE 4 – GROUP 1 NSW TROTTERS’ MILE Looks perfect for MAJESTIC MAN (3) to win his third Group 1 on this Aussie trip. Found the front in Gp1 Grand Prix and won as he liked at Melton last week. Starts from the pole if emergencies come out of this race. Slick beginner. Should win and post a slick mile. PINK GALAHS (5) has a rushed start to this preparation and now looks to be peaking. Lethal turn of speed. Watch for her late. TOUGH MONARCH (9) is the class local and multiple Group 1 winner. Wide draw hurts. Respect. DROP THE HAMMER (4), ALWAYS READY (8) and HAVEHORSEWILLTRAVEL (12) have place claims. Suggested bet: MAJESTIC MAN (3) to win if $1.60 or better. Summary :  BEST BET: R6 N8 Patsbeachstorm ($3 or better) BEST VALUE: R5 N7 Star Galleria ($10 or better each-way) BEST ROUGHIE: R5 N12 Alta Orlando ($12 or better)   by Adam Hamilton

The career of champion squaregaiter Tornado Valley remains alive, with plans to continue racing despite a disappointing performance in the TAB Australian Trotting Grand Prix. The horse pulled up sharply in the feature at Tabcorp Park Melton last weekend, which was his first run since an amazing Group 1 double in the Great Southern Star series during early February. After drawing the back row, Tornado Valley was sent forward and sat parked for much of the last lap but faded significantly in the home straight to finish eighth, beaten more than 16m by Majestic Man. Regular driver Kate Gath, the wife of trainer Andy, told that the nine-year-old had some joint issues, but would be aimed at a return in the coming weeks. “We’ve tended to those and we will just press on,” she said. “We think that the treatment will help and we will give him another start. Hopefully it helps and the plan is to continue at this stage.” Tornado Valley is nearing the $1million mark in stake earnings with 10 Group 1 triumphs, the equal most by any trotter in Australia since 2001. His win in last month’s Great Southern Star was a comeback fairytale, with Gath admitting she had thought the gelding should have been retired before his remarkable performances. The stable has also scratched Majestuoso and Havehorsewilltravel from the Group 1 Trotters Mile at Menangle this Saturday night. Gath said Majestuoso had some feet issues and that Havehorsewilltravel was suffering from a virus, with both to be spelled.   HRV - Tim O'Connor

Adelaide baker and hobby breeder Jack Panagiotou will have mixed feelings when his Roll With Joe colt enters the sale ring at Globe Derby Park on Sunday, March 14. Lot 5 in the Silver Salver South Australian Yearling Sale, the grand looking youngster is the last foal out of Jack’s successful race and broodmare Kiss Me Monty. “I bought her at the SA sales at Morphettville in 2000. She was the first horse I ever raced,” Jack, who formerly trained and drove her, said. At the stud, Kiss Me Monty has produced eight foals of racing age for four winners and two placegetters. They include Milliondollar Kiss, a heat winner of last year’s Allwood and third in the $100,000 Final, Montana’s Jet (1:55.7), a winner of 11 races, the Southern Cross 2YO heat winner Kissed By A Shark and Bad Boy Blues, a placegetter in the Sale Graduate race. Rustlin A Kiss, an unraced daughter of Kiss Me Monty, ranks as the dam of the good Melton winners Whats In The Esky 1:53.1 ($100,933) and Goodtime Rusty 1:54.3 ($91,963). Jack has retained the ownership of three of Kiss Me Monty’s daughters, Milliondollar Kiss, Kiss And Grin and the two-year-old Betterthan A Kiss, who won a trial at Mount Gambier recently. The colt is heavily staked for his two, three and four-year-old racing. Besides the $50,000 Sale Graduate race, he has been nominated for the Southern Cross, Vicbred, Vicbred Platinum and Breeders Crown. He is being prepared by Mandy Pascoe, of Ningana Park, Birdwood. The online catalogue for the sale can be viewed at Printed copies are available at Globe Derby Park and all country tracks in South Australia and Garrard’s Horse & Hound, Melton. For a catalogue or further information contact Gary Newton on phone 0402 978 424 or email   Peter Wharton

Many of New South Wales’ most successful breeders have thrown their weight behind the 2021 Bathurst Gold Crown Yearling Sale, to be conducted by Graeme Board & Co at the Gold Crown Paceway on Sunday, March 21. Heading the list of vendors is Janet and Doug Moore and Ben and Melanie Settree’s Brooklyn Lodge, who are offering 16 yearlings including a half-sister to the Bathurst Gold Bracelet placegetter Brooklyns Best, a half-brother to the Gold Chalice heat winner Brads Luck, a half-sister to the Gold Tiara runner-up Bella Jam Jam, a filly out of the prolific Menangle winner Miss Artistic Tara (1:52.3) and a colt from the Breeders Challenge Regional 2YO Final winner Whispering Lass. Maitland studmaster-breeder Paul Carmody, of Lochend Stud, has a draft of 15 including a dozen by the Artsplace horse Shoobee’s Place, the sire of the classic winners Shoobee Doo, Katchar Shoobee and Merrywood Lynn. Yirribee Pacing Stud, Wagga has entered 10 yearlings by seven different sires including three by last season’s leading NSW first-crop sire Warrawee Needy and fillies by Sweet Lou and Tintin In America. Young breeders David and Rachel Micallef have a four-strong consignment – all out of race-winning mares, while the Dumesny brothers Tony, Bruce and John, are all represented at the sale. Golden Gait Stud, of Wayne and Anne Lamb, and Darren Reay’s Medowie Lodge and Gunning breeder Rikki Cernovskis have all nominated three yearlings.  Other well known breeders with entries include Denis and Jo Howe, Elite Bloodstock, Graeme Gourley, Nathan Varcoe, Matt and Michael Leary, Margot Lennox and John Coffey’s Patrician Park. The sale will be livestreamed with online bidding available. Hard copy catalogues are available from the Bathurst Harness Racing Club. To order a catalogue send an email to The online catalogue can be viewed at  Click on 2021 Bathurst Gold Crown Yearling Sale.   by Peter Wharton

Breeding authority Peter Wharton presents all the harness racing news on breeding from Australia, New Zealand and North America every Friday brought to you by Garrard’s Horse & Hound Three-year-old world record  A fresh world 2400 metre record rating for a three-year-old filly was established by the Bettor’s Delight filly Anntonia of 1:52.9 – bettering the previous record of 1:56.7 held by La Machane – when she won the $200,000 NSW Oaks at Menangle. Anntonia, who has now won five of her 10 starts – she finished second to Beach Music in her heat – is a member of the same family as Franco Hat Trick. Anntonia ranks as a half-sister to the NSW Breeders Challenge winner Miss Halfpenny 1:55 ($234,540), being by Bettor’s Delight from the Christian Cullen mare Perfect Penny (1:58.8), whose dam, the Oaks winner, Threepence 1:57.3 ($253,306), was by Holmes Hanover from Have A Go Franco, by Ok Bye from Heather Franco, by Nero’s B B. Threepence was a sister to a fine racemare in Our Sixpence 1:51.3 ($613,977), who set an Australian mile record for mares winning the 2013 NSW Ladyship Mile. Their dam, Have A Go Franco, was a half-sister to two high class pacers in Franco Hat Trick 1:52 ($659,210) and Franco Heir 1:56.4 ($392,272), both NSW Derby winners. This is the family which produced such winners as Vandanta (1:50), Howard Hughes (1:53), recent winner of the Pinjarra 4YO Classic, Lady Luca (WA Diamond Classic), Magic Franco (1:54.2), Franco Harbourmaster and Silent Major (1:55), who captured the Village Kid Sprint at Northam on the same night as Anntonia won.   Pink Bonnet winner Silk Cloud, the season’s latest two-year-old classic winner, in beating a useful field in the $50,000 Pink Bonnet at Menangle, gives the impression that she could develop into one of next season’s top three-year-olds. Silk Cloud            --Club Menangle Photo   Bought for $13,000 at the 2020 Bathurst Gold Crown Yearling Sale, Silk Cloud is a well developed filly by Shadow Play from Modern Babe, the dam of an earlier winner in Ultra Bliss (2:00.5). Their dam, Modern Babe, was a Modern Art mare from Flawless Babe, by Windshield Wiper from Our Flawless, by Out To Win. It is an interesting fact that there is a double strain of Bye Bye Byrd in Flawless Babe (grand-dam of Silk Cloud), through both Windshield Wiper and Out To Win (sire of the dam of The Unicorn). Modern Babe is a half-sister to a capable pacer in Mirfak Prince, who took a record of 1:56.6, won 32 races and $128,936, Incorruptible 1:55.5 (who won 12) and to the Classic Garry mare Fearless Babe, dam of the Melton winner Fearless Courage (1:58.6). A top flight racemare in Torrent belongs to this family. She won 13 races including the NZ Easter Cup, Timaru Cup and Inter Dominion Consolation.  Amaze, winner of the NZ Derby, the triple NSW Sires Stakes champion Step Outside, Cavaliere Servente, Elite Angel and Jamestown are among many good winning members of Silk Cloud’s family.   Stylish Memphis in 1:49.2 Stylish Memphis, winner of then $200,000 NSW Ladyship Mile in 1:49.2, continues to prove herself in the top bracket among the mares. She is a member of one of NZ’s most successful families, being a four-year-old Bettor’s Delight mare from Memphis Melody (2:00.1), a Badlands Hanover mare who produced others in the Group winners Delightful Memphis 1:51.5 ($507,811) and Memphis Tennessee 1:58.5 ($113,015), Harley Earl 1:55.3 ($146,184) and Virginia Lightning (1:57.1). Memphis Melody was out of Ok Deb (1:58.1), a Victoria Oaks heat winner by Ok Bye from the Dundee Adios mare Deborah Dundee, dam of a fine racemare in Adios Dream 1:58.4 ($167,597) and the NZ Sires Stakes 2YO Final winner Advance Debra, who, in turn, of the mighty Courage Under Fire 1:54.2 ($1.4 million) and a top juvenile pacer in Advance Attack 1:57.2 ($406,094). Other members of this family, which was founded in NZ by the Bribery mare Entice, were Jesse Duke (NZ Sires Stakes 2YO Final and Harness Jewels), the Breeders Crown champion Cyclone Kate (1:50.6), Passion Stride and last year’s outstanding WA youngster Black Jack Baby.   Siring feat to Fly Like An Eagle Rather a notable siring feat was credited to the Mach Three horse Fly Like An Eagle at Gloucester Park last Friday, when he provided the quinella pair in the Group 1 APG 2YO Fillies Sales Classic Final. Valhalla Miss, a grand type of filly, led throughout to defeat Extraordinary Mary (second), and his third runner, Shes An Eagle, finished a respectable seventh. Fly Like An Eagle’s oldest stock are four-year-olds, and they include Chasing The Wind (a Group winner in NSW as a two-year-old), Dancelikeanangel, Dancinginthedark and Mondos Eagle. Fly Like An Eagle was the first son of Mach Three to stand stud in WA, and his early crops have been most impressive. Based at Allwood Stud, Fly Like An Eagle is closely related to the champion NZ pacer and now highly successful sire Changeover.    Well related three-year-old filly Just For Love, who won the $50,000 APG 3YO Fillies Sales Classic at Gloucester Park, showed ability as a two-year-old last season when she finished second to Black Jack Baby in the Westbred Classic. She has opened her three-year-old season on a winning note and will be well in line for the major juvenile classics. Just For Love is a filly by the Matt’s Scooter horse, Mach Three, from Harper Grace (1:55.5), the dam of the recent Sales Classic two-year-old heat winner Rock On Top (1:58). Harper Grace ranks as a half-sister to a smart juvenile and Australian Pacing Gold winner in Bus To Harland, being by Grinfromeartoear from Tiz Herself, by Exotic Earl from the noted producer Laurick’s Pride, by Dale’s Gift. Just For Love was bred by prominent Perth breeder Steve Johnson.   Star trotter by Father Patrick Have No Fear, a brilliant straightout trotter by the American sire Father Patrick from Without Fear (a member of the same maternal line as the Derby winner Stress Factor), advanced strong claims to being the best young trotter in the country when he won the Group 1 Need For Speed Prince Final at Melton. Have No Fear                     -- Stuart McCormick Photo   A three-year-old, Have No Fear is in his second season of racing, but from nine starts he has won five and been twice placed. He has a background of trotting blood second-to-none. Apart from being by Father Patrick, and one of his first frozen crop, Have No Fear is out of the Sundon mare Without Fear (6 wins), a sister to a top NZ filly trotter in Fear Factor, being out of Fickle, by Wide Acclaim from Frivolous, by Rodney Day from the Gay Piper mare Gay Helen, whose family today is one of the best in the NZ stud book. It includes Derby winners in Habibti and Stress Factor and other fine trotters in Our Renezmae (Breeders Crown 2YO), the Dominion Handicap winner Habibti Inta, Habibti Ivy (NZ Oaks), Saratoga and Prince Fearless (Central Victorian Championship).   WA Sales Classic winner Bought for $30,000 and now a winner of $61,925, Floewriter became the first two-year-old classic winner for the season when he won the $100,000 APG Sales Classic Final at Gloucester Park. By the Artsplace horse Sportswriter, Floewriter is out of Maddy White (1:56.9), by the Australian bred horse Lombo Mandingo. Maddy White left an earlier winner in Star Of Diamonds (1:58.4), who was twice placed in Group company. Maddy White, the winner of 11 races and $110,824 in stakes, was out of Benjor Maddy Lombo, by Perfect Art from Magic Maddy Lombo, by Classic Garry and tracing to the noted family founder in Bessie B. Maddy White was a half-sister to the WA Derby and Governor’s Cup winner Handsandwheels 1:53.2 ($666,379), the WA 3YO Sales Classic winner Rock Me Over 1:53.8 ($292,119) and the promising three-year-old Squinta (1:58.6). Their dam, Benjor Maddy Lombo, was a half-sister to two high class pacers in Suave Stuey Lombo 1:49.6 ($587,032) and Miss Trickin Lombo 1:53.3 ($230,312) and to the Panorama mare Sweet Maddy Lombo 1:59.5 ($106,588), a Group winning juvenile who became the dam of the Menangle winner Lombo Idle Belief (1:51.1). The Bessie B family had a terrific influence on NZ and Australian breeding through several branches.   First winners by Always B Miki Always B Miki (1:46), the equal fastest horse of all-time and who shuttles between North America and Alabar’s Victorian branch, was recently represented by his first Australian winner in the two-year-old gelding Uncle Miki.  He led most of the way and won by open lengths at Bathurst.  The gelding is the second foal from the Village Jasper mare Balcony (1:59.9). A second Always B Miki winner was the two-year-old filly Taking The Miki, who won at her second start at Northam. She is the first foal of All American Dream (1:58.7), a Bettor’s Delight mare.   Need For Speed to Queen Elida The $60,000 Need For Speed Princess, for three-year-old trotting fillies, one of the features of the Aurora Australis carnival at Melton, was won by Queen Elida, a well performed filly by Love You from Queen Kenny. Queen Elida      --Stuart McCormick Photo   Love You, a son of Cocktail Jet, has been one of Europe’s top sires of trotters for many years, and his frozen crops in New Zealand and Australia have produced a cavalcade of stars. He has sired such winners as dual NZ Trotter of the Year Monbet (1:55.2), Enghien (1:57.3), Habibti (1:56.5), Ultimate Stride, Il Pirata, Father Christmas and other top trotters. Love You had sired an earlier winner of the Need For Speed Princess in Amour De Frere. Queen Kenny, the Group winning dam of Queen Elida, was by Monarchy, who also distinguished himself as a sire of trotters, from Nice One Kenny, the dam of the Menangle winner Princess Kenny (1:55.3), Royal Kenny (2:00.5) and the promising Here Comes Kyvalley and the second dam of the ill-fated Im Jake The Mus (1:58.8). This has been a most successful family, as One Over Kenny, a sister to Nice One Kenny, was one of NZ’s greatest ever trotting mares and ranked as the dam of the top colt trotters One Over Da Moon, now at the stud in NZ, and Ultimate Stride. The latest Need For Speed Princess winner, Queen Elida, has certainly a wealth of successful trotting blood on both sides of her pedigree.   by Peter Wharton

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