If you build it, they will come. Bringing together Victoria’s two biggest summer gems – the TAB Victoria Cup and the Del-Re National Food Group Hunter Cup – has resulted in what long-time harness racing pundits are describing as the greatest ever Victorian Cup field. Long-time trots form analyst and scribe Bill Hutchison remarked at the TAB Victoria Cup barrier draw this morning at Eynesbury Golf Club that: “Depth wise this is the best Victoria Cup field I’ve ever seen.” Master of Ceremonies, Adam Hamilton, agreed. “It’s definitely the best overall Victoria Cup field I’ve seen in my time,” Hamilton said. The Australasian harness racing world is abuzz ahead of the Group 1, $400,000 feature race to be run over 2240 metres at Tabcorp Park Melton on Saturday night. The best from New Zealand, including three-time New Zealand Cup winner Terror To Love, reigning NZ Cup champion mare Adore Me and Miracle Mile hero Christen Me, will be hoping to take the cup back across the ditch, but the Australian brigade – spearheaded by Tasmanian superstar Beautide and a three-pronged Emma Stewart attack – Guaranteed, Philadelphia Man and Restrepo – will provide fierce resistance. “This race won’t be for the fainthearted,” said champion reinsman Gavin Lang, who is expected to pilot Guaranteed on Saturday night. Impressive five-year-old Lennytheshark, who took all before him as a four-year-old last season, drew the coveted pole for the Victoria Cup. Drawn alongside the David Aiken trained runner will be Geoff Webster’s last-start Shepparton Cup winner, Franco Ledger, who stunned Philadelphia Man and Lennytheshark to win last weekend. The race favourite, and a heavily backed one at that, is Beautide from gate three for trainer/driver James Rattray. Beautide hasn’t raced since finishing second to Christen Me in November’s Miracle Mile but has trialled impressively in recent times. Trainer Amanda Grieve drew gate five with her Ballarat Pacing Cup winner Im Corzin Terror. Grieve also has Chilli Palmer, the first emergency, in the race, who drew gate eight. Cran Dalgety’s superstar Kiwi Christen Me will come from gate six, while Terror To Love and Ricky May will be hoping to emulate their Cranbourne Cup win from December but will have to overcome a barrier seven draw here. West Australian star David Hercules comes out of nine, drawn to trail through nicely on the back of Franco Ledger for Victoria Cup winning reinswoman Kate Gath. Guaranteed and Gavin Lang have drawn gate 10, reigning Victoria Cup winner For A Reason is coming out of 11, superstar New Zealand mare Adore Me is in gate 12 and last-start Hamilton Pacing Cup winner Restrepo rounds out the field in gate 13. The trots world will pause for the big race at 9.32pm on Saturday. Race 7 TAB VICTORIA CUP (GROUP 1) 9:32 PM M0 Or Better. * The winner of the following races in 2014 will be exempt from ballot for this race - New Zealand Free For All, Miracle Mile, Cranbourne Pacing Cup and Ballarat Pacing Cup. * This race is a leg of the Pacers Grand Circuit. * Acceptance Fee - $2, 000. * Stakemoney of $3, 375 per horse to be paid to the 6th to 12th placegetters respectively. TRAINERS NOTE: * Nominations for this race close at Noon on Friday, December 19. * Late nominations for this race close at Noon on Monday, January 19. A late nomination fee of $2, 000 will be applicable. RBD. Prizemoney: $400,000 2240 METRES 2ND LEG DAILY DOUBLE, 3RD LEG QUADDIE, 5TH LEG BIG6 MOBILE START Form Horse Trainer Other Eng. Driver Class Hcp 1 111s3 LENNYTHESHARK D Aiken Chris Alford C10 M4 FR1 2 89151 FRANCO LEDGER NZ G F Webster Geoff Webster C20 M14 FR2 3 4112s BEAUTIDE J R Rattray James Rattray C37 M13 FR3 4 11112 PHILADELPHIA MAN E J Stewart Gavin Lang C13 M4 FR4 5 61264 IM CORZIN TERROR NZ A J Grieve C16 M9 FR5 6 51121 CHRISTEN ME NZ C T Dalgety Dexter Dunn C22 M14 FR6 7 44412 TERROR TO LOVE NZ G T Court Ricky May C27 M21 FR7 ---------- Second Row ---------- 8 020s3 CHILLI PALMER NZ (Em 1) A J Grieve Balarat 30/01/2015 C9 M5 SR- 9 s1112 DAVID HERCULES D A Thompson Kate Gath C33 M23 SR1 10 11231 GUARANTEED E J Stewart Gavin Lang C16 M6 SR2 11 35177 FOR A REASON B J McCarthy Luke McCarthy C20 M9 SR3 12 12111 ADORE ME NZ M Purdon Mark Purdon C22 M12 SR4 13 s4421 RESTREPO E J Stewart Gavin Lang C12 M5 SR5 BY CODY WINNELL
Former kiwi pacer Easy On The Eye will be aimed at the Hunter Cup after his win in Monday's Frank and Edna Day Goulburn Cup. The Shane Tritton trained gelding led throughout to record his second Australian win but his 17th victory overall. "Easy On The Eye's form is faultless since he joined my stable if you ignore the Miracle Mile run and on that occasion we simply overdid it early," Tritton said. "I was extremely happy with his performance at Goulburn, he worked to the lead and controlled the race throughout so now I will take him to Victoria and hope to get a start in the Hunter Cup." Tritton did nominate Easy On The Eye and Suave Stuey Lombo for this Saturday night's Victoria Cup but both failed to make the final field. "We want to wish the connections of horses in the Victoria Cup the best of luck, it should be a great race, it is just a pity Suave Stuey Lombo couldn't gain a start because we would have started from the carpark if they had let us." "Easy On The Eye, Artistic Flite and Yayas Hot Spot will all go to Victoria this week and then after Saturday night's Ranji Bill Stakes at Menangle I will also send one of my four mares down but I just want to wait and see what happens this weekend first." The leading driver in New South Wales, Lauren Panella will drive at Melton on Saturday night and Tritton confirmed drivers that he has used recently will get another opportunity. "A lot of the drivers who have been driving for me will retain their drives this week, outside of Lauren I have been using David Morris, Bruce Birch and Blake Fitzpatrick as well." "We will go down for two weeks and be back for the Inter Dominion heats in Sydney." By Greg Hayes
Any NZ$60,000 race is a big one but for Gold Ace the Flying Mile at Cambridge tonight could be a life changer. Win and the harness racing speedster could head back to Australia for one last shot at making an impression for his future stallion career there. And not to mention the small matter of the A$1.6million worth of races he can contest in the space of just six weeks at Melton and Menangle. But lose tomorrow, most likely to Adore Me, and trainer and part owner Steven Reid has to think seriously about staying home and concentrating on the Auckland Cup and Gold Ace ending his racing days here in New Zealand. “I’d love to take him over there for another crack at the big races cause I feel he has some unfinished business. “He was great in both the Victoria and Hunter Cups last year and I’d also like to have a go at a really fast mile time at Menangle. “So if he can win, especially beating Adore Me this week, that is all on.” With that in mind the barrier draw was crucial, Gold Ace securing barrier two and Adore Me to start from four. “All I wanted was to draw inside the mare and have a chance,” said Reid. “We have got that now and I think everybody knows we will be trying for an all the way win. “If Adore Me can sit outside us and beat us then so be it.” Reid says Gold Ace is starting to feel more like the horse who won both the NZ Free-For-All and this race two seasons ago. “I actually think he is back to something like his best,” says Reid. “He has really seemed to come on in the last few weeks and you know that when he starts bucking. “When he was at his best as a three-year-old he used to buck in the prelims and sometimes even in a race. “And he has been doing in this week. I worked him on Wednesday and he bucked like seven or eight times in the warm up. “So he is feeling good. Whether that is good enough to beat the mare we will see.” The NZ TAB opened Adore Me a $1.40 to win tomorrow night, with Gold Ace at $3.40 to upset her, as he did when he downed Adore Me’s stablemate Smolda when he was hot favourite for this race two seasons ago. by Michael Guerin Courtesy of Harness Racing Victoria
As we count down the hours to a New Year, multiple award-winning journalist Paul Courts relives some of the highlights of the Aussie 2014 year. From new stars to retired champions, sensational highs to dramatic lows, triumphs and tragedies, the past 12 months has delivered it all. With so many headline-worthy moments throughout the year, it is impossible to single one out, but there is no doubt the Smoken Up ‘farewell tour’ grabbed the industry’s attention as fans in three states gathered at their home venue to see the champion one last time. Beginning with his final outing a Menangle – a track trainer Lance Justice described as the gelding’s favourite – Smoken Up treated Adelaide’s faithful to one last victory before a producing a typical gallant effort at his swansong appearance at Melton. It was a send-off fitting of a star which was retired with a sensational record of 74 wins, 54 placings and $3,607,985 in earnings from 153 starts. Smoken Up established numerous records throughout his career - including a Southern Hemisphere stance of 1:48.5 - but to Justice’s dismay, one he missed was a fifth South Australia Cup, which kicks off the 2014 review JANUARY – New-wise it was a quiet month with no major dramas or standout headlines, however, several stars shone in key features such as Caribbean Blaster (South Australia Cup), Paua Fella (South Australia Derby), Im Victorious (Fremantle Cup), Hokonui Ben (Western Australia Cup) and Restrepo (Ballarat Cup) FEBRUARY – Melpark Major was retired, HRNSW declared media reports of Cobalt positives in the state “false”, Rex Horne appointed HRNSW chairman. Major Wins: Christen Me (A G Hunter Cup), My High Expectations (Australasian Trotters’ Championship), Our Maxim (Victoria Derby) and Dougs Courage (South Australia Oaks) MARCH – Victoria’s stake rise kicked in, Im Victorious’ career ended from injury during Inter Dominion, Menangle surface given upgrade, Record $155,000 paid for a Rock N Roll Heaven colt at Sydney APG Sale, Christen Me crowned Grand Circuit Champion Major Wins: Beautide (Inter Dominion), Guaranteed (Chariots Of Fire), Keystone Del (Glenferrie Challenge and Great Southern Star), Major Secret (NSW Derby), Vansumic (Ladyship Mile), Shes A Runa (NSW Oaks), Makes Every Cents (Bathurst Tiara), Artistic Flite (Bathurst Crown) and Stent (Grand Prix) APRIL – Menangle reopens after upgrade, Colin McDowell selected to represent Australia in World Amateur Series, Robbie Morris sidelined for three months due to race fall, Sushi Sushi put down after track accident, date switch for Victoria and Ballarat Cups Major Wins: Beautide (Len Smith Mile), Queen Of Pop (APG Fillies’ Final), Three Blind Mice (WA Derby), Im Blue Double Dee (Mildura Cup), La Mia Juliette (WA Sales Fillies’ Final), Persistent Threat (WA Sales Final) and Outrageous El (Tasmania Derby) MAY – Ban on the use of anabolic steroids took effect in Australia, Stent crowned Trotting Master, Sam Nati quit as chief executive of HRNSW Major Wins: Follow The Stars (APG Final), Barynya (Victoria Oaks), Libertybelle Midfrew (WA Oaks), Asdenro (SA Trotters’ Derby), Waves On Fire; Smooth Showgirl (Seymour Nursery Final), Royal Treat; Illawong Armstrong (Home Grown Final), Claudys Princess (NSW Trotters’ Oaks) and Gumdrops (Queen of the Pacific) JUNE - Barbara Scott became first female Chairman of Stewards in South Australia, Amanda Turnbull claims record as youngest driver to register 1000 wins, NSWHRC announce stake rise, Gaming Tax forced Ballarat to cut prizemoney Major Wins: Tricky Styx (WA Diamond Classic), Claudys Princess (Victoria Trotters’ Oaks), Isaiah Artois (WA Pearl Classic) and Frith; Bamako Mali; Its Only Rocknroll; Lettucerockthem; Ultimate Art; Whereibylong (NSW Breeders’ Challenge) JULY – Victorian Government’s Health Benefit Levy to cost industry $1.4million, Alta Christiano retired to stud through injury, Shayne Cramp made clean sweep of eight-race card at Mildura Major Wins: Eljaykay Phoenix; Imamenace; Spidergirl; Vincennes; Claudys Princess; Endinso; Feeling Arty; Messini; Pressplay; My Bella Starr; Lennytheshark; Niki No No (Vicbred Final), Nike Franco (Queensland Oaks), Im Themightyquinn (Blacks A Fake) and Bling It On (Queensland Derby) AUGUST – Victorian TAB Charity Football Day raised more than $40,000, Kevin Seymour retired from administration, Elizabeth Clarke and Neal Wheat re-appointed to HRV Board, Caribbean Blaster sent to stud Major Wins: Frith; My Arya; Eljaykay Phoenix; Spidergirl; Marty Monkhouser; Katy Perry; Major Crocker; Just Cala; Follow The Stars; Our Twentyten (Breeders’ Crown Final), Major Crocker; Whats Emma Got; Punch Line; Hez The One (Southern Cross Final) SEPTEMBER – Western Australia announced richest Inter Dominion with three-year deal, Smoken Up retired, Mindari Priddy put down due to laminitis, Weona Chief succumb to old age, Suave Stuey Lombo trialled in 1:49.2, Gary Hall junior registered 2000th win Major Wins: My High Expectations (True Roman Free-For-All), Kira Jo; Spinners Boy (Home Grown Classic) OCTOBER – Birth of cult hero Wally McDermott, Queensland stake rise kicked in, Warragul surface received upgrade, Im Victorious given all-clear to return to WA following Inter Dominion injury, Kerryn Manning awarded Gordon Rothacker Medal, M H Treuer Memorial stake hit 30-year low Major Wins: For A Reason (Queensland Pacing Championship), Guaranteed (Melton Plate), Avonnova (Gold Coast Cup), Our Overanova (Gold Coast Trotters’ Cup), Guaranteed (Kilmore Cup) NOVEMBER – Im Themightyquinn retired, HRSA announced growth in wagering, Bonavista Bay retired again, trainer Brian Kiesey provides entire field in trot at Mount Gambier Major Wins: Christen Me (Miracle Mile), Bitobliss (Smoken Up Sprint), Avonnova (Newcastle Mile), Beautide (Coca-Cola Sprint), Waylade (McInerney Ford Classic), Suave Stuey Lombo (Cordina Sprint), Flying Isa (Franco Australian Trotters’ Final) and Majorly Foxy Styx (WA Mares’ Classic) DECEMBER – Ballarat Cup decimated by sulky saga, South Australia announced stake rise, record nominations received for Inter Dominion, Peter McMullen became youngster Australian driver to reach 1000 wins Major Wins: Libertybelle Midfrew (Golden Nugget), Keystone Del (Bill Collins Mile), Terror To Love (Cranbourne Cup), Im Corzin Terror (Ballarat Cup), Keystone Del (V L Dullard Cup), All Under Control; Aimforthemoon (Home Grown Final), Popular Alm (Harnesslink Fantasy Ballarat Cup).
Three-time New Zealand Trotting Cup winner Terror To Love has won a classic Group 1 Decron Cranbourne Pacing Cup after a memorable battle with last-start Miracle Mile champion Christen Me. The finish to tonight’s $100,000 feature race will have harness fans talking for years – two champion horses with two superstar reinsman aboard fighting tooth and nail to the finish. But there can only be one winner and tonight it was Ricky May aboard Terror To Love, who narrowly out-stayed Christen Me and Dexter Dunn in the $100,000, 2555m event. “He’s had no luck with the draws and he showed his true worth tonight,” May said of Terror To Love, who paid $3.10 on the tote. Terror To Love took off to sit outside of Christen Me mid-race and the pair kicked well clear of the field as they headed towards the home turn. Once in the straight it was clear the star Kiwis had it between them, Terror To Love slowly but surely reigning in Christen Me before sticking his head in front right on the line for a remarkable victory. “He’s been at his best all the way through. He might have been just down a wee notch for the (New Zealand) Cup,” said May. “We decided the only way we had a show of beating him (Christen Me) was to try and out-stay him.” May’s tactics worked a treat, Terror To Love proving too strong for the gallant runner-up, who was odds-on favourite, with a further 20m back in third place to Flaming Flutter, who enjoyed a cosy run on the leader’s back throughout for trainer/driver Geoff Webster. The winner’s mile rate was 1:57.1 with the last half covered in 55.4. Uncle Wingnut was fourth, Hilltop Hustler fifth and Im Corzin Terror sixth. Bitobliss failed to finish, choking down after pulling in the run, and will have to trial before racing again. by Cody Winnell Harness Racing Victoria
Same family but a better Golden Nugget result. Hazelmere harness racing trainer Mike Reed won last night’s $175,000 Group One Retravision Golden Nugget Championship after a brilliant drive from his son Mark who got the mare Libertybelle Midfrew home a clear winner from favourite Waylade and Bobbies A Star. The daughter of Christian Cullen has now won 11 races and $436,452 in stakes with eight of those wins coming at Gloucester Park. In the 1989 Golden Nugget Championship Mike Reed trained and drove the Western Australian bred Manageable into third place behind the Victorian trained duo of Sinbad Bay and Another Bart. It was arguably the strongest field to ever contest Western Australia’s premier race for 4yos with Manageable being one of only four WA trained horses in the ten horse field. Manageable was an outstanding example of the WA bred horse and after wins in the Western Gateway Pace and Sires Produce Classic as a 3yo he had a sensational 4yo season. Prior to his Golden Nugget placing Manageable had finished second to Village Kid in a prelude and the final of that year’s WA Pacing Cup. That season he won the Coca Cola Pace (fore-runner of the McInerney Ford Classic) and the WA 4&5yo Championship (fore-runner of the WA 4yo Championship) and after his Nugget placing he won the August Cup, Winter Cup and Navy Cup. Manageable won a total of 27 races and $316,811 in stakes with 23 of his wins at Gloucester Park and Richmond Raceway in city class races. That Mike Reed should train two such great 4yos is notable enough but remarkably the two champions are related and share a common ancestress. Manageable’s third dam Hilda Grattan won a WA Derby for trainer Jim Hand and driver Fred Kersley Snr. Hilda Grattan was a full-sister to Lady Grattan who figures as the fifth dam of Libertybelle Midfrew. This is the maternal family of Lady Irving who was in fact the grand-dam of Hilda Grattan and Lady Grattan. Libertybelle Midfrew After race interview Alan Parker Harness Historian, Pedigrees and Trivia
Champion harness racing reinsman Chris Lewis will be chasing an eighth Bunbury Cup win when he takes the Andrew De Campo trained 4yo Ultimate Major up to the coveted barrier one position in Saturday night’s $50,000 Group Two Bunbury Cup. The most inexperienced runner in the field, Ultimate Major had drawn badly at his two most recent starts in the 4yo Championship and McInerney Ford Classic at Gloucester Park. His trainer Andrew De Campo will be chasing a record-equalling third win in the Bunbury Cup having previously won his hometown race with Paulas Mate in 2001 and Aliveandwell in 2009. Alan Woodworth and Ross Olivieri presently share Bunbury Cup training honours with three wins apiece. Lewis’s previous wins in the Bunbury Cup have been behind Pallaton (1980), Den Helder (1982), Village Kid (1987), Hail The Judge (1998), Faking It (2005), No Blue Manna (2008) and Crombie (2011). Trainer/driver Kyle Harper’s runner Bettors Fire will be attempting to become just the second horse to win successive Bunbury Cups. The George James trained and driven No Dill won the 1969 and 1970 runnings of the race. No Blue Manna is the only other dual Bunbury Cup winner having won the race in 2006 and 2008. Stephanie Smith is seeking to become just the second woman to train a Bunbury Cup winner when she gears up Dundee Three on Saturday night. Cass Haese, who died in July 2014, won the 1995 Bunbury Cup with Scanio.
Champion reinsman Gary Hall jun. is not fazed at Waylade’s awkward barrier at No. 6 on the front line and has full confidence that the lightly-raced, inexperienced four-year-old will give him his 39th victory in a group 1 event by proving the master of his 11 rivals in the $175,000 Retravision Golden Nugget Championship at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The 32-year-old Hall, who has also driven the winners of 26 group 2 events and 40 group 3 races, is refusing to become flustered at the wide draw and he declared that the Nugget was “just another race for us.” However, he conceded that barrier six presented a great challenge for the immature New Zealand-bred gelding who has had only nine starts. But the Hall stable is used to confronting challenges head-on and overcoming them with monotonous regularity. “We’ll probably find out a lot about him,” Hall said. “And we’ll probably have to come from behind.” Waylade, prepared by master trainer Gary Hall sen., is well on truly on target of bringing up the third leg of the prestigious Triple Crown for four-year-olds, after his superb victories in the $50,000 Four-year-Old Championship and $125,000 McInerney Ford Classic in the past three weeks. Waylade has bright prospects of becoming the seventh pacer to complete the McInerney Ford Classic-Golden Nugget double in 19 years since the McInerney Ford Classic was first run. The double has been achieved by Salinger (1997), Saab (1998), Gee Whiz Fizz (2005), Mr Yankee (2006), Lombo Pocket Watch (2007) and Bonavista Bay (2009). Sixty-five-year-old Hall sen. had no hesitation in declaring that Waylade was the best of his six runners in the Golden Nugget. He said that the initial plans were for Waylade to go back from his wide barrier and then hope for a bit of luck. “He will be as good as he was when he won the McInerney Ford Classic,” he said. “He hasn’t been extended in his past three wins and I’m sure he’s the one to beat. If it is a truly-run race, as I’m sure it will be, he will be very hard to beat.” At his most recent start, in the 2536m McInerney Ford Classic last Friday week, Waylade was smartest into stride from the No. 2 barrier before setting a solid pace and strolling to victory by just under four lengths from Bettor Offer, who fought on doggedly after working hard in the breeze for most of the journey. A week earlier Waylade started from barrier four on the front line and raced without cover before winning the 2130m Four-Year-Old Championship from VC Manoeuvre and Bettor Offer. And a week before that Waylade raced in the breeze and won a Nugget Prelude over 2536m from Classic American and Soho Lennon. The Hall camp’s other five runners are Majorly Foxy Styx (No. 2 barrier on the front line), Soho Lennon (No. 3), A Boy Named Rosie (No. 7), VC Manoeuvre (inside of the back line) and Classic American (outside of the back line). Majorly Foxy Styx, a brilliant all-the-way winner of the group 1 Mares Classic at a 1.56.3 rate over 2130m last Friday night, will be driven for the first time by champion reinsman Chris Lewis and looks certain to be a freewheeling pacemaker. “Much depends on how she settles, but she should be there at the finish,” Hall sen. said. “Soho Lennon worked in great style this morning and he should gain the one-out, one-back position. He will be an improver.” Soho Lennon will be driven by Hall’s elder son Clint, with Kim Prentice engaged for A Boy Named Rosie, Nathan Turvey for VC Manoeuvre and Lauren Jones for Classic American. Hall sen. discounted A Boy Named Rosie’s chances from the outside barrier, but said that VC Manoeuvre and Classic American were capable of winning. “VC Manoeuvre should race three back on the pegs and he’s a definite blowout chance,” he said. “Classic American will be driven quietly and will be looking to follow through behind VC Manoeuvre. He’s flying and 2536m will be right up his alley.” Majorly Foxy Styx and the Mike Reed-trained Libertybelle Midfrew are the only mares in the 12-horse field and each will have admirers, even though only one mare, the frontrunning Countess Kala, in 1999, has been successful in the 34-year history of the Nugget. Reed, who trained Tricky Vic for his Nugget win in 2002, predicted that Libertybelle Midfrew would run a big race, saying: “Barrier two on the back line is a really good draw for her, particularly being behind such a quick beginner as Majorly Foxy Styx. Libertybelle Midfrew has won over 2536m and she’ll be doing nothing on Friday night, while the others will be doing all the work. She’s a great each-way chance.” Michael Brennan, who prepared Im Victorious for his Nugget win two years ago, will be represented by Billies A Star, who has just arrived in Western Australia after having ten starts in New Zealand for four wins and three placings. His best and most impressive effort was at his most recent appearance, when he was successful at a 1.57.9 rate in a 2600m mobile at Addington on November 14. He settled in tenth position , started a three-wide move at the 1500m mark before gaining a one-out, one-back sit and bursting to the front 200m from home and winning by just over two lengths. Billies A Star has drawn the coveted No. 1 barrier and Luke McCarthy is generally expected to take the trail behind the free-running Majorly Foxy Styx. Trainers Greg and Skye Bond are hoping for a change of fortune with Bettor Offer after the gelding’s third and second placings behind Waylade at his latest starts. Bettor Offer has not drawn well at No. 5 on the front line. “He has trained on in great style after his second in the McInerney Ford after racing in the breeze,” Greg Bond said. “We’ll be rolling forward and this might work for us or it might work against us. This horse has a bright future and he goes well in big races.” Colin Brown will again be in the sulky behind Bettor Offer and he will be drawing confidence on the fact that Bettor Offer set the pace and won by more than two lengths from Waylade over 2130m at Gloucester Park on October 31. Boyanup trainer Justin Prentice is confident that Mista Rush will be prominent after starting from barrier four on the back line. Mista Rush has won at eight of his 17 starts. “If he runs up to his ability he will be right there,” the 26-year-old Prentice said. “I really like the horse and I think he is right up there with the best four-year-olds in the State. His work yesterday was as good as it has ever been.” Kade Howson, who has driven Mr Yankee (2006) and Schinzig Buller (2008) to victory in the Nugget, trains the promising Ohoka Cooper, who will be driven by Chris Voak from barrier four on the front line. “It’s a tricky draw and we will need to find a nice spot,” Howson said. “He’ll run out the 2536m and that’s in his favour.” Three Blind Mice, the WA Derby winner last season, will start from barrier three on the back line and trainer-reinsman Matt White said that he would be relying on a good tempo in the race. “That will help him to ruin on solidly late,” he said. The latest market: 7/4 Waylade, 7/2 Bettor Offer, 5 Libertybelle Midfrew, 6 Majorly Foxy Styx, 7 Billies A Star, 25 Soho Lennon, Classic American, 40 VC Manoeuvre, 66 Ohoka Cooper, 100 Three Blind Mice, Mista Rush. Tricky Styx will be hard to catch Brilliant filly Tricky Styx, who is noted for her devastating finishing bursts, looks set to be seen in the role of pacemaker when she contests the 2130m Retravision Air Conditioning Pace for three-year-olds at Gloucester Park on Friday night. She has drawn perfectly at barrier one on the front line and reinsman Aiden de Campo said he expected her to set the pace and prove hard to run down. Tricky Styx, a winner of five races as a two-year-old, has resumed this season in grand form for Northam trainer Jesse Moore and looks set to be a leading contender for the WA Oaks early next year. At her first two starts as a three-year-old Tricky Styx has scored runaway wins (by a combined margin of 64.8 metres) over 2190m and 1780m at Northam last month. She has won at seven of her 11 starts and her clash on Friday night with unbeaten fillies Nuala and Im Justforyou will be a highlight of the meeting. The fillies will be opposed by three colts and one gelding. “I’ll speak to Jesse regarding tactics,” de Campo said. “We’ve always wanted to see if she can lead. She did lead from barrier two and easily won a heat of the Diamond Classic last May. She has come back in this preparation a lot more relaxed and in my opinion I’ll be trying to hold the front, not wanting to give the others a head start. “Her final 800m is really dazzling and I think that she can produce a similar sprint after bowling along in front. She’s quite a big, tough filly and I can’t see toughness being a problem for her. The opposition is pretty good and the three fillies are probably the best horses in the race, even though the other runners are pretty smart. Jesse said that Tricky Styx probably would have four or five starts before giving her a spell and then getting her primed for the Oaks.” Nuala, to be driven by Clint Hall for his father, leading trainer Gary Hall sen., will be making her first appearance since she made an auspicious Australian debut, winning easily over 2185m at Pinjarra on August 25 after racing wide early and then setting the pace. She also won easily at her only start in New Zealand, over 2000m at Oamaru in mid-May. “Nuala is a high-class filly and will go well,” said Hall sen. “She will need the run, but is still a winning chance. She has a tricky draw and this is a tough race.” Im Justforyou (who will be driven by Chris Lewis from barrier three) has not been seriously challenged at her three starts, winning in New Zealand in September and at Pinjarra in October and November. “She has won at both her WA starts pretty impressively and I think she is a genuine Oaks filly,” said trainer Clive Dalton. “She’s got a bit of depth about her and I expect her to run a good race on Friday night. “She’s got a bit of class and rated 1.57.5 in each of her wins over 1684m at Pinjarra. In the first of those runs she started from barrier seven and came from well back and ran the final 400m in 27.1sec. At her next start, her first run for five weeks, she breezed and fought it out very well. “Tricky Styx has the draw in her favour and will be hard to beat. Im Justforyou will be running on whatever happens.” Opposing the fillies will are three pacers (Red Hot Major, Mister Ardee and Arturus) trained by Gary Elson and the Callan Suvaljko-trained Blacklist. Mister Ardee is extremely consistent, with his 21 starts producing four wins, nine seconds, six thirds, a fourth and a seventh placing. Olivieri likes Earl Or Nothing Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri is proud of Earl Or Nothing’s consistency and he has high hopes that the Queensland-bred eight-year-old will keep up the good work by winning the 2503m Hisense Trotters Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Earl Or Nothing, to be driven by Chris Lewis, is ideally drawn in the stand at No. 1 on the front line and he meets many of his rivals on better terms than he has in recent months. “He has been consistent and compared with some of the races he’s been in lately he gets a really good pull on the handicaps,” Olivieri said. “He’s given these horses starts or has been on the same mark as them. “He’s off the front and I’m happy about that. He’s versatile and has won after leading. I reckon he’s a shade better coming from behind, but I’ll leave the tactics up to Chris. It won’t be easy on Friday night and of all the barriers No. 1 off the front is not my favourite draw. But I suppose I shouldn’t complain; I don’t get No. 1 very often.” Earl Or Nothing started off 60m over 2631m at Pinjarra on Monday of last week and finished a creditable fourth behind Enjoy A Coldie, who started off the 30m mark. Enjoy A Coldie, trained and driven by Nathan Turvey, will start off 10m on Friday night, meaning that Earl Or Nothing will meet Enjoy A Coldie on 40m better terms. Earl Or Nothing has had eight starts in Western Australia for five wins, two seconds and a fourth. Looming as some of the main dangers to Earl Or Nothing are Retained and Enjoy A Malabu. The nine-year-old Retained (10m) should figure in the finish. He has been driven in all of his 18 WA starts by his trainer Clive Dalton for five wins and three placings. He raced wide early and then had a tough run in the breeze before finishing a head second to Enjoy A Malabu over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Tuesday of last week. “That was a big run and I have put Luke McCarthy on him this week. I’ll tell Luke to go forward to the breeze.” Enjoy A Malabu (20m) is in splendid for Wundowie trainer Bruce Stanley and has won at three of his past six starts. He unwound a typical strong finishing burst to win from Retained at Gloucester Park on Tuesday of last week. by Ken Casellas
Waylade draws awkwardly – Mares Classic winner draws to lead again Waylade has dominated the 4yo features at Gloucester Park this season with wins in the Group Two 4yo Championship and Group One McInerney Ford Classic at his past two starts. His prospects for a clean sweep of Western Australia’s 4yo classics took a hit at this afternoon’s barrier draw when he draw barrier six on the front line. Stablemate Majorly Foxy Styx drew ideally in barrier two however the daughter of Art Major is yet to race beyond 2200 metres and the Golden Nugget over the 2536 metres will be the unknown factor. Trainer Gary Hall has engaged Chris Lewis to drive Majorly Foxy Styx and while Lewis hasn’t driven the mare before he is the most successful driver in the history of the race having won it four times. The 2014 Group One Retravision Golden Nugget Championship (in barrier draw) order is as follows: Number Horse Driver Trainer 1 BILLIES A STAR NZ L A (Luke) McCarthy M G (Michael) Brennan 2 MAJORLY FOXY STYX NZ A C (Chris) Lewis G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) 3 SOHO LENNON C W (Clinton) Hall G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) 4 OHOKA COOPER NZ C D (Chris) Voak K K (Kade) Howson 5 BETTOR OFFER NZ C D (Colin) Brown G S (Greg and Skye) Bond 6 WAYLADE NZ G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) 7 A BOY NAMED ROSIE NZ K N (Kim) Prentice G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) 8 VC MANOEUVRE NZ N A (Nathan) Turvey G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) 9 LIBERTYBELLE MIDFREW NZ M B (Mark) Reed M G (Mike) Reed 10 THREE BLIND MICE NZ M W (Matthew) White M W (Matthew) White 11 MISTA RUSH J K (Justin) Prentice J K (Justin) Prentice 12 CLASSIC AMERICAN NZ L C (Lauren) Jones (C) G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) Em 1 TASMANIAN BROMAC J K (Justin) Prentice J K (Justin) Prentice Em 2 ULTIMATE MAJOR NZ A C (Chris) Lewis A L (Andrew) De Campo Race 7 – Retravision Golden Nugget Championship Betting now open. Paul Hurley Harness Book Manager T +61 2 9218 1209 M +61 417 698 793 495 Harris Street, Ultimo, NSW 2007
Waylade can become youngest winner of 4yo Golden Nugget Championship. Waylade has dominated the 4yo features at Gloucester Park this season with wins in the Group Two 4yo Championship and Group One McInerney Ford Classic at his past two starts. Should Waylade complete the 4yo treble for trainer Gary Hall in Friday night’s Group One $175,000 Retravision Golden Nugget Waylade will become the youngest winner of the race. Waylade was born on New Years Day 2011 so in fact will not become a 4yo until next month. Even more remarkable is that Waylade was born in New Zealand and that country’s breeding season commences on August 1st compared to the Australian season commencement date of September 1st. . Seven of the 34 previous winners of the Golden Nugget were born in the month of December with the youngest winner of the race being Im Victorious which was foaled on 16th December 2008. Waylade will be giving away four months to the oldest of the runners in this year’s Nugget – Bettor Offer was foaled on 1st September 2010. Other trainers records The outstanding mares Majorly Foxy Styx and Libertybelle Midfrew will become the 34th and 35th mares to contest a Golden Nugget Championship when they line up in Friday’s Group One feature. The 33 mares among the 368 starters in previous Golden Nuggets represents just 8.96% of the total starters and between them the mares have tallied just one win three seconds and three thirds. The mares previously placed in a Golden Nugget are listed below. Date Trainer Driver Mare Place Sire 24/01/1992 R J (Rod) Chambers R J (Rod) Chambers Whitbys Miss Penny 2 Booth Hanover 27/01/1995 N J (Neil) Lloyd N J (Neil) Lloyd Norms Daughter 2 Northern Lights 10/12/1999 N J (Noel) Keiley L B (Lindsay) Harper Countess Kala NZ 1 Bard From Wagering 15/12/2000 G L (Grant) Williams G L (Grant) Williams Black And Blue 3 Northern Lights 20/02/2004 A R (Aiden) Warwick D G (Darren) Kerr Lombo La Fe Fe 2 Troublemaker 20/02/2004 A R (Aiden) Warwick A R (Aiden) Warwick Party Date 3 Panorama 8/04/2005 S (Sam) Torre S (Sam) Torre Spicey Hot 3 Classic Garry Party Date’s 5yo son Bettor Party won at Gloucester Park last Friday night
If the overnight TAB fixed odds move for last-start Miracle Mile winner Christen Me is any indication the Cran Dalgety trained harness racing superstar might be unbeatable in Saturday night’s Decron Cranbourne Pacing Cup. Christen Me opened odds-on at $1.70 after drawing pole for the race yesterday but was quickly crunched into $1.55 before shortening further overnight to $1.50. Fellow Kiwi Terror To Love is second favourite at $4.50 after drawing gate four, the three-time New Zealand Cup hero coming off a last-start fourth in the Miracle Mile. The leading local chance with the punters early is Andy Gath trained Maximan, who is clear third favourite with fixed odds betting at $7. The fourth pick, Flaming Flutter, is an $18 chance from his inside-back-row draw. Meanwhile, Keystone Del is hot favourite for the Group 1 Bill Collins Mile at $1.40 with fixed odds ahead of Elegant Image ($4.40) and My High Expectations ($5.50). The winner of the Bill Collins Mile automatically qualifies for HRV's Great Southern Star. The Decron Cranbourne Pacing Cup is a leg of Harness Racing Victoria’s TAB.com.au Trots Country Cups Carnival. A $1000 bet with the TAB will be given away on the night via the popular Trot Selfies promotion (www.facebook.com/trotselfies), while the TAB is also offering a $20,000 First 4 pool Jackpot on the Cranbourne Pacing Cup. There will also be children’s rides and live entertainment. The Carlton Draught Beer Garden will be open for business and dining packages are still available. To book or for more details phone 03 5996 1300. Cody Winnell Harness Racing Victoria
Twelve months ago harness racing driver Jimmy Douglass nearly pulled off a huge boilover when 90-1 chance Scandalman finished second behind Washakie in the Treuer Memorial at Bankstown. Fast forward to this Saturday night and Douglass believes he is driving the right horse in Chariot King to go one better this year. "I've run a couple of placings in the Treuer Memorial from memory, Scandalman wasn't far away last year and Hesa Buzzin ran third behind Washakie too but that was back in 2011," Douglass said. "Chariot King is going to be a good chance on Saturday night, he has drawn barrier one and around the tighter tracks the closer you can draw to the inside the better especially when you are driving a horse that has speed to make use of the draw." Chariot King won Saturday night's Kevin Newman Cup at Tabcorp Park Menangle and Douglass was extremely pleased with the performance. "Before the race John (Tapp) just told me not to get involved in an early speed battle but from the wide draw I couldn't slot in so I had to go right back and because I knew they were walking I decided to head to the pegs because the horses from the back weren't going to get into it." "From about the 600 I thought I was going to get into the clear and when they all left the inside turning for home I just stayed to the pegs and he sprinted so fast." Douglass has formed a good partnership with the son of Badlands Hanover and he believes it was Chariot King's best performance since he has taken the reins. "He was really good, just so sharp when Seel N Print pulled off the inside and he saw the opening and with that sort of speed and acceleration if he gets things run to suit on Saturday night in the Treuer Memorial then he is going to be a contender for sure." By Greg Hayes Nancy O'Grady | Executive Assistant | Harness Racing New South Wales |
Arnold Schwarzenegger uttered the infamous line 'I'll be back' in the Terminator movies and trainer James Rattray will return to New South Wales with his 'Tassie Terminator' Beautide in time for next year's Inter Dominion. In the short term Rattray will set up a base in Victoria and left his Sydney base on Tuesday morning. "We'll just see how it goes at this stage, Fia and I have been looking at some properties around Sydney but we have been looking in Victoria as well and we will make a final decision after we've had a taste of what it is like in Victoria," Rattray said. "There are a few reasons for the move, obviously the Summer Carnival in Victoria is a big attraction for Beautide and to a lesser extent Devendra plus I have horses like Roger Ramjet who is a C2 and Glencore who is a C1 and in Victoria they can race against their own grade." While Rattray was contemplating giving Devendra a shot in Saturday night's Gr. 1 Cranbourne Cup he has decided against it. "Devendra has been racing week to week recently and I think he is going to appreciate the week away from the races especially with the trip south thrown in. He is a very good stand horse and I will aim him at some of the Country Cups around Victoria in the short term." "If he could perform well in those then we may even give him a crack at a race like the Hunter Cup, we will just wait and see." Beautide pulled up well from his second placing in Saturday night's Miracle Mile and will now be aimed at the Ballarat Cup. "Yeah he will go to Ballarat and then probably Bendigo before the Victoria Cup. He was pretty good by Sunday morning, he was pretty bright." Greg Hayes
Harness Racing trainer Gary Hall provides half the field for the hardest race for him to win Western Australia’s leading trainer Gary Hall will provide six of the 12 starters in Friday night’s Group One $175,000 Retravision Golden Nugget 4yo Championship at Gloucester Park. In the 34 previous runnings of the race Hall has provided a total of 29 starters for an unspectacular result of one win, five seconds and one third placing. His first starter was High Leverage in 1986 which finished fourth behind the Victorian Vanderport. Hall’s previous biggest representation in a Golden Nugget was three starters in the 2005 Nugget won by Gee Whiz Fizz. It is not as if his starters lacked quality either as his champions Im Themightyquinn and The Falcon Strike were placed in the race while his only win came courtesy of millionaire New Zealand pacer The Gold Ace in 2011. Other trainers records The most successful trainer in the history of the Golden Nugget is Greg Harper whose ten runners produced four winners and a third placing. Three of the State’s younger trainers in Justin Prentice (Mista Rush), Kade Howson (Ohoka Cooper) and Matthew White (Three Blind Mice) will have their first Golden Nugget starters this year in their capacity as trainer. Both Howson (Schinzig Buller and Mr Yankee) and Prentice (Im Victorious) have driven previous winners of the race. The Mike Reed trained mare Libertybelle Midfrew will become his eighth starter in a Golden Nugget. Reed’s previous seven starters have produced a winner in Tricky Vic in 2002 a second and two thirds. In addition the 2009 winner Bonavista Bay was stabled at Reed’s Hazelmere property by Victorian trainer Emma Stewart. Pinjarra trainer Michael Brennan will gear up just his second Golden Nugget starter in New Zealand import Billies A Star on Friday night. Brennan’s only previous starter in the race was the 2012 winner Im Victorious which was driven for Brennan by Justin Prentice. The 2013 Golden Nugget winner Nowitzki was stabled with Brennan by trainer Daniel Jack and should Billies A Star win this year’s Nugget it will provide an unusual stabling record. Greg and Skye Bond will gear up their ninth Nugget starter with Bettor Offer on Friday night. Their previous eight runners in the race have produced a solitary third placegetter. Greg Bond had seven Golden Nugget starters in his own name before he and his wife formed their training partnership and those seven runners produced one third placegetter. This year, for just the fifth time in what will be the 35th running of the Golden Nugget, there is no Eastern States or New Zealand trained runner in the race. That is not a bad thing for local trainers in that Eastern States trainers have won 15 of the 30 Golden Nuggets in which they have had a starter. The 2014 Retravision Golden Nugget Field (Not in Barrier Order) Horse Trainer Possible Driver Status A BOY NAMED ROSIE NZ G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) Starter BETTOR OFFER NZ G S (Greg and Skye) Bond C D (Colin) Brown Starter BILLIES A STAR NZ M G (Michael) Brennan L A (Luke) McCarthy Starter CLASSIC AMERICAN NZ G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) Starter LIBERTYBELLE MIDFREW NZ M G (Mike) Reed M B (Mark) Reed Starter MAJORLY FOXY STYX NZ G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) Starter MISTA RUSH J K (Justin) Prentice J K (Justin) Prentice Starter OHOKA COOPER NZ K K (Kade) Howson C D (Chris) Voak Starter SOHO LENNON G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) Starter THREE BLIND MICE NZ M W (Matthew) White M W (Matthew) White Starter VC MANOEUVRE NZ G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) Starter WAYLADE NZ G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) Starter TASMANIAN BROMAC J K (Justin) Prentice J K (Justin) Prentice Emergency1 ULTIMATE MAJOR NZ A L (Andrew) De Campo A C (Chris) Lewis Emergency2 Previous placegetters Golden Nugget Championship Date Place Trainer Driver Winner 6/02/1981 1 A L (Tony) Peacock A L (Tony) Peacock JUSTIN HANOVER 6/02/1981 2 G E (George) Turner G D (Greg) Harper CRYSTAL GLENMAR 6/02/1981 3 W A (Wilf) Powell P C (Phil) Coulson PRIDE OF KENTUCKY 12/02/1982 1 G D (Greg) Harper G D (Greg) Harper SINN FEIN 12/02/1982 2 I J (Ian) Petricevich I J (Ian) Petricevich NALAARA BOY 12/02/1982 3 M J (Michael) Day M J (Michael) Day GUNDARY FLYER 11/02/1983 1 G D (Greg) Harper F R (Fred) Kersley CLASSIC GARRY 11/02/1983 2 M D (Merv) Reinke D M (Darryl) Reinke WONDAIS MATE 11/02/1983 3 B J (Barry) Perkins R (Bob) Pollock PREUX CHEVALIER NZ 20/01/1984 1 T B (Trevor) Warwick T B (Trevor) Warwick YARRACOOLA 20/01/1984 2 A C (Chris) Lewis A C (Chris) Lewis LINCOLN LAND 20/01/1984 3 V D (Val) Pereira V D (Val) Pereira GAY BOYDEN NZ 8/02/1985 1 T B (Trevor) Warwick T B (Trevor) Warwick MORANO MAGIC NZ 8/02/1985 2 J H (Jim) Schrader J H (Jim) Schrader TAC WARRIOR NZ 8/02/1985 3 F R (Fred) Kersley F R (Fred) Kersley BOSUN AWEIGH 7/02/1986 1 D F (Don) Murphy A (Anne) Frawley VANDERPORT 7/02/1986 2 T B (Trevor) Warwick T B (Trevor) Warwick TRUNKEY WESTERNER 7/02/1986 3 G N (Graham) Taylor G N (Graham) Taylor GRAYMOORE DREAM NZ 13/02/1987 1 A C (Chris) Lewis A C (Chris) Lewis VERO PRINCE 13/02/1987 2 R V (Bob) Knight V J (Vin) Knight ALPINE FELLA NZ 13/02/1987 3 T B (Trevor) Warwick C G (Colin) Warwick MY LORD GRACE NZ 12/02/1988 1 R V (Bob) Knight V J (Vin) Knight OUR MAESTRO NZ 12/02/1988 2 I R (Dick) Lee I R (Dick) Lee RUFUS YOUNG BLOOD 12/02/1988 3 T B (Trevor) Warwick T B (Trevor) Warwick TRUNKEY STING 10/02/1989 1 R V (Bob) Knight V J (Vin) Knight SINBAD BAY 10/02/1989 2 G R (Gary) Barton G A (Gavin) Lang ANOTHER BART 10/02/1989 3 M G (Mike) Reed M G (Mike) Reed MANAGEABLE 10/02/1989 10 C G (Colin) Warwick C G (Colin) Warwick ABLE SEAMAN NZ 15/12/1989 1 V W (Vic) Frost V W (Vic) Frost WESTBURN GRANT 15/12/1989 2 R J (Rod) Chambers R J (Rod) Chambers WHITBY TIMER 15/12/1989 3 G D (Greg) Harper F R (Fred) Kersley SUR CARAGH NZ 15/12/1989 10 W D (Bill) Duffy P C (Phil) Coulson JULIAN DOE 25/01/1991 1 B A (Bryan) Rogers B A (Bryan) Rogers ADMIRAL HOLLIDAY NZ 25/01/1991 2 A F (Frank) Bratovich L B (Lindsay) Harper BANK MANAGER 25/01/1991 3 K B (Kevin) Bailey K B (Kevin) Bailey HEADLINER 24/01/1992 1 T E (Ted) Demmler T E (Ted) Demmler IMPRESSIONIST NZ 24/01/1992 2 R J (Rod) Chambers R J (Rod) Chambers WHITBYS MISS PENNY 24/01/1992 3 R (Ray) De Campo A L (Andrew) De Campo SMOOTH BUSINESS 22/01/1993 1 D T (Des) Parr G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) VALLEY CHAMP 22/01/1993 2 L B (Lindsay) Harper P C (Phil) Coulson LAKE STREET 22/01/1993 3 C L (Colin) Cummins A C (Chris) Lewis HILARION STAR 28/01/1994 1 C L (Colin) Cummins A C (Chris) Lewis FLASHING STAR 28/01/1994 2 D K (Dudley) Anderson D K (Dudley) Anderson SOUTHERN KNIGHT 28/01/1994 3 G N (Glen) Tippet B R (Brian) Gath MCRANDLE NZ 27/01/1995 1 R (Reg) Trevean T B (Trevor) Warwick SLICK VANCE NZ 27/01/1995 2 N J (Neil) Lloyd N J (Neil) Lloyd NORMS DAUGHTER 27/01/1995 3 R P (Ronan) Hargadon R P (Ronan) Hargadon SIR LEKTOR 8/12/1995 1 J P (John) Green R J (Rod) Chambers BEEFY T NZ 8/12/1995 2 G C (Geoff) Small M W (Maurice) McKendry TABARET NZ 8/12/1995 3 T B (Trevor) Warwick T B (Trevor) Warwick RIWAKA VANCE NZ 6/12/1996 1 R J (Rod) Chambers R J (Rod) Chambers MON POPPY DAY 6/12/1996 2 G A (Garry) Torto C D (Colin) Brown LORD BROOK NZ 6/12/1996 3 S D (Shane) Moore G J (Greg) Kersley TUR BEAU 5/12/1997 1 F R (Fred) Kersley F R (Fred) Kersley SALINGER 5/12/1997 2 J W (Bill) Phillips M S (Scott) Eyre THE ACCELERATOR 5/12/1997 3 W A (Dick) Moore T B (Trevor) Warwick RECORD HIGH NZ 18/12/1998 1 R A (Ross) Olivieri A C (Chris) Lewis SAAB 18/12/1998 2 K A (Ken) White J D (Jason) Fry TOUCH OF ZAM 18/12/1998 3 L M (Laurel) Schofield K D (Kim) Young GOLDEN GEARS 10/12/1999 1 N J (Noel) Keiley L B (Lindsay) Harper COUNTESS KALA NZ 10/12/1999 2 G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) A C (Chris) Lewis MAKE THE RULES NZ 10/12/1999 3 A L (Andrew) De Campo A L (Andrew) De Campo PAULAS MATE NZ 15/12/2000 1 D W (Dennis) Wilson D W (Dennis) Wilson SEELSTER SAM NZ 15/12/2000 2 M G (Mike) Reed M B (Mark) Reed RICH AND SPOILT 15/12/2000 3 G L (Grant) Williams G L (Grant) Williams BLACK AND BLUE 14/12/2001 1 G K (Grant) Crane G (Gavin) Lang MANIFOLD BAY 14/12/2001 2 G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) THE FALCON STRIKE NZ 14/12/2001 3 M G (Mike) Reed M B (Mark) Reed ASTRA NOM MCCOOL NZ 13/12/2002 1 M G (Mike) Reed M B (Mark) Reed TRICKY VIC NZ 13/12/2002 2 W G (Bill) Walker G A (Gavin) Lang LOMBO SKYRIDER 13/12/2002 3 C J (Cameron) Edwards L B (Lindsay) Harper ATLANTA GEORGIA 20/02/2004 1 G R (Graeme) Watts G R (Graeme) Watts TE KANARAMA 20/02/2004 2 A R (Aiden) Warwick D G (Darren) Kerr LOMBO LA FE FE 20/02/2004 3 A R (Aiden) Warwick A R (Aiden) Warwick PARTY DATE 8/04/2005 1 K F (Kevin) Keys K F (Kevin) Keys TARTARY GLADIATOR 8/04/2005 2 P B (Paul) Flemming C D (Colin) Brown ADAMS MATE 8/04/2005 3 dh B E (Bryan) Cousins F R (Fred) Kersley GLOBAL FORCE 8/04/2005 3 dh S (Sam) Torre S (Sam) Torre SPICEY HOT 16/12/2005 1 S D (Steven) Burton R (Ryan) Warwick GEE WHIZ FIZZ 16/12/2005 2 G L (Grant) Williams G L (Grant) Williams PRECIOUS DYLAN NZ 16/12/2005 3 S H (Stuart) Hunter J F (Joel) Rees SIR GALVINATOR 15/12/2006 1 G D (Greg) Harper K K (Kade) Howson MR YANKEE NZ 15/12/2006 2 G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) FAC ET SPIRO 15/12/2006 3 J S (Jarrad) Humphries J S (Jarrad) Humphries NODDY BROMAC NZ 14/12/2007 1 P R J (Paul) Fitzpatrick G J (Gavin) Fitzpatrick LOMBO POCKET WATCH 14/12/2007 2 P G (Phillip) Henwood K N (Kim) Prentice CAPTAIN JACK SPARROW NZ 14/12/2007 3 A L (Andrew) De Campo A L (Andrew) De Campo CAPTAIN BLUFF 28/11/2008 1 G D (Greg) Harper K K (Kade) Howson SCHINZIG BULLER 28/11/2008 2 T (Tony) Svilicich K J (Kyle) Harper MYSTA MAGICAL MACH NZ 28/11/2008 3 G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) IM THEMIGHTYQUINN NZ 27/11/2009 1 E J (Emma) Stewart M B (Mark) Reed BONAVISTA BAY 27/11/2009 2 S M (Susan) Hunter G (Gavin) Lang CAPTAIN JOY 27/11/2009 3 G F J (Greg) Bond C D (Colin) Brown IMA ROCKET STAR NZ 26/11/2010 1 R A (Ross) Olivieri A C (Chris) Lewis DASHER VC NZ 26/11/2010 2 G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) K N (Kim) Prentice WHY LIVE DANGEROUSLY NZ 26/11/2010 3 B D (Barry) Morrison W R (Wayne) Reid INDOMITABLE SAAB 25/11/2011 1 G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) GOLD ACE NZ 25/11/2011 2 D F (Dean) Braun M L (Morgan) Woodley MUSTANG MACH NZ 25/11/2011 3 G S (Greg and Skye) Bond C D (Colin) Brown ELIMINATOR NZ 7/12/2012 1 M G (Michael) Brennan J K (Justin) Prentice IM VICTORIOUS NZ 7/12/2012 2 G E (Gary) Hall (Snr) G E (Gary) Hall (Jnr) BETTOR REASON NZ 7/12/2012 3 N J (Noel) Keiley B N (Ben) Keiley REUBEN BROGDEN NZ 6/12/2013 1 D W (Daniel) Jack D W (Daniel) Jack NOWITZKI 6/12/2013 2 M A (Michael) Callegari A C (Ashleigh) Markham SMOKEY THE BANDIT 6/12/2013 3 R F (Rodney) Oliver A C (Chris) Lewis HEEZ ON FIRE
He has broken 1:50 around Tabcorp Park Menangle before and now For A Reason will get his chance to do it again in the harness racing SEW Eurodrive Miracle Mile on November 29. The glamour pacer earned an invitation to the $750,000 Grand Circuit event tonight. Following his stellar third-placed performance in Tuesday's Christchurch Casino New Zealand Cup, Directors of the New South Wales Harness Racing Club wanted the multiple Group One-winner for their flagship event. Defending champion Beautide was the first to be issued an invitation to the 2014 edition and after taking out tonight's automatic qualifier at the principal track, the Coca-Cola Amatil Sprint, it gave NSWHRC Directors the opportunity to issue another invitation. The Miracle Mile conditions states that horses facing the difficulties of travel which may affect their performance in the Miracle Mile may be issued an invitation prior to the close of nominations for the Cordina Sprint (Monday). And luckily for connections, For A Reason fits this criteria. "Unfortunately we cannot issue an invitation to any horses from tonight's Coca-Cola Amatil Sprint until next week" NSWHRC chief executive Bruce Christison said. "Directors issued an invitation to For A Reason tonight and are still considering a couple of other horses that are in New Zealand" Only two other horses apart from Beautide and For A Reason have accepted invitations to the 2014 Miracle Mile and they are Newcastle Mile winner Avonnova and Kiwi star Christen Me. For more information contact NSWHRC Racing Manager David Wonson on (02) 4645 2200.
Star harness racing reinsman Gary Hall jun. has given punters a valuable lead by deciding to drive Soho Jackman in preference to Crusader Banner in the $22,500 TABtouch Cranley Memorial Sprint at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Hall drove both pacers to effortless victories last Friday night when Soho Jackman, at his first appearance for six months, came from tenth in the middle stages to race without cover before dashing away to score by more than a length over Walter James, rating 1.59.6 over 2536m, and Crusader Banner was equally impressive when he surged home from sixth and last at the bell to win by just under three lengths from Diamonds A Blaze, rating 1.55.5 over 1730m. The Cranley Memorial will be decided over 1730m and Hall is bubbling with confidence that five-year-old Soho Jackman will prove too speedy for his six rivals, including up-and-coming four-year-old Crusader Banner, who will be driven by his brother Clint. Both pacers are prepared by champion trainer Gary Hall sen. "Soho Jackman is a good horse who begins fast and I expect him to lead from barrier one and win," Hall jun. said. However, Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri is adamant that Soho Jackman is not a past-the post proposition. He gives his runner, the Victorian-bred six-year-old Real Hammer, a strong winning chance. Real Hammer, a winner at 13 of his 56 starts has been an erratic and hard-to-control pacer for much of his career, which included a stint under the care of Hall sen. when Hall jun. drove him eight times for two wins. Real Hammer has a history of racing erratically and pulling hard. Real Hammer has not appeared for six weeks, when he was inclined to hang in and raced at the rear before finishing last behind Zacs Nuggett over 2130m at Gloucester Park. Real Hammer, a noted frontrunner, charged home from the rear to win a race over 2185m at Pinjarra at his previous outing. He was an all-the-way winner, rating 1.55.6 over 1730m at Gloucester Park three starts before that. Olivieri said that Real Hammer was becoming far more tractable following some gear changes. "He went to Byford on Sunday morning and you wouldn't believe how well-mannered he was in his trial," he said. "He came out very well from behind the mobile and sat behind the pacemaker Sensational Gabby before finishing second to her, coming home in 57.8sec. and 27.1sec. "I was very pleased with the trial and the draw (No. 2) for Friday night. I'm using a new lugging bit on him and he raced tractably. Whether he does it in a race, I don't know. I have also made a change to his head gear and he will race with block blinkers. He ran with the blinkers in Sunday's trial and they are settling him down instead of stirring him up." Hall jun. said he considered Real Hammer to have no hope of beginning fast enough to wrest the early lead from Soho Jackman. "If Soho Jackman is to be beaten, it will be by Crusader Banner," he said. Crusader Banner has been untroubled to win at his past three starts in which his average winning margin has been 11 metres. Chris Lewis has chosen to handle Real Hammer in preference to speedy frontrunner Blissfull Boy, who will start from barrier three. Trainer Kevin Charles has engaged Dylan Egerton-Green to drive Blissfull Boy. The Hall camp has a third runner in the event, The Ragpickers Dream, who faces a tough task from the No. 6 barrier. The New Zealand-bred seven-year-old has a losing sequence of 16 and will be driven by Kim Prentice. The Cranley Memorial has been run nine times and Hall sen. and Hall jun. combined to win with El Padrino, who raced without cover before getting to the front 520m from home and then holding on to defeat the fast-finishing Dhoni by a nose in 2012, after finishing second with Im Themightyquinn in 2008 and third with My Jasami in 2011. Lewis was successful with the Alan Bell-trained Mister Veejays Fella in 2009. Williams to drive Zacs Nuggett Pinjarra trainer Kade Howson has engaged Robbie Williams to drive Zacs Nuggett in the McInerney Ford Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night and the eight-year-old should maintain his excellent form by proving too tough for his 11 rivals over his pet journey of 2536m. Zacs Nuggett is an M3-class performer and is able to contest Friday night's event restricted to M0 to M2-class runners with Howson taking advantage of Williams's concession as a junior reinsman. Zacs Nuggett has the ability to overcome the distinct disadvantage of starting from the outside of the front line. Williams, who will be having his first drive behind the West Australian-bred pacer, looks set to send Zacs Nuggett forward in the first lap to race in the breeze outside either Grand Cru or Tuapeka Kahu. Grand Cru (barrier two) and Tuapeka Kahu (three) are smart frontrunners, with the Mike Reed-trained Grand Cru bringing up his second win in a row with an all-the-way success over 2620m at Northam on Tuesday of last week and Tuapeka Kahu (trained by Greg and Skye Bond) finishing an encouraging second behind Jaccka Felix last Friday night after all-the-way wins in successive starts in August. Howson drove Zacs Nuggett at his most recent outing, last Friday week, when the hardy gelding raced three wide early and then in the breeze before winning from Bet Your Life and Romulus over 2130m. "He has thrived since that win and should again prove hard to beat," Howson declared. Williams also has bright prospects with Dashing Christian, who has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier in the 2130m Gannon's Pacing Colours Pace. Williams will attempt an all-the-way victory with the New Zealand-bred eight-year-old who has been unplaced at his past two starts from back-line draws, following an all-the-way success with Williams in the sulky, over 2130m on August 29. Dashing Christian is one of five runners in Friday night's race who are prepared by ace trainer Gary Hall sen. The other Hall runners are Soho Highroller (Micheal Ferguson), Some Kinda Tactics (Stuart McDonald), Heez Orl Black (Tom Buchanan) and Jaccka Felix (Dylan Egerton-Green). Heez Orl Black is racing keenly and is capable of a bold showing from barrier two on the back line. The richly-talented Bettors Fire also makes strong appeal at his second appearance after a lengthy spell. Bettors Fire, to be driven by his trainer Kyle Harper, is the class runner and should fight out the finish, despite the disadvantage of starting from the outside of the front line. He covered a lot of extra ground when a splendid first-up sixth behind Some Kinda Tactics over 1730m last Friday week. Three Blind Mice poised for first-up win Brilliant, lightly-raced pacer Three Blind Mice should make a triumphant return to racing and send punters home on a happy note by winning the final event, the 2130m Alltools Pathway Pace, at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Busselton trainer-reinsman Matt White said that Three Blind Mice was on target to contest the feature events for four-year-olds this season, including the McInerney Classic and Golden Nugget Championship. "That's the plan, to have him peaking for those big races," said White, who has taken over the preparation of Three Blind Mice from the gelding's part-owner Barry Howlett. White recently acquired his A-grade trainer's licence and has already prepared five winners. Three Blind Mice gave a superb performance to set the pace and win the WA Derby from Elegant Christian and Machtu early last April. He then led and won at Bunbury and Harvey at his following two starts before going for a spell. White took Three Blind Mice to Pinjarra to contest a 2185m trial on Sunday morning and was fully satisfied with his performance, finishing a head second to the pacemaker Awesum Teddy, rating 1.58 after dashing over the final two 400m sections in 28.4sec. and 27.9sec. "It was a good hit-out," White said. "Three Blind Mice sat behind the leader before finishing strongly," he said. "They rolled along a bit and he hit the line together with Awesum Teddy. "From barrier four on Friday night I'll probably roll forward and I'd like to think he will get to the front. He's only a C2-class pacer and his next start probably will be in the country." The only possible danger to Three Blind Mice on Friday night appears to be smart four-year-old High Courage, who will be driven by Gary Hall jun. for his father, leading trainer Gary Hall sen. High Courage, who has won at six of his 18 starts, will begin from the outside of the front line. An easy all-the-way winner over 2130m at Gloucester Park three starts ago, he had an extremely tough run in the breeze when a fighting third behind stablemate Crusader Banner over 1730m last Friday night. "He's race fit and will make a race of it with Three Blind Mice," said Hall jun. "However, the draw makes it tough for High Courage." Prentice hoping for winning run to continue Boyanup trainer-reinsman Justin Prentice, fresh from winning with Tasmanian Bromac at Pinjarra on Monday and Kiralin and Bettor Dreams at Gloucester Park on Tuesday evening, has high hopes of ending the week on a high note by driving promising four-year-old Where Dreams Grow to victory in the first heat of the Melbourne Cup Luncheon Preux Chevalier Pace for mares at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The WA-bred Where Dreams Grow has struck a purple patch with four wins and a second placing from her past six starts. She has fared poorly in the random draw and will start from the outside of the back line. However, Prentice is quietly confident that she will prove to be an excellent each-way chance, with her chief rivals Harriet Elisabeth (barrier three on the back line), Diamonds A Blaze (barrier seven) and Robyns C C (six) drawing poorly. "Where Dreams Grow has the ability to win from the No. 12 barrier," Prentice said. "She has been going very well and felt super at her latest outing, at Pinjarra on Monday of last week. "She felt really good and switched on at Pinjarra and repeating that performance she should finish in the money on Friday night and qualify for the final. She's reasonably strong and pretty quick as well. "She has got a tricky draw, but the three who appear hardest to beat have all drawn awkwardly. I'll see how things pan out early and then I'll probably put her into the race at some stage." Prentice said that he would nominate Kiralin for the second heat of this event in a bid to qualify her for the final. He has been training Kiralin, a five-year-old by Elsu, for four weeks and produced her in fine fettle for her first start since mid-August. Prentice is also looking forward to driving standing-start specialist Multibet for the first time on Friday night when the Jess Moore-trained seven-year-old begins from the inside of the front line in the Sky Racing Handicap over 2503m. Multibet ran home solidly on the inside from eighth at the bell to finish third behind Medley Moose and Bashful Compton in the group 3 Kalgoorlie Cup at huis latest outing. Earl of Charity a real bargain Young horseman Michael Young, Courtney Burch and Brett Archibald made a wise decision to out lay just $6000 six weeks ago to purchase Victorian-bred trotter Earl of Charity. The seven-year-old will start from the inside of the front line in the $17,500 Slater Gartrell Sports Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night and reinsman Gary Hall jun. is full of confidence that he will maintain his winning form. "If he gets away in the stand and leads I don't think they'll see which way he went," Hall said. "If he doesn't lead, he could still win. He's quite a nice horse and as long as he settles, he can come from anywhere." Earl of Charity is trained by Gary Hall sen. and he made an impressive debut for the Hall stable when he started from the 30m mark, and despite breaking in running, he was prominent throughout before winning from Keepyaguardup and Conquer All over 2503m last Tuesday week. "He was in good form when we got him, but had a few issues, with pulling," Hall jun. said. "I think that being in a big stable has helped him and he has settled down a lot. He never used to get away in stands. He got away at his first start for us, off 30m. And he did get away off the front in a trial. "Late in August Michael Young approached the owners, but he didn't really expect them to sell. However, they agreed to sell him for $6000." Young seized the opportunity to buy the gelding, who was due to contest a race at Pinjarra a couple of days later. He agreed to let part-owner Terry Wegner start him at Pinjarra, with the proviso that the two parties share any prizemoney. Earl of Charity, who had won at his previous start, repeated the dose with Wegner guiding the gelding to victory over Idle Maple and All Flair. The new owners had an immediate return and gained half of the $4485 first prize. Then Earl of Charity earned $4550 with his first-up success with the Hall camp. by Ken Casellas