Day At The Track
Search Results
65 to 80 of 129

Champion trainer Gary Hall sen. maintained his dominance of feature events at Gloucester Park when his younger son Gary produced a near-perfect drive to land up-and-coming star Northview Punter a decisive and impressive winner of the $35,000 Alltools Four And Five-Year-Old Championship at Gloucester Park on Friday night. And to emphasise the 64-year-old's overwhelming superiority in West Australian harness racing he produced the trifecta, with Soho Valencia (Clint Hall) finishing second, a neck ahead of Benjamin Banneker (Justin Prentice). The trifecta paid $514.70 for a $1 investment. Hall sen. is now mapping out plans for the New Zealand-bred four-year-old Northview Punter to contest the rich feature events at next summer's Gloucester Park carnival. "He has taken his time to hit his straps," Hall jun. said. "He's always had the ability, but it has taken a little while to get it out of him. He's a bull and he's starting to mature at the right time. "I always thought that he was just below them (the State's top pacers), but the way he's going now, and if he keeps heading in that direction, he's going to be a player come Christmas." In a keen betting race, Northview Punter was solidly supported to start third favourite at 7/2, with five-year-olds Soho Valencia and Red Salute sharing favouritism at 2/1. Benjamin Banneker was a 52/1 tote outsider. Red Salute, as expected, jumped straight to the front from the No. 1 barrier and Hall jun. urged Northview Punter forward from the No. 4 barrier to race three wide for the first 200m before applying some pressure on Red Salute. Northview Punter then gained the one-out, one-back trail after a lap when Soho Valencia (sent forward, three wide, after 600m) moved into the breeze. After moderate first sections of the final mile in 30.8sec. and 30.4sec., the third 400m section whizzed by in a sizzling 27.7sec. when Soho Valencia challenged Red Salute for supremacy. Finally, Soho Valencia took the lead 250m from home, but he was unable to withstand the powerful late burst from Northview Punter, who burst to the front with 70m to travel and went on to win by just under a length at a 1.57.1 rate after a final quarter of 28.8sec. Benjamin Banneker raced three back on the pegs before finishing strongly to be third, with Rocky Marciano sustaining a spirited three-wide burst to be a splendid fourth. Red Salute wilted to fifth. Northview Punter, by Bettors Delight, has now earned $256,915 from 18 wins and 12 placings from 38 starts. Hall jun. admitted that he was "not really confident" after the third quarter in 27.7sec., saying: "He did sort of drop the bit at that stage. He does struggle a bit with point-to-point speed. But that quarter down the back definitely brought me into the race and on the bend he was charging, full of running." HALL SUSPENDED FOR 30 DAYS AND WILL MISS WA DERBY Champion reinsman Gary Hall jun. has been denied the opportunity of winning the $200,000 WA Derby on April 11 after being suspended for 30 days for causing interference in the Alltools Red Lithium Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The 31-year-old Hall, in the sulky behind 7/4 favourite Korobeit Angel, was suspended for severely checking the early pacemaker Lord Lexus rounding the first turn shortly after the start of the 1730m event. Korobeit Angel, who started from barrier three and raced three wide early, contacted the off fore leg of Lord Lexus, causing the 5/1 third favourite to break into a gallop and drop back to the rear. Korobeit Angel then went on to set the pace. She pulled hard in the lead and wilted to finish third behind the fast-finishing last-start winner and 20/1 chance Hokuri Handrail and Little Boy Blue. The 30-day suspension is the heaviest penalty in recent years imposed on a driver causing interference in a race in WA. The stewards intended to hand down a 34-day suspension before reducing the penalty to 30 days after Hall pleaded guilty to the charge of careless driving in that he allowed Korobeit Angel to shift in and check Lord Lexus. Hall decided to start his suspension immediately and did not drive at the Bunbury meeting on Saturday night. He has driven 99 winners in WA this season and will be eligible to resume at the Pinjarra meeting on Monday April 21. Korobeit Angel sprinted over the first 400m section of the final mile in 28.4sec. and sustained a smart pace with the next quarters in 29.3sec., 29.3sec. and 29.1sec. Hokuri Handrail, an M3-class pacer, became eligible to contest Friday night's event restricted to M0 and M2-class performers when trainer Kristie Morrone engaged Luke Edwards to make use of his concession as a junior driver. Hokuri Handrail started from the outside of the back line and was on the pegs in eighth position at the bell before Edwards brought the New Zealand-bred six-year-old home with a brilliant burst. Edwards eased the gelding off the pegs with 250m to travel and after going four wide on the home turn Hokuri Handrail charged home from fifth at the 100m mark to burst to the front 50m from the post. He rated 1.56 in scoring his 13th win from 39 starts in WA. He now has earned $129,752 from 18 wins and ten placings from 61 starts. DALTON MAKES A GREAT START TO WA CAREER Former Victorian trainer-reinsman Clive Dalton made a wonderful debut as a trainer at Gloucester Park on Friday night when Major Fury set the pace and held on to win the 2503m Alltools The Name Says It All Handicap. The 55-year-old Dalton, who has driven about 500 winners and trained almost 700 winners in Victoria, prepares Major Fury for New South Wales breeder-owner Matthew Sandblom at Neven Botica's Herron property, 60km north of Bunbury. Dalton took over the preparation of Major Fury from Peter Tilbrook after the NSW-bred five-year-old had finished second to Hez Got The Nod at Gloucester Park a fortnight before Friday night's success. In an unusual coincidence, Next Dawn, the winner of the final race on Friday night's program, was trained and driven by Dalton for 17 starts in 2011 for three wins at Shepparton and one win at Cobram. Major Fury was a firm even-money favourite on Friday night and his supporters were on good terms with themselves when Callan Suvaljko got the gelding away to a flying start from the inside of the front line. After an opening quarter of the final mile in 30.7sec., Suvaljko increased the tempo and Major Fury covered the next three sections in 29.7sec., 28.9sec. and 29.2sec. Major Fury fought on tenaciously to beat 10/1 chance The Pacing Priest, who finished strongly from fifth at the bell to go down by only one metre. A neck away in third place was Black Cracker, who trailed the pacemaker throughout. "As soon as he jumped away I was pretty confident," Suvaljko said. "He can roll 30sec. quarters and sprint home pretty well. That was the plan to roll along and make it difficult for the backmarkers. He should win more races." Major Fury, a winner of four races in NSW as a two and three-year-old, has had 16 starts in WA for six wins and three seconds to boost his career earnings to $63,189 from ten wins and five seconds from only 27 starts. His dam The Kindly One (by American stallion Praised Dignity) raced 42 times in NSW for eight wins, 11 placings and $95,562. She has produced six winners, including Art Princess, an earner of $179,364 from 14 wins and 21 placings from 62 starts. The Kindly One's dam, the Queensland-bred Kotare Fury, had 100 starts form 19 wins and 38 placings for stakes of 72,958. EYRE CRUSHER STAKES HIS DERBY CLAIMS Leading trainer Gary Hall sen. has a vice-like grip on the $200,000 WA Derby on April 11 with a team of brilliant three-year-olds, including Elegant Christian, Machtu, High Courage, Pelusiac and Classic American. And Eyre Crusher emerged as another realistic prospect for the Hall camp in the group 1 classic when Clint hall drove him to a thrilling fast-finishing victory in the 2130m Milwaukee Nothing But Heavy Duty WA Derby Prelude at Gloucester Park on Friday night. "Eyre Crusher will beat any of my three-year-olds, sitting on them, as long as he doesn't work early," Hall sen. said. "When Gary drives him at home he says he feels the closest to Im Themightyquinn. But he's not strong. He's got a lightning burst for about two furlongs, and once he's at the end of that he falls in a heap. He's an opportunist." Pelusiac was all the rage in Friday night's race and was sent out favourite at 5/2 on, with Eyre Crusher second favourite at the gift odds of 15/2 and Bettor Offer, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, at 8/1. Pelusiac lacked sparkle from the No. 2 barrier and raced without cover for the first 500m taking over as pacemaker from 33/1 chance Back On Board. Bettor Offer then was left in the breeze and Eyre Crusher gained the perfect one-out and one-back trail. Colin Brown sent Bettor Offer to the front 140m from the post, but he was overhauled in the final stride by the flying Eyre Crusher, who gained the verdict in the photo by a nose. Both the final 400m sections were covered in 28.1sec. and Eyre Crusher rated 1.56.7. Eyre Crusher won once from two starts as a two-year-old in New Zealand and his record now stands at nine starts for four wins and four seconds for earnings of $39,623. He is the first foal out of Mach Three mare Lucasta Midfrew, who won twice from 30 starts. Lucastra Midfrew's half-sister (by Christian Cullen) Libertybelle Midfrew won the $156,000 Yearling sales final for two-year-old fillies by five lengths at Alexandra Park in April 2013. DELIGHTFUL JADE OVERCOMES A CHECK TO WIN Delightful Jade, who is closely related to former star performer Whitbys Miss Penny, remained unbeaten after two starts when she unwound a spirited finishing burst to win the $21,000 Alltools Western Crown Classic for two-year-old fillies at Gloucester Park on Friday night. She overcame a check approaching the home turn to get up and beat the pacemaker and 7/4 on favourite Mohito, who dead-heated for second with 20/1 chance Lady Willoughby. Mohito was two lengths clear of her nearest rival with 100m to travel before she wilted and was defeated by Delightful Jade, who trailed her throughout. Tricky Styx, a 6/1 chance driven by Aiden De Campo, raced in last place in the field of six before starting a three-wide move at the 550m mark. She sprinted strongly to get three-quarters of a length in front of Mohito 250m from home. She had not crossed to a clear lead when she broke into a gallop approaching the home turn. "When I got checked when Aiden's horse galloped I didn't think I was going to pick up the leader," said Delightful Jade's driver Matt White. "To her credit she knuckled down and did the job. She has got a great attitude and will only improve. This is the first time I have driven her and I was pretty impressed." Delightful Jade, second favourite at 9/4 and trained at Capel by Andrew De Campo for breeder-owner Melissa Howie, is by Bettors Delight out of Booth Hanover mare Whitbys Solitaire, who raced only nine times for two wins, four placings and $5443. Delightful Jade has earned $18,620 for her two wins from two starts. Whitbys Solitaire is out of Fiscal Miss, a mare who won 15 races and earned $53,854. The first foal out of Fiscal Miss was Whitbys Miss Penny, who was retired after having had 50 starts for 32 wins and six placings for $568,289 in prizemoney. Whitbys Miss Penny won the $80,000 Edgar Tatlow Stakes at Moonee Valley in March 1990 at her third start and her victories in 1991 included the Western Gateway Pace, the Battle of Bunbury, the WA Oaks, the WA Derby, the Caduceus Club Classic, the Sires for three-year-old fillies, the Pink Diamond and the Four-Year-Old Coca Cola Pace. In 1992 she finished second to Impressionist in the Golden Nugget Championship and won the Fremantle Cup, the Mount Eden Sprint, the Bunbury Cup and a prelude of the WA Pacing Cup. RED HOT MAJOR CALLS THE TUNE Red Hot Major, the 11/4 second favourite, made the most of an abominable start by 2/1 favourite Artillery Major by leading all the way in the $21,000 Alltools Western Crown Classic for two-year-old colts and geldings at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Artillery Major galloped badly and lost about 200m and this enabled Kim Young to drive Red Hot Major hard from the No. 4 barrier to cross to the front soon after the start. Red Hot Major was joined in the lead in the first lap by 13/4 third favourite Out Of The Shadow and he looked set for an easy victory when that gelding began to wilt in the final circuit. But debutant Military Master, a 7/1 chance who had trailed Red Hot Major all the way, loomed as a serious threat when he got into the clear approaching the home turn and ran home determinedly. However, Red Hot Major revealed splendid fighting qualities to resist the challenge and go on and win by 1m at a 1.59.6 rate over 1730m. "The other horse (Military Master) went really well and surprised me a bit," said Young. "I was probably driving to beat two of the others (Artillery Major and Out Of The Shadow) and when Military Master came at me I thought we were going to get beaten. Military Master was not the worst horse, but one we didn't know anything about. However, my horse showed good endeavour." Red Hot Major, owned and trained by Gary Elson, has won at his first two starts and has earned $18,035. His dam Red Hot Rita earned $32,564 from 11 wins and 13 placings from 46 starts. Red Hot Rita also produced smart performers Just Live Life (43 starts for ten wins, 16 placings and $60,440) and Im Smouldering, who had 31 starts for 14 wins, 14 placings and $262,475 in prizemoney. Im Smouldering won the group 2 Tatlow Stakes for two-year-old fillies at Melton in May 2012, defeating the brilliant Frith, and the group 1 $100,000 Vicbred Super Series final for three-year-old fillies at Melton last July. NEXT DAWN SHINING FOR CUMMINGS Former Victorian pacer Next Dawn maintained his sound form for his new trainer Graham Cummings when he finished in dashing style to score an easy victory in the 1730m Make Smoking History Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. A winner at Northam four starts earlier, Next Dawn was a 14/1 chance from barrier two on the back line, with polemarker I Am Legend (boasting a losing sequence of 17 and unplaced at his previous 12 starts) a well-supported favourite at 5/2, with Absolute Cool, placed once at his previous eight starts, a strong second fancy at 13/4 from barrier four on the front line. Next Dawn, driven for the first time by Robbie Williams, raced in seventh position, three back on the pegs while I Am Legend set the pace with Absolute Cool working hard in the breeze. Williams got Next Dawn off the pegs and into the clear approaching the home turn and the Victorian-bred six-year-old finished strongly to take the lead 90m from the post. He won by one and a half lengths from I Am legend, with two lengths to Im Terrific in third place after that pacer had trailed the pacemaker all the way. Next Dawn, who rated 1.56.3, has won 11 times from 42 starts in Western Australia to take his record to 75 starts for 16 wins, 14 placings and $97,947. By American stallion Dawn Of A New Day, he is the fifth and final foal, and only winner, out of unraced What's Next mare Next Interest. PACIFIC WARRIOR A MAJOR CHANC E IN CLARKE FINAL New Zealand-bred six-year-old Pacific Warrior emerged as the horse to beat in the $25,000 final of the Clarke Pace next Friday night when he gave another powerhouse performance to score a narrow but impressive victory in the third qualifying heat at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Pacific Warrior was a 6/1 chance from barrier five on the front line, with most punters pinning their faith in the polemarker Lovers Delight, who started favourite at 6/4 on. Our Arlington (barrier three) and Menelaus of Sparta (four) were smartest into stride, but neither was able to get to an early lead, with Chris Lewis driving hard to keep Lovers Delight in front with a slick lead time of 36.6sec. Kade Howson did not bustle Pacific Warrior early before he sent the gelding forward to move into the breeze after about 600m. After the first two sections of the final mile in 30.5sec. and 30sec. Howson applied more pressure on the leader and the next two quarters whizzed by in 28.4sec. and 28.1sec. Pacific Warrior got his head in front 400m from home and he and Lovers Delight matched strides down the home straight, with Pacific Warrior prevailing by a half-head, with 5m to Pride of Colorado, who trailed the leader all the way. "Lovers Delight ran the lead time (a brisk 36.6sec.) and we stayed out of that," Howson said. "And from there we just had to keep at him. Lovers Delight had burnt early and was a bit vulnerable. Pacific Warrior just keeps coming. He's a tough, big horse and hopefully he will develop into a Cups prospect." Pacific Warrior, trained at Mt Helena by Ray Williams, has had 30 starts in WA for 16 wins, six seconds and two thirds to take his career record to 57 starts for 20 wins, 15 placings and $176,293 in stakes. SHIRLZ SENSATION LOOKS SET FOR A BRIGHT CAREER Lightly-raced four-year-old Shirlz Sensation has taken his time to develop and is now giving promise of becoming a good winner for Jandabup trainer Mike Beech. Shirlz Sensation started from the outside of the front line at the gift price of 15/2 in the third qualifying heat of the 2130m Community Newspaper Group Westbred Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night and gave a most impressive display to score an effortless victory. Atlastalone, favourite at 11/8 from barrier three on the front line, hung out in the score-up and locked sulky wheels with Kissed Flush when the mobile sent the field on its way. Outsider Mako Shadow was smartest into stride, but was unable to wrest the lead from polemarker Atomic Chip (4/1) in a fast lead time of 36.1sec. Ryan Warwick then sent Firebomb to the front after 520m and soon after that Chris Lewis dashed Shirlz Sensation forward to work hard in the breeze. Shirlz Sensation led by a half-length at the bell and remained in that position for the next 500m before forging to a clear lead 300m from home. Shirlz Sensation then careered away from his rivals to cover the final 400m in 28.4sec. and win at a 1.56.7 rate by a margin of 31 metres from Soho Monza, with a head to Firebomb. Shirlz Sensation has had 21 starts for six wins, three placings and stakes of $48,971. COMPACT ROCKET DELAYS THE START AND THEN BEHAVES PERFECTLY West Australian-bred five-year-old Compact Rocket, who has been unreliable at the start in several recent stands, again was fractious behind the tapes and delayed the start of the 2503m Alltools.com.au Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Chris Voak then got Compact Rocket away to a perfect flying start and the gelding burst straight to the front before bowling along in the lead and scoring an easy victory, beating Pacific Playboy by one and a half lengths, with Veitchy flashing home along the pegs to be third. Compact Rocket, a 7/1 chance trained by Ross Olivieri, kept his rivals, particularly 2/1 favourite Trojan Bromac, well at bay in the middle stages when he dashed through the second and third quarters of the final mile in 29.9sec. and 28.2sec. Trojan Bromac, who moved into the breeze with two laps to travel, wilted to finish fifth. Compact Rocket is by American sire Dr Drew and is the only winner out of New Zealand-bred mare Pipe Dreamer, who raced eight times in New Zealand and eight times in Victoria for just one win, at Cranbourne in August 2001. Compact Rocket, bred and owned by Bob Fowler, has been a handy performer who has earned $64,396 from nine wins and nine placings from 55 starts. by Ken Casellas

Up-and-coming pacer Red Salute has started from the prized No. 1 barrier four times in his 51-start career for four all-the-way victories over 2130m and Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri is confident that the gelding will continue this trend when he starts from the inside barrier in the $35,000 Alltools Four And Five-Year-Old Championship over 21230m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. "I was rapt with his performance last week and he can go faster than that," said Olivieri when commenting on Red Salute's strong frontrunning performance to win over 2130m at a 1.56.9 rate last Friday night. "That was a controlled, aggressive type race and he'll probably need to go faster this week. To hold up and lead will be Plan A. Polak (barrier three) can begin fast, but they might also respect Red Salute's gate speed. And I don't think that Northview Punter (barrier four) is capable of crossing Red Salute." Red Salute will again be handled by Chris Voak, who has driven the WA-bred pacer at 12 of his 15 wins. Red Salute is an M6-class performer and the highest-assessed runner in the race. Answering a query that he should be overjoyed at the gelding drawing the No. 1 barrier against lesser-performed horses, Olivieri said: "It's a good field which contains several horses who are on M3, M4 and M5 marks, and they are going to get to an M6 mark and better. "Red Salute was immature and had a gaiting problem as a young horse. But we've ironed out that problem and now he's more fluent and a bit quicker (at the start). Red Salute is like an AFL footballer with his first pre-season under his belt. He's a new kid on the block in fast class and he's shown that he's up to them in that company. I'm not saying that he's better than them, but he's not out of place in top company." Owners Denise Trobe, Jeanine Diederich, Adrian Staltari and Anthony Jones are hoping that Red Salute will make amends for his distant last in the Four And Five-Year-Old Championship 12 months ago when he started from the No. 4 barrier and raced three wide early before getting a length in front of Your Good Fortune and was about to cross to the pegs and lead when he broke into a bad gallop and dropped back to the rear. Your Good Fortune, favourite at 7/4 on, went on to set the pace and win by a length from Famous Alchemist. These two pacers will again contest the race this year, with Famous Alchemist at No. 5 on the front line and Your Good Fortune on the outside of the back line and each facing a stern test. Olivieri will also be represented by star mare Sensational Gabby, who has fared badly in the draw and will start from the outside (No. 7) on the front line, with Chris Lewis in the sulky. "The draw is against her," Olivieri said. "Her biggest hope is if Polak and Northview Punter charge forward and try to beat out Red salute and they run some ridiculous lead time. Then she would be right in the race. But if they come out under normal speed and run normally she will not have much hope." Leading trainer Gary Hall sen. holds a powerful hand in Friday night's event with five runners --- Northview Punter, Famous Alchemist, Benjamin Banneker, Real Hammer and Soho Valencia. He conceded that Red Salute would be hard to beat from the No. 1 barrier, but said that Soho Valencia should not be underestimated despite drawing the No. 4 barrier on the back line and having his first start for 17 months. "Soho Valencia is easily the best horse in the race, but he will need the run," Hall said. "He's going along nicely, but being first-up is the problem. However, he will still acquit himself well, particularly if he gets a favourable passage." Soho Valencia, an M1-class performer, will be making his first appearance since he made his WA debut in a prelude of the Golden Nugget when he worked hard in the breeze before winning easily from Midnight Dylan and Bronze Seeker over 2130m at Gloucester Park in October 2012. He has raced 33 times for 19 wins and seven placings for stakes of $298,942. It was then discovered that he had bone chips in his off fore knee, a condition which required surgery. Clint Hall will drive the five-year-old on Friday night and his younger brother Gary will handle four-year-old Northview Punter, who notched his 17th victory from 37 starts when he raced without cover before beating Shirlz Sensation at a 1.53 rate over 1684m at Pinjarra three Mondays ago. Kim Prentice will drive Famous Alchemist, his son Justin will handle Benjamin Banneker and Robbie Williams will be in the sulky behind Real Hammer, who will be the rank outsider in the race. HALL TIPS PELUSIAC TO SET THE PACE AND WIN Champion trainer Gary Hall sen. is bubbling with confidence that lightly-raced gelding Pelusiac will prove too speedy for his ten rivals in the $17,000 Milwaukee Nothing But Heavy Duty WA Derby Prelude over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. "He should lead and win," he said. "I'd like him to make amends for last week when he didn't get a clear run." Pelusiac, driven by Robbie Williams, raced three back on the pegs and was blocked for a clear passage in the final circuit when eighth behind outstanding stablemate Elegant Christian in the 2536m Caduceus Club Classic. Gary Hall jun. will resume in the sulky behind Pelusiac this week and he should have little trouble in getting him straight to the front from the No. 2 barrier on the front line. Drawn inside of him is Major Rush, who has won once from 27 starts and invariably is driven with a sit. Two starts ago Pelusiac raced wide early before getting to the front and going on to win the 2100m Battle of Bunbury. He worked hard in the breeze before winning at a 1.53.9 rate over 1684m at Pinjarra five days earlier. He has now raced nine times for five wins and three seconds. His major rival appears to be his speedy stablemate Eyre Crusher, who has had eight starts for three wins and four seconds. Eyre Crusher gave a sample of his class at Northam on Thursday of last week when he dashed to an early lead and went on to win by more than five lengths at a 1.57.2 rate from Calais over 2190m. Calais was having his first start for three months and he should be greatly improved by the outing. He will start from barrier four on the front line on Friday night and should be prominent. Forrestdale trainers Greg and Skye Bond have three smart New Zealand-bred three-year-olds in the race in Bettor Offer (Colin Brown), Zacharia (Chris Lewis) and Black Mr Mach (Ryan Warwick). The Ross Olivieri-trained Tarsao was most impressive at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon when making his first appearance for four months when Chris Voak drove the gelding to an effortless all-the-way victory over 1684m, rating 1.55.6 when he defeated Slurp Alert by more than eight lengths. However, Tarsao's prospects slumped when he drew the outside of the front line. LADY WILLOUGHBY INHERITS THE SPEED OF HER DAM Amongst Royalty is one of the smartest fillies to have raced in Western Australia in recent years and her first foal Lady Willoughby has inherited much of her sparkling speed and brilliance. Lady Willoughby, bred and owned by Bob Fowler, will make her Gloucester Park debut when she contests the $21,000 Alltools Western Crown for two-year-old fillies on Friday night. "She's going to be a sensation," said trainer Ross Olivieri. "But she will be meeting stiff opposition from Mohito and Straittothehilton. I'm very impressed with those fillies and it wouldn't surprise me if she can't match them at this stage. "Lady Willoughby went out and won at her first start, going no time (2.7.2 over 1823m) at Narrogin and then she disappointed us when we thought she would win, but finished only third at Northam." In the Northam race on Thursday of last week Lady Willoughby competed against colts and geldings and after racing one-out and two-back in a field of five she lacked sparkle and finished third, almost four lengths behind the winner Artillery Major. However, Olivieri's hopes were boosted on Tuesday morning when Chris Voak drove Lady Willoughby in trackwork. "He said that she was a different horse to the one who went around at Northam," he said. "Hopefully, her Northam effort was just an aberration and, hopefully, she will go just as well on Friday night as we know she can. Her Mum was good and so is she." Lady Willoughby will start from the No. 2 barrier in a field of six, flanked by unbeaten fillies, Delightful Jade and Mohito. Olivieri hopes that Lady Willoughby will go one better than Amongst Royalty, who finished second in the Western Crown in February 2006 when she finished a nose behind Sheza Clout. Delightful Jade, trained at Capel by Andrew De Campo, finished strongly from three back on the pegs to win by just over two lengths from Torrevean Mio over 1730m at Gloucester Park at her only appearance, on Tuesday of last week. She is closely related to former champion filly Whitbys Miss Penny. Mohito, trained at Bakers Hill by Mike Williams, has won at her only two starts, at Northam and Pinjarra, when she set the pace for Ryan Warwick, who will be anxious on Friday night to get her to an early lead from barrier three. Straittothehilton, trained at Byford by Katja Warwick, will start from the outside barrier and is the most experienced filly in the race, with her four starts producing a debut victory at Pinjarra followed by three second placings. She has been beaten at her past two outings (at Bunbury and Pinjarra) by the Jesse Moore-trained Tricky Styx. Tricky Styx will start from barrier five on Friday night and must come under serious consideration in what should prove to be a highly competitive event. She is a half-sister to Go West U Terror, who won the 2010 Western Crown for colts and geldings. ARTILLERY MAJOR SET TO GUN DOWN THE OPPOSITION Astute Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri firmly believes that Artillery Major has the firepower to remain unbeaten by proving too strong for the enemy in the $21,000 Alltools Western Crown for two-year-old colts and geldings at Gloucester Park on Friday night. "I think that Artillery Major is a huge chance," Olivieri said. "He's fast and he's strong." Artillery Major, handily drawn at barrier three on the front line, will be at a far shorter quote than he was when he made his debut at Northam on Thursday of last week when he was a 25/1 chance who led early and then raced without cover before beating Nitro Lad, rating 2.0.7 over 1780m. Chris Voak will drive Artillery Major and Chris Lewis, back after an ocean cruise, will handle Olivieri's second-string runner Coeur de Whitby, who will start out wide at barrier six. "I put him in a race at Pinjarra on Monday in preference to running in a trial and he ran second in 1.58 and did it really well," Olivieri said. "He will improve his own weight on that run and if he improves as much as I think he will he'll be competitive on Friday night." by Ken Casellas  

Champion harness racing trainer Gary Hall Sr strengthened his grip on the 2014 G1 $200,000 Sky Racing WA Derby on 11 April after dominating the $40,000 Caduceus Club Classic (2536m) at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Hall's pair, Elegant Christian and Machtu, completely dominated the traditional Derby lead-up and sent an ominous warning to their rivals by gapping WA’s best three-year-olds by an ever widening seven lengths. Elegant Christian jumped straight to the front for Clinton Hall to dictated terms, but it wasn’t a walk in the park for the unbeaten three-year-old, as his stablemate Machtu applied the blowtorch a lap out and the pair settled down for an enthralling battle. The son of Christian Cullen and English Elegance held off a gallant Machtu by two and a half metres, with a closing last half of a sizzling 55.3, racing away from the rest of the field. Last season’s two-year-old of the year Mister Jadore was almost 30 metres away in third place. Despite amazingly only winning his first Derby last season with the injury plagued Alta Christiano, this looks to be Hall’s best sophomore crop ever as far as depth is concerned, with the champion mentor appearing to hold all the aces for next month’s Group One Blue Riband event. Elegant Christian should take natural improvement on his first-up effort, while Machtu could not have been more impressive in defeat. “I don’t think there is much between these two” Hall said after the race “They are both pretty special.” Hall also had an impressive three-year-old winner the night before at Northam, with Eye Crusher winning by four lengths in a slick 1.57.2 mile rate for the 2190 metres. In other races on the night at Gloucester Park, Red Salute driven by Chris Voak held off stablemate Sensational Gabby to win the HBF Run For A Reason FFA, while Hokuri Handrail got under the guard of most punters with a returned to winning form in a heat of The Clarke at odds $64.30 with Tabtouch. 

Friday night was a red letter night at Gloucester Park for Wanneroo trainer Debbie Padberg, who completed her first city treble when Shannon Suvaljko drove 9/2 chance Hez Got the Nod to a decisive all-the-way victory in the 2503m Carilley Estate Handicap. She had been successful earlier with The Feather Foot (11/2) and Franco Torres, a 57/1 tote outsider. Her three winners were in the first, second and fourth legs of the quadrella, which paid a massive dividend of $84,593. Her husband John, the managing part-owner of the trio, loves to dabble and he left the course rubbing his hands with typical unihibited glee. Debbie, far less extroverted than her ebullient husband, took the feat in her stride, but admitted it was a thrill to land her first Metropolitan treble after having held a trainer's licence for 30 years. "They're all nice horses, nothing too special, and they will just keep on racing and doing their job," she said. "I think I have had four or five trebles on country tracks." She attributed Hez Got The Nod's success to a return to standing-start racing, saying: "He was in mobiles and was going no good, so we returned to stands with him." This was Hez Got The Nod's second run in a stand after only one placing at his four previous starts in mobiles. He also led when he won a Gloucester Park stand before Friday night's race. He also won two stands at Gloucester Park in September and a stand at Northam in December. "We bought him for $25,000 after he had won once from 22 starts in New Zealand and four times from 11 starts in New South Wales," said John Padberg. The Grinfromeartoear five-year-old now has had 15 starts in WA for Padberg and Jodie Foster for five wins, four placings and stakes of $35,510. The gelding has graduated to an M1 classification with a record of 48 starts for ten wins, 20 placings and $66,216. "He's so reliable that he'll earn a bucket load of money out of the stands," said Padberg. Last-start winner Major Fury was a heavily-backed even-money favourite in Friday night's race, but he scrambled into his gear from the inside barrier and was beaten out by Hez Got the Nod, from the No. 2 barrier. Callan Suvaljko then trailed Hez Got The Nod, who covered the first two 400m sections of the final mile in 30.8sec. and 30.6sec. before sprinting over the final two quarters in 29.5sec. and 28.9sec. to win by just under two lengths from Major Fury, with just over a length to Pacific Black, who sustained a spirited three-wide burst from the rear. Hez Got the Nod's maternal granddam Janet Quill produced good winners Dartmoor and Mevagissey. Dartmoor, who won the Australian Pacing Championship at Gloucester Park in March 2008, beating No Blue Manna and Hayton Brain, is still racing in Victoria and has a record of 33 wins and 48 placings from 214 starts for earnings of $400,551. Mevagissey had 141 starts for 17 wins, 27 placings and $171,709. POLAK AND KIMES, A WINNING COMBINATION Five-year-old Polak and reinsman Clint Kimes are a winning combination and Kimes was more than happy to resume as Polak's driver in the $21,000 Mulberry On Swan Autumn Championship, taking over from champion reinsman Chris Lewis, who is enjoying a break, cruising the high seas. Kimes drove with considerable confidence and aggression to score an upset victory over the 10/1 on favourite David Hercules, who just failed to overcome the disadvantage of starting out wide at No. 6 and being forced to race wide. Kimes now has driven the Mike Reed-trained Polak six times for three wins, a second, a third and a seventh. Polak, second favourite at 10/1, started from barrier three and Kimes drove him hard, three wide, before getting past the polemarker Son of Fergie and into the lead after 300m. Morgan Woodley restrained David Hercules to last in the field of nine and when Gary Hall started a three-wide move with Passion Stride after 500m, Woodley followed with David Hercules, who went four wide at the bell in a bid to breach the gap from the pacemaker. David Hercules fought on with typical grit and determination and was beaten by 2m, with the winner rating a smart 1.54.6 after covering the final sectionals in 28.5sec., 29.3sec., 28sec. and 29.4sec. Passion Stride, who was switched to the pegs in the final few hundred metres, finished gamely into third place, just ahead of This Time Dylan, who sustained a strong finishing burst. Max Wimbridge, a part-owner of the winner, was excited at the win and said: "We've been looking for a good draw and we got it tonight. And I think we proved that good draws win races. "One of the owners (Roy Patterson) will be disappointed because he's on a cruise ship and the other one (Stephen Schmedje) is still down in Esperance county his money after selling his farm." Polak has been an excellent investment for Wimbridge, Patterson and Schmedje, having earned $177,695 from 16 wins and 16 placings from 58 starts. He was purchased for just $15,000 at the 2010 Gloucester Standardbred yearling sale and is a full-brother to Schinzig Buller, who has earned $290,837 from 11 wins and 13 placings from 55 starts. His wins included the group 2 Sales Classic for two-year-old colts and geldings in February 2007 and the group 1 Golden Nugget in November 2008 when he defeated Mysta Magical Mach and Im Themightyquinn. Polak is also a full-brother to three-year-old filly Lipizzaner, who led and won a race at Gloucester Park last Tuesday. BIRTHDAY BOY EDWARDS NOTCHES FIRST CITY WINNER Luke Edwards celebrated his 24th birthday on Sunday in style by driving his first Metropolitan-class winner at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he gave a polished display to score an emphatic victory with The Feather Foot in the 2130m Tony O'Driscoll Pace. Edwards, who was granted a licence to drive in the city in January, had The Feather Foot in the breeze for the first 150m before gaining the one-out, one-back trail behind The Black Lord, who was forced to work in the breeze with the 5/4 favourite Chocolatto having an easy time in front with a dawdling lead time of 38.4sec. and a leisurely first 400m section of the final mile in 31.9sec. Edwards was forced to take off earlier than planned when Kristian Hawkins started a three-wide move with Pembrook Henry 700m metres from home, threatening to put The Feather Foot in restricted room. Edwards switched The Feather Foot three wide at the 650m mark and the WA-bred seven-year-old sprinted fast (with the third quarter whizzing by in 28.1sec.) as he charged past Chocolatto with 400m to travel. The Feather Foot covered the final quarter in 28.9sec. and won by more than two lengths from Pembrook Henry (15/1), with Veitchy (28/1) finishing strongly from the rear to be a close third. The winner rated 1.58.9. The Feather Foot, by former champion pacer The Falcon Strike, started at 11/2 and ended a losing sequence of 29. However, he has proved a wonderful acquisition for owners John Padberg, Edwards, his younger brother Isaac, Kiara Davies and Michael Tenardi. They claimed the gelding last July for a mere $4000 and his 20 starts for trainer Debbie Padberg he has won once and been placed eight times for stakes of $22,603. The Feather Foot now has amassed $157,471 from 13 wins and 21 placings from 89 starts. He won the $100,000 group 1 State Sires Series final for three-year-old colts and geldings in July 2010, beating Erris Lad and Thomas With Steam. His maternal granddam Maybe Rich (a winner of ten races) produced six winners, including Fac Et Spiro, who had 85 starts for 23 wins, 30 placings and stakes of $386,695. Edwards, who drove Myouri to victory in an $8000 Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park in mid-February, said he was confident that The Feather Foot would prove hard to beat on Friday night despite finishing ninth in a field of ten behind Rowchester the previous Friday night. "He had a soft run along the pegs and was climbing all over them, but didn't get a clear run," he said. "And at his previous start he was beaten a nose by Shifting Sand. We put him in the race tonight and he was good enough to do the job. I had to go a bit earlier than I would have liked, but if I hadn't he would have been in a pocket. "He will strip fitter at his next start and I reckon he's got another two or three wins in him." Edwards also is hoping for further successes with Gamblers Power, a filly he trains and has driven to two wins at Northam this season. Edwards has no family background in horses. "About four years ago my boss had horses with Kevin Keys and I had my first involvement with horses, working with youngsters with him," he said. "I started to go through the reinsmen's school and then John and Debbie offered me a job as a stablehand. "Debbie gave me a few horses to drive in trials and when I graduated from the reinsmen's school I started working full-time with the Padbergs." SOUTHERN LEGACY LIVING UP TO EXPECTATIONS Breeding suggests that Southern Legacy will continue her wonderful consistent form and win many more races for owner-trainer-reinsman Justin Prentice. Southern Legacy, a 10/1 chance, raced three back on the pegs before finishing powerfully to score an easy victory over 82/1 outsider La Stella Del Mare and Mene Jaccka (22/1) in the 2130m Sully's Painting Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It was a dream price for the five-year-old, who was having her seventh start after a spell. Her previous six runs had produced two wins, one second and three thirds. Punters rallied to support the polemarker Bonsu, who was sent out at 6/4 on. Bonsu set the pace for Shannon Suvaljko before wilting to finish fourth, with Southern Legacy charging to the front in the final 50m to win at a 1.57.8 rate and take her record to 23 starts for five wins, ten placings and $69,911. Southern Legacy, by Canadian sire Northern Luck, is out of Lady Legacy. She did not race as a two-year-old and showed early promise when, at her third start, finished second to the brilliant Sensational Gabby in the WA Oaks in May 2012. Southern Legacy's dam Lady Legacy raced 23 times for five wins and one placings for stakes of $23,280 before producing six winners, including Scram jet (172 starts for 24 wins, 42 placings and $235,076) and Pride of Colorado (67 starts for 14 wins, 14 placings and $125,013). Lady Legacy's dam Fiscal Miss (15 wins and $53,854) produced star performers Whitbys Miss Penny (50 starts for 32 wins, six placings and $568,289) and Ace of Whitby (79 starts for 29 wins, 21 placings and $317,247). Fiscal Miss was out of smart mare Remit, whose eight winners included Whitby Heritage (66 starts for 22 wins, 18 placings and $201,758), Whitby Timer (44 starts for 23 wins, eight placings and $314,899) and Whitbys Merit (14 starts for ten wins, two placings and $168,598). FRANCO TORRES BUCKS ALL THE ODDS Six-year-old New Zealand-bred gelding Franco Torres went into the 2130m first heat of the Burswood On Swan Clarke Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night as the rank tote outsider at 57/1 for three reasons: he had drawn out wide at barrier five, he had finished tenth at his most recent start and was an M2-class performer competing against three M3-class pacers and four M4 horses. However, he bucked the odds and caused a major upset when he stormed home from seventh at the bell to race away and score an easy victory, beating Danieljohn by more than two lengths, with Uppy Son (13/4) a half-length away in third place. Lord Coburn, an easy all-the-way winner at his two previous starts and drawn the prized No. 1 barrier, was all the rage and started favourite at 10/9 on. Lord Coburn led easily, with Black Pontiac in the breeze, Uppy Son on the pegs behind the pacemaker and Mighty Flying Thomas one-out and one-back. The pace slackened after about 500m and Morgan Woodley wisely took off with Mighty Flying Thomas after 650m in a bid to move alongside the pacemaker. But the move was foiled when 25/1 chance Black Pontiac's hind legs contacted the sulky and made him pull hard. This left Mighty Flying Thomas out on a limb, three wide. Franco Torres was seventh at the bell and 50m later Shannon Suvaljko switched him three wide to follow Mighty Flying Thomas, who eventually got to second in the back straight. But he was a spent force and Franco Torres burst to the front 250m from home before racing away from his rivals. Uppy Son pulled up lame in the near foreleg. Suvaljko was fined $200 by the stewards for having crossed his hands to use the whip before the final 200m mark. Franco Torres, trained by Debbie Padberg and owned by John Padberg and David and Alison Wiggers, won twice in New Zealand and three times in New South Wales before being purchased for $25,000. He now has raced 67 times for 11 wins, 18 placings and $89,338. He is a half-brother to Franco The Man, who has earned $185,496 from 19 wins and 28 placings from 105 starts. He is also related to This Time Franco (36 starts for ten wins, 11 placings and $249,151), Franco Thunder (178 starts for 44 wins, 43 placings and $199,928) and Franco Tiger (116 starts for 43 wins, 36 placings and $991,387). VOAK'S TACTICS PAY OFF WITH BET THE MAX There was action aplenty in the 2536m Community Newspaper Group Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night before the innovative Chris Voak triumphed with 11/2 chance Bet The Max. The first surprise came when good frontrunner Waipawa Junior, the 13/4 second fancy from the No. 1 barrier, was crossed by 10/1 chance Elusive Courage, who began speedily from barrier three. Christian Banner, favourite at 2/1, was restrained from the outside barrier back to last in the field of ten. Bet The Max started from barrier two on the back line and settled down in sixth position before Voak vacated the one-wide position and urged the gelding forward in a dashing bid for the lead. Bet The Max sprinted fast and got a length and a quarter in front of Elusive Courage, but was unable to cross to the lead. Voak then restrained Bet The Max and tried to slot in behind the pacemaker. But Bet the Max broke into a gallop and Voak had to abandon that manoeuvre as Colin Brown kicked up with Waipawa Junior to retain the position behind the leader. Voak quickly got Bet The Max back into a pacing action and the gelding was left in the breeze. Elusive Courage then dawdled through the opening quarter of the final mile in 32.4sec. before Luke Edwards brought outsider Myouri with a fast burst from the rear to join the leader and stablemate Elusive Courage 1350m from home, thus providing Bet The Max with the one-out, one-back sit. Myouri got to the front 430m from home, but was unable to hold off the strong-finishing Bet The Max and Christian Banner. The final quarter was run in 28.5sec. and the winner, who is owned by Harry Capararo and trained at Northam by Lang Inwood, rated 2.1.8. Bet The Max surged to the front at the 100m mark and went on to win by 2m from Christian Banner, who finished determinedly, three wide, from seventh at the bell to be second, almost a length in front of Myouri. The New Zealand-bred Bet The Max ended a losing sequence of 15, stretching back to an all-the-way Albany win 14 months ago, and he now has had 61 starts for ten wins, 14 placings and $49,064. Voak, who was driving Bet the Max for the first time, was fined $100 for careless driving in that he reduced the speed dramatically when he tried to restrain Bet The Max to obtain the run behind the leader. This caused the gelding to break into a gallop. WOTAVUGOT SHOWS THAT HE HAS GOT WHAT IT TAKES New Zealand-bred six-year-old Wotavugot certainly is not in the same league as his half-brother Chancellor Cullen, but he certainly gave a most impressive display when he outclassed his eight rivals in very modest company in the 2130m Make Smoking History Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Driven with extreme confidence by Chris Brew for Barragup trainer Laurie Groves, Wotavugot, a son of In The Pocket and a heavily-supported 5/2 on favourite, charged to the front 80m after the start and gave a bold frontrunning display to win by just under 11 lengths from Fully Zapped, rating 1.58.6 after final quarters in 28.4sec. and 29.1sec. This ended a losing sequence of 17, stretching back to a win in a stand at Narrogin in June 2012. Chancellor Cullen, who has had 43 starts for 16 wins, 11 placings and $363,752, is remembered by WA harness racing fans for his half-head victory over Bronze Seeker in the group 1 McInerney Ford Classic at Gloucester Park in November 2012. Wotavugot had 24 starts in New Zealand for seven wins and seven placings. His four wins and four placings from 22 starts have boosted his earnings to $61,257. MANTOMAN TOO TOUGH FOR BOOFSHALFBROTHER New South Wales-bred seven-year-old Mantoman gave a strong staying performance to record a fighting victory over Boofshalfbrother and Franco Jackson in the 2130m Spices Group Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The Michael Brennan-trained gelding was driven for the first time by Gary Hall jun. and was a well-supported 13/4 chance from barrier four on the front line. Boofshalfbrother (9/1) took full advantage of the No. 1 barrier and he set the pace, with opening quarters of the final mile in 31.6sec. and 30.7sec. Hall moved Mantoman into the breeze after 400m when Colin Brown switched Franco Jackson to take the trail behind the leader after being first out from barrier two, but being unable to cross Boofshalfbrother. After a third quarter in 28.4sec. Mantoman moved alongside Boofshalfbrother and got to the front 150m from the post. Boofshalfbrother fought back grimly and went down by only a neck after a final quarter in 29.1sec. Franco Jackson battled on into third place, with the 2/1 favourite Shnappy faded to eighth after racing three wide in the middle stages. Mantoman, by Art Major, is out of Pretty Inpink, a mare who earned $103,492 from 15 wins and ten placings from 47 starts. Mantoman won 12 times in New South Wales and he has had 16 starts in WA for two wins and one placing. His earnings stand at $89,427. SMOOTH CAESAR UPSETS SOHO JACKMAN Big eight-year-old gelding Smooth Caesar outmuscled the opposition when he finished with great spirit to beat 2/1 on favourite Soho Jackman in the first heat of the 2130m Red Pepper Catering Westbred Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Owned by Marie Bingham, and trained and driven by Pinjarra horseman Kim Young, Smooth Caesar started from the coveted No. 1 barrier, but was a 10/1 chance despite a last-start second at Pinjarra and a win on the same track three starts before that. Last-start winner and a 4/1 tote outsider Oneheart Twofists began brilliantly from barrier six and Matt White had the gelding in front after 220m, giving Smooth Caesar a favourable sit on the pegs. Soho Jackman, from the outside of the back line, settled down in 11th position before Gary Hall jun. took him three wide approaching the bell. Soho Jackman sustained his effort and took the lead 100m from the post. But he was unable to hold out Smooth Caesar, who got the upper hand in the final 50m and scored by 2m at a 1.56.7 rate. Smooth Caesar has had 82 starts for 11 wins, 21 placings and $87,487 in prizemoney. WHOS MISTAKE THE FIRST OF SIX WINNERS FOR HALL Veteran pacer Whos Mistake got leading reinsman Gary Hall junior's weekend away to a flying start when he led all the way in the 2130m Munja Gardens Claiming Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Hall completed a double later in the program when he was successful Mantoman and he travelled to Bunbury on Saturday night where he drove four winners --- Truckers Buckeroo, Rocky Pop, Pelusiac and Ben Cartwright. Whos Mistake, trained by Gary Hall sen., was favourite at 6/4 on and he gave punters little cause for concern as he set a solid pace and scored by 4m from 10/1 chance Pride of Colorado, who put up a great performance to fight on doggedly after racing three wide for most of the race. Whos Mistake, owned by Doug Webster, has been a most reliable performer who has earned $148,710 from 18 wins and 25 placings from 124 starts. by Ken Casellas  

It's only a $7500 event for Metropolitan maiden performers, but the final race at Gloucester Park on Friday night, the 2130m Make Smoking History Pathway Pace, is of significant importance to Chris Brew, who is confident of success with Wotavugot, a six-year-old with a losing sequence of 16 and unsuccessful since scoring at Narrogin in June 2012. "This could well be my final appearance at Gloucester Park and I would dearly love to win the race," said the 32-year-old Brew, who has decided to embark on a new career path. "I will be seen as a trainer for the final time when I drive Glenferrie Hood in the Manea Classic at Bunbury on Saturday night and debutant Dainty Diva at Collie on Sunday afternoon. I will leave Western Australia in two weeks and it's possible I might not drive again at Gloucester Park." The Victorian-born 32-year-old Brew would dearly love to end his career in this State the same way as he started it --- when he brought Long Shot Lou home with a powerful three-wide burst to win at Gloucester Park in December 2007 at his first appearance in the State. He will be moving home to Melbourne with his wife Kalina and children Olivia (six) and Toby (nine months) and will become a fly-in, fly-out truck driver in Karratha, in the far north of WA. "This is something I've decided I need to do for my family," he said. "I'll miss training and driving here in WA. I haven't got many regrets and I've enjoyed my time here over the past six and half years. I'd love to bow out with a winner or two." The pint-sized Brew has winning prospects with his two drives on Friday night --- Christian Banner in the Community Newspaper Group Pace and Wotavugot in the final event. Wotavugot, who is trained at Barragup by Laurie Groves, warmed up for this week's assignment in good style when he trailed the pacemaker Raza Sharp Lombo before finishing fast to be a close second to that horse over 2536m last Friday night. He is ideally drawn in this week's event at No. 2 barrier on the front line. "He was impressive last week and seems like a horse on the way up," Brew said. "I would like to think that he will lead and take catching." Wotavugot certainly makes strong appeal as the likely leader, with the moderate performer Big Shot Barbie (who has managed one placing from her past 21 starts) on his inside. "Even though he finished seventh at his previous start (behind Vertical Four at Bunbury at his previous start) Wotavugot impressed me," Brew said. "He came from a long way back and attacked the line very well. "Laurie Groves and his son Brad, David Hunter and Dennis Roche have been the biggest supporters I've had and it would be fantastic to drive a winner for them before I go home. "Christian Banner, who is trained by Hunter, has drawn the outside of the front line, but he is a winning chance. It wouldn't matter where he draws; he's always a chance because he's just a good, honest and consistent horse. He has a good turn of foot and if the race is run to suit he's always a chance. "His last-start fourth was in a good field at Harvey and they sprinted a fast last sectional. He will be suited over the 2536m. His record over 2500m is very good. He is a model of consistency and he came from last to win the Williams Cup over 2666m in December." Christian Banner has won twice over 2600m at Addington and over 2569m at Bunbury and two starts ago he finished with a powerful burst to be second to Clifford over 2597m at Bridgetown. Clifford franked that form with a strong victory at Gloucester Park last Friday night. Brew also is confident of strong showings from Glenferrie Hood in the Manea Classic at Bunbury on Saturday night and he said he expected Dainty Diva would produce a strong effort at her debut in a three-year-old maiden event at Collie on Sunday. " "Dainty Diva is very fast away from a stand and she's clean-gaited," he said. "I'm hoping she draws the front line, and if she does she should prove a good winning chance. Glenferrie Hood should go well at Bunbury. I'm hoping for a favourable draw. After the race Glenferrie Hood will leave for New South Wales where he will be trained by Luke McCarthy." Brew said that he had had his share of success and his share of heartbreak in WA and would leave with many happy memories. His major triumphs were winning the $100,000 group 1 State Sires Series final for three-year-old colts and geldings with The Feather Foot in July 2010, the group 2 $50,000 Binshaw Classic with Please Release Me in February 2012 and two group 3 events with Lucie Boshier in 2012 --- the John Higgins Memorial and the Norm's Daughter Classic. Brew's decision to quit harness racing will further deplete the ranks of talented young reinsmen. In the past month New Zealand-born drivers Chris Butt and Shane Butcher have left WA. Butcher has resumed driving in Auckland and Butt has gone to Paris to work in a stable there before going to America to gain further experience and then returning to his homeland. WOODLEY OUT TO MAKE AMENDS IN THE AUTUMN CHAMPIONSHIP Outstanding reinsman Morgan Woodley is hellbent on making amends for the defeat of David Hercules in last year's Autumn Championship by driving the David Thompson-trained gelding to victory in the $21,000 Mulberry Estate Autumn Championship at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Twelve months ago Woodley chose to drive David Hercules in preference to Mysta Magical Mach when David Hercules, from barrier No. 4, worked hard in the breeze and battled on to be a well-beaten second to the pacemaking Mysta Magical Mach, who was heavily backed to start favourite at 6/4 on for star reinsman Chris Lewis. Woodley had driven Mysta Magical Mach to victory in the Autumn Championship in 2012, after having won the feature event with Scruffy Murphy in 2008. In a major change the Autumn Championship will be decided over 1730m after the race was run over 2536m last year and 2506m the previous year. David Hercules is a brilliant sprinter who holds the track record for 1700m (1.52.8) and 2130m (1.53.6). He proved far too good for the opposition last Friday night when he started from the outside of the front line (barrier seven)and worked without cover before surging past the pacemaker Truckers Ruffnut and into the lead 450m from home before winning by 5m from Red Salute, rating 1.55 over 2130m. He sprinted over the final 800m in 55.6sec. Woodley was full of praise for the seven-year-old, describing him as a tremendous performer with a high cruising speed and keen appetite for racing. David Hercules will start out wide again this week and Woodley is likely to send him forward from the No. 6 position immediately after the start or when the field settles down after 400m or so. Hokuri Handrail, who will be driven for the first time by Chris Voak, is favourably drawn at No. 2 and has sound prospects of leading. He has managed just one placing from his past 14 starts, but is a smart frontrunner, capable of considerable improvement. Polak, to be driven by Clint Kimes for trainer Mike Reed, will start from barrier three. He possesses sparkling gate speed and is likely to press forward at the start in a bid for the lead. The chief rival for David Hercules could be This Time Dylan, who is likely to be restrained at the start from the No. 7 barrier and be saved up for a powerful last-lap sprint. This Time Dylan, trained by Michael Brennan, has won at nine of his past 18 starts and is the leader in the Gloucester Park Horse of the Year award. STAND SPECIALIST LORD COBURN RETURNS TO MOBILE RACING Former Victorian pacer Lord Coburn, who has scored effortless all-the-way victories in 2503m stands at his past two starts, will return to mobile racing when he starts from the prized No. 1 barrier in the 2130m first heat of the Burswood On Swan Clarke Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri said that he had hoped Lord Coburn would continue contesting stands and was disappointed when the advertised 2503m stand for M4-class pacers was not included in the ten-event program because of insufficient nominations. "The mobile was my second choice and I still consider Lord Coburn will prove hard to beat," he said. "He is in terrific form and he should lead and play a big part in the race. I would have preferred for him to run in a stand because he is such a good beginner that he would've jumped 10 metres in front of his rivals. But he should still lead in the mobile." Lord Coburn, to be driven by Chris Voak, is a six-year-old gelding by Grinfromeartoear who has relished his pacemaking role at his past two starts in 2503m stands and has won by 13m and 7m. He has started 15 times in WA, with 11 of those events being a standing-start race over 2500m --- for four wins, two seconds and one third placing. "He wasn't sent to me as a stand horse; he was sent to me as a fast 1700m horse," Olivieri explained. "And I have found that he is a good standing-start horse over 2503m." Friday night's race looks sure to provide keen betting, with all eight runners having admirers. The Andrew De Campo-trained Danieljohn is knocking on the door after five placings from his past six starts and he looks set to fight out the finish. He set a fast pace and sprinted over the final 800m in 56.9sec. when second to truckers Ruffnut over 2130m last Friday week. Uppy Son is close to another win after his head second to Lord Lombo last Friday night when he finished with great determination after racing outside the pacemaker Midnight Dylan. He is the only runner on the back line and appeals as a major hope in a race in which Benjamin Banneker (trained by Gary Hall sen.) and stablemates Bronze Seeker and Mighty Flying Thomas (trained by Peter Anderson) must be considered. Benjamin Banneker was most impressive at his second appearance after a spell when he worked hard without cover before fighting on grandly to be second to Lovers Delight in the 2550m Harvey Cup last Saturday night. Olivieri also expects a strong showing from Shnappy in the Spices Group Pathway Pace over 2130m. To be driven by Voak, Shnappy returns to mobile racing after contesting 2503m stands at his past two starts for a win and a second. He will start from the outside of the front line, but looks hard to beat against moderate opposition. by Ken Casellas  

The passing years are not diminishing the brilliance of Chris Lewis, who was at his best at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he drove Sensational Gabby to a stylish victory in the $50,000 Community Newspaper Group Empress Stakes. This gave the 58-year-old maestro a record seventh success in the group 2 feature event for mares, after wins with Candy Macray (1988), Armbro Lucy (1992), Meggie Dear (2001), Classical Mover (2002), Shes Royalty (2007) and Ima Spicey Lombo (2011). It was Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri's third win in an Empress Stakes, after succeeding with Elysees Crest (Morgan Woodley) in 2010 and Ima Spicey Lombo. While Lewis deserves praise for his drive behind Sensational Gabby, Olivieri must be congratulated for curing the West Australian-bred five-year-old's annoying and disruptive habit of overracing badly. "She's just a great mare and Ross has done a great job in settling her down," Lewis said after Sensational Gabby, favourite at 6/4 on, had defeated Famous Alchemist and Kristen Louise. "We needed to get her back a bit (and prevent her from pulling so hard) and Ross has been able to get her to do that in her past few runs. And this has made my job much easier. "She is now on the right road and she's got that sort of speed to be quite competitive in races other than those restricted to mares." Sensational Gabby, bred by her owners Susan Beven, Danny Roberts, Brian Anderson, Barry Sutton and Norm Champion (along with Jay Farrell), was an all-conquering juvenile who won at 21 of her first 23 starts. She failed badly at four starts at Menangle in an Eastern States campaign early last year and when she returned to WA she went into Olivieri's stables. But she pulled hard at her first five starts for her new trainer, in November and December, before he experimented with her gear and eventually cured the problem. Sensational Gabby now boasts a marvellous record of 45 starts for 26 wins, five placings and stakes of $509,505. She is by Yankee Sensation and is the first foal out of the New Zealand-bred mare Lite Jewel. Sensational Gabby started from barrier two on the back line and Lewis was content to let her relax in eighth position in the one-wide line, following Talk About Mach, while polemarker Courage On Fire set the pace and covered the first two quarters of the final mile in 303sec. and 30.6sec. Gary Hall jun. settled 5/2 second fancy Famous Alchemist behind the pacemaker until he eased her off the pegs after 4500m and dashed her forward, three wide, to assume the position outside the leader. Kyle Harper started a three-wide move with Talk About Mach approaching the bell and Lewis followed that run before switching Sensational Gabby four wide passing the 600m mark. Famous Alchemist got to the front with 550m to travel before Sensational Gabby, sprinting fast, surged to the lead 300m from home. Famous Alchemist refused to surrender and fought back determinedly before finish a length behind the winner. Kristen Louise, who trailed the pacemaker for most of the way, finished strongly into third place. The third 400m section of the final mile whizzed by in 27.9sec. and the last quarter was run in 29.3sec., with the winner rating 1.59 over the 2536m. PACIFIC WARRIOR ON AN INEVITABLE JOURNEY TO THE TOP "He will go a long way," declared Kade Howson after driving 5/2 favourite Pacific Warrior to an impressive win in the $25,000 final of the Fremantle Gazette Lewis final at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It was yet another superb performance by the New Zealand-bred six-year-old on his inevitable climb to the top. Pacific Warrior began well from the No. 5 barrier on the front line, but was no match for 50/1 outsider Real Hammer, who began with dazzling speed from the outside (No. 7) barrier and sped to the front after 200m. However, Howson was unruffled and was content to progress forward, three wide for the first 500m, before Pacific Warrior moved into the breeze. After a third 400m section of the final mile in 28.8sec., Pacific Warrior burst to the front on the home turn and beat the fast-finishing 5/1 third favourite Marooned by 2m. Marooned, who raced behind the leader, finished a head in front of 13/2 chance Our Arlington, who was shuffled back on the pegs to ninth at the bell and was badly hampered for room in the home straight before flashing home with an eye-catching burst. Pacific Warrior is trained at Mt Helena by Ray Williams and had 27 starts in New Zealand for four wins and seven placings from 27 starts before arriving in Western Australia where his 29 starts have produced 15 wins and eight placings. He now has earned $166,244. He is owned by Oz West Pacing, the Northam Alliance Pacing Syndicate, Bruce Greenwood, Greg Richens, Joseph Lawrence, Reegan Buswell and Ian Gillespie. "Things didn't go our way; we got crossed at the start, but the horse was far too good," Howson said. "Real Hammer is one of the fastest horses in WA and once he crossed us there wasn't much we could do. So we just parked up there and I let him do the rest. "In the moving line he's pretty good and he gets around this track a lot better than he used to. He'll go a long way." PRINCE EDDIE SMASHES WA SPRINT RECORD FOR TROTTERS Clint Hall identified Prince Eddie as a square-gaiter capable of proving a star in Western Australia when the New Zealand-bred gelding won four races in succession at Menangle last winter and a band of West Australians are extremely happy that they decided to buy him. Max Grynberg, Karen Hall, Bill Paterson, Ruth and Tony Thompson, Dave Kahl, Danny Roberts, Susan Beven and Jay Farrell were celebrating their perspicacity at Gloucester Park on Friday night after Prince Eddie had romped to victory in the $30,000 Happy Birthday Alison Ward Discreet Romeo Sprint. The five-year-old Prince Eddie, favourite at 10/9, was driven with supreme confidence by Gary Hall jun. and was not extended in beating 3/1 second fancy Ushaka Bromac by three and a half lengths, rating 1.58.9 which smashed the State 1730m record for trotters, the 1.59.8 recorded by Conquer All last October. Prince Eddie, trained by Gary Hall sen., has improved in leaps and bounds and his first 12 WA starts have produced five wins and four placings to take his career record to 27 starts for ten wins, four placings and $77,260 in stakes. He won only once from eight starts in New Zealand (and was unplaced at the other seven starts) before racing seven times in New South Wales for four wins last June and July. Gary Hall jun. got Prince Eddie away like a flash from the No. 2 barrier and the gelding set a solid pace, followed by polemarker Ushaka Bromac, with Hot Holiday in the breeze and Heez Speedy Gonzalez in the one-out, one-back position. Prince Eddie gave his rivals no chance by sprinting over the final two 400m sections in 29.2sec. and 29.3sec. The Beau Brummell raced three back on the pegs and he finished fast on the inside to be a half-head behind Ushaka Bromac in third place. Prince Eddie is by American stallion Monarchy and is out of Hands And heels, a mare who was retired after only one start, when tenth in a race at Addington in May 2002. However, Hands And Heels has proved a wonderful broodmare, producing talented trotters King Charlie and Shezoneoftheboyz. King Charlie earned $239,256 from 15 wins and 14 placings from 69 starts, while Shezoneoftheboyz won easily at her first five starts as a three-year-old in the 2009-10 season. Her wins included a group 3 feature over 1609m at Ashburton and the $80,000 New Zealand Trotting derby. She then was unplaced at her next four starts before being retired with a record of five wins from nine starts for stakes of $76,624. DAVID HERCULES ENHANCES HIS REPUTATION West Australian-bred seven-year-old David Hercules enhanced his reputation when he sizzled over the final 800m in 55.6sec., after racing without cover, and scored an easy victory in the 2130m Stirling Times Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It was his 29th win from 86 starts and boosted his earnings for owners David Botha and Jeneen Johnson to $802,664. David Hercules, favourite at 5/1 on, started from the outside barrier (No. 7) on the front line and Morgan Woodley did not bustle him and was content to race in the breeze while polemarker Truckers Ruffnut, second fancy at 5/1, set a brisk pace. Woodley began to apply more pressure on the leader at the bell and David Hercules surged to the front 450m from home and went on to win by 5m from Red Salute (11/1), with Passion Stride (50/1) running home gamely to be third, four and a half lengths behind Red Salute. Red Salute enjoyed the perfect passage in the one-out and one-back position (following David Hercules), but did not seriously threaten him in the run down the home straight. David Hercules rated 1.55 which was well outside his track record of 1.53.6 over the 2130m journey. His trainer David Thompson was in Sydney on Friday night before going to Menangle two days later to watch the interdominion championship final, a race in which he dearly wanted David Hercules to contest. Woodley was full of praise for David Hercules, saying: "He's a horse who really loves the fight. He is a tremendous performer. He likes to get up there and get involved and if you get him travelling on the bit he just loves it. He really thrives on that sort of racing. "He has a high cruising speed and tonight we got up there (in the breeze) and tried to make it hard for those around him. Having a good horse liken Red Salute on our back was a concern. I was really pleased when we got past the leader at the 400m mark and expose Red Salute from that point onwards. I think that if Red Salute was able to hold up right on our back until the top of the straight and get one kick, it might have been a different story. "So when I was able to get past the leader and really make Red Salute work from the 400m outside of us I was pretty confident." LORD LOMBO, DOWN IN CLASS, CAUSES AN UPSET Lord Lombo made the most of a recent drop down from an M4 classification to be eligible to contest the M3-only Wanneroo Times Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Driven patiently by Chris Voak, the seven-year-old caused an upset when he started at 15/1 and charged home to snatch victory from Uppy Son (17/4) and the 2/1 favourite Midnight Dylan. This broke a losing sequence of 13 and ended a run of eight unplaced efforts for Pinjarra trainer Chris King. With polemarker Midnight Dylan setting the pace and Uppy Son in the breeze, Voak was happy to position Lord Lombo in the one-out, one-back position before the gelding unwound a scorching late sprint, coming from sixth (three wide) on the home turn to beat Uppy Son by a neck. Uppy Son had looked the winner when Dean Miller got him to the lead in the final stages. The final 800m was covered in 56.8sec., with the last 400m taking 28sec. Lord Lombo rated 1.56 over the 1730m. This was Lord Lombo's seventh win in WA for his Victorian owners Greg Stubbs and Tony Peacock. He had won eight times in Victoria, twice in South Australia and once in New South Wales before arriving in WA. His record stands at 98 starts for 18 wins, 24 placings and stakes of $160,782. "He was pretty much down in grade tonight and Chris (King) does a good job training his horses over the mile," Voak said. "It was a big effort by Lord Lombo to come from where he was to win." ROWCHESTER CARRIES TOO MANY GUNS IN A TIGHT FINISH New Zealand-bred horse Rowchester warmed up for the $25,000 Manea Classic at Bunbury next Saturday night when he gave a tough staying performance to win the 2130m Happy Birthday Alison Ward Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Starting favourite at 10/9, Rowchester got away smartly from barrier two on the back line and raced without cover for most of the way before winning narrowly from the fast-finishing 4/1 second fancy Robbery, with veteran Rojen Cruz, third favourite at 13/2, flashing home from seventh on the pegs at the bell to be a close third. The heavily-supported Robbery lacked early pace from the No. 1 barrier and settled down three back on the pegs in fifth place while Cool Johnny set the pace from Im Terrific (pegs), Rowchester (breeze) and The Oyster Bar (one-out, one-back). Gary Hall jun. sent Rowchester to the front 250m from home and the horse dug deep to hold out the fast-finishing Robbery by a half-head, rating 1.57.9 after closing sectionals of 28.3sec. and 28.9sec. "There's definitely more than one of him," said Hall. "He can come out here on occasions and sort of nod off a bit and not really concentrate. It's important to get him up there on the speed and get him interested in the game. "We were confident tonight that the breeze would be there when we wanted it, and everything worked out good. He toughed it out really well. He's not the sort of horse you want to go kicking away with He is better racing outside something of having something racing pretty close to him. "They were coming and we had to get going. I thought he was going to hold on easily, but it got quite nerve wracking late." Rowchester, trained by Gary Hall sen., has had 21 starts in WA for six wins and seven placings. He raced five times in New Zealand, winning at his final three starts, as a three-year-old in November-December 2012. He is the fifth foal out of Falcon Seelster mare Satire Franco, who failed to be placed at her 16 starts. HALL SEIZES THE INITIATIVE WITH THE PACING PRIEST Injury-plagued pacer The Pacing Priest gave a sample of his ability at his third appearance after a spell when he scored a narrow win in the 2503m Melville Times Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The win gave Gary Hall jun. the first leg of a driving treble and West Swan trainer Ken Kirke considerable satisfaction. Punters groaned at the start of the stand when 5/2 favourite Bobby Teal and 3/1 second fancy Bet Your Life galloped, leaving 7/1 chance Pembrook Henry in front with The Pacing Priest in the breeze. Hall was happy to take the one-out, one-back trail when Justin Prentice dashed forward with Mister Sarkozy in the first lap to move into the breeze. But after a lap had been completed the pace slackened noticeably and Hall seized the initiative by vacating his ideal position and taking up the position outside the leader. Chris Voak (Pembrook Henry) slowed the field almost to a jog with a first quarter of the final mile in 33.5sec. before the next section went by in an ambling 31.1sec. Then the tempo increased with a third quarter in 28.7sec. and a final 400m in a sparkling 27.7sec. The Pacing Priest took a narrow lead in the final stages and won by a nose from Pembrook Henry, with Pacific Black running on soundly to be third after trailing the leader all the way. The winner rated a pedestrian 2.4.1. The Pacing Priest raced seven times in New Zealand (all in stands) for two wins and one placing. He then won at his Australian debut, at Wedderburn in March 2009, before being sent to Perth and entering the stables of Gary Hall sen. His first eight starts for Hall produced three wins and five seconds before he went amiss after finishing eighth behind Bonavista Bay in the Golden Nugget at Gloucester Park in November 2009. Leg problems then prevented The Pacing Priest from racing for 41 months. The gelding resumed with Kirke as his trainer last April and in 15 starts for Kirke he has won three times and been placed on another three occasions. The Pacing Priest, by Pacific Rocket, is the first foal out of unraced Road Machine mare High Road. Now an eight-year-old, he has earned $93,186 from nine wins and ten placings from just 34 starts. "We had The Pacing Priest a long time ago and one thing he wasn't short of was ability," said Hall jun. "Tonight I took off when the speed was so slow and I knew that the breeze was there. I thought we could drive him from the breeze sit-kick style and he was fortunate that we were able to get away with those sectionals. He was good enough to get over the leader." CLIFFORD PROVES TOO STRONG FOR BARKERS HALL New Zealand-bred five-year-old Clifford is proving a wonderfully consistent performer and a great moneyspinner for Bunbury trainer John Graham and he caused a minor upset at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he proved too strong for 5/2 on favourite Barkers Hall in the 2130m Southern Gazette Pace. Starting second fancy at 11/2, Clifford was driven with great confidence by Graham's stable foreman Tom Buchanan. Barkers Hall had no trouble in setting the pace from the prized No. 1 barrier, but Buchanan drove positively, taking Clifford three wide for the first 150m before settling in the breeze. After a third quarter of the final mile in 28.8sec. Barkers Hall looked all set for victory, particularly when Clifford dropped back one and a half lengths behind the pacemaker at the 400m mark. However, Clifford finished strongly to hit the front 100m from the post before beating Barkers Hall by just over a lengths at a 1.58 rate. Buchanan said he was confident that Clifford could beat Barkers Hall, pointing out that Clifford had finished a close second to Barkers Hall's better-credentialled stablemate Rowchester two starts earlier. "I don't think that Barkers Hall is anywhere near the horse that Rowchester is," said Buchanan. "So I knew that if I could get outside the leader and get some nice easy sectionals Clifford would be hard to beat, and he was. Going down the back straight (in the last lap) I thought that Junior (Gary Hall jun., the driver of Barkers Hall) was still travelling pretty well. "It wasn't as though my bloke was struggling; I just gave him a bit of a breather and Barkers Hall went from going all right to struggling round the bend. And Clifford was too good. I think Clifford can go on and get to an M3 mark." Clifford did not race in New Zealand and his 63 starts have produced 16 wins, 15 placings and stakes of $110,675. He is the tenth foal out of Soky's Atom mare Sceptic, who was retired after finishing ninth as a three-year-old at her only start, in Wellington in April 1995. CHANGE OF SHOES HELP ONEHEART TWOFISTS The value of the No. 1 barrier in mobiles at Gloucester Park was further illustrated on Friday night when Oneheart Twofists was heavily supported and started favourite at 10/9 on. At his two previous starts earlier in the month he was sent out at liberal odds --- at 90/1 (when sixth from the back line at Harvey) and at 21/1 (when he led and finished third from barrier two at Pinjarra). Driven by Callan Suvaljko, Oneheart Twofists gave his supporters no cause for concern as he dictated the terms in front and romped to a three-length victory over Senator Whitby in the 1730m Eastern Reporter Westbred Pathway Pace. The easy victory broke a losing sequence of 19, stretching back to March 2012. Millendon trainer and part-owner Graham Bond attributed the seven-year-old gelding's victory to a change of shoeing. "He has been a knee knocker and has had a tendon problem," he said. "But now everything is going well for him. I've been able to get him off his knee by putting steel shoes on, instead of aluminiums. They're galloping plates, no heels, no nothing, just plain level shoes. "He was a knee knocker when he was in the stables of Gary Hall sen. and I was able to buy him as an unraced three-year-old for $5000 from Mark Congerton." Oneheart Twofists, by Courage Under Fire, has earned $34,516 from six wins and six placings from 44 starts. RAZA SHARP LOMBO BREAKS THROUGH AFTER 23-MONTH DROUGHT Eight-year-old Raza Sharp Lombo celebrated his 132nd start by giving a bold frontrunning display to win the Bill Delaney Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. This ended a losing sequence of 31, stretching back to a win at Globe Derby Park in April 2012. Raza Sharp Lombo had 116 starts in South Australia for 20 wins and 41 placings before being sent to WA early last year to be prepared by Gary Hall sen. He did not show up for the Hall camp and Brigadoon trainer Wendy Boyd took over his preparation a few months ago. Then after Raza Sharp Lombo had run on from sixth and last at the bell to finish second to Smooth Caesar at Pinjarra on February 3 he left Boyd's establishment to be prepared by Dylan Quadrio. Quadrio drove Raza Sharp Lombo for a sixth at Northam and then an encouraging third (after racing in the breeze) behind Preordained at Gloucester Park last Friday week. On Friday night, in moderate company, Raza Sharp Lombo, now raced by Quadrio's father Shane, was second favourite at 5/2. The Mach Three gelding dashed straight to the front from barrier three, set a solid pace and sprinted over the final 400m in 28.1sec. to win by a half-length from the polemarker and 9/2 chance Wotavugot, who finished strongly after trailing the leader all the way. Tis A Charmer, a 33/1 chance and a nine-year-old mare trained by Boyd and having her 170th start, ran on from eighth and last at the bell to be a distant third. by Ken Casellas  

Noted frontrunner Courage On Fire has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier in the $50,000 Community Newspaper Group Empress Stakes at Gloucester Park on Friday night to boost Wanneroo trainer Debbie Padberg's hopes of winning the group 2 feature event for mares for the second time. She trained Glitzy Miss for her dramatic victory in the Empress Stakes in April 2008 when the five-year-old was tenth with 550m to travel and seventh at the 100m before flying home, out wide, to defeat the pacemaker Alkira Jet. The New Zealand-bred Courage On Fire has won ten races in Australia, with five of those wins coming when she has set the pace --- over 1720m and 2125m at Penrith, over 1609m at Menangle and over 1730m and 2130m at Gloucester Park. The Empress Stakes will be decided over 2536m and this should not seriously trouble Courage On Fire, who has raced four times over that distance at Gloucester Park for a fourth, a fifth, a second and a win (when she sat behind the pacemaker and ran on to win narrowly from Next Dawn and Chocolatto early last December). Mrs Padberg is delighted with the favourable barrier and said that Courage On Fire was "very good" in front. The seven-year-old led and won easily from Aristocratic Glow over 2130m three starts ago before starting from the outside of the back line and finishing strongly to be third to Aristocratic Glow and Deluxe Edition. She was sixth at the bell and finished seventh behind Leda McNally in a 2130m prelude of the Empress Stakes last Friday night. Mrs Padberg, who is in fourth place in the Metropolitan trainers' premiership table, said that she was undecided on what tactics reinsman Michael Tenardi would adopt. Much would depend on whether Courage On Fire was challenged strongly in the early stages. Two speedy beginners are on the outside of Courage On Fire --- four-year-olds Askmenow (barrier two) and Kristen Louise (three). Askmenow has been unplaced at her past six starts and has a losing sequence of eight, but her trainer Gary Hall sen. said that if she was able to lead she would be very hard to beat. Hall has a higher opinion of stablemate Famous Alchemist, who will start from the inside of the back line, immediately behind Courage On Fire. "It's a tricky draw, but she can certainly win," he said. Famous Alchemist has had only 38 starts for 12 wins and 13 placings. Famous Alchemist charged home from last at the bell to finish third behind her stablemate Aussie Made Lombo in the Empress Stakes last March to give Hall his third success in the race which he first won with Moray Miss in 1991. Vance Stampalia, who drove Glitzy Miss for her win in this race six years ago, is the regular driver of four-year-old Kristen Louise, who is prepared at Wanneroo by his sister Tonia. Stampalia stole a march on his rivals when he got Kristen Louise away to a flying start from the No. 5 barrier in the second prelude of the Empress Stakes last Friday night. Kristen Louise charged to the front after 100m and was not extended in winning from Selkie and Ace of Cards. "She crossed them easily last week," he said. "And it would be nice to be able to lead again this week. Kristen Louise has improved since her win last week and is thriving on a preparation of mainly swimming in the pool." Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri has cured speedy mare Sensational Gabby of her habit of overracing and he has sound prospects of winning the event for the third time, after scoring with Elysees Crest in 2010 and Ima Spicey Lombo the following year. Olivieri also trained Live High when she surged home from 11th at the 600m to finish second to Aussie Made Lombo last year. Sensational Gabby raced without cover when second to Famous Alchemist over 1730m two starts ago before she started from the outside of the front line, was restrained to last and then sprinted fast after 700m to join the leader Leda McNally last Friday night when she fought on to finish second to that mare. HALL SAYS NORTHVIEW PUNTER CAN OVERCOME BACK-LINE BARRIER Leading trainer Gary Hall sen. was naturally disappointed when speedy New Zealand-bred four-year-old Northview Punter drew badly at barrier four on the back line in the $25,000 Fremantle Gazette The Lewis final at Gloucester Park on Friday night, but defiantly declared that all was not lost and that the horse was capable of overcoming this disadvantage and winning the 2130m event. "It was a phenomenal run by Northview Punter when second to Hokonui Ben last week and he can win from the back line," said Hall, who will be in Sydney on Friday night keeping his eye on Livingontheinterest before that pacer contests the interdominion championship final at Menangle on Sunday. Hall makes no secret that he considers that Northview Punter is far better suited to leading in his races than coming from behind. But he believes that the horse is gaining in experience and is capable of proving more versatile. Northview Punter began with great dash from barrier three to set the pace in the 2536m RWWA Cup last Friday night and he fought on grandly when beaten by only a neck by the fast-finishing Hokonui Ben, rating 1.55.8 over the 2536m. At his previous appearance, two weeks before last Friday night's run, Northview Punter worked hard for the first 500m before taking up the running and going on to win by more than two lengths from Pacific Warrior over 2130m. A week later Pacific Warrior led from the No. 1 barrier and won easily from Mighty Flying Thomas and Uppy Son over 2130m. He will start from barrier five on the front line this week and looks set to fight out the finish. The Matt Scott-trained Marooned has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier and even though the seven-year-old's best performances in Western Australia have been when he has produced a powerful finishing burst reinsman Chris Voak will be strongly tempted to attempt an all-the-way win. Marooned does possess good gate speed and has led and won at two of his 16 wins, over 1609m at Menangle and 2170m at Canberra. Mohegan Sun (barrier two) and Menelaus of Sparta (three) have each won twice when leading all the way. But they are not noted frontrunners, and this could make it easier for Marooned to set the pace. Marooned was most impressive last Friday night when he started from the back line and trailed the pacemaker Mach Banner before flashing home with a sparkling late burst to finish a half-head second to Mach Banner. TRUCKERS RUFFNUT WORKS WITH DASH BEFORE HIS CLASH WITH DAVID HERCULES A sizzling final 800m in 56sec. in a track workout at Donaldson Park in Bunbury on Tuesday morning greatly impressed his trainer Murray Hansen, who is confident the eight-year-old can cause an upset and beat star performer David Hercules in the $21,000 Stirling Times Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. In the random draw, Truckers Ruffnut gained the prized No. 1 barrier, while David Hercules fared poorly and will start from the outside of the front line (No. 7) in the small field of eight. "Our one big advantage over David Hercules is the barrier draw," Hansen said. "We've drawn one and will be utilising it and holding up to lead. Truckers Ruffnut has always possessed good gate speed and in previous campaigns was always a very hard horse to beat when he was in front. "David Hercules will have to be right at the top of his game to beat Truckers Ruffnut. I feel sorry for David Hercules, with all the bad barriers he has been getting. I think that my horse can run a really good time." Leading reinsman Gary Hall jun. will be reunited with Truckers Ruffnut after the horse has been driven at his first five starts after an injury-enforced absence of 39 months by Ryan Bell, Shane Butcher (three times) and Dylan- Egerton-Green. Hall has an outstanding record with Truckers Ruffnut, having driven him 24 times for 11 wins, nine seconds, two thirds, one seventh and one eighth. Truckers Ruffnut has finished strongly to win at two of his past three starts at Gloucester Park. He raced three back on the pegs in fifth position before charging home brilliantly to win from Danieljohn and Mighty Flying Thomas last Friday night. Hansen drove Truckers Ruffnut in his workout on Tuesday morning when the horse was clocked over the 1200m trip in 3min. 5sec. and sprinted the final 800m in 56sec. "He worked really well and I feel he is better than he was when he won last week. He does all his trackwork on his own and he works free-legged," Hansen said. "He's that good a pacer that he could race without hopples. He has run a half in 55sec. free-legged without putting a foot wrong." Byford trainer David Thompson said that he was becoming resigned to receiving wide draws for David Hercules. But he was full of praise for the even-year-old's splendid third behind Hokonui Ben and Northview Punter in the 2536m RWWA Cup last Friday night. David Hercules started from barrier seven and was restrained to the rear by Morgan Woodley before he dashed the gelding forward in the first lap to work hard outside then pacemaker Northview Punter. David Hercules fought on grandly to finish only a length behind Hokonui Ben. An improver in Friday night's race appears certain to be the Ross Olivieri-trained Red Salute, who is sure to appreciate the favourable No. 2 barrier on the front line in the field of eight. Red Salute has been dogged by unfavourable draws in recent outings. DON'T DISREGARD THE BEAU BRUMMELL, ADVISES MELLSOP Waroona trainer-reinsman Bob Mellsop offered some sound advice to punters when he said that they should completely disregard The Beau Brummell's last-start seventh behind Earl Harbour at Gloucester Park last Saturday week when assessing the five-year-old's chances in the $30,000 Happy Birthday Alison Ward Discreet Romeo Sprint for trotters on Friday night. "He met with severe interference soon after the start before making up a great deal of ground," Mellsop said. "He will start on the inside of the back line this week and should get a good run behind the polemarker Ushaka Bromac." The Beau Brummell's form before his unlucky last-start effort was very good. His six previous starts, after resuming from a spell, produced two wins (including the WA Trotters Cup), two seconds, one third and one fifth placing. Vance Stampalia, driver of the Bruce Stanley-trained Ushaka Bromac, and Gary Hall sen., trainer of Prince Eddie, are both confident of success. Stampalia believes that Ushaka Bromac will have the early speed to lead from the No. 1 barrier in the 1730m event. She led early and then sat behind the pacemaker Idle Maple before finishing solidly to be a close second to Earl Harbour over 1730m last Saturday week. Prince Eddie, whose past eight starts have produced four wins, one second and two thirds, looks nicely placed from the No. 2 barrier. He raced without cover when third to Earl Harbour at his latest start. He finished powerfully to win from Sandakan Lombo in a 2503m stand at his previous start. by Ken Casellas  

Trainer-reinsman Aldo Cortopassi justified the faith placed in him by Queensland owner Jeroen Nieuwenburg when he brought Hokonui Ben home with a sparkling late burst to snatch victory from Northview Punter in the $50,000 MMJ Real Estate RWWA Cup at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Nieuwenburg shocked West Australian harness racing fans early this month when he switched Hokonui Ben from the stables of leading trainer Gary Hall sen. and gave him to Cortopassi to train. In his final two starts for Hall Hokonui Ben Hall had scored a splendid all-the-way victory in the $400,000 WA Pacing Cup and then finished a half-head second to stablemate Livingontheinterest in the $35,000 Lord Mayor's Cup. Clint Hall was in the sulky for Hokonui Ben's WA Pacing Cup triumph, and in an ironic twist, Hall drove Northview Punter in Friday night's race. Northview Punter, a 7/1 chance, began with tremendous dash from the No. 3 barrier and burst straight to the front. Northview Punter looked the winner when he rounded the home bend full of running and holding David Hercules at bay. But he was unable to hold out 13/2 chance Hokonui Ben, who started from the back line and was tenth when he started a three-wide run 950m from home. Hokonui Ben was in eighth place, out wide, with 450m to travel before he thundered home to gain the upper hand in the final couple of strides. He beat Northview Punter by a neck, with David Hercules, equal favourite at 7/4 with polemarker This Time Dylan, a fighting third after starting from the outside of the front line. Morgan Woodley sent David Hercules forward in the first circuit, but the gelding was kept three wide by 26/1 chance Mysta Magical Mach until David Hercules finally got to the breeze after a lap. This Time Dylan enjoyed an ideal passage behind Northview Punter before finishing fourth. In an up-tempo race the New Zealand-bred Hokonui Ben rated a smart 1.55.8 over the 2536m and took his record to 18 wins and 15 placings from 53 starts for stakes of $581,639. His 29 starts in Western Australia have produced 12 wins and ten placings. "We were on a hiding to nothing when we took him and I had a big set of shoes to fill," taking a horse off Senior (Hall sen.)," Cortopassi said. "He has done a huge job with the horse and won the Pacing Cup. I'm just grateful to have the opportunity to race on with the horse. He's a lovely horse and is the real deal. He's probably the best horse I've had the opportunity to train. "Special thanks to Jeroen to have the faith in me to have a crack with the horse. We didn't have to do a lot with him. All I had to do was to try to keep him at that level after all the work that had been done with the horse previously. "This was probably the weakest race Hokonui Ben has contested for a while. There was no Im Victorious or Livingontheinterest. So he was probably the class runner and has done a great job. He really sprinted brilliantly. The race was put on as well after the early burn which made it for horses like him. Luck was on our side." LEDA McNALLY IS SPOT ON FOR THE LADYSHIP MILE AT MENANGLE Leda McNally completed her preparation for the $200,000 Ladyship Mile at Menangle next Sunday in dashing style with a stylish all-the-way win in the first prelude of the MMJ Land Sales Empress Stakes at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The 5/2 on favourite was untroubled to bounce to the front from the No. 1 barrier and set a solid pace before sprinting over the final 400m in 27.9sec. to defeat Sensational Gabby by just under a length at a 1.57.2 rate over 2130m. Famous Alchemist (13/4) trailed the pacemaker and battled on doggedly into third place. It was a performance that pleased reinsman Chris Voak, who said that Pinjarra trainer Chris King had the five-year-old spot on for her battle against her nine rivals, including champion New Zealand four-year-old Adore Me and Baby Bling, winner of last year's Miracle Mile. "She has broken 1.54 on this track (Gloucester Park) and I've driven at Menangle and run at a 1.52 speed and I think that she can easily handle breaking 1.52 speed there," he said. "We'll rely on the barrier draw and hopefully there is genuine tempo in the race. She certainly does her best work when sat up." Voak said he was hopeful that Leda McNally (who will leave Perth for Sydney by air on Tuesday) would handle the travel and change of environment. He pointed out that Leda McNally had won the group 3 Norms Daughter Classic and the group 1 Mares Mile at Gloucester Park in November, with star New Zealand mare Bettor Cover Lover finishing third and fourth in those feature events. "So now we are hoping that Leda McNally is not affected by the travel," he said. The versatile Leda McNally has raced 50 times for 19 wins and nine placings for earnings of $278,308. BROWN PREDICTS BIG THINGS FROM MACH BANNER Recent New Zealand import Mach Banner gave a sample of his class and showed that he is capable of developing into a top-line performer in Perth when he set the pace and held on to beat the fast-finishing Marooned in the third heat of the MMJ Valuations and Consultancy Lewis Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Reinsman Colin Brown said that he had been informed by trainer Greg Bond and stable worker Ryan Warwick that Mach Banner's work during the week, and following his second West Australian appearance when fifth behind Im Victorious in the interdominion championship heat the previous Saturday, had been sensational. "This is the first time that he has put his hoof up, if you like, and declared how good he is," Brown said. "On the track he ran home in 26 (sec.) something and so the horse is on the way up. I think he has got a little bit of class." Mach Banner, a New Zealand-bred five-year-old, arrived in Western Australia with a splendid record in top company in New Zealand where he had 55 starts for 12 wins and 17 placings for stakes of $225,565. Even though he performed soundly in the interdominion heat the previous Saturday and was favourably drawn at No. 2 on the front line on Friday night, Mach Banner was sent out second fancy at 9/4, behind the less-credentialled Northern Assassin, who started from barrier three as a heavily-supported 5/4 favourite. Brown stole a march on Northern Assassin when he urged the seven-year-old forward in the early stages to take up the running after 100m. Polemarker The Oyster Bar broke badly after 200m and Ryan Bell was left in the breeze with Northern Assassin. After a lead time of 37sec. Mach Banner reeled off quarters in 30sec., 29.1sec. 29.1sec. and 28.8sec. and he just held on to beat 15/1 chance Marooned, who trailed the leader before flashing home. Franco Torres, a 66/1 outsider, raced in the one-out, one-back position and finished third, with Northern Assassin wilting to sixth. LITTLE BOY BLUE PROVING A GOOD BUY FOR VAL MELLSOP Val Mellsop, wife of Waroona trainer-reinsman Bob Mellsop, made a wise decision when she outlaid $10,000 to purchase Little Boy Blue from Gary Elson last July. The New Zealand-bred five-year-old notched his fourth win for his new connections when Mellsop drove him to an effortless all-the-way victory from the No. 1 barrier in the 1730m MMJ Facilities Management Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. That boosted his earnings for the Mellsops to $29,930 and took his career record to 54 starts for 12 wins, 17 placings and $95,887 in prizemoney. Little Boy Blue, a strong-finishing winner at Harvey ten nights earlier, was favourite at 3/1 on and he gave his supporters no cause for concern. Little Boy Blue rattled home over the final 400m in 27.3sec. and won at a 1.56.1 rate by just over two lengths from 14/1 chance Hoylakes Firstlady, who started immediately behind the favourite and trailed him throughout. "He's going super and just like me, he loves being spoilt," Mellsop said. "I'm not in a hurry to come back to town. I'll run around in the country and milk it a little bit. He's only five, and he's sound." The win gave Mellsop a belated birthday present. He turned 57 the previous Sunday and had further reason to celebrate when he prepared The Big Bite for his all-the-way win in the Hahn Pace at Bunbury on Saturday night. The Big Bite was driven by Colin Brown and paid $12.40 on the tote. Little Boy Blue did not race in New Zealand. By Armbro Operative, he is out of Robyn Blue, a mare who earned $99,634 from eight wins and 17 placings from 48 starts. As a two-year-old in December 2004 Robyn Blue was placed three times behind Foreal in group 1 and 2 events for two-year-old fillies at Alexandra Park. TRUCKERS RUFFNUT PROVIDES A BOOST FOR EGERTON-GREEN Eight-year-old Truckers Ruffnut caused his second upset in the space of three starts in his long-awaited comeback when 21-year-old Dylan Egerton-Green celebrated his first drive behind the horse by bringing him home with a storming run to win the 2130m MMJ Investment Sales Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Not only was the win a triumph for Bunbury trainer Murray Hansen, but it gave Egerton-Green a timely boost before he represents Western Australia in the $50,000 Australasian Young Drivers championship at Menangle next Sunday. The State's other representative at Menangle next Sunday is Aiden De Campo, who drove even-money favourite Danieljohn in Friday night's race in which Truckers Ruffnut was an easing 33/1 outsider. Danieljohn started from barrier one and bowled along in front before he was overhauled by Truckers Ruffnut about 60m from the post. The final 800m was covered in 56.9sec. and Truckers Ruffnut rated a smart 1.56. Mighty Flying Thomas (4/1) trailed the pacemaker and finished full of running to be a close-up third. This was Truckers Ruffnut's fifth start after an absence of 39 months. He was successful two starts before Friday night's race when he started at 21/1 on the tote. He had been driven at his three previous runs before Friday by Shane Butcher, who returned home to New Zealand about a week ago. This gave Egerton-Green the opportunity to take the drive. Truckers Ruffnut started from barrier two on the back line and Egerton-Green had him three back on the pegs in fifth place at the bell when Rocky Marciano was in the breeze and Whos Mistake was enjoying the one-out, one-back trail. Egerton-Green got Truckers Ruffnut off the pegs 250m from home and took him three wide on the home turn. Truckers Ruffnut accelerated strongly and Danieljohn was powerless to defy his late challenge. Egerton-Green was the 13th reinsman to have driven Truckers Ruffnut during his 52-start career which has produced 20 wins, 14 placings and stakes of $249,770. "He did it pretty easily and was just too good," Egerton-Green said. "But I had to get stuck into him a bit. He was just being a bit cunning." Truckers Ruffnut, a top-flight juvenile who as a three-year-old won the group 3 WA Sales Classic, the group 1 $100,000 State Sires Series and the consolation of the Breeders Crown at Melton, damaged a suspensory ligament in 2010 and then injured his other leg. This is his fourth attempt at a comeback after he had gone amiss at his three previous attempts to resume racing. He is related to New Zealand-bred chestnut Motoring Magic, who earned $366,395 from ten wins and ten placings from 34 starts. FOOTNOTE: Aiden De Campo had three drives on Friday night for seconds with Conniving Major Dave and Danieljohn and a third with Trojan Bromac, all trained by his father Andrew. It was a different story at Donaldson Park in Bunbury the following night when they dominated the eight-event program. Aiden De Campo drove four winners --- Gotta Go Chocolate, Typhoon Tan, Vertical Four and Tricky Styx. The first three are trained by his father and Tricky Styx is trained by Jesse Moore. Andrew De Campo also trained Lovers Delight, who was driven by Chris Lewis for his smart victory in the Bunbury Patrons Cup. GALACTIC GALLEON PROVES TOO TOUGH FOR THE PACEMAKER Galactic Galleon maintained his recent splendid form and notched his fourth win from his past five starts when he revealed wonderful fighting qualities to get up a beat 2/1 on favourite Conniving Major Dave in the 2130m MMJ Real Estate Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. After starting from barrier two on the back line Galactic Galleon(second fancy at 6/1) was rushed forward by Colin Brown to race in the breeze, but well back from the pacemaking Conniving Major Dave. After a third quarter in 28.6sec. Conniving Major Dave looked the likely winner turning for home. But Galactic Galleon refused to give in and surged home to get to the front 40m from the post and win by a head from the favourite. The final section was also covered in 28.6sec. and the winner rated 1.58.6. "Galactic Galleon had the advantage of race fitness over the leader and that told in the end," said Brown. Galactic Galleon, by Art Major and the ninth and last foal out of the unraced Soky's Atom mare Moonshaker, was placed at three of his five starts in New Zealand and now has raced 23 times in WA for eight wins and ten placings. STAMPALIA REPEATS THE DOSE AND STEALS A MARCH WITH KRISTEN LOUISE Almost seven years ago Vance Stampalia drove horse No. 5 in the tenth and final event at Gloucester Park. He stole a march on his rivals when he set the pace with Black Line, an 11/2 chance trained by Debbie Padberg. Black Line went on to win from Ideal Lavros. Stampalia repeated the dose at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he was in the sulky behind the No. 5 runner, Kristen Louise, in the tenth and final event, the 2130m second prelude of the MMJ Real Estate Empress Stakes. He again stole a march on his rivals when he got Kristen Louise, the 16/1 rank outsider in a field of six, away to a flying start. Kristen Louise simply had too much pace for her rivals and burst to the front after 100m before setting a solid pace and winning by a half-length from 7/1 chance Selkie, who trailed her all the way. Ace of Cards came from the one-out, one-back position to finish third. Stampalia was able to get Kristen Louise to relax after her fast start and the four-year-old mare, the youngest and least experienced runner in the race, was able to dawdle through the lead time in 39.1sec. and the first 400m section of the final mile in a slow 32.3sec. She had plenty in reserve and was able to keep the opposition at bay with final quarters of 28.9sec. and 28.5sec. The wonderful connection behind the No. 5 runner in race ten is that Kristen Louise is closely related to Black Line. Kristen Louise, bred and owned by Marshall Taylor and Tony Glass, is the 11th foal out of Windshield Wiper mare Demarcation (a winner of nine races in Victoria). Demarcation's dam Picket Line produced ten winners of 109 races, including Black Line, who earned $255,232 from 18 wins and 13 placings from 78 starts. Picket Line is a half-sister to Shadow Line, who won 14 times in WA for Ken White. Stampalia drove Shadow Line twice for an 11th placing and a nose second to Guys Laughing over 1700m at Gloucester Park in September 2001. Kristen Louise has earned $38,590 from five wins and eight placings from 34 starts. LEWIS MAKES THE MOST OF A LUCKY BREAK WITH LORD COBURN Invariably when a horse gallops fiercely at the start of a stand the runner behind him meets with severe interference and frequently is virtually out of contention. The polemarker Czargem galloped badly when the tapes released the field for the MMJ Commercial property Management Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The well-supported 13/4 second favourite and last-start winner Lord Coburn was immediately behind Czargem on the inside of the 10m line. But most fortuitously Czargem veered outwards to provide a dream saloon inside passage for Lord Coburn, who burst straight to the front while the well-fancied Erris Lad was inconvenienced by the galloping Czargem and was foiled in an anticipated bid for the early lead. Chris Lewis then dictated terms in front with the Ross Olivieri-trained Lord Coburn, who was not extended in running the first two sections of the final mile in 31.5sec. and 30.2sec. before sprinting over the next two quarters in 28.6sec. and 28.5sec. to coast an easy 7m victory over Erris Lad, who had trailed the pacemaker all the way. Trojan Bromac, favourite at 3/1, fought on to be third after racing in the one-out, one-back position. "A bit of luck goes a long way," said Lewis. "You take it when you can. Obviously it made this horse's job a lot easier. Lord Coburn is in form and once he was in front he was going to be pretty hard to beat. I think he has stepped up a notch and he's definitely got more wins in him." The Victorian-bred Lord Coburn has had 53 starts for 14 wins, 14 placings and $103,665. He has had 15 starts in WA for four wins and four placings. PREORDAINED BREAKS THROUGH AND ENDS A LOSING SEQUENCE OF 16 Preordained, a New South Wales-bred five-year-old, had been unplaced at all his 16 appearances at Gloucester Park before he was sent out a warm 5/4 favourite from the prized No. 1 barrier in the 1730m MMJ Commercial Strata Pace on Friday night. But he gave his supporters a giant scare before prevailing by a nose as he held on grimly to defeat the fast-finishing 11/4 second fancy Barkers Hall to end a losing sequence of 16. Preordained, driven by Morgan Woodley for Northam trainer Glenn Elliott, was beaten out by 25/1 chance Nuclear Bunny from barrier three. However, Nuclear Bunny was unable to cross to the pegs and Preordained, after a slick first quarter in 29.7sec., coasted through the next 400m in a leisurely 31.5sec. before final quarters of 28.8sec. and 28.9sec. Woodley dashed Preordained away after rounding the home turn, but the Parsons Den gelding had to fight grimly to keep Barkers Hall at bay. "He put the writing on the wall at Northam last week when he whizzed forward from an outside gate, got to the lead and hung in really good (when second to Fully Zapped)," Woodley said. "And on paper this looked like his race from barrier one over a mile on a predominately leader-biased track. Everything looked in his favour. "But it was a lot closer than I would have liked on the line. He got away with easy sectionals and I thought he would have had a fairly good kick left in the straight. But when I went for him there wasn't quite as much there as I thought I might have had. "I was definitely worried when Barkers Hall came at him. Preordained was a short-priced favourite and I probably could have made the decision just to keep sitting against the horse and keep Barkers Hall in a pocket a lot longer than I did. When I made the decision to kick I thought I had plenty in reserve. But then there were certainly nervous moments for me." Preordained has raced 59 times for eight wins, 14 placings and $50,703. IT'S JUST A STROLL IN THE PARK FOR MISTER JADORE It certainly looked a one-sided affair when Mister Jadore lined up against four moderate rivals in the $21,000 MMJ Commercial Leasing Sales Classic for three-year-old colts and geldings at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Mister Jadore was the State's star two-year-old in the 2012-13 season and went into the race as the winner of seven races and $168,129, with the combined earnings of his rivals being a mere $28,514 from a total of four wins. Starting at 10/1 on, Mister Jadore made it a one-act affair as Chris Lewis drove him to an effortless all-the-way victory, rating 1.58.4 after sprinting over the final quarter in 28.7sec. He crossed the line 19m ahead of the 9/1 second fancy Apache Cruiser, who trailed him throughout. Mister Jadore, trained by Annie Belton and raced by her and her husband Colin, boosted his prizemoney to $181,989 from eight wins and nine placings from 20 starts. "He has run a nice time, which he needs to at this time of the year," said Lewis. "It has taken him a little bit of time to get back to his best and he's now bringing his times down." by Ken Casellas  

Ace harness racing reinsman Kim Prentice will resume at Gloucester Park on Friday night after a term of suspension and has landed the plum drive behind This Time Dylan in the $50,000 MMJ Real Estate RWWA Cup. Pinjarra trainer Michael Brennan engaged Prentice after the gelding's regular reinsmen, Justin Prentice and Gary Hall jun., were unavailable. Justin Prentice, son of Kim Prentice, is committed to drive his own nomination Gday Mate and Hall is serving a brief term of suspension. This Time Dylan is in dazzling form, with his past 16 starts producing nine wins, three seconds, two thirds, a fourth and a sixth. He is the leader in the Gloucester Park Horse of the Year award with 70 points, 20 ahead of Northview Punter. This Time Dylan was most impressive at his most recent outing when he was eighth in the middle stages before charging home with a powerful three-wide burst to win the 2662m Narrogin Cup on February 6. That followed his fast-finishing third to Hokonui ben and Toretto in the 2936m Fremantle Cup. Enhancing This Time Dylan's prospects in the 2536m RWWA Cup is the fact that he will start from the coveted No. 1 barrier. Kim Prentice drove the eight-year-old for his previous trainer Gary Hall sen. three times, in claiming races in November and December for a win and two seconds and he has a high opinion of the chunky little pacer. Gday Mate will also be one of the main fancies on Friday night. He has won at five of his past 12 starts, including two fast-finishing victories at Gloucester Park before he contested the 2683m Albany Cup on January 31 in which he raced three wide for much of the way and finished strongly to be a close third behind Bronze Seeker and the pacemaker Lovers Delight. Star pacer David Hercules is the likely favourite, but will need a good share of luck after starting from the outside (No. 7) on the front line. The WA-bred seven-year-old trailed them pacemaker Livingontheinterest before getting off the pegs at the bell and fighting on to be fourth behind Im Victorious in the 2536m interdominion championship heat at Gloucester Park last Saturday night. Eight nights earlier the David Thompson-trained David Hercules led from barrier three and rated 1.54.8 when he beat Our Major Mark by seven lengths over 2130m at Gloucester Park. Our Major Mark, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, performed soundly in Saturday night's interdominion heat when he was eighth on the pegs at the bell before finishing solidly into third place behind Im Victorious and Livingontheinterest. He lined up again at Gloucester Park on Tuesday night when he started off the 40m mark and surged home from ninth at the bell to be third behind Shnappy. He is well placed from the No. 2 barrier in Friday night's Cup. Leading trainer Gary Hall sen. will be represented by Northview Punter (barrier three), Our Arlington (six) and Passion Stride (barrier two on the back line). Northview Punter dashed to the lead 500m after the start and gave a bold frontrunning display to score an easy two-length win over Pacific Warrior over 2130m last Friday week. He bowled along in front and won a 2150m trial in good style at Byford on Sunday morning when he sprinted over the final two quarters in 28.4sec. and 27.7sec. to beat stablemate Famous Alchemist by a head at a 1.576.2 rate over 2150m. . Adding depth to the RWWA Cup is Fremantle Cup winner Hokonui Ben, who will start from barrier three on the back line for his new trainer-reinsman Aldo Cortopassi. Hokonui ben was tenth at the bell before finishing strongly and going five wide on the home turn to be sixth in Saturday night's interdominion heat. LAUREN JONES TO MAKE HER WA DEBUT BEHIND WHOS MISTAKE Diminutive Queensland teenager Lauren Jones will make her West Australian debut when she drives Whos Mistake in the $21,000 MMJ Investment Sales Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The 18-year-old arrived in Perth last Friday week to work for leading trainer Gary Hall sen. at his Serpentine training establishment and she appeared in public for the first time in the State when she drove Northview Punter to victory in a Byford trial on Sunday morning. Hall engaged Jones, who weighs a mere 49kg, to drive Whos Mistake to take advantage of her junior concession to enable Whos Mistake, classified as an M5 performer, to contest Friday night's event which is restricted to horses handicapped on an M4 mark or an easier mark. Whos Mistake, a Victorian-bred eight-year-old, is a smart frontrunner and is favourably drawn at No. 2 on the front line. Gary Hall jun. drove Whos Mistake to an effortless all-the-way victory at a 1.58.3 rate over 2130m last Friday night. He sprinted over the final 800m in 56.4sec. Jones, a daughter of Queensland trainer-reinsman Peter Jones, has had about 250 drives for 19 wins. Her final drive before heading to Perth was at Redcliffe on Thursday, February 6 when she was in the sulky behind five-year-old Wake Up Quinn, an $18.70 tote outsider with a losing sequence of 34. Wake Up Quinn raced without cover for the first 500m before gaining the one-out, one-back position. Jones eased him three wide 450m from home and the chestnut burst to the front 250m from the post. After a highly successful career contesting events for mini trotters, Jones started driving at Albion Park, Redcliffe and the Gold Coast at 17. She represented Queensland in a championship event for mini trotters at Alexandra Park in Auckland in 2011, in which she finished third. She won three of the four races in the Marburg series at Ipswich West late last year. She saw a job advertised on the Trading Ring to work at the Hall training establishment. She applied and got the job and has started a three-month trial period. In the random draw for Friday night's event, the Andrew De Campo-trained Danieljohn fared best and is sure to appreciate the prized No. 1 barrier. Aiden De Campo will be anxious to get Danieljohn away smartly and attempt to lead throughout over the 2130m journey. "He hasn't had a good draw for a while and we'll be trying to lead," said de Campo sen. "Lord Lombo also gets away fast, but we will be aiming to hold the lead." Bickley trainer Peter Anderson will be represented by in-form pacers Rocky Marciano (barrier five) and Mighty Flying Thomas (inside of the back line). Morgan Woodley gave punters a lead by opting to drive Rocky Marciano in preference to Mighty Flying Thomas, who trailed the pacemaker and was hampered for room when a splendid second behind the pacemaker Pacific Warrior in the 21230m Governor's Cup last Friday night. Rocky Marciano also was unlucky when he failed to obtain a clear passage in the final circuit when third to Famous Alchemist over 1730m the previous Friday night. LEDA McNALLY READY FOR A STRONG EFFORT BEFORE THE LADYSHIP MILE Speedy mare Leda McNally ran a sparkling trial at Pinjarra on Sunday morning and looks set to lead and should take plenty of beating in the first prelude of the MMJ Land Sales Empress Stakes at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The 2130m event should prove a perfect lead-up for the $200,000 Ladyship Mile at Menangle on Sunday week. "She sat back in the trial before finishing strongly to win by more than three lengths from Carim Courage," said reinsman Chris Voak. "She recorded almost her best winning mile rate (1.56.7) over the trip (2185m). "It was a good blow-out for her and Friday night's race will be a good conditioning run for the Ladyship Mile. We are hoping and expecting to win, even though she has been programmed for the Ladyship Mile. "She should be leading on Friday night in a race in which the Hall stable will mount a two-pronged attack with Askmenow and Famous Alchemist. I expect one of them to work forward and apply a lot of pressure. But I think Leda McNally is ready to run a good race." Leda McNally, trained at Pinjarra by Chris King, should appreciate racing against her own sex after performing soundly against some of the State's best pacers in recent feature events, including the Fremantle Cup and Lord Mayor's Cup. She should get spirited opposition from Askmenow and Famous Alchemist. Askmenow, a New Zealand-bred four-year-old, has ruined her chances at her past two starts with bad beginnings in standing-start events. She looks far better suited in Friday night's mobile event over 2130m in which she will start from the No. 4 barrier on the front line. Famous Alchemist set the pace and dashed over the final 400m in 27.2sec. when she won from Sensational Gabby and Rocky Marciano over 1730m last Friday week. She will be the only runner on the back line in Friday night's event and looks set to fight out the finish. CONNIVING MAJOR DAVE GETS HIS CHANCE FROM BARRIER THREE Capel trainer Andrew De Campo predicted that four-year-old Conniving Major Dave would be "pretty hard to beat" after the New Zealand-bred gelding drew barrier three on the front line in the MMJ Real Estate Pathway Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. "I was very happy with his run last week and if he finds the top or the breeze this week he should be the one to beat," he said. "Those are the positions from which he races at his best. It was hard for him to make up ground last week, being off the track in the last lap." Conniving Major Dave started from the outside of the back line in a 1730m Pathway last Friday night when he settled down in ninth position and did well to fight on, out wide, from seventh at the bell to be fourth behind the pacemaker Myouri, who sprinted over the final 800m in 57.6sec. Conniving Major Dave won at three of his 12 starts in New Zealand and has raced 12 times in WA for four wins and four placings. He will be having his second start after a spell this week. "He had a good prep last year and ran some good times, including 1.54.6 over 1684m at Pinjarra last October. And he's getting better with age." Conniving Major Dave will be handled by Aiden De Campo, who also has sound prospects with Trojan Bromac and Danielhjohn later in the program. Trojan Bromac will start from barrier five off the front in the MMJ Commercial Property Handicap, a stand over 2503m. "His form is good and he hasn't missed the money at his past five or six starts," said trainer Andrew De Campo. It's not a strong field on Friday night and he should go well." Trojan Bromac's past six starts have produced two wins, two seconds and two thirds. SHEZABLAZE GIVES TERESA SCHOFIELD HER FIRST TRAINING SUCCESS Teresa Schofield, wife of Bennett Springs horseman Greg Schofield, landed her first winner as a trainer when Matt White drove Shezablaze to victory in the 1730m Yes Loans Pace for three-year-old fillies at Gloucester Park on Tuesday afternoon. The inexperienced Shezablaze was a 21/1 outsider who exceeded expectations when she raced wide early and then in the breeze before finishing strongly to defeat Major Flirt by a neck at a 1.58.7 rate. This was the filly's fourth appearance as a three-year-old after a ten-month absence, following a third and a fourth in March 2013. Shezablaze, by Courage Under Fire, is the third foal out of the Village Jasper mare Fluent Style, who was trained by Greg Schofield for seven wins, eight placings and stakes of $78,033 from 28 starts. Fluent Style finished second to Dilingers Reign in the WA Oaks in May 2006. Fluent Style's half-brother Effortless (by Crouch) was a handy performer for Greg Schofield, earning $64,743 from 12 wins and 21 placings from 89 starts. Shezablaze was bred by Teresa Schofield and Rod Price, who race the filly in partnership with Glen Price, a greyhound trainer. Teresa Schofield has had a battle on her hands with Shezablaze, who has made many trips to the veterinary surgeon in attempts to cure physical problems. "She has had problems that we couldn't solve," she said. "She was sore somewhere, but we were unable to pinpoint the problem. We were told that she was just suffering from growing pains. "She's got ability and it's just a matter of getting it out of her. She has tended to pace roughly. She goes all right for the first thousand and after that she goes roughly. Recently I decided to treat her with Bowen therapy; it's cross fibre manipulation by hand. She has had muscle soreness on all parts of her body. "She now has had three treatments, once a week, and after each treatment she has improved a bit. She paced okay today. It's the best she's ever gone around since I've been treating her." White completed a double when he drove four-year-old mare Cielito to victory in the 2130m Caduceus Club Pace. Cielto, trained at Busselton by her owner Barry Howlett, started at 11/1 and won from the fast-finishing El Sunami. It was her second start after an absence of nine months. by Ken Casellas  

Champion reinsman Gary Hall jun. has driven the winner of almost every feature event in Western Australia and he is aiming to put the record straight by adding the $50,000 Make Smoking History Dainty's Daughter Classic to his imposing list of achievements when he handles the highly-impressive Majorly Foxy Styx in the group 3 race at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Hall has driven in seven of the 14 Dainty's Daughter Classics for two seconds, a third, a fourth, a fifth, an eighth and an 11th placing and his prospects of breaking through for an overdue success in this 2130m event for three-year-old fillies soared when the New Zealand-bred Majorly Foxy Styx drew the coveted No. 1 barrier on the front line. The stewards suspended Hall from driving for 12 days after he had pleaded guilty of causing interference when driving Vapour in a race at Gloucester Park on Monday afternoon. Hall immediately sought a stay of proceedings to enable him to drive Majorly Foxy Styx and several other stable runners on Friday night and Im Victorious in the WA heat of the interdominion championship the following night. His request was granted and his suspension will begin at midnight on Saturday night. Majorly Foxy Styx, trained by Hall's father Gary, has won at each of her past six starts by an average margin of just over two lengths and the big Art Major filly warmed up for this week's assignment in devastating style with a nine-length victory in a 2150m trial at Byford on Sunday. Driven by Clint Hall, Majorly Foxy Styx raced without cover early and then set the pace before sprinting over the final 800m in 56.4sec. and the last 400m in 27.5sec. Clint was substituting for his brother Gary, who was returning from Adelaide where he drove a winner (Copthewrath) for his mate, Mildura trainer Shayne Cramp, and finished third with Dontdoubtme in the South Australian Oaks at Globe Derby Park on Saturday night. Hall jun. and his father combined to land a treble with Prince Eddie, High Courage and Machtu on Monday afternoon and they were also successful with Classic American at Harvey on the following nighty. Now Hall sen. is poised to bring up his century of winners on Friday night when he will have nine runners. His season's tally stands at 97. Majorly Foxy Styx will be a firm favourite in a race in which she will clash with several smart fillies, including Harriet Elisabeth, Artistic Copper, The Parade, Maddy White and My Samantha Jane. Harriet Elisabeth, trained by David Thompson, won at three of her five starts as a two-year-old before she resumed after a seven-month absence and finished last as an odds-on favourite at Gloucester Park four Tuesdays ago. She will start from barrier three and is capable of a bold showing. The Andrew De Campo-trained Artistic Copper has led and won impressively at her past three appearances and will start from the inside of the back line. She should gain a perfect run behind the pacemaking Majorly Foxy Styx. Boyanup trainer Justin Prentice has engaged star reinsman Chris Lewis to drive The Parade, who chalked up her fifth win from 12 starts when she finished powerfully to defeat Maddy White and Typhoon Tan at Bunbury last Saturday night. PACIFIC WARRIOR GETS HIS CHANCE IN CUP FROM INSIDE BARRIER New Zealand-bred six-year-old Pacific Warrior has led from start to finish only once from his 27 starts in Western Australia, but he makes strong appeal as the likely leader from the prized No. 1 barrier in the $25,000 Make Smoking History Governor's Cup over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He has won 13 races and been placed eight times in WA when his only all-the-way victory was over 2185m at Pinjarra at his second run in Australia when he took full advantage of the inside barrier. The only other time he has started from the No. 1 barrier was in the 2692m Pinjarra Cup early last June when he pulled hard in front and finished third to Ima Rocket Star and Hokonui Ben. Pacific Warrior, who is prepared at Mt Helena by Ray Williams and will be driven by Kade Howson, ran a splendid Cup trial last Friday night when he started from barrier four, raced three wide early and then without cover and finished an fighting second to noted frontrunner Northview Punter when the final 800m was covered in 56.1sec. The Cup is for pacers handicapped M2 to M4, but trainer John Guagliardo is so pleased with the form of Copagrin that he nominated the five-year-old for the race, even though he is still on an M1 mark. Copagrin, to be driven by Matt White, is ideally drawn at No. 2 on the front line and will have many admirers. Copagrin impressed greatly last Friday night when he raced three back on the pegs and did not get clear until late when he flashed home to be third behind Marooned and Northern Assassin in the 2130m Binshaw Classic, Uppy Son, who will start from barrier four on the back line for Bunbury trainer-reinsman Stephen Reed, is getting close to another win. He stormed home, three wide, from eighth at the bell to be a neck second to WA Pacing Cup placegetter This Time Dylan in the 2662m Narrogin Cup on Thursday of last week. And then two nights later Uppy Son started off 70m in a 2500m stand at Bunbury and finished powerfully from last in the field of seven at the bell to be a close-up fifth, just two lengths behind the winner Im Riddick. The Ross Olivieri-trained Hez The Bart Man is sure to appreciate a drop in class and cannot be underestimated. He covered a lot of extra ground when an impressive Gloucester park winner three starts ago. Bickley trained Peter Anderson has each-way prospects with Bronze Seeker (barrier four) and Mighty Flying Thomas (inside of the back line). Bronze Seeker, a sit-and-sprint exponent, charged home from three back on the pegs to snatch victory in the 2683m Albany Cup two starts ago, but was found wanting in last week's Narrogin Cup when he raced in the one-out, two-back position in a muddling-run race and just battled on into sixth place behind This Time Dylan. Mighty Flying Thomas will be making his third appearance after an absence of two months and should enjoy a good passage on the pegs. He covered a good deal of extra ground when a wilting last-start seventh in the Albany Cup. DELUXE EDITION SET FOR A BATTLE WITH BLACKNSWEET ADDA West Australian-bred four-year-old Deluxe Edition should be rewarded for her consistency by winning the $17,000 Mick's Mares Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The mare, who is trained at Oakford by Ross Olivieri, will be handled by her regular reinsman Chris Voak, who is in the midst of a purple patch. She musters plenty of early speed and is a good frontrunner, ideally suited from the No. 3 barrier. However, Deluxe Edition could strike a snag in the form of the Kevin Keys-trained Blacknsweet Adda, who will be driven by Dylan Egerton-Green from barrier two. Blacknsweet Adda gave a bold frontrunning display on Tuesday of last week and was overhauled in the final stages when third behind classy three-year-old Classic American over 1730m. She raced again on Tuesday of this week when she thundered home from 11th at the bell to be an eye-catching second to Mako Shadow over 1730m. Exposed form suggests that Deluxe Edition will forge to the front, giving Blacknsweet Adda a perfect trail. Whatever transpires, the race appears likely to develop into a spirited battle between the paid. Deluxe Edition, who has a tendency worrying tendency to pull hard in her races, is proving a splendid moneyspinner for her breeders and owners Denise Trobe and Adrian Staltari. She has earned $88,487 from eight wins and 15 placings from 33 starts. LEWIS TO DRIVE FRONTRUNNING COOL JOHNNY FOR THE FIRST TIME New Zealand-bred five-year-old Cool Johnny who excels as a frontrunner, will be driven for the first time by Chris Lewis when he stars from the ideal No. 2 barrier in the 2536m Put Smoking Behind You Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Trainers Greg and Skye Bond engaged Lewis when the stable's No. 1 driver had two of his own horses (Pete of Pan and Mein Guy) in the field. The Bonds also have a second runner in Im Terrific, who will be handled by Ryan Warwick. Though unplaced at his past six starts, Cool Johnny makes good appeal. The gelding has scored four all-the-way wins in Western Australia and he also has proved to be a sound stayer, with wins over 2692m, 2536m (twice) and 2503m. Mein Guy showed that he is likely to be prominent with a strong performance last Friday night when he finished strongly from sixth at the bell to be third to Northview Punter and Pacific Warrior. This is a weaker field in which the stablemates Dashing Christian and Why Live Dangerously (trained by Gary Hall sen.) will start from the two widest positions on the front line, but are capable of surprising. IM VICTORIOUS LOOKS GOOD THING TO QUALIFY FOR INTERDOMINION FINAL The scratching of Argent Treasure has brought star pacer Im Victorious in to barrier four on the front line in the $48,000 TAB.com.au Interdominion qualifying heat over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Saturday night and the Michael Brennan-trained five-year-old should prove too strong for his rivals. The first two placegetters in the heats to be decided on Saturday in Perth, Christchurch, Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney (two) will qualify for the $750,000 final to be run over 3009m at Menangle on Sunday March 2. And the NSWHRC officials will select two wild cards to make up the field of 14 which will start with ten across the front line and four off the back line. Im Victorious, brilliant winner of the 2536m Fremantle Cup on January 10, failed when sixth as the 5/4 on favourite in the 2936m WA Pacing Cup the following week when he endured a tough passage and was hampered in the final lap by a punctured tyre of his sulky. Gary Hall jun. looks set to drive Im Victorious aggressively on Saturday night and the star pacer could well race in the breeze for the greater part of the event. Hokonui Ben, who led and won the WA Pacing Cup from Toretto, This Time Dylan and David Hercules, has switched stables and will be driven by his new trainer Aldo Cortopassi. He will start from barrier three on the back line and should fight out the finish. Livingontheinterest, trained by Gary Hall sen., who has prepared champion Im Themightyquinn for his wins in the past three interdominion championship finals, will be represented by Livingontheinterest, a talented frontrunner who looks certain to lead from the No. 2 barrier with Clint Hall in the sulky. "Livingontheinterest ran a super trial at Byford on Sunday," Hall said. "Our plan is to lead and I consider Im Victorious and Hokonui Ben as his only two dangers." Livingontheinterest, driven by Brian Dunne, began speedily from barrier six in Sunday's trial and led throughout, rating 1.57.4 over the 2150m, with the final 800m being covered in 57.4sec. That was his first public appearance since he led and won the 2130m Lord Mayor's Cup by a half-head from Hokonui Ben last Friday week,. "He went too slowly in the early stages (lead time: 37.4sec. and opening quarters in 31.3sec. and 30.4sec.)," Hall sen. said. "This week I'll want him to go faster. Going slowly doesn't suit him and he's better off bowling along." David Thompson, trainer of David Hercules, a brilliant all-the-way winner at a 1.54.8 rate last Friday night, was disappointed when the star seven-year-old drew awkwardly on the inside of the back line, behind modest performer Empire Flame. "That's the luck of the draw," said a philosophical Thompson. "His fate is in the lap of the gods and what will be, will be. We'll be hoping for the best." by Ken Casellas  

Marooned, a seven-year-old gelding, who boasted a losing sequence of 20 when he was claimed for $10,000 ten weeks ago, delighted his new owners when he stormed home from the rear to win the $50,000 Channel Nine Binshaw Classic at Gloucester Park on Friday night. A tote outsider at 46/1, Marooned was handled expertly by Chris Voak and his victory over the heavily-supported 9/2 third favourite Northern Assassin and Copagin (10/1) came as a major surprise. There were six claims lodged for Marooned when he contested a claimer at Gloucester Park on November 29 and Gloucester Park Harness Racing committeeman Garry Scott was exceedingly happy when he was successful in the ballot. Marooned, who is raced by Scott, his wife Janine, their son Matt and friends Tony Maguire, Alison Tilt and the Manton brothers, is proving a splendid acquisition, with his first eight starts since entering Matt Scott's Serpentine stables producing two wins and a second placing for stakes of $42,845. The New South Wales-bred Marooned was able to contest the heats of the Binshaw Classic, restricted to M1-class pacers, because his classification was reduced from an M2 mark to M1 after he had extended his losing sequence to ten last August. He started out wide from barrier six on the front line in Friday night's 2130m final and Voak eased him back to race on the pegs. Polemarker Shnappy, the 3/1 favourite, set the pace after resisting a strong early challenge from Atlastalone. The pace was solid throughout, and after each of the first two 400m sections of the final mile went by in 29.4sec., Shnappy sprinted the third quarter in 28.6sec. Northern Assassin, ninth in the first lap, started a three-wide move approaching the bell and he got to a narrow lead 300m from home and looked the winner until Marooned flew home out wide on the track. Marooned was tucked away in the pegs in ninth position at the bell. He was still ninth when Voak eased him off the inside with 400m to travel. Marooned then went four wide and was sixth on the home turn before charging home to burst to the lead in the closing stages. The final quarter took 29.5sec. and the winner rated 1.57. Copagin, who raced three back on the pegs, finished boldly, out wide, to be a neck away in third place, with Shnappy wilting to fourth. "Last week his run (fourth to Copagrin) was a hell of a lot better than what it looked," Voak said. "I don't think we would have been any match for Copagrin, but I reckon if he had got clear a little earlier he would have run second. "Often in these type of races, with the hot speed, you need a lot of luck, and we got that. But by the same token the horse still has to be good enough to hit the line. And tonight he certainly ate it up. I drove Marooned for Matt early in December and he finished strongly to beat This Time Dylan (who went on to finish third to Hokonui Ben and Toretto in the WA Pacing Cup). If This Time Dylan was in tonight's field he probably would have been the $2 favourite." When Marooned won from This Time Dylan he sprinted the final 800m in 56.7sec. and the last quarter in 27.6sec. and Voak admitted to Matt Scott that the gelding was quite a bit better than he had anticipated. Friday night's win, paying $46.80 on the tote, was one of several successes by the gelding at handsome odds. His New South Wales successes included wins at $44.70 at Wagga and $17.60 and $48.70 at Menangle. By American stallion Hare Hare, Marooned has earned $145,722 from 17 wins and 15 placings from 72 starts. The victory continued the 25-year-old Voak's great run of successes this season. With 63 wins he is in second place behind Gary hall jun. (72) on the Statewide premiership. He is equal sixth on the Metropolitan premiership table with 22 wins, with Hall showing the way with 53 wins. EMPRESS STAKES IS THE TARGET FOR FAMOUS ALCHEMIST Leading trainer Gary Hall sen. is setting talented New Zealand-bred five-year-old Famous Alchemist for the $50,000 Empress Stakes at Gloucester Park on February 28 after she had strolled to victory in the 1730m Alan Vawser Memorial on Friday night. Famous Alchemist, favourite at 7/4 on, was never seriously challenged and she was able to stroll through the lead time in a modest 8.3sec. before simply ambling through the first two 400m sections of the final mile in 31.3sec. and 30.8sec. Rarely, in any company, is a leader able to dawdle over the first 800m of the final mile in 62.1sec. Gary Hall jun. gave Famous Alchemist a little more rein and she sped over the final quarters in 28.5sec. and 27.2sec. She was not extended in coasting to victory by a length from 7/1 chance Sensational Gabby, who fought on doggedly after racing without cover. Rocky Marciano, second fancy at 5/2, trailed the pacemaker throughout and was hopelessly blocked for a run in finishing a close third. Hall did not release the ear plugs and Famous Alchemist rated 1.57.3 and could have gone considerably faster. She has led six times at her 20 starts in Western Australia and has won every time. The expected early speed battle between Famous Alchemist (barrier 1) and Sensational Gabby (three) did not eventuate and trainer Ross Olivieri appears to have cured the mare's recent habit of overracing badly in her races. This surprised Hall jun., who said: "I thought that there would have been a lot of speed off the gate and during the week everyone said to me that Famous Alchemist would have trouble in holding up. And we thought that the first half might be run quicker than the last. "But it was one of those races which did not pan out that way and she has led comfortably. Half-way through the race I felt like pulling her one off the fence and putting some pressure on myself. She is a quality mare who has had a few setbacks, and we're happy to have her racing in this sort of form." Famous Alchemist, owned by Karen Hall, has had 37 starts for 12 wins and 12 placings for earnings of $236,219. LIVELONG AND PROSPER REGAINING FORM AFTER SURGERY About a year ago Livelong And Prosper was laid low by injury and his future was uncertain. He was suffering from severe stifle lock in both hind legs and veterinary surgeon Kim Rose had to cut the ligaments in both legs in an attempt to cure the problem. The operation was successful, but when Livelong And Prosper resumed work for Bickley trainer Peter Anderson the somewhat gangling and lightly-framed gelding struggled to reproduce the form he showed when he started his Western Australian career as a three-year-old early in 2012. Anderson then experimented by giving Livelong And Prosper a lighter workload on the training track and concentrated on a lot of swimming in the pool. This decision is paying dividends. The New Zealand-bred gelding has put on weight and is racing with admirable enthusiasm. In his current preparation he has won at Bunbury in November and at Gloucester Park and Harvey in December and he impressed at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he unwound a sparkling late burst to snatch victory from Im Clean Cut and Soho Jackman in the 2130m See It First on Nine Pathway Pace. Despite fast-finishing thirds at his two previous outings, Livelong And Prosper was a 25/1 chance, mainly because of his wide draw at No. 5 on the front line. Soho Jackman, undefeated at three starts since a spell, was favourite at 10/9 on and polemarker Ohoka Kentucky was a firm 6/4 second fancy. Ohoka Kentucky was first into stride, with Gary Hall jun. getting Soho Jackman away brilliantly from barrier six. Soho Jackman poured on the pressure and was held at bay by Ohoka Kentucky before Robbie Williams relinquished the lead after 450m. The early cracking pace had the rest of the field well spread out, mainly in Indian file, with Morgan Woodley able to get Livelong And Prosper across to the pegs in sixth position. Williams took Ohoka Kentucky off the pegs and into the breeze 1050m from home to put some pressure on the leader. Livelong And Prosper was sixth at the bell when Woodley was able to ease him off the pegs before switching him three wide 460m from home. Then the gelding was forced four wide at the 400m when Shannon Suvaljko started a three-wide move with Im Clean Cut. Livelong And Prosper sustained his spirited burst, out wide, to hit the front about 70m from the post and he beat Im Clean Cut (18/1) by a neck, with a neck to Soho Jackman. Ohoka Kentucky wilted to finish fifth. Livelong And Prosper was purchased as a three-year-old by Ken Casellas and Ross Waddell after his four starts had produced one third placing at Alexandra Park. He made an auspicious start in WA, winning at his first two starts, at Harvey and Narrogin in January 2012 before catching the eye with a splendid fast-finishing third to talented three-year-olds Gracias Para Nada and Western Cullen at Gloucester Park the following month. He is now starting to realise his full potential and should improve on his record of seven wins, 16 placings and $45,235 in stakes from 46 starts. By American stallion Falcon Seelster, Livelong And Prosper is the second foal out of Badlands Hanover mare Nicolosa, who had only five starts for one win (at Alexandra Park in August 2006). Nicolosa is the first foal out of Al Cioccolato, who won at her only start, as a three-year-old at Forbury in May 2001. Woodley said that he felt confident after the fast lead time and with the pressure being applied in front. "I was confident until we were pushed four wide at the 400m," he said. "However, he knuckled down well in the straight." UNWANTED ARTISTIC COPPER SHOWS HER CLASS Prominent breeder Mike Howie was disappointed when Artistic Copper failed to attract a single bid at the 2012 Gloucester Standardbred yearling sale. But now is quite happy that nobody was interested in the filly, who had a reserve price of $10,000. Howie decided to keep the filly and gave her to Andrew De Campo to be prepared for racing. Artistic Copper boosted her earnings to $83,125 when she gave a polished frontrunning exhibition to score a three-length victory over the fast-finishing Lipizzaner in the $21,000 Love Child On Nine WA Sales Classic for three-year-old fillies at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Artistic Copper, hot favourite at 3/1 on, started from barrier two and Matt White dashed her to the front after 120m. After moderate quarters of 31.7sec. and 31.3sec., Artistic Copper sped over the final sections in 28.7sec. and 28.3sec. to win easily from 8/1 chance Lipizzaner, who fought on solidly from sixth and last at the bell. Shez Sensational was a half-length away in third place after racing without cover in the middle stages. This gave Artistic Copper her second success in a feature event for fillies. White drove her to victory in the group 1 $100,000 Sales Classic for two-year-old fillies last April. She now has raced 13 times for four wins and one placing. "She is a lot stronger this time in," said White. "She has got better with every run this preparation and she has put it all together now." Artistic Copper is by American stallion Artistic Fella, who earned $2,604,855 from 26 wins, ten seconds and four thirds from 52 starts. He set a world record rate of 1.49.3 over 1700m and in seven of his wins he rated 1.48.4 or better and in another five wins he rated faster than 1.50. ROBINSON GETS VEITCHTY HOME IN A THREE-WAY PHOTO Trainer Michael Robinson made full use of a needle-eye opening in the final stages of the Fat Tony On Nine Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night to send 9/1 chance Veitchy through on the inside of the pacemaker Sargent Sonny to score in a thrilling three-way photo. The camera revealed that Veitchy had scored by a nose from 9/4 favourite Sparkling Seelster, with a head to Sargent Sonny, the 3/1 second fancy. "He always finishes strongly and hits the line well," Robinson said. "He's so consistent and I love driving him. It's a pleasure to have this little horse." Robinson was happy to take the trail behind the pacemaker Sargent Sonny, with Sparkling Seelster in the breeze and 6/1 chance Soho Highroller in the one-out, one-back position. Sparkling Seelster got his nose in front 20m from the post, but just failed to hold off the fast-finishing Veitchy. Veitchy, who won at seven of his 26 starts in New Zealand, has earned $73,795 from 11 wins and 21 placings from 71 starts. He is raced by Dion Poolman, Ashlee Cortopassi, Barry Street, Christian McArthur, Kirsty Ferguson, Simon Campbell-Hardwick, Brett King, Haley Morland, Frank Ranaldi and Richard McArthur. The six-year-old by Sands A Flyin is related to several good winners, including The Cavalier, who won 15 races and $248,089. He is the second foal out of I'llmakemyname, who had only one start, for a win as a three-year-old at Bay of Plenty in October 2005. NORTHVIEW PUNTER ANSWERS A FEW QUERIES "There has probably been a little bit of a question mark over him lately, whether he is still up to his best form," Gary Hall jun. said after driving Northview Punter to a convincing victory in the first heat of the Block On Nine Lewis Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Well the New Zealand-bred four-year-old, favourite at 10/9 on, certainly showed that he is in splendid form as he surged past stablemate Real Hammer and into the lead after 450m and then relaxed with a muddling 31.5sec. quarter before he sprinted over the final three 400m sections in 29.7sec., 28.1sec. and 28sec. to score by just over two lengths from Pacific Warrior, rating 1.56.8 over the 2130m journey. Pacific Warrior, second fancy at 9/4, raced three wide early and then in the breeze and he was gallant in defeat. Mein Guy ran on from sixth at the bell to be a fair third, with Mohegan Sun finishing boldly to be an eye-catching fourth. "There were questions about his form and tonight we were definitely going to find out," Hall said. "We got away with a bit once we got to the front. Northview Punter is a class animal and when he finds the rail he's a hard horse to get over." Northview Punter, a Bettors Delight horse who is prepared by leading trainer Gary Hall sen., has already earned $208,215 from 16 wins and 11 placings from 34 starts. BOBBY TEAL LEADS AND MAKES IT FOUR WINS IN A ROW Former Victorian pacer Bobby Teal, who managed just one win from his first 25 starts in Western Australia and had a losing sequence of 20 three months ago, has struck a purple patch of form and his smart all-the-way win in the 2503m Mark Readings Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night was his sixth victory from his past nine starts and his fourth in a row. Forrestdale trainer Jarrad Humphries has produced the Life Sign six-year-old in grand shape in the past three months and Kyle Harper has relished the opportunity to drive the standing-start specialist who has contested 44 stands in his past 45 starts. Bobby Teal, equal favourite at 7/4, was not extended in leading throughout to win by 5m from the equal fancy J Walker, who started from 20m and sustained a strong three-wide burst from ninth at the bell. Lord Coburn (22/1) who raced three back on the pegs, ran on strongly to finish third. Once Bobby Teal jumped to the front Harper was able to get the gelding to relax and he was able to amble through the first 400m section of the final mile in 31.1sec. before he lifted his rating and reeled off final quarters of 29.3sec., 28.5sec. and 29.5sec. "A lot of stands recently have been run the same way, with the leader being able to get it easy early and then run a quick time over the final 1200m," Harper said. "Most of these fields are made up of evenly-matched bunches. "There was nothing tonight to put a lot of pressure on and that makes it easy to get what you need, and if the horse is good enough he will prove hard to run down." Bobby Teal, owned by Albany businessman Harry Capararo and Queenslander Wayne Innes, has raced 72 times for 12 wins and 24 placings for stakes of $80,966. TAJIES GIRL FINISHES FAST TO CAUSE AN UPSET West Australian-bred four-year-old Tajies Girl caused an upset when she started at 31/1 and finished strongly to get up and snatch victory from 5/4 on favourite Hoylakes Firstlady in the 1730m The Voice On Nine Mares Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The win, by a head, was a triumph for young owner-trainer-reinsman Chris Butt, who had the Blissfull Hall mare poised to strike in the one-out, one-back position throughout. Hoylakes Firstlady started from the No. 1 barrier and was beaten out by Am Opulent from the No. 3 barrier. However, Am Opulent was unable to cross to the pegs and was forced to race without cover all the way. Butt bided his time and waited until the home turn before switching Tajies Girl three wide. Tajies Girl sprinted strongly and burst to the front in the final 15m, with the final quarter being run in a smart 28.6sec. Am Opulent fought on gamely to be third. The winner rated 1.58.5. Tajies Girl, a sound second to Bonsu at Pinjarra last Monday, drew favourably at barrier two in Friday night's race, but Butt was left to Ponder his tactics. "When the draw came out I wasn't sure how it was going to work out," he said. "And as things turned out we got the perfect trip and she got the job done. "She has been racing well in the country, but she is a bit limited and has to be held up for one run." Tajies Girl is out of Classic Rendezvous, who produced Lord Matao, who has had 42 starts for eight wins, eight placings and $65,040. Tajies Girl now has had 27 starts for four wins, six placings and $32,003 in prizemoney. Classic rendezvous was unplaced at three starts as a two-year-old in early 2000 before being retired. SHARDONS ROCKET APPROACHES $300,000 MILESTONE Seemingly indestructible nine-year-old Shardons Rocket moved a step closer to reaching $300,000 in prizemoney when Chris Lewis drove his assertively to score a solid all-the-way victory in the 2130m A Current Affair Claiming Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Owned by Ashley and Gavin McPhail and trained at Byford by Tony Svilicich, Shardons Rocket is an iron horse who has raced 137 times for 25 wins and 47 placings for stakes of $297,102. He was favourite at 5/4 on and Lewis drove him hard from the No. 2 barrier to get past the polemarker Touch Me Toes and into the lead after 80m. Pride of Colorado, resuming after a spell, raced wide early before moving into the breeze and then Lewis increased the tempo, with Shardons Rocket dashing over the final three quarters in 29.3sec., 28.4sec. and 29.2sec. He had to fight grimly to hold on and beat 9/1 chance Rojen Cruz, who raced three back on the pegs before Chris Voak brought him home with a fast run, out five wide on the track. Pride of Colorado battled on gamely to be a close third, a nose ahead of Whos Mistake. On All Fours, who had won at his two previous starts and had enjoyed an ideal passage, one-out and one-back, lacked sparkle and finished sixth in the field of seven. by Ken Casellas  

Noted frontrunner Livingontheinterest was forced to fight tenaciously to hold out a determined late challenge from Hokonui Ben and beat his stablemate by a half-head in an exciting finish to the $35,000 Make Smoking History Lord Mayor's Cup at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It was a case of Father Knows Best as Kim Prentice called on Livingontheinterest for a special effort, and the New Zealand-bred six-year-old responded grandly to deny Hokonui Ben victory after working hard in the breeze for the final 1600m of the 2130m event after racing three wide in the early stages. Hokonui Ben was driven by Prentice's 25-year-old son Justin. The 52-year-old Kim Prentice admitted after the race that he was quite concerned that Hokonui Ben, the all-the-way winner of the 2936m WA Pacing Cup at his previous outing and second fancy at 5/2 in Friday night's Cup, would snatch victory from Livingontheinterest, the 7/4 on favourite who had made all the running after starting from the No. 2 barrier. "Just before we turned for home I thought that I was in a little bit of strife," he said. "Livingontheinterest had dropped the bit a little bit and I knew that Hokonui Ben would give him a hell of a race. I always love it when Justin wins, but not in that situation tonight. It was a really good two-horse race." It was the umpteenth time that leading trainer Gary Hall sen. had provided the quinella in a feature race at Gloucester Park. Only two weeks earlier Hall had a quinella result in the $400,000 WA Pacing Cup when Hokonui Ben defeated Toretto by a nose. Hall now has trained the winner of the Lord Mayor's Cup five times to equal Bill Horn's record in this event which was inaugurated in 1966. Hall's previous winners were Tricky Bey (1994), Abit Rich (1997), Live To Reign (2007) and Talk To Me Courage (2010). Horn won the Lord Mayor's Cup four times with Village Kid and once with Ballantines. Livingontheinterest was smartest into stride in Friday night's Cup and was joined by Hokonui Ben after 500m. Polemarker Ohoka Dallas slotted in behind the pacemaker, leaving Mysta Magical Mach racing three back on the pegs. Mysta Magical Mach, winner of the Lord Mayor's Cup three times in the previous five years, fought on gamely to be a well-beaten third. Livingontheinterest's winning prospects were greatly enhanced when he was able to run the lead time in a modest 37.4sec. and the first two 400m sections of the final mile in leisurely 31.3sec. and 30.4sec. The pace certainly went on in the final circuit, with the final quarters whizzing by in 28.3sec. and a sizzling 27.1sec. The winner, owned by Beth Richardson, Glen Moore, Andrew Curran, Garry Ralston and Karen Hall, rated 1.56.6 and took his record to 42 starts for 20 wins, eight placings and $243,915 in prizemoney. His 27 starts in Western Australia have produced 13 wins and three placings. ARISTOCRATIC GLOW BEGINS SLOWLY AND SMASHES RECORD West Australian-bred five-year-old Aristocratic Glow gave breeder-owner Bob Fowler a notable victory when she overcame a tardy beginning to storm to a superb win in the $25,000 Put Smoking Behind You Im Themightyquinn Mares final at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Aristocratic Glow, trained at Pinjarra by Barry Warwick and driven in fine style by Chris Lewis, was a 4/1 second favourite who sustained a spirited finishing burst to defeat the 10/9 favourite Deluxe Edition by a half-length after racing four back on the pegs for much of the way. She rated 1.55.9 to smash the course record for mares over 2130m, a rate of 1.56.7 held jointly by Luck Has It, Leda McNally and Famous Alchemist. Aristocratic Glow started from the prized No. 1 barrier, but, as expected, she was unable to muster sufficient early speed to capitalise on this significant advantage. Millies Girl (33/1) charged straight to the front from barrier four before Chris Voak gave the hard-pulling Deluxe Edition her head and sent her into the lead 250m after the start. As usual, Deluxe Edition was inclined to overrace and after a fast lead time of 35.7sec. she reeled off rapid quarters in 29sec., 29.7sec., 29.2sec. and 29.8sec. Deluxe Edition led by almost three lengths 300m from home, but she weakened slightly in the home straight and was overhauled by Aristocratic Glow 100m from the post. However, Deluxe Edition fought on grandly and finished almost three lengths clear of the third placegetter, 50/1 chance Courage On Fire, who ran on from seventh on the pegs at the bell. Aristocratic Glow has now earned $65,280 from eight wins and nine placings from 34 starts. She looks well suited to contesting the $50,000 Empress Stakes over 2536m on February 28. "She was slow from the inside draw tonight, but got away safely," Lewis said. "And things worked in our favour with the fast early pace. When Chris Brew (Kotare Ash in the breeze) started to drop off (approaching the bell) I thought there would be an opportunity for us a bit earlier (to get into the clear) than I thought. And we were able to take advantage of that and be not far off the pace going into the 600m, and she worked home strongly." Aristocratic Glow is by Canadian stallion Northern Luck and is the fifth winner out of the unraced Northern Lights mare Arctic Glow. Arctic Glow has also produced Chazsalico (135 starts for 20 wins, 31 placings and $141,515), Amongst Royalty (86 starts for 23 wins, 27 placings and $570,820), Made of Dreams (49 starts for ten wins, 14 placings and $39,664) and Idolize Me (53 starts for ten wins, seven placings and $60,099). Arctic Glow is out of Boncroft Castle, the dam of eight winners of 62 races, including Mon Poppy Day (50 starts for 20 wins, 16 placings and $318,558). ROCKY MARCIANO GIVES ANDERSON THE FIRST OF THREE WINNERS Up-and-coming four-year-old Rocky Marciano emerged as a candidate for Cup events in the winter when he completed a remarkable month with a magnificent victory in the 2536m Quitline Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. His effortless win gave Bickley trainer Peter Anderson the first of three winners in the space of 70 minutes. Anderson then was successful with Chocolatto and Bronze Seeker in Albany. Chocolatto (Shane Butcher) dashed to an early lead, set the pace, was overhauled by the favourite Ben Cartwright 350m from home and the fought back to regain the lead in the home straight to win from the fast-finishing Our Red Baron and Ben Cartwright in the Bevan's Seafoods Pace. Thirty minutes later 34-year-old Lang Inwood brought Bronze Seeker home with a brilliant late burst to snatch victory over the pacemaker Lovers Delight and Gday Mate in the $30,000 GWN7 Albany Cup. While Anderson was in Albany, Caris Hamilton-Smith was in charge of Rocky Marciano, who took his record in January to five starts at Gloucester Park for four wins and a nose second to Maggies Mystery. Rocky Marciano was favourite at 10/9 from barrier three, with talented frontrunner Your Good Fortune at 5/4 from the No. 1 barrier. As expected, Ryan Warwick got Your Good Fortune away smartly and straight into the lead. Morgan Woodley quickly got Rocky Marciano into the breeze and he did not bustle the New Zealand-bred gelding. Your Good Fortune was able to coast through the first 400m section of the final mile in 31.2sec. before increasing the tempo with a 30.3sec. second quarter. Woodley then poured on the pressure and the third quarter was covered in a scorching 27.5sec., with Rocky Marciano getting past the pacemaker 550m from home and then increasing his margin to win impressively by three lengths from Argent Treasure (who had enjoyed a perfect trail behind the leader). A wilting Your Good Fortune was just under two lengths away, dead-heating for third with stablemate Our Major Mark. Rocky Marciano dashed over the final quarter in 28.6sec. and rated 1.59.6. Rocky Marciano, placed at three of his ten starts in New Zealand, has thrived under Anderson's care, with his 33 WA starts producing 11 wins and ten placings. He could contest the $25,000 Four-Year-Old Championship over 1684m at Pinjarra on March 3 and should be one of the main hopes in the $35,000 Four and Five-Year-Old Championship at Gloucester Park on March 21. SIX IN A ROW FOR OAKS PROSPECT MAJORLY FOXY STYX Reinsman Kim Prentice had some anxious moments before guiding Majorly Foxy Styx to victory in the 2130m Smoke Free Pace for three-year-old fillies at Gloucester Park on Friday night. But the big, strong New Zealand-bred filly simply proved too good for her rivals and won convincingly by 4m from Maddy White, rating 1.58.1 as she notched her sixth win in a row. Leading trainer Gary Hall sen. is setting Majorly Foxy Styx for the $50,000 Dainty's Daughter Classic next Friday week and the $175,000 WA Oaks on May 9. Majorly Foxy Styx, favourite at 6/4 on from the back line, settled at the rear, but was pulling fiercely and virtually obliged Prentice to send her forward, three wide. She got to the outside of the pacemaker and 7/4 second fancy Generally Outspoken after a lap before forging to the front with 1050m to travel. After a solid lead time of 36.8sec., the first three sections of the final mile were covered in 29.7sec., 29.1sec. and 29.7sec. Leaving the back straight the final time Generally Outspoken (trailing the leader) was seriously inconvenienced when a wheel of her sulky became locked with a wheel of The Parade's sulky. This caused her to become unbalanced and she broke into a gallop about 300m from home. Maddy White, a 16/1 chance who had raced three wide early and was fifth in the one-wide line at the bell, looked a threat as she worked forward approaching the home turn. However, she wilted in the closing stages to finish a sound second after a slow final quarter in 31sec. "Majorly Foxy Styx gave me a workover early by pulling hard," Prentice said. "She's not the nicest horse to drive, but she's definitely got a fair share of ability, and that carries her through. She has done a good job, considering she pulled so hard early. "I knew that we were walking turning for home and I honestly thought that the one coming (Maddy White) would have beaten me. But she only got to my wheel and was as tired as I was. "Definitely the 2536m of the Oaks will suit her. Gary has just told me that he's going to take her home and concentrate on getting her manners a little bit better than what they are. And he's a master at that and when the Oaks comes she will be spot on." MISTER SARKOKZY RELISHES STANDING-START RACING New Zealand-bred gelding Mister Sarkozy is an almost faultless standing-start performer and his impeccable manners paved the way for his effortless victory in the 2503m Quit Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He is a tried and true stand performer, contesting stands at 20 of his 25 starts for six wins. He has been successful once from five appearances in mobiles. The six-year-old was a heavily-supported 2/1 favourite off the front line on Friday night and he gave his backers little cause for concern once Boyanup trainer Justin Prentice sent him to the front 150m after the start and then allowed him to bowl along freely. His task became much easier when 13/4 second favourite Askmenow began slowly off the 20m mark and settled down a distant last. After a 29sec. third quarter of the final mile Mister Sarkozy gave his rivals little hope by sprinting over the final 400m in 27.9sec. He careered away to win by just over four lengths from Compact Rocket, who enjoyed a perfect run behind the pacemaker. Sonic Classic ran home solidly to be third, with Askmenow making up a considerable amount of ground to finish fifth. "I thought that if we bowled along we would make it hard for the backmarkers by not really letting them into the race and we would be hard to beat," Prentice said. "In saying that, I didn't think that he would win so convincingly. He was pricking his ears on the line. Hopefully, there's a couple of more wins in him." Mister Sarkozy, raced by Craig Lynn, won at three of his seven New Zealand starts and at five of his 18 starts in WA. He has earned $48,636. ON ALL FOURS GIVES LEA FIRST CITY SUCCESS ON HER BIRTHDAY Byford trainer Vicki Lea celebrated her 36th birthday in style at Gloucester Park on Friday night when she landed her first Metropolitan-class winner, with Kyle Harper driving veteran pacer and 25/1 outsider On All Fours to a narrow victory in the 2130m Breathe Easier Claiming Pace. The nine-year-old On All Fours has returned to racing after a 16-month absence in fine form, winning twice from his first three starts in his comeback. Harper guided him to an all-the-way victory at 25/1 at Pinjarra last Monday, but he was not particularly confident of a repeat success on Friday night. "In the past (when trained by Callan Suvaljko) he has been a horse who had to lead to show his best form," Harper said. "And I thought he would have had to show his best form in this field to win. "But after the first 400m I was laughing where we were sitting (fourth in the one-out, one-back position). But I still wasn't 100 per cent confident that he would come from behind as well as he would need to. But he has done a fantastic job. Vicki has breathed new life into him and he's just a completely different horse to what he used to be. The freshen-up and the training regime she's got suits him down to the ground." Shardons Rocket, the 3/1 on favourite, was surprisingly beaten out from the No. 1 barrier, with Davy Maguire (26/1) bursting straight to the front from barrier three. Morgan Woodley quickly got Shardons Rocket off the pegs to race in the breeze and this helped Ryan Bell to angle Adda Paternal Suit from the No. 6 barrier to enjoy the run behind the pacemaker. Shardons Rocket eventually got to the front 550m from home before Whos Mistake loomed alongside him 150m later. Then On All Fours finished strongly to hit the front 80m from the post before holding on to beat the fast-finishing Rojen Cruz (15/1) by a half-head, with Shardons Rocket a fading third. On All Fours, who is owned by Lea and her mother Pam, has now earned $178,687 from 23 wins and 19 placings from 89 starts. A winner of three races as a two-year-old, he has raced 25 times in claimers for five wins. His maternal granddam Rule The Roost produced Make The Rules (108 starts for 24 wins, 32 placings and $220,075) and the 2010 Victoria Derby winner Courage To Rule (62 starts for 17 wins, 21 placings and $489,231). THE OYSTER BAR ENDS LOSING RUN OF 25 --- AND PRENTICE SUSPENDED The prized No. 1 barrier again proved a decisive factor in the 2130m Thank You For Not Smoking Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night when Chris Lewis drove the well-backed 9/4 equal favourite The Oyster Bar to a smart all-the-way win. This ended a losing sequence of 25 (including nine minor placings) over the past 12 months and it further emphasised how pacers trained by the 67-year-old Tony Svilicich thrive on rigorous racing schedules. The Oyster Bar was having his sixth start in the space of 25 days and never looked in any real danger of defeat as he paced freely in front and went on to score by just over a length from Im Clean Cut at a 1.59 rate. The main news to emerge from the race was the nine-day suspension imposed on ace reinsman Kim Prentice, who was found guilty of causing interference to other runners racing towards the front straight in the first lap. The stewards found that Prentice, driving Soho Highroller, had tightened Condrieu, the 9/4 equal favourite who, in turn, caused Sparkling Seelster (Justin Prentice) to be checked. Soho Highroller, who raced in the breeze, finished fifth, while Sparkling Seelster finished solidly into third place and Condrieu covered extra ground before fading to last in the field of eleven. The Oyster Bar won at three of his 36 starts in New Zealand and has won at seven of his 65 starts in Western Australia. His maternal granddam, Class Act produced five winners, including Classical, a Soky's Atom mare who raced 23 times for five wins, ten placings and $291,590, Evening Class (191 starts for 17 wins, 32 placings and $103,220) and Open Class (122 starts for 13 wins, 23 placings and $86,026). Classical won two group 1 classics as a two-year-old in New Zealand as well as a listed classic as a two-year-old and as a three-year-old. Then in July 2003 she finished second to Pullover Brown in both the group 1 Victoria Oaks and Australian Oaks at Moonee Valley. No. 1 POSITION HELPS COPAGRIN TO RETURN TO WINNING FORM A losing sequence of 16 means nothing to punters --- when the pacer in question is starting from the coveted No. 1 barrier at Gloucester Park. Such was the case on Friday night when five-year-old Copagrin lined up on the pole position for the Mick's Binshaw qualifying heat two. Punters rallied as one and Copagrin's tote odds on course tumbled from 4/1 to favouritism at 5/4 on. Copagrin, trained at West Swan by John Guagliardo and driven by Matt White, was beaten out at the start5 by two of his rivals, but was still able to hold up and take up the running. First, Soho Redford (11/4) was smartest into stride from barrier three and led by a half-length in the early stages, but was unable to cross Copagrin. Then Pete of Pan (barrier two) got a half-length in front of Copagrin, but was unable to get to the pegs. After these early battles Copagrin relaxed and covered the opening 400m section of the final mile in 30.8sec., with Soho Redford in the breeze, Pete of Pan in the one-out, one-back position and Cool Johnny trailing the leader. Copagrin sprinted over the final quarter in 28.4sec. and won by five lengths from Soho Redford, rating 1.57.4 over the 2130m. It improved his record to 50 starts for 13 wins, ten placings and $96,918. "He was a bit slow out, but he was good enough to hold the top," White said. "He has been knocking on the door and tonight looked like his night. He didn't give me much of a feel in the running, but when I pulled the plugs and gave him a couple of cuts with the stick he really switched on. He felt good from that poi9ntr and just put paid to them." BELL PREDFICTS BRIGHT FUTURE FOR NORTHERN ASSASSIN Ryan Bell was full of praise for Northern Assassin after driving him to a stylish win in the Fresh Air Binshaw qualifying heat three at Gloucester Park on Friday night. "He excites me a bit and he's got a bright future," he declared. "He's a very good racehorse and that's why his future looks good." Bell then said that Northern Assassin had been extremely unlucky when unplaced in the Four-Year-Old Championship in November and the Golden Nugget in December. "He was the most unlucky horse throughout that series," Bell said. "He never got to show how good he was. Those races turned him into the horse he is now. Once he found the front tonight it made life easier. But he doesn't have to lead to win. He's very versatile." Northern Assassin, owned by Bell's mother Jean and trained by his father Peter, is certainly developing into a quality performer. He has raced 21 times for eight wins, seven placings and $56,523. On Friday night Northern Assassin, favourite at 5/4 on, mustered plenty of pace from the No. 3 barrier and burst to the front 230m after the start. He dashed over the final two quarters in 28.9sec. and 28.7sec. and was untroubled to win by two lengths from Lunar Tide, with a length to Shnappy, who raced three back on the pegs before finishing fast. The winner rated 1.57 over 2130m. NO TROUBLE FOR THE CONSISTEN FRONTRUNNING OUR AMAZING ART New Zealand-bred six-year-old Our Amazing Art maintained his consistent form when he gave a bold frontrunning display to score an effortless win in the 2130m Make Smoking History Binshaw qualifying heat one at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Wanneroo trainer Debbie Padberg has got the gelding into peak form and his past five starts have produced two wins, two seconds and a third placing. He will be a major chance in the $50,000 final next Friday night, particularly if he draws favourably. Our Amazing Art, a heavily-supported 6/4 on favourite from the No. 2 barrier, burst to the front 80m after the start and Shannon Suvaljko rated him perfectly in the lead, with opening quarters of 30.4sec. and 30.1sec. followed by two final sections of 28.8sec. He rated 1.58.2 and won by two lengths from 12/1 chance Atlastalone, with a nose to Why Live Dangerously in third place. Mein Guy, second fancy at 7/2, raced without cover before fading to seventh in the field of eight. Our Amazingt Art, raced by John Padberg and Jodie Foster, has earned $118,877 from 12 wins and 14 placings from 62 starts. by Ken Casellas  

Veteran pacer Mysta Magical Mach bounced back to top form with an all-the-way victory in a 2536m event at Gloucester Park last Friday night and astute Byford trainer Tony Svilicich has high hopes the nine-year-old can equal the feat of former champion Village Kid by winning the $35,000 Make Smoking History Lord Mayor's Cup on Friday night for the fourth time. Trainer Bill Horn combined with champion reinsman Chris Lewis to win the Lord Mayor's Cup with Village Kid in 1985, 1986, 1989 and 1990. Svilicich has won the Cup with Mysta Magical Mach in 2009, 2011 and last year. Morgan Woodley, who handled Mysta Magical Mach in the 2009 and 2013 Cup victories, will again be in the sulky in this year's 2536m Cup. Justin Prentice drove the New Zealand-bred gelding when he won the 2011 Cup. Woodley has also won the Cup with the Svilicich-trained Taihape Tickler in 2006 and was successful behind Another One For Me in the 2012 Cup. Mysta Magical Mach has drawn awkwardly on the inside of the back line in this year's Cup, but the hardy gelding has a fine history of overcoming disadvantages. He started from the outside of the front line (barrier nine) in the 2009 Cup when he was restrained to the rear and then covered a lot of extra ground in the middle stages before winning from Mr Yankee and Smooth Crusa. He also started from the outside at No. 9 in 2011 when he raced wide early and then in the breeze before defeating Can Return Fire and Tsunami Lombo. In last year's Cup Mysta Magical Mach (4/1) started from the No. 2 barrier and Woodley got him to the front after 400m, with Im Themightyquinn, the 11/4 on favourite settling in sixth position in the one-wide line before starting a three-wide move 1100m from home. Mysta Magical Mach held Im Themightyquinn at bay and beat him by a half-length. Im Themightyquinn was driven by Kim Prentice for leading trainer Gary Hall sen., deputising for the champion's regular driver Gary Hall jun., who was in Mildura contesting the annual invitation drivers' championship at that club. Hall sen. and Prentice are now confident of making amends for Im Themightyquinn's defeat in last year's Cup by succeeding with Livingontheinterest, who is ideally drawn at No. 2 on the front line and looks the likely leader. Prentice will take over from Hall jun., who drove Livingontheinterest when he finished a close third behind Mysta Magical Mach and Red Salute last Friday night. Hall jun. will be in Mildura on Friday night as Western Australia's representative in the invitation drivers' championship. Hall sen. has a good record in the Lord Mayor's Cup. He trained and drove Tricky Bey to victory in 1994 and Abit Rich for his win in 1997. He also won the Cup with Live Live To Reign (Hall jun. in 2007) and Talk To Me Courage (Shayne Cramp in 2010). In last week's race Livingontheinterest started from barrier five on the front line and Hall jun. restrained him to the rear. Woodley was able to get Mysta Magical Mach to relax in front and the gelding ambled through the first 400m section of the final mile in 32.8sec. Livingontheinterest made a lightning move 1300m from home to quickly move alongside the pacemaker, who then dashed over the final three quarters in 28.4sec., 28.3sec. and 27.7sec. Mysta Magical Mach held on to score by a head from the fast-finishing Red Salute, with a neck to Livingontheinterest. "I don't think any runner can beat my two runners, Livingontheinterest and Hokonui Ben," said Hall sen. "Livingontheinterest lost by only a long neck last week after working in the breeze. There's not much between him and Hokonui Ben. Livingontheinterest grows a leg in front." Livingontheinterest has won six times at Gloucester Park when leading and there appears little doubt that he will burst past the polemarker Ohoka Dallas in the early stages. Nine-year-old Ohoka Dallas has a losing sequence of 34 (in which his only placing was 27 starts ago) and he will be at6 handsome odds. Hokonui Ben is favourably drawn at barrier three on Friday night for his first appearance since Clint Hall drove him to an all-the-way victory in the $400,000 WA Pacing Cup over 2936m last Friday week. Clint Hall is serving a term of suspension and Hall sen. will confer with the gelding's Queensland owner Jeroen Nieuwenburg on Wednesday before a substitute reinsman is engaged. Lewis, who has won the Lord Mayor's Cup a record eight times, will handle the Ross Olivieri-trained Red Salute, who rattled home from fifth on the pegs at the bell to be second to Mysta Magical Mach last week. Red Salute will start from the outside of the back line and should be finishing with a flourish. Hall jun. will be busy at the Mildura meeting on Friday night with eight drives. In the four heats of the invitation drivers' championship he will handle Rose Harvest, Our Bedrock, Aldebaran Macha and Ya Bowen Delight, and in minor events he will drive Em Jay Fortyseven, Par Three, Queen Mab and Saint Theory. ARISTOCRATIC GLOW WARMS UP IN FINE STYLE Five-year-old Aristocratic Glow has never set the pace during her 33-strart career and she is unlikely to lead from the prized No. 1 barrier in the $25,000 Put Smoking Behind You Im Themightyquinn Mares final at Gloucester Park on Friday night. But the Barry Warwick-trained mare should enjoy an ideal passage throughout the 2130m mobile event and should prove hard to beat. She warmed up for this week's feature event in splendid fashion when she charged home from the rear to be second to Courage On Fire over 2130m last Friday night. Aristocratic Glow started from barrier four and lacked early sparkle. She was tenth with 400m to travel before she unwound a spirited finishing burst, flying home from seventh (five wide) on the home turn. She was a Gloucester Park 2130m winner three starts before that when she surged home from sixth at the bell to beat Tatum Franco by a length. With Aristocratic Glow unlikely to muster sufficient early speed to lead, there is likely to be a keen battle for the front between Pure Empathy (barrier two) and Millies Girl (No. 3). Both are smart frontrunners. Pure Empathy, trained by Brad Groves, will be handled by Aldo Cortopassi, who drove the mare when she gave a strong frontrunning display to win from Millies Girl and Corza Commotion in a 2130m heat of this event three starts ago. Millies Girl has set the pace in all of her six wins from 58 starts and Shane Young will be expected to make a spirited effort to get to an early lead. One of the fancies is sure to be the Ross Olivieri-trained four-year-old Deluxe Edition (Chris Voak), an extremely consistent performer whose 32 starts have produced eight wins and 14 placings. Deluxe Edition, who is inclined to pull hard in her races, will start from the No. 4 barrier Deluxe Edition covered extra ground, out three wide and then in the breeze, before getting to the front and then finishing third to Lord Diego in fast time over 1730m last Friday night. She was most impressive the previous week when she flew home from the rear to be a close second to Talk About Mach. Talk About Mach, to be driven by Kyle Harper for veteran trainer Bill Horn, will have many admirers from the inside of the back line. A versatile five-year-old, she has won at three of her past four starts, all over 2130m at Gloucester Park. ASKMENOW READY FOR HER FIRST STAND AFTER A DASHING TRIAL A dazzling trial by Askmenow at Byford on Sunday morning has filled leading trainer Gary Hall sen. with confidence for the four-year-old mare's first appearance in a stand --- the 2503m Quit Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The New Zealand-bred Askmenow, the youngest runner in the race, will start from 20m in the field of 12 and will be driven by Kim Prentice for the first time. Prentice was engaged because Gary Hall jun. will be driving at the Mildura meeting on Friday night and his elder brother Clint is under suspension. Askmenow, who has raced 34 times for ten wins and 11 placings, qualified to start in a stand for the first time when she began smoothly from the outside of the front line in a 2550m stand at Byford on Sunday morning. Driven by Hall jun., Askmenow set the pace and won by 24 lengths from Lifes A Journey at a 2.1.5 rate. After a third quarter of the final mile in 29.5sec., Askmenow sprinted brilliantly over the final 400m in 27.8sec. "Rating 2.1.5 in a stand at Byford is really flying," said Hall sen. "They usually run 2.3 or 2.4 in similar company. She did it easily and getting caught up in traffic should be her only worry on Friday night." Askmenow resumed after a brief let-up when she began from the outside of the front line and was restrained to the rear before finishing powerfully to be fifth behind Rocky Marciano over 2130m last Friday week. Hall sen. also has excellent prospects with the New Zealand-bred Majorly Foxy Styx in the Smoke Free Pace for three-year-old fillies. Majorly Foxy Styx has won at Gloucester Park at each of her past five starts, including her first four runs as a three-year-old. She will start out wide, at barrier five on the front line and will be driven by Kim Prentice. "She should go very close and her only danger appears to be Generally Outspoken, providing that filly does everything right," Hall said. "Generally Outspoken galloped over the line when she won a Byford trial on Sunday morning." Chris Voak has been engaged to drive Generally Outspoken, who has a distinct advantage, starting from the coveted No. 1 barrier. CONDRIEU SHOULD SEND PUNTERS HOME ON A WINNING NOTE New Zealand-bred four-year-old Condrieu, the youngest and least experienced runner in the final event at Gloucester Park on Friday night, should overcome the disadvantage of the outside barrier on the front line and prove the master of his ten rivals in the 2130m Thank You For Not Smoking Pace. Trained at Forrestdale by Greg and Skye Bond, Condrieu will be driven by Ryan Warwick, who replaces the suspended Colin Brown. Condrieu is a classy animal who should certainly have the edge over his rivals. There is plenty of early speed on the front line and Warwick is likely to restrain Condrieu before unleashing the gelding alight when the pace slackens. However, there is a possibility that Warwick could attempt to set Condrieu alight when the mobile barrier releases the field. Brown used the element of surprise successfully when he got Condrieu away brilliantly from the No. 5 barrier in the McInerney Ford Classic in November when the gelding burst straight to the front and set the pace before finishing a gallant second to Chilli Palmer. Whatever the scenario Condrieu appeals as the winner. He has raced 28 times for nine wins and 11 placings and looks set for a bright career. SCHOOLBOY GETS HIS CHANCE WITH THREE TOP DRIVES AT ALBANY Sixteen-year-old Micheal Ferguson has been rewarded for working over the school holidays for leading trainer Gary Hall sen. by being engaged to drive three smart Hall pacers at the Albany Cup meeting on Friday night. Ferguson will handle in-form pacers Ben Cartwright, Westernator and Vapour, each of whom has an excellent winning chance. Hall, who will have ten starters at the Gloucester Park meeting on Friday night, has five runners engaged at the Albany meeting. He has engaged Michael George for speedy Eyre Crusher, who looks a certainty in the Auto One Albany Three-Year-Old Pace after his dashing victory at Gloucester Park last Friday night, and Rowchester, who has drawn perfectly at barrier one in the $30,000 GWN7 Albany Cup. "Micheal Ferguson helped out over the school holidays and he deserves to get the chance with some good horses," Hall sen. said. Ben Cartwright should prove very hard to beat from the No. 3 barrier in the 2258m Bevan's WA Seafood Pace after his runaway victory over Grand Cru and Livelong And Prosper at Gloucester Park last Friday night. The American-bred Westernator has bright prospects from the No. 1 barrier in the 2683m MCB Construction Pace. Westernator, a winner at one of his six starts in America, has had 12 starts in Western Australia for two Gloucester Park wins and five placings. Vapour has strong claims from barrier five in the 2258m Snacks HSV Fremantle Pace. A winner of two races in New Zealand, Vapour has had four starts in WA for two wins, a second and an unplaced effort. Rowchester, a New Zealand-bred four-year-old with seven wins and eight placings from 21 starts, is in splendid form and should fight out the finish of the 2683m Albany Cup in which he will clash with Cyclone Mitch, Smokey the Bandit, Mighty Flying Thomas, Gday Mate, Son of Fergie and Lovers Delight. By Ken Casellas

A sizzling trial at Pinjarra on Sunday morning is a strong pointer that Leda McNally will prove hard to topple in the 2536m Advance Attack Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It was a most impressive performance, according to reinsman Chris Voak, who said that Friday night’s event would be an early stepping stone to the $200,000 Ladyship Mile at Menangle on March 2. Due to an oversight Leda McNally was not nominated for the WA Pacing Cup at Gloucester Park last Friday night and Voak said that he was anxious to give the five-year-old mare a fast workout at Pinjarra on Sunday morning to prepare her for Friday night’s assignment. “I let her run, even though I had a good hold on her,” he said. “I didn’t think that we were running that quick. She rated 1.54.7, which I believe is the fastest time recorded over 2185m at Pinjarra. She missed the Pacing Cup run and needed a good sharp run. The way she went in the trial showed that she would have been more than competitive in the Cup “She’s a classy mare who has the score on the board and she’s got a good chance on Friday. The Tony Svilicich-trained runners Shardons Rocket and Mysta Magical Mach will be favoured from barriers one and two. But Leda McNally is ready to run a strong race.” Leda McNally, a winner of 18 races from 47 starts, will begin from the No. 4 barrier and Voak is hoping the mare will get a good trail in the one-wide line. She reeled off smart quarters of 28.9sec., 29.5sec., 27.6sec. and 28.8sec. in Sunday’s three-horse trial in which she beat stablemate Lord Lombo by five lengths. Shardons Rocket, who will start from the No. 1 barrier, broke a losing sequence of 14 when he raced in the breeze before winning easily from the pacemaker tee Pee Village at a 1.58.1 rate in a 2692m claiming event at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon. That followed his excellent second to Gday Mate in the 2936m WA Pacing Cup Consolation at Gloucester Park last Friday night when he set a solid pace. Svilicich has engaged Aldo Cortopassi to drive Shardons Rocket, with Chrism Lewis driving Pacific Warrior. Cortopassi has driven Shardons Rocket at eight of his 81 starts in Western Australia for four seconds and one third placing. Morgan Woodley will return to the sulky behind Mysta Magical Mach, who looks ideally suited from barrier two. The last time Woodley drove Mysta Magical Mach was nine starts ago when the New Zealand-bred gelding won a 1730m Free-For-All at Gloucester Park last May, beating Uppy Son by a head, with has The Answers in third place. Woodley has a wonderful record behind Mysta Magical Mach, with 20 victories, including the 2009 WA Pacing Cup. Mysta Magical Mach, Shardons Rocket and Leda McNally will clash with Livingontheinterest, who put in a strong performance in the WA Pacing Cup last Friday night when he settled down in eighth position and raced wide over the final 1450m to finish seventh behind Hokonui Ben. “His Cup run was good and if he had drawn a barrier in Friday night’s race I would have declared him,” said trainer Gary Hall sen. “He’s right in this race.” by Ken Casellas  

Highly-promising four-year-old Heez On Fire is poised to break a losing streak of five by winning the $50,000 San Simeon Classic at Gloucester Park on Friday night, according to Cardup trainer Rod Oliver. Oliver was delighted when Heez On Fire drew the No. 2 barrier on the front line and said: "I'm very happy; that's the marble I had my eye on. I'd rather draw No. 2 than one. If you make a little fumble from one you're going to get buried. But from two you're in the moving line and all you have to do, hopefully, is maintain your spot. "You're then in the firing line and you don't have to worry about getting a run. It's just what I wanted. Hopefully he can roll to the top. It's not imperative that he gets to the front, but, hopefully, he can. "And if he can roll to the top and get a nice quarter before opening up at the bell, he will be very hard to beat. He has only got to reproduce the run that he produced last week and he'll be right in it. He pulled up a treat and has worked super since then. I've only light jogged him on the sand track at home and he felt really good this (Tuesday) morning. His heart rate was good and his recovery was good. I'm really happy with him. "However, it's a big race and I expect plenty of opposition. Rowchester probably will come around early and if we go to the front he'll probably sit outside of us. There obviously will be some pressure, but if he gets a reasonable first quarter he is capable of running a good last half. If he doesn't get run into the ground he'll be running some good time for the final 800m." Heez On Fire again will have the services of ace reinsman Chris Lewis, who should have little difficulty in getting the WA-bred gelding straight to the front. On the inside of Heez On Fire is The Black Lord, who resumed after a spell last Friday when he also started from the prized No. 1 barrier and surrendered the lead after just 50m to Atlastalone, who began speedily from barrier two. Heez On Fire started from barrier two on the back line last Friday night when he settled down in sixth position before Lewis started a three-wide move approaching the bell. Heez On Fire sustained his effort and finished a splendid second (beaten by 1m) to Rowchester, who had worked hard outside the pacemaker Jay Bees Grin before gaining the upper hand 300m from home. This followed wonderful runs when third at his two previous appearances. He charged home, out very wide, from tenth at the bell when third to Im Terrific and Rocky Marciano on December20. And at his previous outing, a fortnight earlier, he started from the outside of the back line and thundered home from 11th at the bell to be third behind Nowitzki and Smokey The Bandit in the 2536m group 1 Golden Nugget Championship. Heez On Fire has earned $99,821 from eight wins and four placings from 19 starts and Oliver has high hopes that the gelding will develop into a quality fast-class performer. The prospects of What God Knows, the fastest of the three heat winners last Friday night when he rated 1.57.4 after leading and holding on to defeat the fast-finishing Atomic Chip, diminished when he drew out wide at No. 6 on the front line. Ohoka Kentucky, a close and unlucky third in a heat behind Rowchester and Heez On Fire, also fared poorly in the random draw and will start from the outside of the front line. Rowchester, to be driven by Gary Hall jun., will start from barrier three on the back line and should make a bold bid for victory. But a vastly superior draw should tilt the scales in favour of Heez On Fire. Atlastalone impressed with his smart all-the-way win in a heat, will start from the inside of the back line, and the noted frontrunner will need plenty of luck to cause an upset. Chris Voak will drive the Ross Olivieri-trained Four Sisters from barrier two on the back line, replacing Lewis. Morgan Woodley has been engaged to drive the Bruce Whiteman-trained outsider Atomic Chip. He will replace Robbie Williams, who will drive his own nomination Ohoka Kentucky. DASHING TRIAL POINTS TO A STRONG SHOWING FROM LEDA McNALLY A sizzling trial at Pinjarra on Sunday morning is a strong pointer that Leda McNally will prove hard to topple in the 2536m Advance Attack Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It was a most impressive performance, according to reinsman Chris Voak, who said that Friday night's event would be an early stepping stone to the $200,000 Ladyship Mile at Menangle on March 2. Due to an oversight Leda McNally was not nominated for the WA Pacing Cup at Gloucester Park last Friday night and Voak said that he was anxious to give the five-year-old mare a fast workout at Pinjarra on Sunday morning to prepare her for Friday night's assignment. "I let her run, even though I had a good hold on her," he said. "I didn't think that we were running that quick. She rated 1.54.7, which I believe is the fastest time recorded over 2185m at Pinjarra. She missed the Pacing Cup run and needed a good sharp run. The way she went in the trial showed that she would have been more than competitive in the Cup "She's a classy mare who has the score on the board and she's got a good chance on Friday. The Tony Svilicich-trained runners Shardons Rocket and Mysta Magical Mach will be favoured from barriers one and two. But Leda McNally is ready to run a strong race." Leda McNally, a winner of 18 races from 47 starts, will begin from the No. 4 barrier and Voak is hoping the mare will get a good trail in the one-wide line. She reeled off smart quarters of 28.9sec., 29.5sec., 27.6sec. and 28.8sec. in Sunday's three-horse trial in which she beat stablemate Lord Lombo by five lengths. Shardons Rocket, who will start from the No. 1 barrier, broke a losing sequence of 14 when he raced in the breeze before winning easily from the pacemaker tee Pee Village at a 1.58.1 rate in a 2692m claiming event at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon. That followed his excellent second to Gday Mate in the 2936m WA Pacing Cup Consolation at Gloucester Park last Friday night when he set a solid pace. Svilicich has engaged Aldo Cortopassi to drive Shardons Rocket, with Chrism Lewis driving Pacific Warrior. Cortopassi has driven Shardons Rocket at eight of his 81 starts in Western Australia for four seconds and one third placing. Morgan Woodley will return to the sulky behind Mysta Magical Mach, who looks ideally suited from barrier two. The last time Woodley drove Mysta Magical Mach was nine starts ago when the New Zealand-bred gelding won a 1730m Free-For-All at Gloucester Park last May, beating Uppy Son by a head, with has The Answers in third place. Woodley has a wonderful record behind Mysta Magical Mach, with 20 victories, including the 2009 WA Pacing Cup. Mysta Magical Mach, Shardons Rocket and Leda McNally will clash with Livingontheinterest, who put in a strong performance in the WA Pacing Cup last Friday night when he settled down in eighth position and raced wide over the final 1450m to finish seventh behind Hokonui Ben. "His Cup run was good and if he had drawn a barrier in Friday night's race I would have declared him," said trainer Gary Hall sen. "He's right in this race." HALL ADVISES PUNTERS TO "GET ON" LORD DIEGO FROM THE No. 1 BARRIER New Zealand-bred seven-year-old Lord Diego has been unplaced at his past seven starts and has a losing sequence of ten. But champion trainer Gary Hall sen. advice for punters is to "get on" when the gelding lines up at barrier one in the 1730m Lancaster Park Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Lord Diego resumed after an absence of four months when he battled on from eighth at the bell to finish sixth behind Atlastalone over 2130m last Friday night. "I was very happy with his first-up run," Hall said. "He is a strong stayer and he should lead and win." Lord Diego, who has won at 12 of his 70 starts, will clash with the Ross Olivieri-trained Deluxe Edition, the youngest runner in the race who caught the eye with her excellent second to Talk About Mach over 2130m last Friday night. Four-year-old Deluxe Edition (Chris Voak) was restrained back to last from the No. 5 barrier before she sustained a spirited three-wide burst from the 1050m to lose by half-a-length. She will start from barrier four this week and should fight out the finish. Hall sen. also has high hopes for Toretto in the TABtouch-Home of Racing and Sports Betting Pace after the lightly-raced five-year-old's fine effort to finish a nose second to his more experienced stablemate Hokonui Ben in the 2936m WA Pacing Cup last Friday night. Toretto, driven by Kim Prentice, sat behind the pacemaking Hokonui Ben before finishing fast to fail by the barest possible margin. Gary Hall jun. will replace Prentice, who will handle the polemarker, stablemate Whos Mistake in the 2130m event. "Toretto will go forward and should win," said Hall sen. "Whos Mistake will not be handing up to any horse apart from Toretto, whose Cup run was not beyond my expectations. He's racing in great form and I considered that he was a definite place chance." Hall has two of the fancied runners in the TABtouch Three-Year-Old Pace in Eyre Crusher and High Courage. "I can't separate them," he said. "Gary will drive High Courage because the colt has a few problems ... he hangs and gets on one knee and does a few little things like that. Kim Prentice will drive Eyre Crusher." High Courage, a winner of one race from only four starts, will begin from barrier three, with Eyre Crusher starting from the coveted No. 1 barrier. At his second appearance after a spell High Courage had a very tough run in the breeze when a fighting second to the pacemaker Bettor Rules over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Tuesday of last week. Eyre Crusher, a winner at one of his two starts in New Zealand, has finished second at each of his three starts in Western Australia. He resumed after a spell at Gloucester Park last Friday week when he sprinted home fast to be second to the impressive Machtu over 2130m. Forrestdale trainers Greg and Skye Bond have two good prospects in the race in Black Mr Mach and Zacharia and the David Thompson-trained Hugh Victor and Bob Mellsop's last-start winner Bettor Rules will have many admirers in what should be one of the keenest betting races on the program. Chris Voak, who has driven Prince of Whitby, Ginas Ingot and Soho Mercury to victory at each of their most recent outings, has given punters a lead by choosing to handle the Ross Olivieri-trained Prince of Whitby.   By Ken Casellas  

Master horseman Gary Hall sen. took a calculated risk when he abandoned his regular training program for Hokonui Ben leading into Friday night's $400,000 Nepean Conveyors WA Pacing Cup --- and his bold gamble paid handsome dividends when his elder son Clint drove the seven-year-old to a dashing all-the-way victory in the group 1 feature event. This continued the 64-year-old Hall's remarkable dominance of the State's major pacing event, a race he now has won eight times in the past 12 years to extend his lead over the late Phil Coulson, who prepared the winner of five WA Pacing Cups. "It probably was more of a jag, rather than good training," a humble Hall said. "The previous week Hokonui Ben worked in terrific style on the Wednesday morning, but I wasn't happy and was disappointed with his run in the Fremantle Cup on the Friday night." Hokonui Ben enjoyed a perfect trail, one-out and one-back, in the Fremantle Cup, but lacked sparkle in finishing a well-beaten fourth behind Im Victorious, Bettors Fire and David Hercules. "I thought that Hokonui Ben had every chance, so I decided to freshen him up and didn't hopple him during the week," Hall said. "I normally hopple him every week, but I took the chance and confined his work to just cantering every day." Hokonui Ben, favourably drawn at the No. 2 barrier on the front line in the 2936m WA Pacing Cup, was third favourite at 11/2 behind Im Victorious (5/4 on) and David Hercules (5/1), with Bettors Fire the next fancied runner at 10/1. Clint Hall dashed Hokonui Ben past the polemarker, inexperienced stablemate Toretto (a 45/1 outsider), 100m after the start and he relished his pacemaking role before holding on to win by a nose from the fast-finishing Toretto, with 17/1 chance This Time Dylan third and David Hercules fourth. This gave the 36-year-old Hall his biggest success in harness racing and his first win in a group event, 20 years after his first drive in a race, when he finished fourth with favourite Prince of Azhar at the now defunct Cunderdin track. Hall has an enviable record as a reinsman, having won at his first appearance at Gloucester Park and at each of his first two drives in America. He was successful at his 11th drive in a race, when Sweet Boronia won by eight lengths at Bunbury on October 8, 1994. He won with his first drive at Gloucester Park when Little Town Blues beat Just As Sweet in a junior drivers' event on February 17, 1995. He won with his first two drives in America, scoring with former WA pacers Lombo Dominator and Super Strike. Hall sen said that he was extremely proud of Clint, saying: "He has always been a great driver and unfortunately he went to America and has probably lived in Gary's shadow. But he has proved tonight that he is right up there with some of the very best drivers around." The 31-year-old Gary Hall jun. opted to drive Im Victorious for trainer Michael Brennan and he certainly had mixed fortunes in the big race. Im Victorious started from the inside of the back line and Hall drove him hard early in an attempt to get off the pegs and into the one-wide line. However, when Im Victorious was in fourth position 150m after the start he was checked, raced roughly and lost two lengths. The stewards found that Ima Rocket Star (Colin Brown) had shifted down when not clear of Im Victorious. They suspended Brown from driving for 23 days. After this early setback Hall jun. urged Im Victorious forward with a three-wide burst 400m after the start. This caused Kyle Harper, in the breeze with Bettors Fire, to speed up and resist the move. This sudden acceleration opened up the field and Hall was able to immediately slot into the prime one-out, one-back position. Harper then rated back in the breeze, with Bettors Fire almost two lengths behind the pacemaker. Clint hall then was able to get Hokonui Ben to relax, without being under any pressure. No further moves came until Hall jun. eased Im Victorious out from the one-wide line 1300m from home. Hall was half-carting, and Ima Rocket Star, who had been trailing Im Victorious in the one-wide line, contacted the nearside sulky wheel of the favourite. This flattened the tyre, putting Im Victorious at a significant disadvantage. Im Victorious then began a three-wide burst to be fourth at the bell, but he was unable to get past Bettors Fire and had to race out wide for the remainder of the race. He looked a spent force passing the 400m mark and finished sixth. Clint Hall dashed Hokonui ben away from his rivals approaching the home turn, and this allowed Kim Prentice to get into the clear with Toretto, who was two lengths behind the leader at the 100m before finishing with great determination to fail by just a nose. This Time Dylan, who was eased off the pegs approaching the bell, was held up for clear running in the final circuit and Justin Prentice angled the gelding back on to the pegs turning for home. This Time Dylan then finished solidly into third place, a nose ahead of David Hercules, who raced at the rear before unwinding a powerful burst, out wide. After Hokonui Ben coasted through the first 400m section of the final mile in 31.1sec., he gave his rivals something to chase when he sped over the next two quarters in 28.4sec. and 28.1sec. before a final quarter in 29.2sec. He rated 1.59.6 over the 2936m. Clint Hall, who earned a winning driver's percentage of $12,500, was fined $1000 and was suspended for 28 days for improper use of the whip in the closing stages when he wielded the whip with more than an elbow to wrist action. Kim Prentice, who failed by a whisker to land his third winner of the WA Pacing Cup, was fined $500 for the incorrect use of the whip, and a similar fine was imposed on Harper for a similar offence. Gary Hall jun. was fined $200 for half-carting with Im Victorious 1300m from home. Clint Hall said that everything worked in favour of Hokonui Ben, saying: "Tonight I gave myself a good chance if I had things my own way, and it turned out perfectly. My worst nightmare was Kyle holding out Junior three wide early and causing (plenty of) pace. It was a gift when Junior got into the one-one and then Kyle let me do what I wanted to do. That's all I needed. "With a lap to go my fingers were hurting, with Hokonui Ben travelling that well. I knew at the 400m, or even earlier, that we had the fancied runners beaten and I was feeling a lot better than them. About 75m out I was cursing myself that I had kicked away and given Toretto the run that far from home. "I dashed away because I had the other ones off the track. And to be honest I didn't think that Toretto could beat Hokonui Ben. I see a lot of them at home and Hokonui Ben has got a fair bit on Toretto." Hokonui Ben is owned by Queenslander Jeroen Nieuwenburg. A seven-year-old gelding by Washington VC, he was having only his 50th start ibn a race on Friday night. A winner at six of his 24 starts in New Zealand, he has raced 26 times in WA for 11 wins, eight seconds and one third placing. His career record stands at 50 starts for 17 wins, 14 placings and stakes of $540,339. He is the first foal and only one of four foals out of Jane Halsey to have raced. Jane Halsey, by American stallion Admiral Halsey, had 15 starts in New Zealand for one third placing and prizemoney of $413. Her dam Taurus Jane earned just $670 from one third placing from eight starts. Hall sen. said that he would now set Hokonui Ben for the West Australian heat of the interdominion championship at Gloucester Park on Saturday, February 15. "I'm hoping to take Alta Christiano to Sydney for the $200,000 Chariots of Fire (on March 2)," he said. "And if Hokonui Ben qualifies for the interdominion championship final, I'll take him, too." Video attached. GDAY MATE WINS THE CUP CONSOLATION WITH A TYPICAL SPARKLING SPRINT New Zealand-bred seven-year-old Gday Mate, generally regarded as just a good, solid standing-start performer, maintained his rise to the top when he produced a typical sparkling late sprint to score an easy win in the Nepean Conveyors WA Pacing Cup Consolation at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He raced three back on the pegs before trainer Justin Prentice got him into the clear with 300m to travel. And then he charged to the front 100m from the post to win by 4m from the pacemaker Shardons Rocket. Gday Mate rated 1.59 in the 2936m mobile event, which compares favourably with the track record of 1.58.3, set by Dasher VC when he led and won the 2013 Fremantle Cup. Gday Mate covered the journey in 3min. 37.1sec., which was significantly faster than the 3min. 38.2sec. recorded by Hokonui Ben in winning the WA Pacing Cup 25 minutes later. "I'm stoked with him and he showed that he's up there with the best of them," said the 25-year-old Prentice. Gday Mate's win came a week after his fast-finishing victory in a 2536m mobile the previous Friday night. "I was a bit worried about how he would back up tonight," Prentice admitted. "Since I've had him, I've raced him every two to three weeks, and this is the first time I've tried backing him up. Maybe I should've been doing it for a long time." Chris Lewis sent Shardons Rocket (13/2) to the front after 200m and the Tony Svilicich-trained nine-year-old was joined 950m after the start by stablemate and 11/4 favourite Mysta Magical Mach, giving Uppy Son (7/1) the one-out, one-back sit, while Sanjaya (10/1) trailed the pacemaker. Gday Mate travelled well all the way and it was only a matter of getting a clear run. Once Prentice eased him off the pegs 300m from home the result was a foregone conclusion. Sanjaya fought on to finish third, while Mysta Magical Mach wilted to finish seventh and Uppy Son faded to tenth. Gday Mate's past 12 starts have produced five wins and three seconds and he now has earned $184,598 from 15 wins and 31 placings from 87 starts. HALL PERFORMS A MIRACLE TO GET CODE RED BACK INTO ACTION New Zealand-bred pacer Code Red broke down with a serious injury to his off-side foreleg during a track workout on Wednesday December 4. But leading trainer Gary Hall sen. has worked an equine miracle to get him back into action and the gelding returned to racing with a flourish, scoring a most impressive victory in the 2130m Nepean Conveyors Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Hall has used a new, revolutionary treatment to get the gelding back into training and racing. "Code Red damaged his suspensory ligament early last month and I had to scratch him from a race at Gloucester Park the following Friday night," Hall explained. "It is a really bad injury and he hasn't recovered. It is a nine out of ten tear, from top to bottom. But I have treated the injury with this new treatment I've got, and the injury doesn't worry him. It is a treatment I have learnt from a guy in America. It's no drugs or anything like that involved. "It is called PRP and you take the blood and get the serum out of it and inject it into the damaged ligament." Investigations revealed that PRP stands for Platelet Rich Plasma, which is a new therapy for the treatment of equine tendon and ligament injuries. The collection and preparation of platelet rich plasma is simple and non-invasive and takes only about 30 minutes. Blood is collected from the horse's jugular vein and then a process separates the serum from the red blood cells. Eventually, after a series of processes, the platelet rich plasma is injected back into the injured tendon or ligament under ultrasound guidance. Code Red, a seven-year-old by American stallion Red River Hanover, started from the No. 2 barrier on the front line on Friday night and was heavily supported to start favourite at 5/4. Clint Hall got Code Red past polemarker Maggies Mystery and into the lead after 60m and the gelding gave a bold frontrunning display to win by a length from stablemate and 11/4 second fancy Northview Punter. Code Red was not extended in coasting through the lead time in 38.8sec. and the first two 400m sections of the final mile in 30.8sec. and 30.5sec. before he dashed over the final quarters in 28.9sec. and 27.7sec. He rated 1.58.4. Code Red, a winner of six races in New Zealand, left that country with a losing sequence of 21. He has raced 19 times in WA for six wins and six placings to take his career record to 68 starts for 12 wins, 16 placings and stakes of $129,579. He is the first foal out of the In The Pocket mare Asabella, who also produced the brilliant Ohokas Bondy and Dancing Diamonds. The ill-fated Ohokas Bondy raced 44 times for 22 wins, nine placings and $388,148. He was undefeated at his first 13 starts in WA, including the 2010 Golden Slipper. Dancing Diamonds was a brilliant two-year-old and she has earned $343,276 from nine wins and five placings from 21 starts. MAJORLY FOXY STYX SET FOR DAINTYS DAUGHTER CLASSIC Promising filly Majorly Foxy Styx is being set for the $50,000 Dainty's Daughter Classic on February 14 after she extended her winning sequence to five with a convincing victory in the 2130m Nepean Conveyors Three-Year-Old Fillies Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. And after contesting the Dainty's Daughter Classic, Majorly Foxy Styx will be prepared by leading trainer Gary Hall sen. for the rich WA Oaks in April. Majorly Foxy Styx, driven by Gary Hall jun. and hot favourite at 3/1 on, started out wide at barrier six on Friday night and after racing wide early, she got to the front after 500m and went through the first two 400m sections of the final mile in 30.6sec. and 30.5sec. She sprinted over the next two quarters in 28.6sec. and 29.4sec. and won easily by 7m from 7/1 second fancy My Samantha Jane, with two lengths to The Parade (15/2) in third place. The winner rated 1.57.7. Polemarker My Samantha Jane lacked early sparkle and settled down in sixth position and was seventh at the bell before producing a powerful finishing burst. The Parade also ran on gamely from sixth at the bell. Hall sen. said that he was a little concerned at Majorly Foxy Styx's habit of pulling hard. "I didn't like the way she was pulling tonight," he said. "Gary tried to get her to back off, but she wouldn't. However, she still won pretty easily and she's pretty good." WHAT GOD KNOWS GIVES DAVIES HER FIRST CITY SUCCESS Twenty-three-year-old Kiara Davies was all smiles after landing her first Metropolitan-class winner when she drove veteran pacer What God Knows to an all-the-way victory in the third heat of the San Simeon Championship at Gloucester Park on Friday night. And she celebrated this success the following night at Northam when she gave another polished performance in the sulky to score an upset victory with 28/1 outsider Sir Excellent Art, who charged to the front after 100m, set the pace and defeated the 7/4 on favourite Falconice in a 2190m C0-C2-class event. What God Knows, who started at 10/1, and Sir Excellent Art are trained at Wanneroo by Debbie Padberg. Davies, who won the inaugural Junior Drivers Challenge series last year, had to drive What God Knows vigorously under the whip in the early stages to withstand a strong challenge for the lead from Soldier Boy (Clint Hall). After a lead time of 37.4sec., What God Knows went through the first 400m section of the final mile in 29.5sec. before Davies gave him a breather with a 30.2sec. quarter, followed by final sections of 28.9sec. and 29.4sec. Outsider Atomic Chip, who was buried away on the pegs in tenth position at the bell, flew home on the inside and got to within a neck of the winner on the line. Sonic Classic came from seventh on the pegs to be third. Raymon John, favourite at 3/1, was ninth in the middle stages before starting a three-wide move 1050m from home. He sustained the strong burst and appeared the likely winner when he moved into second place passing the 400m mark. But he broke into a gallop with 300m to travel and dropped back to finish in 11th place. What God Knows ended a losing sequence of 13 and took his record to 135 starts for 11 wins and 29 placings for earnings of $106,344. He won at six of his 47 starts in New Zealand and once from five starts in New South Wales. His 83 starts in WA have produced four wins and 20 placings. ATLASTALONE KEEPS THE WEST AUSTRALIAN FLAG FLYING Lightly-raced six-year-old Atlastalone kept the West Australian flag flying at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he was untroubled to set the pace and score an easy win in the second heat of the San Simeon Championship. Atlastalone, bred and owned by Ross Waddell, was the only WA-bred pacer to be successful on the ten-event program. He was a strongly-supported 13/4 favourite and a fast start paved the way for an impressive victory. Byford trainer Garry Butler got Astlastalone away at full tilt from barrier two and he surged past the polemarker The Black Lord and into the lead after only 50m before going through the lead time in a very comfortable 38.2sec. and the opening quarter in a leisurely 31.3sec. After a moderate second quarter in 30.1sec., Atlastalone sped over the final sections in 28.1sec. and 28.3sec. to win by 5m from 13/2 chance Erskine Range, who fought on doggedly after working hard in the breeze throughout the 2130m journey. Lord Lexus enjoyed the one-out, one-back position before fighting on to be third. Atlastalone was off the scene for nine months before resuming racing in mid-December. After a first-up sixth he led and won at Pinjarra and raced in the breeze and finished second to Lovers Delight at Bunbury before contesting Friday night's race. "We had a few issues with him and he's had a good spell," Butler said. "He has come back really good and we're happy with him. He is definitely a nice horse when he leads." Atlastalone has raced 24 times for six wins, five placings and $33,199 in prizemoney. By American stallion Dawn Of A New Day, he is the first foal out of Classy And Smart, who earned $104,828 from 14 wins and 21 placings from 73 starts. TOUGH ROWCHESTER LOVES A FIGHT New Zealand-bred four-year-old Rowchester gave leading trainer Gary Hall sen. the first leg of a quartet of winners at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he revealed typical toughness to win the first heat of the San Simeon Championship. And followers of the all-conquering Hall stable cashed in handsomely, with the Bettors Delight horse starting at the gift price of 7/1. Gary Hall jun. drove Rowchester like the best horse in the race. Rowchester started from barrier four and raced three wide before he got to the breeze outside the pacemaker Jay Bees Grin (9/1), with the polemarker and 10/9 on favourite Ohoka Kentucky behind the leader. Heez On Fire, second fancy at 11/4, dashed forward from the midfield to be fourth at the bell. But he was kept wide in the back straight before Hall jun. sent Rowchester to a narrow lead 300m from home. Heez On Fire fought on grimly, but Rowchester withstood the challenge and beat him by one metre, with a half-head to Ohoka Kentucky, who was hampered for room in the final circuit before finishing fast along the pegs. The final sections were run in 28.2sec. and 29.2sec. and Rowchester rated 1.57.9. "No one really knew what Robbie's horse (Ohoka Kentucky) was going to do from one," said Hall jun. "When he got crossed the race opened up for us. But I thought that jay Bees Grin would be hard to beat. "Rowchester has got a bit of bottom to him and he loves a fight. So it was probably a good thing that we had Heez On Fire there keeping us honest." Hall sen. refused to agree with the general perception that toughness was Rowchester's main asset, saying: "He can be sat up and I reckon if he gets a good sit he could really zip." Rowchester won at three of his five New Zealand starts and has raced 15 times in WA for five wins and seven placings. He has earned $49,530 from his seven wins and eight placings from 20 starts. He is a half-brother to nine-year-old The Musics Over, who won five races in New Zealand and 11 in Tasmania. Rowchester's maternal granddam Samantha Franco produced good WA performer Banana Dana (61 starts for 14 wins, 13 placings and $142,629). His great granddam Smarty Pants produced Smart Son (who was a winner in New Zealand, Australia and America before retiring with earnings of $347,805 from 41 wins and 59 placings from 226 starts) and Vanderel (87 starts for 14 wins, 23 placings and $164,163). ROCKY MARCIANO GOES PAST THE $100,000 MARK Classy New Zealand-bred four-year-old Rocky Marciano underlined his potential and took his earnings past the $100,000 mark when he outpaced his rivals in the 2130m Nepean Conveyors Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. "He looks to have plenty more wins in store," enthused Morgan Woodley after he had driven the Christian Cullen gelding to a decisive victory by just less than two lengths over Our Amazing Art, with three lengths to Mohegan Sun in third place. Our Amazing Art (7/1) jumped in front from the No. 2 barrier and led for the first 500m before Rocky Marciano, the 10/9 on favourite, stormed into the lead after a sizzling lead time of 36sec. Woodley then was able to get Rocky Marciano to relax and go through the first two 400m sections of the final mile in 30.6sec. and 30.8sec. Mohegan Sun, who settled in seventh spot, started a three-wide move with 1200m to travel and he got to third at the bell when Woodley increased the tempo and Rocky Marciano surged through the third quarter in 29.1sec. before sprinting over the final quarter in 28.2sec. to win at a smart 1.56.9 rate. Rocky Marciano, placed at three of his ten New Zealand starts, has been extremely consistent for Bickley trainer Peter Anderson, with his 31 WA starts producing nine wins and ten placings. His stake-earnings now stand at $101,389. TALK ABOUT MACH REVIVES MEMORIES OF VILLAGE KID It was extremely fitting that the colours of blue, gold sash and striped sleeves made famous by the outstanding deeds of Village Kid were to the fore on WA Pacing Cup night at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The colours of octogenarian Hope Valley trainer Bill Horn were worn by 23-year-old Kyle Harper, who drove Talk About Mach to a stylish victory in the 2130m second heat of the Nepean Conveyors Im Themightyquinn Mares Pace. The same colours were carried by Village Kid throughout his magnificent career, which included four victories in the WA Pacing Cup in the 1980s. Talk About Mach, a last-start winner, was a 16/1 chance from barrier three on the back line, with deluxe Edition favourite at 5/2 and polemarker Kotare Ash at 11/4. Kotare Ash, as expected, set the pace, with Harper settling Talk About Mach in eighth position in the one-wide line. Deluxe Edition was restrained from the No. 5 barrier by Chris Voak and went back to last in the field of 12. Aristocratic Glow started a three-wide move approaching the bell, and her run was followed by Talk About Mach, who sustained a strong effort to come from eighth with a lap to travel to hit the front in the final 100m before winning by a half-length from Deluxe Edition, who finished strongly out wide. Kotare Ash held on to be third. Talk About Mach rated 1.58.8 and took her record to ten wins, 14 placings and $105,302 from 47 starts. "When Bill has her absolutely spot on you can tell the difference, and tonight when I hit the track (for the preliminary) I said 'yes this is the one we want and I was pretty confident in the warm-up.'" BRAEMOOR RECOVERS AFTER A TARDY START Boyanup trainer-reinsman Justin Prentice completed a double when Braemoor recovered after a bad start to come from the rear and score a narrow victory in the 2503m Nepean Conveyors Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Prentice had won earlier in the program with Gday Mate in the WA Pacing Cup Consolation. Braemoor, a 15/4 chance off 10m, galloped for a few strides at the start and settled down in ninth position. Lisharry (13/2) galloped badly at the start and broke again 300m later. Im Elmer Fudd (15/1) set the pace for Chris Lewis and he held off an early challenge from Erris Lad. Then Anvils Big Punt (16/1) went forward to race in the breeze in the final two laps. After the first two sections of the final mile min 31.2sec. and 31.3sec., Im Elmer Fudd sped up with a 28.7sec. third quarter as the challengers were coming from the rear. Rockyourbaby went forward 1050m from home and Prentice followed his three-wide burst to move to seventh at the bell. Braemoor went four wide on the home turn and hit the front 50m from the post before holding the fast-finishing Coringa Cory (11/1) at bay to score by a head at a 2.2 rate. Im Elmer Fudd held on to be third, a neck in front of Anvils Big Punt. "At the 400m I thought he was just winning, but at the top of the straight I thought I'd be lucky to run a place," Prentice said. "And when I had Robbie come off my back with Coringa Cory I thought he would have gone straight past me. Braemoor has done a good job to hold him off." Braemoor, a New Zealand-bred seven-year-old by Christian Cullen, has had 27 starts in WA for nine wins and five placings to take his career record to 58 starts for 12 wins, 13 placings and stakes of $111,221. BALLEYBOFEY WINS NORTHAM CUP AT 5/1 New Zealand-bred eight-year-old Balleybofey gave a bold frontrunning performance to win the $30,000 Northam Cup at Burwood Park on Saturday night to give reinsman Chris Lewis his second success in the event. Lewis won the 2001 Cup with the Les Coulson-trained All The Answers. Balleybofey, a 5/1 chance off the 10m mark, began speedily and dashed to the front after 450m to give the 2/1 favourite Flyalong Falcon the trail behind the pacemaker. Kyle Harper dashed Springsteen (off 20m) forward in the first lap to work hard in the breeze. Balleybofey fought on grandly to win by a length from Springsteen, with Flyalong Falcon finishing determinedly, out wide, to be third. The winner rated 2.1.2 over the marathon 2970m and took his record to 14 wins and 24 placings from 68 starts for stakes of $122,086. Balleybofey is trained at Mt Helena by Ray Williams, whose son Grant drove Silvers Coin and Navigator Dee to victory in the Northam Cup in 2002 and 2003, respectively. Navigator Dee was trained by Ray Williams' brother Mike, who also drove High Narai to victory in the 1977 Northam Cup. by Ken Casellas  

65 to 80 of 129