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Smart youngster Regulus, who already had two Sires Stakes heat placings to his name before yesterday, confirmed he is very worthy of his spot in the $180,000 Final with a dominant victory in the sixth heat of the series at Addington last night. Sent straight to the front by Dexter Dunn, the imposing son of Mach Three was able to dictate terms in front, before kicking too strongly for Return To Sender, who also qualified for the final, finishing second, after receiving the gun run in the trail. Meanwhile, the David Kaa trained Dean Martin is now likely to come down for the Sires’ Stakes Final after winning the first race at Alexandra Park last night. The son of Elsu qualified when finishing second to Cyclone Prince in the first heat. He is likely to be accompanied by Mista Mara, who was also a winner last night, during his Southern assault. In other news from Addington, Charlotte Hunter enjoyed some Birthday success when reining Ireby Betty to an all of the way win at odds of $57.20. However, the win did win did not surprise the connections of the roan coloured mare, who had from all reports ‘been working the house down.’ Hunter, who works in the foal registration department of Harness Racing New Zealand, also finished third on her own horse Private Jones earlier in the night. By Mitchell Robertson  

Last Saturday’s (October 12) Gore Harness Racing Club’s meeting produced a couple of training firsts in the eighth and 11th events. Both Earl Drake and John Price have been involved in harness racing for years but achieved their maiden victories when Liam Sienna and Surprise Party both scored narrow 2200m mobile victories. Otautau-based Drake (53) and his father Reg (73) trained Liam Sienna to a head victory in 2:47.1, while Price and his wife Katrina, who train near Winton, got Surprise Party up by a neck in 2:48.2. Junior driver Carl Hanna and Nathan Williamson were the respective reinsmen. Liam Sienna was the Drake father/son combo’s only starter since they went into partnership on August 1. Reg has been training since 1983 and has had 11 winners and 29 placings from 175 starters, while Earl, who is a builder by trade, has always helped out. “It’s a good feeling to get the first win out of the way early on. We are working five at the moment, and that includes three 2-year-olds. “Dad paid $16,000 for 'Liam' at 'the Yearling Sales. It was the year of the earthquake. We gave him to Hamish Hunter as a 2-year-old and he won three races with him. “He’s a bit underrated and is a really nice horse to train,” Earl said. Liam Sienna is a 4-year-old Elsu gelding out of the former Tony Grayling trained four-win Sands A Flyin mare, Whata Breeze. Liam Sienna is owned by Mrs P.J. Drake and Reg Drake. He was bred by Alabar Stud. Reg Drake is a life member of the Wairio Trotting Club while Earl is a past president. They are both committee members. Meanwhile, Southland company executive John Price had recorded a second and a third before nailing his first winner at his ninth attempt with Surprise Party. It was the well-bred daughter of Christian Cullen and Champagne Party’s first win in five races. The Tony Herlihy trained and driven Champagne Party mare won 14 races and $159,226. Up until August 1 Price’s wife Katrina had been training with her father-in-law Roger. They started out in 1999 and went on to win 76 races and more than $500,000. “John’s delighted with the win. Relief more than anything. Mind you it’s not really his first. He’s always helped out in the weekends. It has been a family operation,” Katrina said. She said they were working a team of 11, comprising mainly youngsters. They recently retired three-win 6-year-old Bettor’s Delight mare Easybet to stud, while McArdle 5-year-old gelding Ardghal had been sold. He won nine of his 35 starts and $76,313. Price said Surprise Party would spell for a few days now before being brought back for racing next month. “She was terribly gaited early on and I think it was only her rich bloodlines that kept us persevering with her. She’s still on the unruly and has plenty to learn. “She’s getting better with racing experience and she has placed a couple of times and was the favourite ($4.20) on Saturday,” Price said. Surprise Party is owned by F. J. Price, K. V. Price, T. G. Bell, Mrs V. I. Bell, F. R. Price, H. L. Price, and was bred by Cullen Breeding Limited. By Duane Ranger (Courtesy of Harness Racing New Zealand)

Kevin Chapman thinks Locharburn could be something a little special. That’s why he will not make the late payment for the Sires Stakes and has instead sent the imposing son of Christian Cullen to the spelling paddock. “I don’t really agree with the late payment clause anyway,” said Chapman. “I think it is a bit unfair to those who have paid all the way through,” he added. Chapman said that Locharburn, who is currently bouncing around his paddock at Chapman’s Amberley property, would have a quiet time for the rest of the month before preparing for the Elsu Classic and the rich NZ Yearling Sales Series Final, which is his main immediate aim. “He may not have any lead-ups down here and just head straight up to Auckland to have a run around          Alexandra Park the week before the Elsu Classic.” Chapman said that Locharburn doesn’t even really turn three until December and that he didn’t want to overtax him too early in his career. “I want him to have a good career, not just a good season. He has already had four starts this season, and he is going to have a big autumn. So he needs to have a break at some stage, and now is as good a time as any.” Chapman thinks Locharburn could be the real deal, but he is not getting carried away just yet. “He has run some good times, but he hasn’t really beaten much with the exception of Arden Rooney,” said Chapman. “I do think he will get a bit better yet, but only time will tell,” laughed Chapman. By Mitchell Robertson

Local (Dunnstown) trainer/driver David Murphy snared a stable double at Bray Raceway Ballarat on Wednesday September 25, with a pair of Modern Art four year old entires - much improved Desdon Murruffy taking the Megamerch Rural Merchandise Pace for C0 class over 2200 metres and Super Zeck the Peter McErvale Real Estate Trotters Mobile for T0 & T1 class over the same distance. Desdon Murruffy a daughter of the Smooth Fella mare Spellmaker was driven forward from gate six to cross the leader Bazzas Art (Art Major) inside him and travelled beautifully throughout, safely holding a margin to the wire in defeating Bazzas Art by 1.9 metres in a rate of 1-58.3, with Doey Doeback third after following the pair. Super Zeck from the Beach Towel mare Me Dolli Kit a winner of eleven races, began safely from outside the front row, with Murphy immediately sending him forward to park outside the pacemaker Ballan Road (gate three). Applying plenty of pressure to the leader approaching the home turn, Super Zeck unplaced in 12 previous outings outstayed his rivals to record a half head victory over Tribal Fella which trailed the leader gaining a late split in a rate of 2-03.4, with Ballan Road fighting on strongly to finish third 1.2 metres away. Great Western trainer Michelle Manning’s tough Elsu/Whatsonyamind 5-Y-0 gelding Pacquiao adapted to claiming company by winning the Tradelink Ballarat Claiming Pace over 1710 metres in 1-56.4 and in doing so made it three wins from his past four outings. Driven by Matt Craven, Pacquiao (Claiming price $7,000) raced in the open throughout from gate five, before outstaying the pacemaker Highview Spirit to score by 4.3 metres. All Honour (four wide home turn) came from last to finish third. Bannockburn (Geelong) trainer Geoff Webster has Kiwi bred 6-Y-0 Sierra Kosmos/Roydon Action gelding Action Kosmos racing in peak form and was rewarded by taking the National Tiles Trotters Handicap for T2 or better class over 2200 metres, bringing up his 3rd victory in 32 outings. Driven by the stable’s Emmett Brosnan, Action Kosmos after starting from outside the front row was sent forward shortly after the start to cross Mother Nature which pounced on the lead from barrier two as the tapes released. Travelling boldly, Action Kosmos defied all challengers to register a 3 metre victory in an easy 2-05.1 from the ever reliable Happy Hombre which raced in the open, with Rostevarren (four back the markers last lap) flashing home late to finish third just in advance of Mother Nature which was held up all the way to the wire. Smythes Creek trainer Emma Stewart was also to chalk up a stable double with Bettors Delight/Party Baby gelding Fearless Leader (Ian McMahon) taking the Matthews Joinery & Kitchen Centre Pace for C5 & C6 class over 2200 metres and Village Jasper/Childers Vision gelding Goodtime Veejay (Michael Stanley), both leading virtually throughout. by Len Baker  

Those betting on the Horsham meeting on Monday September 16 got their fingers burnt, when Bungaree (Ballarat) based trainer “Ash” Herbertson snared the first two races on the program at juicy odds. Four year old Blissful Hall/Princess Yum Yum mare Gelese brought up two wins in succession by taking the Get Well Gary Scott Pace for C0 class over 2200 metres paying Supertab odds of $11.90. Driven by Terang “young gun” Jason Lee, Gelese was given the run of the race from the pole following the pacemaker Confusion Reigns (gate three), one of two runners from the Kerryn Manning barn, with stablemate Willow Robyn going for a hat-trick as a short priced $1.60 favourite. When Willow Robyn rushed up three wide from last in the final circuit, he appeared to have the race well in his keeping after dashing clear on straightening, with Gelese being extricated into the clear. Finishing full of running, Gelese bloused Willow Robyn in the last bound to score by a nose in 2-00.7, with Armbro Speedster third after racing in the open. Nine year old Ultimate Falcon/Left Tycoon mare Ultimate Tycoon returned to the winners list after an absence of 25 months when greeting the judge in the Westvic Race Pix – Matt Craven Pace for C1 class over 2200 metres, with ironicly Matt Craven in the sulky. A winner of six races in 122 stars prior to the race, Ultimate Tycoon produced a career best performance after being driven forward from gate five to park outside the heavily supported pacemaker Mister Seelster (gate six) which had little difficulty in assuming control shortly after the start. Refusing to give in on straightening, Ultimate Tycoon ($5.10) showed previously unseen strength in proving too strong for Mister Seelster ($2.90), winning by a margin of 4.2 metres in a rate of 2-03.6. Vee Jay Jazz (four back the markers finished third). Terang’s Matt Craven who is driving in rare form at present can do nothing wrong of late and brought up a double when 4-Y-0 Sealed N Delivered/Lady Bullville gelding Ynobe Coby scored a big win in the Betta Electrical Horsham – Peter Manning Pace for C0 class over 1700 metres in a rate of 1-58.6. Trained at Elliminyt (Colac) by Courtney Slater, Ynobe Coby bred and raced by Ebony Slater settled in the moving line closer to last than first after starting from gate two on the second line, with the Mildura visitor Kilbirnie North View leading from the pole. Set alight at the bell to join the leader for the final circuit, Ynobe Coby went into overdrive on turning and raced away to register a 9.5 metre margin over Kilbirnie North View and Artois Stone which trailed the favourite. Jason Lee (cousin of Matt Craven) was also to chalk up a double after winning the Conway Pies – Jayson Finnis Pace for C1 class over 2200 metres aboard the Michelle Manning (Great Western) trained 5-Y-0 Elsu/Whatsonyamind gelding Pacquiao after taking a concession. Despite sitting in the open from gate five outside Bohemian Lombo (gate two), Pacquiao outstayed his rivals to win well by 3.9 metres in advance of Garabaldi Union which followed him all of the way, with Rising Power a stablemate of the winner third from near last. The mile rate 2-01.1. Astute Narracoorte (S-A) part-owner/trainer Greg Scholefield has made many successful raids on Victoria in the past and kept his record intact when smart 4-Y-0 gelding Glenferrie Rustler scored in the Grahan Eeles Saddlery – Cheap Tint Pace for C2 & C3 class over 2200 metres. Taking a concession for Mount Gambier’s Jayson Finnis, Glenferrie Rustler (Lis Mara/Exceptional Lass) led throughout from gate three in defeating a game Valentino Rustler which raced outside him, going down by 1.1 metres in 1-58.9, with Wipethesmile third after trailing the winner. It was Glenferrie Dreamer’s 12th victory in 19 outings, the majority being in restricted company in his home state. Local trainer Ken Exell would have received a tremendous thrill when his bargain priced 8-Y-0 Allawart Ray/Allawart Liz gelding Allawart Ugo scored in the Bunnings Horsham – Ken Exell Trotters Handicap for T0 or better class over 2200 metres in a leisurely rate of 2-06.9. With Hamilton reinsman Rod Barker in the sulky, Allawart Ugo stepped cleanly from a 20 metre handicap, avoiding a couple of gallopers in the early stages to lob three back in the moving line with Peter Manning’s Sunnyandcher leading. Trailing Ollie Nova ahead of him three wide into the final bend, Allawart Ugo ran home strongly out wide on straightening to gain the day by 2.3 metres from Ollie Nova with the hot favourite Knapdale Girl a disappointing third 2.5 metres away after trailing the pair.  by Len Baker  

It might have been just a humble R 0 class event, but there were “right royal” celebrations following the Aussie debut win of Smokin Bopper NZ at last Wednesday’s Bathurst meeting.  It was the first race starter for a number of the owners, a dream result that explained the excited handshakes and backslaps for trainer-driver Nathan Hurst and syndicate manager Mark Johnston, the on-course bookmaker at the Bathurst meetings. Back at the Royal Hotel in nearby Orange, where the syndicate was formed, there was a similar reaction, from patrons  who’d strongly supported the horse into $1.50 favoritism  in anticipation of such a performance. Hurst settled the five-year-old midfield before taking the lead mid-race. A 59.0 seconds last half was enough to easily hold off trailer Call Me Anytime and stablemate Blacks A Buzzin. The 2:00.8 rate for the 1730 metres was impressive for this grade, and suggestive of further success. Mark Johnston indicated that the immediate goal for the new horse was the upcoming Canola Cup at Eugowra, Australia’s richest C 0 series. Along with his bookmaker father Alan and bagman Heath Cubbin, he won a consolation race at last year’s carnival with the Hurst-trained Ignite Ted, and would love to go one better this time around. Hurst’s earlier winner at the meeting, Reservation Road NZ ($4.30 ), was equally impressive.  Racing outside the lead in an R4 and better 2130 metres event, he showed stamina and determination to grit out a win from Karinya Hando, which had a three-wide trail from the bell, and leader Hes Magic Red.The 57.7 last half was the quickest at Bathurst in quite a while. The other double from the meeting went to driver Amanda Turnbull, with stable runner Whispering Lass and catch drive Aunty Olive. Whispering Lass ($2.40 favourite) appeared well graded but was the undoubted omen selection for the Alabar-sponsored C1-C2 mares In A Whisper Stakes, named after her illustrious dam, one of our best juvenile fillies in the modern era. The drive was so good it looked simple. From the inside of the second row, Turnbull obtained the trail on leader Express Jet and bided her time until straightening for home before coming out of the trail to record an easy win. Miss Ponder ran on well from the rear for second, and Express Jet held on strongly after pulling very hard in the lead. The overall mile rate for the 2130 metres was 2:00.6, with 30.7 the slowest quarter. Aunty Olive ($2.00 fav.) showed blistering gate speed to lead easily in an R0 sprint event, and the Mike Watson-trained four-year-old got away with comfortable sections to run out comfortably from peg runners Charlottes Delight and Imposing Molly, in a 2:04.9 mile rate. Turnbull was re-united with the mare for the first time in almost two years, but she recalled the juvenile filly’s gate speed, and put it to good use on this occasion. Aunty Olive, Reservation Road and Smokin Bopper provided an Elsu siring trifecta at the meeting, which would have been very pleasing for Alabar’s John Coffey, who will be in attendance on Friday, to conduct a breeding seminar on behalf of Harness racing New South Wales. Elsu will certainly rate a mention. Other winners at the meeting were: Laughing Game ($3.90), a tough effort outside the lead in R1-R2 class, for Amy Day and trainer Mark Rawsthorne. The win continued the exceptional strike rate for the driver in the first race at Bathurst. That’s putting the pressure on! Leigh’s Delight  ($3.70) , backing up after a win two weeks ago at the track for Kerryann Turner and Robbie Morris, who brought the Bettors four-year-old three-wide from the bell. The Menangle couple have enjoyed good success with their Bathurst runners in recent months. Stevie Wander ($3.10), all the way in C0-C1 class for Jack Butler and driver John O’Shea.  The Mach Three gelding hasn’t had much luck with barrier draws recently, and was always going to hold the lead from his inside draw. Smack Dab Shannon ($4.50), for Michael Munro and trainer Peter Bullock in 3YO class, backing up after a win in the final 2YO race of last season. Not regarded by his stable as mentally strong, he fought back after being headed close to the post, so he might be starting to show some of the tenacity of his classy dam Veloce Cavallo. Bathurst race again this Friday night (Tier One meeting), followed by next Wednesday night, and the annual Awards Night function will be held on Friday September 27 at Rydges Mount Panorama. by Marianne Donnelly

Horses trained in the vicinity of Ararat had a profitable night at the Ararat trot meeting held on Tuesday September 10, winning three of the eight races on the program. Ararat owner/trainer Daryl Crone’s handy 6-Y-0 Jet Laag/Signing Autographs gelding Wicked Subwoofer returned to the winners list, when successful in the Kathy McGrath Trotters Handicap for T0 or better class over 2165 metres in a mile rate of 2-08.8. Driven by Bendigo based Neil McCallum, Wicked Subwoofer was sent forward from the 20 metre mark avoiding a few gallopers to park outside the pacemaker Family Decision. Proving to be the best stayer, Wicked Subwoofer was too strong at the finish for Family Decision, scoring by 3.1 metres, with Drop Us A Line (one/one) third after angling to the back of the leader on the home turn and using the sprint lane to be a metre away. Great Western’s Peter Manning very rarely misses a winner at Ararat and chalked up a double with Elsu/Hanover Chic gelding Eliseos Falcon taking the Joey Collins 3-Y-0 Pace over 1790 metres and 6-Y-0 Rustler Hanover/Cuddle Me Good gelding valentine Rustler the Barry Davidson Pace for C1 class over 2195 metres. Eliseos Falcon (Kerryn Manning) raced in the open for the first lap from outside the front row, before sliding past the well supported leader In The Trenches which appeared to want to turn off and run out in the back straight. Kicking clear on straightening, Eliseos Falcon making his third race appearance, held an 8.4 metre margin to the judge in defeating Casey Isabella which trailed the weakening leader in a rate of 2-01, Catch Me If You can (one/one) finished third. Valentino Rustler (Matt Craven) was also sent forward from gate four to sit outside his stablemate Garabaldi Union and in a punishing finish, was too strong for the 10-Y-0 Vinnies Jet which raced three wide solo for the final circuit, with Garabaldi Union holding down third. The mile rate 2-02.1. Mt Gambier trainer Barry Finnis and reinsman son Jayson snared the Presidents Pace for C2 class over 1790 metres with 5-Y-0 Grinfromeartoear/Maybe The One gelding Cheesy Grin which at one stage was touted as being the next big thing to came out of Mt Gambier. Gradually working back into form, Cheesy Grin making his 16th race appearance was able to stride to the lead from gate three shortly after the start and proceeded to lead his rivals a merry dance, winning by 1.8 metres in advance of Make A Fuss (one/one – three wide home turn) and Guvs Boy which trailed the winner, using the sprint lane to no avail. The mile rate 2-00.8. Seven year old Village Jasper/Any Danger gelding Arber formerly trained in the area at Armstrong by Brooke Hansen greeted the judge in the Brad Hunt Pace for C3 & C4 class over 2195 metres in a slick rate of 1-59. Now in the care of Tim Bolitho at Anakie in the Geelong district, Arber bred and raced by Sports Bookmaker Philip Nott was restrained from outside the front row by Gavin Lang to settle at the rear of the seven horse field, with Kerryn Manning’s Lucky Dave leading out from the pole before being restrained to allow stablemate Kickittochris to assume control. Held up for one final dash at the leaders, Arber finished hard out wide on turning to register a 1.2 metre victory over Kickittochris which had every chance even though Voce kept him honest. Peaces Of You ran home late from the rear to finish third. Note:   Two winners from Ararat’s programme ARBER (recent track record holder at Geelong) and WICKED SUBWOOFER are from the sisters Any Danger and Signing Autographs out of the grand mare of  Linda Suzanne. She being the dam also of good western district race horses, Off the Old $ 184, 000+ and Doyouwantitagain $109, 000.+. This is the family of Cute Van, sire of Vandeport. Videos of all races are attached Len Baker  

It may have only been a Monday afternoon C5 plus race over 1800 meters worth just $3500 at Betezy Park  Globe Derby but South Australia may just have found themselves a new super start in the form of seven year old Elsu gelding Remember El.   A new edition to the Les Harding stable from West Australia  where his form was around such pacers as David Hercules, Mysta Magical Mach, Lombo Navigator the later two both placed in inter-domion grand final and the champ himself  I’m The Mighty Quinn.   Remember El started from the outside gate in the small six horse field driver David Harding followed star mare Repelem over to race outside that mare going into the back straight the first time Harding declared it on running their first quarter in 28.5 from there Harding never let Repelem and her driver Ryan Hryhorec get a breather Remember El pulled away going past the 600 meter mark to and in the end won by 7 meters clocking an amazing 1.55.8.   Repelem was game in defeat  but  last season’s Ian Duff Memorial & Jobies Babe winner at Melton  was simply no match for SA’s new star.   Remember El,  is owned by Victorians Tony Prochilo, Angelo and Albert Cammaroto and Patrick de Krester, was formerly trained by Gary Hall he was bred by leading breeder Peter Gleeson by Elsu his dam Mindful earned $147,625 from 13 wins and five placings from 30 starts. Mindful is a full-sister to Ottway (101 starts for eight wins, 25 placings and $59,307) and a half-sister to Bakerandthefatman (160 starts for 24 wins, 34 placings and $185,039).   Also impressive on the card was the second up run of Welcome To Vegas for Aaron Brown and Ryan Hryhorec team, the form Victorian, who improved many lengths from his first up run in South Australia when he beat only two runners home, sat outside the leader taking the lead on the home turn to win by 2.3 meters from leader Village Flyer.   Smart Northern Luck mare Closure won her third race in a row when she came from last going into the back straight the final time driver Mark Webster let the classy mare go and she went from last to first within 300 meters Gary Newton  

The all-conquering father-and-son combination of Gary Hall sen. and Gary Hall jun. ended the 2012-13 season on a high note at Gloucester Park on Friday night when Northview Punter scored an impressive victory in the Mornings With Matt McDermott Pace and emerged as a leading candidate for the rich Golden Nugget Championship in November. Never in the history of Western Australian harness racing has a trainer and driver been so dominant. The 63-year-old Hall and his 31-year-old son scored runaway wins in the awards for the State’s leading trainer and reinsman. Hall sen. trained 192 winners and 155 placegetters from 673 starters for earnings of $2,715,678 and Hall jun. drove 237 winners and 229 placegetters from 871 starters for total stakes of $2,982,094. Greg and Skye Bond finished second in the Statewide trainers’ premiership with 153 winners and 197 placegetters from 736 starters, with Andrew De Campo next with 92 winners and 127 placegetters from 457 starters. Colin Brown took second place in the Statewide drivers’ premiership with 139 winners from 787 starters, with Chris Voak and Morgan Woodley next with 130 winners each. In the Metropolitan premierships, Hall sen. trained 150 winners to finish well ahead of the Bond team, with 74 winners. Hall jun. (163 winners from 520 starters) was the leading city reinsman, finishing ahead of Chris Lewis (69 winners from 604 drives), Brown (63) and Woodley (60). Northview Punter, a solidly-supported 6/4 favourite from the outside of the back line on Friday night, settled down in ninth position and moved to seventh, three wide, at the bell before forging past the pacemaker Big ben Lombo 320m from home and going on to win by a length from Deluxe Edition, the only filly in the race, who finished strongly from sixth on the pegs at the bell. Slick Chapel, a stablemate of the winner, ran home strongly from the rear to be third. Northview Punter covered the final 800m in 59.1sec. and rated 1.58 over the 2130m journey on a slowish track. This took his record to 19 starts for 11 wins and five placings for stakes of $145,425. He won once from two starts in New Zealand before entering Hall’s stables. He is by American stallion Bettors Delight out of an American mare Watch Your Step, who had 48 starts in the United States for five wins, 16 placings and $59,806. He is a close relation to 1990 Little Brown Jug winner Beach Towel, the American harness Horse of the Year that season. HAS THE ANSWERS WINS EASILY, BUT SUFFERS FROM A DAMAGED HOOF Evergreen champion Has The Answers bled profusely from a nasty puncture wound in his off fore hoof after scoring an effortless all-the-way win in the 2130m Racing Radio Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It is not known what caused the injury or whether it affected him during the race. Trainer Tony Svilicich must produce a veterinary certificate of soundness before the stewards will permit the gelding to race again. It is hoped that the problem is not serious. Has The Answers, favourite at 3/1 on from the No. 1 barrier and he was surprising beaten for early speed by 20/1 chance Lord Lombo, who began very fast from barrier six. However, Lord Lombo was unable to cross to the front and Chris Voak then cleverly manoeuvred him to the pegs to enjoy the perfect passage behind the noted frontrunner. After a moderate lead time of 38sec. Has The Answers had the luxury of being able to amble through the first 400m section of the final mile in 30.5sec. before Morgan Woodley increased the tempo and the ten-year-old dashed over the next three quarters in 29.1sec., 27.2sec. and 28.9sec. to win by two lengths from Lord Lombo, rating 1.56.5. Sneakyn N Down Under, second favourite at 4/1, was more than two lengths farther back in third place after he had enjoyed a perfect sit, one-out and one-back. Shardons Rocket (23/1), a stablemate of Has The Answers, was a wilting fifth after racing without cover. Has The Answers is seemingly indestructible and he now has raced 240 times for 76 wins, 40 seconds and 25 thirds for $1,326,582 in prizemoney. Woodley has enjoyed a wonderful association with the Legacy Of Power gelding, having driven him 47 times for 22 wins, six seconds and four thirds. ELEGANT CHRISTIAN FOLLOWS A FAMILY TRADITION Elegant Christian, a sturdily-built New Zealand-bred gelding, followed a family tradition when he scored a fighting victory in the 2130m TABtouch.Mobi Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. It was his second win from first two starts (after a runaway victory at Pinjarra earlier in the month) to emulate the performance of his dam English Elegance, whom was successful at her first two starts, as a two-year-old at Addington in April-May 2007 before she finished a close third at her next start, in a group 1 $75,000 event for fillies at Alexandra Park. English Elegance, by American stallion Camtasticus, was retired as a three-year-old with a record of five wins, six placings and $82,936 from 13 starts and Elegant Christian is her sixth foal. Elegant Christian is trained by Gary Hall sen., who also had Pelusiac, an easy winner at his first two starts, engaged in the race. Gary Hall jun. chose to drive the Washinghton VC gelding in preference to Elegant Christian, who gave Kim Prentice a welcome 52nd birthday present. Pelusiac, who had won his first two starts by margins of eight lengths and four lengths, was a warm 7/4 on favourite from the outside (barrier two) on the back line. Elegant Christian was drawn out wide, at No. 6 on the front line, but was a well-supported 9/4 second fancy. Polemarker All Williams (12/1) led for the first 350m before Pelusiac took up the running, with Prentice quickly getting Elegant Christian into the breeze. After a third quarter in 29.4sec., Elegant Christian applied considerable pressure on Pelusiac and got on terms with 220m to travel. Elegant Christian gained the upper hand 100m from home and went on to beat Pelusiac by 1m at a 1.59 rate after the final 400m was covered in 28sec. Soho Star, the third runner in the race trained by Hall sen., raced in the one-out, one-back position before fighting on to third to give Hall a trifecta result which returned a dividend of $13.40 for a $1 investment. LOVING YOU MAKES QUITE AN IMPRESSION Loving You, a filly by Art Major, revived memories of Victorian pacer Impressionist’s victory in the group 1 Golden Nugget Championship at Gloucester Park in January 1992 when she gave a bold frontrunning display to outclass her rivals in the 2130m Big Breakfast Show Pace on Friday night. Loving You, owned by Neven Botica, trained by Peter Tilbrook and driven by Shannon Suvaljko, was a heavily-supported 5/2 on favourite who set the pace and defeated outsider Firth of Tay by four and a half lengths. Loving You is related on her dam’s side to Impressionist, who was driven by star Victorian horseman Ted Demmler to victory over Whitbys Miss Penny in the 1992 Golden Nugget. Loving You is the third foal out of Roustabout, whose great granddam Tilla was the mother of Impressionist, who ended his career with a splendid record of 56 starts for 23 wins and 12 placings for earnings of $427,005. Roustabout is a half-sister to two-year-old Pelusiac, who finished a close second in the opening event at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Roustabout’s first foal is Arousing, a winner at Northam last Tuesday night after winning at Pinjarra the previous week. Arousing, also owned by Botica, has earned $46,873 from six wins and 16 placings from 55 starts. Roustabout, by Christian Cullen, was retired after having 12 starts for four wins, two placings and $33,171 in stakes. She won twice in WA, at Pinjarra and Gloucester Park in March 2006. Herr Gloucester Park success was by a nose over Precious Maiden in the group 3 Empress Stakes. Loving You, who finished third behind Frith in the group 1 WA Oaks in May this year, went into Friday night’s race with a losing sequence of 11. But she looked outstanding from the No. 2 barrier on the front line. Indomitable, a 10/1 chance, began speedily from barrier six, but was unable to cross to the lead, with Loving You kicking up strongly on her inside. Nathan Turvey then was able to get Indomitable across to the pegs after 350m to take the trail behind Loving You. Eselar (10/1) raced three wide before getting to the breeze after 700m and she faded to finish ninth. Indomitable did not threaten danger and finished tenth. Zonya, a last-start Northam winner for trainer Mike Beech, caught the eye in coming from 12th at the bell to be a fast-finishing third. BUTCHER HURT AND EGERTON-GREEN SEIZES HIS OPPORTUNITY A fall when driving trackwork on Thursday left young reinsman Shane Butcher stiff and sore and unable to take the drive behind Ohoka Samson in the 2130m Drivetime With Stewart Maister Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Part-owner and trainer Kade Howson then engaged Dylan Egerton-Green, who made the most of the unexpected opportunity to land the New Zealand-bred seven-year-old an easy winner. Ohoka Samson, heavily supported to start favourite at 5/4 on, made the most of the favourable No. 2 barrier and he set a solid pace before sprinting over the final 800m in 56.8sec. to win at a 1.58.2 rate by three and a half lengths from Imtheguy (11/1), who finished gamely after racing three back on the pegs. Polemarker Arch On Fire (7/1) ran on solidly to be a head away in third place after trailing the leader all the way. Ohoka Samson, owned by Howson in partnership with the gelding’s New Zealand breeders Lorraine and Pero Smith, has been plagued by injury throughout his career. After winning at three of his eight starts in New Zealand and once from two starts in Victoria, Ohoka Samson has had only 20 starts in Western Australia for nine wins and five placings to take his career record to 30 starts for 13 wins, eight placings and $102,714. Ohoka Samson fractured his pelvis in a fall in April 2009 and was unable to race for 19 months. He resumed in November 2010 when he ran two seconds before winning six in a row. He damaged a tendon in the winter of 23011 and was forced on to the sidelines for 24 months. He resumed racing at Bunbury on July 13 this year and his first five starts in his comeback campaign have produced two wins, two seconds and a tenth placing. MEXICANO INHERITS THE ABILITY OF PRECIOUS MAIDEN Mexicano, who revealed outstanding potential as an early two-year-old in New Zealand, gave promise of better things to come when he recorded his first Australian victory with an impressive win in the 2130m TABform Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. After two fourths and a second at his first three appearances in Western Australia, Mexicano gave a sample of his class when he raced three wide for the first 250m and then outside the pacemaker and even-money favourite Grand Cru before surging to the front on the home turn and beating Grand Cru by two lengths. Trained at Bickley by Peter Anderson and driven with supreme confidence by Morgan Woodley, Mexicano, third favourite at 13/2, will now have a short spell before being prepared for feature events for four-year-olds in the coming summer months. After Grand Cru had coasted through the first two 400m sections of the final mile in 31.5sec. and 30.7sec., the final quarters went by in 28.4sec. and 29sec. and Mexicano rated 1.59.5. He won at his debut, at Alexandra Park in December 2011 when he sprinted over the final 800m in 28.2sec. and beat Slick Chapel before he finished a head second at his next start to Ohoka Punter, who has developed into a star performer, earning $478,402 from his ten wins and seven placings from his first 17 starts. Ohoka Punter’s successes include the $200,000m Victoria Derby at Melton last February and the $246,000 New Zealand Northern Derby a month later. Mexicano, who is owned by Ian Sermon, Lee Bunney, Greg Newbold, Peter and Michael Pike, Tracey Sermon, Dave Morley and Gary Charlton, is by Christian Cullen and is the first foal out of Precious Maiden, who was retired after earning $158,498 from 12 wins and 28 placings from 70 starts. Precious Maiden, a winner of two races in New Zealand, was trained in Western Australia by Grant Williams and won at each of her first three starts in the State in February-March 2006. At her final appearance she finished second to Jilsander in the group 3 Mares Mile at Gloucester Park in December 2007. BRILLIANT START PAVES THE WAY FOR THE BLACK LORD A flying start by The Black Lord paved the way for the New Zealand-bred five-year-old’s smart win in the 2130m Afternoons With Peter O’Neill Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Despite his easy victory when he raced three wide for much of the way at Bunbury at his previous outing, a fortnight earlier, The Black Lord was sent out at the liberal odds of 17/1 in a race in which Victorian newcomer Barkers Hall (5/4) and polemarker Saint Petersburg (11/4) dominated betting. Aiden De Campo got The Black Lord away brilliantly from the No. 3 barrier and the Elsu gelding sped to the front after 150m and bowled along in front before sprinting the final 400m in 28.8sec. to beat 16/1 chance Myouri by a half-length at a 1.59.1 rate. Im Clean Cut, who raced three back on the pegs, ran on well to be third. The Black Lord, trained at Henley Brook by Chelsey Harding, shows good promise and has a record of seven wins and eight placings from 39 starts for stakes of $39,097. His dam Visa Girl is a full-sister to Lord Miles, who raced with Great Success in Perth in 2000 and 2001 when he had 19 starts for seven wins and four placings. His wins included the $20,000 Country Cup at Gloucester Park in November 2000 and the Christmas Gift in December 2001 when he defeated The Die Is Cast, Chivalrous Fella and Baltic Eagle. He retired with earnings of $143,072 from 21 wins and 27 placings from 103 starts. GDAY MATE ENDS A LOSING SEQUENCE OF 27 New Zealand-bred six-year-old Gday Mate ended a losing sequence of 27 and broke a 14-month drought when young Boyanup trainer Justin Prentice brought him home with a sparkling burst of speed to score an easy win in the 2503m Late Nights With Ashleigh Paikos Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. His previous success was also in a 2503m stand in June of last year. Gday Mate, a 13/2 chance, started from barrier four on the front line and Prentice had the gelding travelling smoothly in the one-wide line before he finished boldly from fifth at the bell to burst to the front 250m from home. He sprinted the final 400m in 28.3sec. and beat 2/1 favourite J Walker by three lengths, with the pacemaker To Transcend (3/1) seven lengths farther back in third place. J Walker will pay to follow. He was eighth at the bell and after being switched four wide by Robbie Williams with 450m to travel, he finished powerfully. Gday Mate, bred in New Zealand by Lorraine and Pero Smith, has had 77 starts for 11 wins, 29 placings and $130,033.He is a younger full-brother of smart open-class performer Please Release Me, who has earned $232,820 from 20 wins and 33 placings from 84 starts. SMOOTH CAESAR MAKES THE MOST OF PRIZED No. 1 BARRIER Giant pacer Smooth Caesar outmuscled his 11 rivals when he made full use of the prized No. 1 barrier when Shannon Suvaljko drove him to an all-the-way victory in the 1730m Friday Morning Pacing Preview Westbred Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Punters rallied to support Smooth Caesar, trained at Mardella by Matthew Henwood, and the seven-year-old gelding was a warm 5/4 on favourite. Loaded Aussie was smartest to begin from barrier three, but was unable to cross to the pegs, with Suvaljko driving Smooth Caesar hard to maintain the lead. Kissed Flush, who started from the outside of the back line, was sent forward by Colin Brown in the early stages to take up the position in the breeze. Criminal Minds finished fast from ninth at the bell to be a close second, with Kissed Flush holding on to be third, in front of Soho Monza, who fought on from eighth with a lap to travel. Smooth Caesar, whose dam Hilarion Lass had 48 starts for five wins, ten placings and $9209, has raced 60 times for nine wins, 14 placings and stakes of $66,549. BACKAS COBBER MAKING A GOOD START TO HIS WA CAREER Six-year-old Backas Cobber, who arrived in Western Australia from Victoria about five weeks ago with a losing sequence of 29, notched his second win at his third start in the State when he held on to score a narrow victory in the 2130m 1206AM Trotters Trot at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Owned by Bruce and Pauline Stanley, Backas Cobber is trained at Wundowie by Bruce Stanley, who drove the gelding assertively. Backas Cobber started from the inside of the back, line and Stanley wasted no time in easing the gelding off the pegs and dashing him forward. Ryan Bell got last-start winner Idle Maple away with a fast start from barrier five and the seven-year-old led for the first 600m before Stanley got Backas Cobber to the front. This left Hot Holiday in the breeze and that trotter finished with great determination to finish a nose behind Backas Cobber, who rated 2.3.4. Backas Cobber has raced 101 times for 18 wins and 23 placings for stakes of $154,716. He is a half-brother to Backa Beyond, who had 35 starts in WA a couple of years ago form one win from 35 starts in that State. by Ken Casellas  

Passionate Pearcedale harness racing sisters Julie and Jennifer Coventry were "over the moon" at Cranbourne on Saturday August 31, as they are part of a syndicate which race a very smart ex-Kiwi by the name of McNiven who made it two from two in Australia by taking the Alabar 2-Y-0 Pace over 2060 metres. Trained at Longwarry by Lee Evison who also holds a share in him, McNiven who did his early racing in the deep south around Winton and Gore was making only his fifth race appearance and shows plenty of promise having now registered two wins and 3 placings. Driven by Greg Sugars, McNiven a gelded son of McArdle and Solitaire had little difficulty in leading from gate four and was never out of second gear, coasting to the wire to record an untouched 4.6 metre victory in advance of Zuko Dream which trailed, with The Gingerbreadman battling away courageously to be a head away in third place after racing in the open. The mile rate 2-00.4. The girls love their harness racing and can be seen at the Cranbourne Saturday morning trials whenever they are held, giving the club a hand with anything that is required. Lara trainer Dean Braun has made Cranbourne his own this season and apart from capturing the trainers premiership there, produced a quartet of winners during the evening as well as the quinella in the feature event on the program - the G.D. Wilson Memorial Pace for C6 or better over 2080 metres when 4-Y-0 gelding Magical Telf (Live Or Die/Super Telf) defeated  Saab Quality and Pete Of Pan in 1-57. Four Starzzz Shark/Debrouch gelding Wolowitz landed the Condo's Horse Transport 3-Y-0 Pace, exciting Elsu/Make It Hot 3-Y-0 gelding Chilli Palmer the Hygain Feeds Pace for C0 class and veteran 11-Y-0 gelding Dartmoor Dream Away/Janet Quill) the Cranbourne Trainers Bonanza Claiming Pace and in doing so, chalked up his 33rd victory at start number 192 all driven by Chris Alford who smashed the long standing tally of winners for a month by driving 53 winners during August, overtaking Kerryn Manning's 49 set a number of seasons back.. Another big winner on the night was Ardmona (Shepparton) trainer Doc Wilson's greatly improved 5-Y-0 D M Dilinger/Nora Barnacle gelding Indi Bapu in the Vicbred Platinum Country Series Final for C1 class over 2080 metres in a rate of 2-01.1. Driven by partner Donna Castles, Indi Bapu was trapped wide from gate three on the second line before being sent forward to park in the open outside the last start Warragul winner Alina. Surging clear halfway up the running, Indi Bapu scored by 4.5 metres from Alina, with Me Mate Les (one/one) third. It was Indi Bapu's 10th victory in 36 outings. Len Baker  

Astute Lara trainer Dean Braun who works so hard at his trade, capped off a magnificent season by chalking up his 100th home state winner for the season when Elsu/Prima Bella gelding Watch This Spot scored in the Oktoberfest @ Lord's Raceway 2-Y-0 Pace over 2150 metres at Bendigo on Tuesday August 27. Driven by Chris Alford, Watch This Spot was taken back from gate three in the small five horse field to settle four back the markers, with Brian Gath taking the second elect Rumour Monger to the front shortly after the start. Easing away from the markers to trail Decileight in the final circuit, Watch This Spot (three wide home turn) cruised to the wire 5.8 metres in advance of Sutter Man which followed his every move, with Big Bang Leonard using the sprint lane off the back of the leader to finish third.. The mile rate 2-00.5. Braun and Alford had earlier in the night snared the Staffordshire Park Trotters Handicap for T3 or better class over 2150 metres with highly promising Love You/Dreamlands Nancy 3-Y-0 gelding Our Dreamlover in rate of 2-03.1, scoring by an unextended margin of 9.3 metres in advance of Wildenstein which trailed after leading out, with the in-form mare  Cookeyslass (three back the markers) third. Dean Braun was also victorious in winning the Cranbourne HRC Trainers Premiership this season, as well as feature races in New Zealand, NSW, Queensland, W-A and Tasmania - a superb effort for someone who usually never has more than 25 horses in work at any given time. Len Baker  

Tabcorp Park Melton turned on a pearler of a Friday night this week as Bitobliss reeled off one of the most eye-catching finishing bursts ever seen at the track. The ever-promising dual Kilmore Cup winner looked hopelessly placed when a clear last going off the back as first-up heroes Melpark Major and Smoken Up were duelling up front. Even as they swung the final bend and Bitobliss peeled to the extreme outside, it still appeared the first two in running would duke out the closing stages. That was until, Scotty Stewart gave his star pacer full bore and he started to steam down the outside. In a matter of moments he had gone from four lengths off the leader to a full sulky length clear and eventually it was an effortless four-metre win. Smoken Up bravely fought on for second in a more than creditable first-up performance while Motu Crusader (third) and Have A Bender (fourth) swooped home to just run past Melpark Major on the line. The mile rate of 1:56.6 was highlighted by a 55.8 last half and 27.8 last quarter, of which the winner would have ran significantly quicker. Stewart spoke to Rob Auber following the race and explained that it’s more about keeping him healthy rather than improving the rising seven-year-old. “If we can keep him on the track there is a bit ahead of him,” Stewart said. “It’s a matter of keeping him right and healthy, last year we were chasing a bit because of the broken leg. There’s another one of these Free For All’s in two weeks and I’ve thought about entering (for New Zealand) but Im Themightyquinn is going so we’ll wait and see. “Tonight the horses we were following were going forward whereas last month they probably weren’t, so even though you lose ground straightening we still had momentum.” The other feature race on the program was the VHRSC 3YO Cup and Chilli Palmer produced a similar finishing burst to capture the race. The highly touted son of Elsu scored by 2.8 metres from Hilltop Hustler, who worked during the run and fought on strongly and Nowitzki, who found the led in the early stages thanks to a brilliant drive. The mile rate was recorded in 1:58.0 with the last half coming in 55.4. by Blake Redden Harness Racing Victoria

The Horsham HRC held two of their season feature races on Thursday August 22 - the $8,000 Rosehill Princess Of The Wimmera for Three Year Old Fillies 3C0 to 3C2 class over 2200 metres and the $8,000 Alabar Guineas for Colts & Geldings over the same distance. Woorndoo trainer Bob Mahncke combined with Ararat reinsman Michael Bellman to land the "Princess" with Lombo Krista Bella, a daughter of Lombo Pocket watch and Arabella Lombo raced by wife Jenny. Despite racing in the open throughout from gate three, Lombo Krista bella dashed away at the straight entrance to record a big 13.7 metre victory in advance of Confusion Reigns which followed her home, with Cullen Time third after trailing the weakening front runner Fineandsunny. The mile rate 1-59.8. Great Western's Kerryn Manning snared the "Guineas" with much travelled Kiwi bred Washington VC/Robyns Measure gelding Willow Robyn in a rate of 2-02.3. Raced by Queensland developer Norm Jenkin, a part-owner of dual NZ Cup winner Flashing Red, Willow Robyn toyed with his rivals, leading throughout from the pole to score by 10.6 metres in advance of Galleons Warrior (one/one) and Faraway Man which trailed the winner. It was Willow Robyn's first victory in six race appearances. Kerryn had earlier in the day landed the Rosehill Veterinary Services Pace for C2 class over over 2200 metres with former Kiwi 4-Y-0 gelding Lucky Dav A gelded son of Armbro Operative and Jodie Dick, Lucky Dave from gate five was taken back to the tail of the field as the start was effected, with Ultimate Tycoon leading from gate two. Giving chase three wide in the last lap, Lucky Dave joined the hot favourite Cheesy Grin which had crossed Ultimate Tycoon in the final circuit on straightening and just lasted from Pas Mate which rattled home from last on the marker line in a rate of 1-59.5. Cheesy Grin held on for third. Consistent 4-Y-0 Real Desire/Calories gelding Indulgent chalked up his 7th victory (six this season) by taking the Metropolitan @ Morley Park Pace for C3 & C4 class over 2200 metres. Trained by Peter Manning at Great Western, Indulgent taking a concession for Mount Gambier junior Jayson Finnis was sent forward from gate five, crossing the pacemaker Superstar Express in the back straight on the first occasion. Travelling under a tight rein, Indulgent had too much in reserve at the finish for Bronze Destiny which issued a serious challenge on turning after racing in the open from the bell, with Wheatsheaf Avaball a remarkable third after spending the entire race three wide uncovered. A prohibitive $1.40 favourite, Indulgent returned a mile rate of 2-00.3. Local McKenzies Creek trainer Barry Dunn was successful with 4-Y-0 Grinfromeartoear/Regards gelding Wipethesmile in the Smiling Shard @ Alabar Pace (1st Division) for C1 class over 1700 metres in a rate of 2-00.6. Driven by Wayne Lane, Wipethesmile (gate six) ran home from three back the markers to score by a nose from The Avoca Flyer from last and the hot favourite Franciselizabeth which faced the breeze. The second division was taken out by astute Lara trainer Shaun Kittel's 5-Y-0 Life Sign/Jazz Opera gelding Jazz King. Formerly trained in the northern part of the state by owner Greg Fleming, Jazz King with Daryl Douglas in the sulky settled last from the extreme draw, with the well backed Cobargo Jack leading from gate two. Latching to the back of Arr En Special three wide in the final circuit, Jazz King despite making the home turn four wide, put pay to his rivals in a couple of strides to score by 5.1 metres in a rate of 1-58.4 over Arr En Special and Cobargo Jack. On what was a great day for the Manning's, Michelle combined with Terang's Matt Craven to land the Shadow Play @ Alabar Pace for C0 class over 2200 metres with 4-Y-0 Elsu/Whatsonyamind gelding Pacquiao in a 2-01.5 rate after racing in the open from gate two, scoring by a half head from the red-hot ($1.20) favourite One Wise Man which led. Chesney (one/one) finished third. Videos of all races attached. Len Baker  

Advancing years have not dimmed the brilliance of rising 11-year-old Sneakyn Down Under, who gave a typical powerful frontrunning performance to crush his rivals in the $35,000 Howard Porter Memorial at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Driven with supreme confidence by part-owner and trainer Darren Duffy, Sneakyn Down Under earned a reprieve from a proposed retirement when he stormed to victory by just over a length from Franco Renegade, rating 1.56.8 over the 2130m journey. This ended a losing sequence of ten and boosted Sneakyn Down Under’s earnings to $421,364 from 25 wins and 16 placings from 82 starts. It was the gelding’s first success for eight months and his impressive return to form prompted Duffy to reconsider his retirement plans for the big, rangy New Zealand-bred gelding. It was an historic victory, with Sneakyn Down Under maintaining his dominance in the Porter Memorial, a race he won in 2009 and 2012. No other pacer has won the group 3 event more than once since Pure Steel won the inaugural Porter Memorial in 1978. Sneakyn Down Under, favourite at 2/1, began with his usual brilliance from barrier four and dashed past Shardons Rocket to take up the running after 120m. After covering the first 400m section of the final mile in 30.6sec., Sneakyn Down Under gave the opposition little chance of overhauling him as he sped over the final three quarters in 28.8sec., 28.3sec. and 28sec. Franco Renegade (13/4) raced three back on the pegs before finishing strongly to deprive Shardons Rocket of second place. Has The Answers raced four back on the pegs and ran home gamely to be fourth. Sneakyn Down Under raced 11 times in New Zealand for two wins over 2700m as a three-year-old at Forbury before arriving in Western Australia. By American stallion Badlands Hanover, he is out of Sneaky Peak, the dam of Countess Kala, winner of the Golden Nugget at Gloucester Park in December 1999. OHOKA ASSASSIN BOOSTS STABLE’S HOPES IN THE GOLDEN NUGGET Lightly-raced New Zealand-bred three-year-old Ohoka Assassin emerged as an excellent second string runner for the powerful Greg and Skye Bond stable in the rich Golden Nugget Classic late this year when he gave a bold frontrunning display to win the 2536m Premier Suzuki Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The Bonds have high hopes with Condrieu in the Golden Nugget, and Ohoka Assassin, fit now after being laid low by a leg problem earlier this year. “Ohoka Assassin has had a few little hiccups along the way and he damaged a hock soon after arriving in WA,” said Greg Bond. “We haven’t probably seen the best of him yet and I’m hoping that he will measure up for the Nugget. He’s got more than his share of ability.” Ohoka Assassin, favourite at 5/2 from the No. 1 barrier on the front line, was sent straight to the front by Ryan Warwick and he relished his pacemaking role. He sprinted over the final 800m in 56.9sec. and won by 1m from 4/1 third fancy Another Vinnie, who finished strongly from tenth in the middle stages and sixth at the bell. Conniving Major Dave impressed at his Gloucester park debut in finishing boldly from eighth at the bell to be third, with Slick Chapel, second favourite at 11/4, a fighting fourth after working hard, three wide and then in the breeze. Rocky Marciano also lost few admirers when he sustained a strong finishing burst from the rear to finish fifth. Ohoka Assassin won once from seven New Zealand starts and his two wins from seven WA appearances have taken his record to 14 starts for three wins, five placings and $30,575. His win came three nights after his four-year-old full-brother Ohoka Colorado was successful at Menangle to improve his record to nine wins, 13 placings and $74,725 from 42 starts. Ohoka Assassin’s dam, the Falcon Seelster mare Millwood Krystal has also produced Ohoka Arizona (20 starts for eight wins, four placings and $273,498), Ohoka Samson (29 starts for 12 wins, eight placings and $91,164), Ohoka Detroit (28 starts for four wins, six placings and $14,845) and Millwood Manhattan (19 starts for three wins, three placings and $40,364). Ohoka Arizona was an outstanding juvenile in New Zealand in 2007 when he finished well ahead of Im Themightyquinn in several races. His wins included a group 1 classic at Addington, two group 3 events and a win in the $200,000 Emerald for colts and geldings. He also finished a close second in the group 1 Sires Stakes at Addington. UNSOCIABLE MIGHTY FLYING THOMAS BECOMES A GENTLEMAN Mighty Flying Thomas is an unsociable gelding, generally unfriendly and ill-tempered and with a mind of his own. But he is a favourite at the Bickley stables of Peter Anderson because of his fierce determination, his tenacity and tremendous will-to-win. He was at his cantankerous worst when Anderson took him to Narrogin for his Western Australian debut in July of last year. He simply refused to score up at two attempts and was withdrawn by the stewards. Not amused at this punishment, Mighty Flying Thomas then dug his toes in and required a great deal of persuasion from reinsman Morgan Woodley to eventually leave the track and return to his stall in the birdcage. It was a long, wet and cold night for all concerned. However, Mighty Flying Thomas has responded to Anderson’s patient care and Woodley’s skill in the sulky to develop into an almost perfect gentleman on the track, invariably getting away swiftly and racing with tremendous zest. His speed, strength and wonderful fighting qualities have enabled him to become a shining light in his current campaign and he kept up his fine work with a notable triumph over 2/1 on favourite Pacific Warrior in the 2536m Nepean Conveyors Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Mighty Flying Thomas, second fancy at 11/2, began speedily from the No. 4 barrier and after racing four wide in the early stages Woodley deftly manoeuvred the gelding into the one-out, one-back position as Showdownatmidnight worked his way past the polemarker I Am legend to take up the running after 300m. Woodley then seized the initiative, vacating the prime one-out, one-back spot after 500m and dashing Mighty Flying Thomas forward, three wide, before bursting to the front 150m later. Woodley gave Mighty Flying Thomas a breather with a leisurely first 400m section of the final mile in 32.1sec. and then he increased the tempo, reeling off quarters in 28.9sec., 28.7sec. and 28.6sec. as he kept Pacific Warrior (in the breeze) at bay on the way to recording a splendid victory by just under a length, rating 1.58.7. To maintain such a high speed and cover the final 1200m in 1min. 26.sec. was an outstanding effort by the five-year-old Mighty Flying Thomas. That time certainly compares favourably with the final 1200m in 1min. 25.1sec. recorded by open-class star Sneakyn Down Under when he won the Howard Porter Memorial, over the shorter 2130m journey later in the program. Mighty Flying Thomas is undefeated at three attempts over 2536m at Gloucester Park. Not only is he a redoubtable stayer, but he is a very smart sprinter who is being set for the $10,000 Mount Eden Golden Mile over 1750m at Kalgoorlie on September 17. Mighty Flying Thomas has had 13 starts in WA for six wins and three placings and his career record stands at 12 wins and ten placings for stakes of $87,213 from just 40 starts. While he is performing strongly, so, too, is his six-year-old half-sister Flying Pocketlands, who took her record to 21 wins, 29 placings and $442,423 from 90 starts when she won the listed classic, the Alabar Breeders Crown Graduate Mares Free-For-All at Ballarat on Saturday of last week. IM ELSA ENDS LOSING RUN OF 20 AND GIVES ANDREWS A DOUBLE New Zealand-bred mare Im Elsa bounced back to her best form and ended a losing sequence of 20 when she scored an impressive all-the-way victory in the 1730m Gannon’s Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. She started favourite at 7/4 and her win over Sovereign Grange (11/1) and Bettor Whitby (15/1) completed a training double for Wes Andrews, who was successful earlier in the night with It And A Bit. Aiden de Campo got Im Elsa away speedily from barrier three and the six-year-old got past polemarker Siena Franco and into the lead after 200m. She set a solid pace and was never seriously threatened. She covered the final 800m in 58.3sec. and rated 1.57.1. This took Im Elsa’s record to nine wins and 19 placings for stakes of $112,632 from 63 starts. A winner of four races in New Zealand, she has raced 32 times in WA for five wins and seven placings. At her third start in WA she won the group 3 $35,000 WA Mares Mile from Artemis Belle at Gloucester Park in December 2011. By former star pacer Elsu, Im Elsa is out of Champagne Party, who won at 14 of her 40 starts and earned $152,445. Her wins included the group 2 Queen of the Pacific at Moonee Valley in June 2002. Champagne Party’s dam Bee Gee’s Dream produced star performers in Party Party (45 starts for 13 wins, 23 placings and $251,236) and Another Party (149 starts for 31 wins, 42 placings and $888,678). AIDEN de CAMPO BRINGS UP HIS CENTURY Outstanding young Capel reinsman Aiden de Campo notched a century of winners in a season for the first time when he drove The Black Lord to victory in the 2100m Happy 50th Johnny Ryan Pace at Bunbury on Saturday night. The Black Lord, trained by Chelsey Harding, was favourite at 6/4 and he surged home from sixth at the bell to win in fine style from Off The Chain. BLACK PONTIAC RELISHES HIS FRONTRUNNING ROLE Victorian-bred pacer Black Pontiac has struck a purple patch for Orange Grove trainer-reinsman Donald Harper and he notched his fifth win from his past 12 starts when he set the pace and held on grimly to defeat the fast-finishing Imtheguy by a head in the 1730m West Australian Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Harper made the most of the perfect No. 1 barrier and Black Pontiac set a fast pace, recording a slick rate of 1.55.3 after sprinting over the final 800m in 56.9sec. Black Pontiac was second favourite at 9/4 and he defied the pressure applied by 11/8 favourite Real Hammer, who got his head in front at the bell, but was unable to forge to a clear lead. Imtheguy(6/1) enjoyed a perfect run behind the pacemaker before issuing a spirited late challenge. Lewis Hamilton (33/1) raced three back on the pegs and finished strongly to be third. Real Hammer wilted to finish fourth after working without cover throughout. Black Pontiac, owned by Tara Sweet, had 11 starts in Victoria for five wins and three placings before arriving in WA where his 63 starts have produced ten wins and seven placings. By Grinfromeartoear, Black Pontiac is the second foal out of Short And Black, who had 47 starts for ten wins, 11 placings and stakes of $53,619. Short And Black’s first foal Falcons legend is still racing in Queensland where he has earned $63,860 from 14 wins and 24 placings from 118 starts. Short And Black is one of the nine winners out of Gaviston, a daughter of Gavigold, whose nine winners included No Damage (294 starts for 46 wins, 94 placings and $240,428) and Natures Fury (317 starts for 48 wins, 104 placings and $422,193). BULLDOZER CONTINUES ON HIS MERRY WAY Victorian-bred pacer Bulldozer, claimed for $9000 by Banjup trainer Annie Belton 13 months ago, is proving a wonderful bargain. The six-year-old maintained his sound form when he surged to the front after 300m, set a brisk pace and held on to score a narrow win in the 2130m Yes Loans Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. A warm favourite at 5/4, Bulldozer had to be driven right out by Chris Lewis to hold on and beat Ohoka Samson (11/1) by a nose after a photo-finish malfunction left the judges to make a decision in a desperately close finish. The judges were unanimous in their declaration that Bulldozer had hung on by the barest possible margin. Ohoka Samson started from the outside of the front line and Kade Howson restrained him back to last in the field of 11 before he dashed the gelding forward after 700m. Ohoka Samson moved outside the pacemaker at the 1100m mark and he sustained a spirited finishing effort to cross the line locked together with Bulldozer. Wrongly Accused (9/2) ran home solidly along the pegs to be a close third after trailing the pacemaker. Bulldozer, a Courage Under Fire gelding, was acquired by Belton after contesting a claimer at Warragul in August of last year and he now has raced 21 times for his new owner for five wins and five placings for stakes of $57,521. His career record now stands at 99 starts for 15 wins, 28 placings and $118,677. A half-brother to The Sentry, who earned $452,452 from 23 wins and 13 placings from 61 starts, Bulldozer looks set to continue to be a good moneyspinner. KOTARE ASH CHARGES HOME FROM A “HOPELESS” POSITION Kotare Ash, seemingly in a hopeless position when locked in on the pegs in sixth position 250m from home, was eased into the clear by Kaiden Hayter on the turn and sprinted brilliantly to get up and snatch a thrilling last-stride victory over Riverboat Ning in the 1730m Brear And Doonan Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Hayter, who was having his first drive behind the New Zealand-bred seven-year-old mare for Serpentine trainer Chris Brew, had her travelling well three back on the pegs all the way while polemarker and 5/4 on favourite Libra Belle was bowling along in front for Dean Miller. Riverboat Ning (8/1) trailed the pacemaker and when Peter Tilbrook eased her off the pegs 225m from home, Hayter was able to get off the pegs and follow Niverboat Ning, who looked certain to win when she swept to the front 70m from the post. But Kotare Ash sprouted wings to overhaul Riverboat Ning right on the line. Arch On Fire ran home gamely to be third, while Libra Belle wilted to fifth. Kotare Ash, a 17/1 tote chance, rated 1.57.3 and ended a losing sequence of 18 and improved her record to 42 starts for nine wins, nine placings and $85,047. Kotare Ash’s victory was the beginning of a great weekend for Hayter, who landed a double at Bunbury on Saturday night. He was successful with the Brian Clemens-trained Asbo (5/2) in the Sky Channel Pace and 30 minutes later he drove his own nomination Pacific Playboy (20/1) to a fast-finishing victory over Tate Gully Gold in the GWN7 Handicap over 2500m. KISS CHASEY ENDS A GOOD NIGHT FOR LEWIS Champion reinsman Chris Lewis completed a double at Gloucester Park on Friday night when 11/1 chance Kiss Chasey proved too strong for his 11 rivals in the final event, 2130m SEW-Eurodrive Westbred Pathway Pace. Kiss Chasey, a five-year-old by Yankee Sensation trained at Oakford by Ross Olivieri and owned by Lewis’s wife Debra, raced three wide early before charging to the front in the first circuit and then setting a solid pace, with Smooth Caesar working hard in the breeze. Moonlight Rockhole finished strongly from eighth at the bell to be second, a length behind the winner, with the 7/4 on favourite Sparkling Seelster a fast-finishing and unlucky third. Sparkling Seelster lacked dash from the No. 1 barrier, with Loaded Aussie beginning speedily from barrier five to take up the early running. Sparkling Seelster was hemmed in on the pegs in seventh position at the bell and did not obtain a clear passage until late in the race. Kiss Chasey has been a good performer for Olivieri, with the gelding’s 25 starts producing seven wins, seven placings and $52,969 in prizemoney. Lewis was successful earlier in the night with Bulldozer in the Yes Loans Pace. Kiss Chasey is out of former smart performer Hello Boys, who raced 55 times for 12 wins, 17 placings and $89,541. Hello Boys, a half-sister to former top-flight mare Party Date, is out of Boom Or Bust, a winner at eight of her 36 starts. Party Date earned $256,003 from 25 wins and 27 placings from 111 starts. Her victories included the 2004 Ladyship Cup at Moonee Valley and the 2005 Easter Cup at Gloucester Park. IT AND A BIT GETS THE JOB DONE IN FINE STYLE Victorian-bred pacer It And A Bit, related to 1990 WA Derby winner Pappy McCoy, showed that he should win more races for Brookdale trainer Wes Andrews when Ben Keiley drove him to a convincing all-the-way victory in the 2130m Del Basso Smallgoods Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. A heavily-supported 9/4 favourite, It And A Bit was smartest to begin from the No. 1 barrier and he won by one and a half lengths from Cup of Life (who trailed him throughout), with 40/1 chance Veitchy running into third place after racing three back on the pegs. Franco Hendrix, who raced four back on the pegs, rattled home along the inside from ninth at the 300m to be fourth. It And A Bit dashed over the final 400m in 28.6sec. and rated 1.57.7. It And A Bit, a winner of nine races in Victoria, has had 28 starts in WA for four wins and seven placings. He is still eligible for metropolitan maiden events with a handy record of 13 wins and 39m placings for stakes of $88,202 from 107 starts. It And A Bit’s maternal granddam Meagan Brooke produced talented South Australian pacer Pappy McCoy, who included the 1990 WA Derby among his 31 wins in a splendid 111-start career which netted $327,932 in prizemoney. WHOS MISTAKE, CLAIMED FOR $8000, CONTINUES HIS WINNING WAYS When Victorian horseman Geoff Webster outlaid $8000 to claim Whos Mistake at Melton in June 2012 he certainly did not predict that the Victorian-bred pacer would be such an outstanding moneyspinner. Webster sent Whos Mistake to Western Australia to be prepared by ace trainer Gary Hall sen. But Whos Mistake managed just one third placing from his first seven starts for Hall before being sent for a spell. Hall revitalised the gelding who resumed racing after a four-month absence with a runaway 11-length victory in moderate company in Albany last January. At Gloucester Park on Friday night Whos Mistake maintained his splendid form with a narrow victory over Gday Mate in the 2503m Alltools Handicap. That took his record for Webster and Hall to 28 starts for six wins and ten placings for stakes of $82,735. His career record now stands at 114 starts for 16 wins, 23 placings and $122,600. Whos Mistake started from the 10m mark and second fancy at 7/2 on Friday night and Gary Hall jun. got him away brilliantly, while the 5/4 on favourite Balleybofey galloped badly on the front line. Whos Mistake surged to the front after 280m and Hall rated him well in front before the seven-year-old sprinted over the final 400m in 28.3sec. He held on doggedly to beat 20/1 chance Gday Mate by a nose, with Johnny Diamond a solid third after trailing the pacemaker. Balleybofey made up a great deal of ground and ran on along the inside from ninth on the home turn to finish fifth. by Ken Casellas

Forbes harness racing trainer Phillip Thurston is preparing for an exciting weekend after his talented two year old filly Freedom Is qualified for Sunday's Breeders Crown Final. Thurston is enjoying his post work life after retiring nine months ago and is relishing the opportunity to travel with the daughter of Courage Under Fire. "In the past I have had to transfer my horses to professional trainers because I had a full time job as a school principal but when I retired at the start of the year it allowed me to stay involved a lot more and I've had a good time while travelling with Freedom Is," Thurston said. "I took her to Queensland and she qualified for the Nursery Final, finishing second in the final and although she might still be a maiden after having twelve starts she has earned a cheque every start." Freedom Is has drawn barrier one on Sunday afternoon and Thurston couldn't have been happier. "She has tremendous gate speed and the sprint lane at Melton is a bonus for her as well, as a racehorse she is faultless, she is relaxed when she arrives at the track, she has an old head on young shoulders and in my opinion is the full package." "When we got back from Queensland I actually put her in the paddock for five days thinking that she had done enough this season but she was bucking her brand off so I put her straight back into work for the Breeders Crown." The filly's dam is Alegria which makes Freedom Is a full sister to the well performed Glenferrie Alexis. "I flew to the New Zealand sales with a long term plan of building up a small but strong band of broodmares, I bought two well bred fillies, Freedom Is was one of them, the other one was by Elsu and is half sister to Terrorway but she hasn't made it as a two year old because of her size but I really like her as well." "I'm staying in Victoria with David and Lisa Miles and they have made us feel very welcome."   Courtesy of Harness Racing New South Wales  

Bunbury harness racing trainer Frank Bonnett has a strong Golden Nugget prospect in Another Vinnie, who caused an upset when he stormed home from last to score an impressive victory in the Alltools WA Pty Ltd Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Most punters considered that John of Arc was a certainty and he was sent out a hot favourite at 5/2 on after he had won brilliantly at seven of his eight starts in Western Australia. But John of Arc had a tough run, three wide early and then in the breeze, before wilting to fifth behind the ultra-consistent Another Vinnie, a neglected 27/1 tote outsider who started from the No. 3 barrier on the back line and was kept at the rear by Aaron Beckett while the early pace was hectic, with polemarker Desgerrado setting the pace from Jungleface Jake, who overraced and pulled hard in the breeze in the early stages. John of Arc then applied considerable pressure on Desgerrado in the middle stages, and with the first two 400m sections of the final mile whizzing by in 28.6sec. and 28.9sec. it was obvious that those two three-year-olds would be sitting ducks for horses coming from behind after having had soft runs. This proved the case. Another Vinnie was last in the field of ten at the bell as he followed the three-wide run of his stablemate Guns With Cows. Desgerrado (second fancy at 6/1) withstood all challenges before Another Vinnie charged to the front 120m from the post and beat him by a length, with Big Ben Lombo coming from three back on the pegs to be third. The final two quarters were covered in only 30.3sec. and 29.6sec. and Another Vinnie rated 1.57.2. Another Vinnie has already earned $165,112 from 12 wins and 11 placings from 34 starts for breeder-owner Les Coulson and he looks an ideal type to contest the rich Golden Nugget in late November. Another Vinnie, by Legacy Of Power, is out of Coulson’s former good race mare Vinnies Sister, who had 82 starts for 13 wins, 19 placings and $123,335 in prizemoney. IM THEMIGHTYQUINN TO SPELL BEFORE CONTESTING THE NEW ZEALAND CUP Champion pacer Im Themightyquinn completed his current preparation with an effortless win in the 2130m Del Basso Smallgoods Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night and will now go for a brief spell before heading to Christchurch to contest the rich New Zealand Cup at Addington on November 12. And after that Im Themightyquinn will travel to Sydney for the Miracle Mile at Menangle before returning to Perth for the WA Pacing Cup and Fremantle Cup. Im Themightyquinn was favourite at 3/1 on and Gary Hall jun. did not bustle him out from the No. 3 barrier on the front line and was content to settle him in the one-out, one-back position. Polemarker Please Release Me (second fancy at 13/2) led for the first 120m before Chris Lewis sent veteran Has The Answers (12/1) to the front. The lead time was a slow 38.8sec. and Lewis put on the brakes and let Has The Answers amble through the first 400m section of the final mile in an extremely slow 32.3sec. This dawdling pace prompted Gary Hall jun. to vacate the one-out, one-back position and send Im Themightyquinn forward, three wide, with 1050m to travel. Im Themightyquinn quickly moved alongside Has The Answers and the tempo lifted sharply, with the third quarter going by in 28.3sec. Im Themightyquinn got his nose in front at the 220m mark and he surged away to win by one and a half lengths from the fast-finishing Please Release Me, who had trailed the pacemaker throughout. Has The Answers held on to be 1m away in third place. Im Themightyquinn sprinted over the final quarter in 27.1sec. and he rated 1.57.8 as he took his record to 101 starts forn51 wins and 31 placings for earnings of $4,370,716. OUTSIDER HUGH VICTOR RUNS ON FROM THE REAR AND SMASHES TRACK RECORD Hugh Victor, a half-brother to top-flight pacer David Hercules, bounced back to his best form when he finished powerfully from the rear to win the 1730m Gate Bar And Bistro Pace for two-year-olds at Gloucester Park on Friday night. After being unlaced at his two previous starts, Hugh Victor was overlooked by punters and returned $58.90 on the tote for a $1 investment. The race was run at a fast tempo and Hugh Victor, trained at Byford by David Thompson, rated a slick 1.56.9 which set a track record for two-year-olds over 1730m. The previous record of 1.57.4 was held by Harriet Elisabeth (a stablemate of Hugh Victor) and Modigliani. Hugh Victor started from the outside (barrier five) on the front line after the scratching of Lukey and Racey American and this certainly made his task easier. Morgan Woodley got Hugh Victor away swiftly and the gelding raced four wide early before he wisely decided to restrain him back to last in the field of ten. Woodley immediately positioned Hugh Victor on the pegs while Jacksagrinner set a fast pace, with the 5/4 on favourite Soho Starr applying plenty of pressure in the breeze. Mister Jadore, second favourite at 9/4, was sent forward from the rear at the 1000m mark by Chris Lewis and the third 400m section of the final mile was covered in a blistering 27.8sec. Woodley bided his time and eased Hugh Victor off the pegs 270m from home and switched the gelding four wide approaching the home turn. Hugh Victor sprinted strongly and won by a half-length from the gallant Mister Jadore, with a length back to Soho Starr. The final quarter was covered in 29.9sec. Hugh Victor has raced 13 times for two wins, five seconds and $29,934. He is the fifth foal out of the Golden Greek mare Like A Dame (36 starts for three wins, 12 placings and $10,312). David Hercules is the best of Like A Dame’s progeny, earning $700,114 from 26 wins and 25 placings from 76 starts. Like A Dame’s first foal, Smiling Angel, won at her final three starts, at Bunbury, Pinjarra and Gloucester Park in May and June 2009 before being retired to stud with a record of six wins, 13 placings and $47,294 from 31 starts. Like A Dame’s dam, the Victorian-bred unraced mare Hold Tight, produced five winners, including Fake Embrace, who had 178 starts for 37 wins, 40 placings and $240,249. Hold Tight’s dam Stormy Port was the mother of Albuquerque, who amassed $322,630 in prizemoney from 15 wins and ten placings from just 35 starts. Albuquerque won the Australian Gold for two-year-old colts and geldings at Moonee Valley in April 1993 before winning the Tasmanian and South Australian Derbies and finishing third in the Victoria Derby in 1994. MIGHTY FLYING THOMAS HAS KALGOORLIE SPRINT IN HIS SIGHTS Tough New Zealand-bred five-year-old Mighty Flying Thomas maintained his grand form when he scored a fighting all-the-way victory in the 2536m McInerney Ford Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night and Bickley trainer Peter Anderson is planning to set the gelding for the 1750m Mount Eden Mile in Kalgoorlie next month. Mighty Flying Thomas possesses dazzling early pace and is ideally suited over sprint trips. He is proving an excellent purchase for Ian and Hazel Brandon, Ian Sermon, Lee Bunney and Ken Casellas, with his first 12 WA starts producing five wins and three placings for stakes of $35,624. The son of Falcon Seelster had 27 starts in New Zealand for six wins, seven placings and $40,039. Mighty Flying Thomas was favourite at 6/4 on after his strong all-the-way win at Northam and an extremely close and unlucky third behind Pacific Warrior in the John Higgins Memorial the previous Friday night. From barrier No. 2 on the front line Morgan Woodley had Mighty Flying Thomas in front from polemarker What God Knows after 250m and after the first two 400m sections of the final mile in 30.9sec. and 31.1sec. Mighty Flying Thomas sped over the final quarters in 28.4sec. and 27.9sec. before fighting grimly to win by a head from 20/1 chance Justlikelindt, who finished determinedly after enjoying the perfect passage in the one-out, one-back position. Lord Diego (11/2) finished strongly from eighth in the middle stages to be a close third. The win completed a double for Woodley and gave him his 998th victory in an outstanding career. Friday night’s event renewed a keen rivalry between Mighty Flying Thomas and Lord Diego. In his final five starts in New Zealand early in 2012 he clashed four times with Lord Diego at Manawatu. Mighty Flying Thomas led and won easily from Lord Diego over 2000m on February 7, 2012 and then the honours were with Lord Diego, who won over 2500m and 2000m at his next two starts, with Mighty Flying Thomas finishing third and second. In their final clash in New Zealand, on February 23, Lord Diego finished second and Mighty Flying Thomas third behind Rangatiki. Mighty Flying Thomas is the fourth foal out of the In The Pocket mare Fleets Pocket, who was retired after four unplaced runs as a two and three-year-old. Fleets Pocket’s third foal is Flying Pocketlands, who has amassed $425,548 from 20 wins and 29 placings from 89 starts. He has won six races in New Zealand, ten in Victoria and four in New South Wales. RODRIGIO COMPLETES A SUCCESSFUL WEEK FOR BRENNAN New Zealand-bred five-year-old Rodrigo completed a successful week for Pinjarra trainer Michael Brennan when he finished strongly to win the 2130m Happy 50th Birthday Glen Mortimer Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Rodrigo, a 26/1 outsider, was driven perfectly by Justin Prentice before scoring by a length from the fast-finishing Sir Swanky (9/1), with Bettor Still (12/1) a close third. This win followed successes by Brennan with Pocket Change at Gloucester Park on the previous Monday and 33/1 chance Extreme Bromac at Northam on Thursday night. Gary Hall jun. drove Pocket Change and Chris Playle got up with Extreme Bromac after the gelding had worked hard in the breeze all the way. Prentice got Rodrigo away speedily from the No. 5 barrier and the gelding was trapped three wide for the first 400m. But then I Am Legend (3/1) had to accelerate quickly to hold out outsider Romulus, who charged forward, four wide, to issue a spirited challenge for the lead. Romulus got almost a length in front of I Am Legend after 500m, but was unable to cross to the lead. This powerful challenge left a big gap behind I Am legend and Prentice gleefully was able to angle Rodrigo across to the pegs to follow the pacemaker. My Jasami started a three-wide move 1050m from home and he moved to third at the bell. Romulus continued to fight on in the breeze and he got to a half-length lead with 550m to travel. But I Am Legend fought back to regain the ascendancy. Prentice then was able to ease Rodrigo off the pegs approaching the home turn and the gelding finished boldly to surge to the front and win easily. The final two quarters were covered in 28.4sec. and 29.3sec. and the winner rated 1.58.1. Copagrin, favourite at 6/4 at his first appearance after a brief let-up, settled in ninth position and was ninth, three wide, at the bell. He was forced very wide 300m from home and battled on to finish sixth. Rodrigo, owned by Mark Salathiel, is a winner of ten races in Victoria and now has had eight WA starts for one win and two placings to take his record to 64 starts for 12 wins, 23 placings and $95,193. His maternal granddam Fern Glen produced Maheer Lord, who raced 197 times for 34 wins and 46 placings for stakes of $515,470. Maheer Lord, trained and driven by Grant Williams, won the group 1 WA Pacing Cup at Gloucester Park in January 2006, beating Ohoka Ace by a nose, with No Blue Manna in third place. BETTORS FIRE GIVES HARPER HIS FIRST TRAINING SUCCESS Kyle Harper landed his first winner as a trainer when he drove New Zealand-bred four-year-old Bettors Fire to a smart win in the 2130m Caduceus Club Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Bettors Fire, making his Australian debut after winning 11 times from 30 New Zealand starts, was a solidly-supported 6/4 on favourite from the No. 2 barrier on the front line. However, Bettors Fire was kept out at the start by polemarker Ardens Southee (15/2), but the 23-year-old Harper was quite content to race without cover, with the first two 400m sections of the final mile being covered in a slow 32.3sec. and 30.2sec. The tempo increased in the final circuit and the final quarters were covered in 28.2sec. and 28sec. with Bettors Fire on terms for most of that lap before getting to the front about 80m from the post. Her rated 1.57.4 in beating Ardens Southee by a half-length, with 12/1 chance Franco Hendrix finishing solidly to be a length away in third place after trailing the leader all the way. Bettors Fire, owned by Frank Ranaldi, looks set for a successful career in WA. He is still a Metropolitan maiden, with earnings of $84,392 from 12 wins and seven placings from only 31 starts. He has emulated the performance of his dam Sparks A Flyin by winning at his Australian debut. Sparks A Flyin won the group 1 New South Wales Oaks at Harold Park in March 2001 at her first start in Australia. She was retired with earnings of $510,133 from 21 wins and 20 placings from 78 starts. EL MACHINE GIVES HOWSON ANOTHER WIN IN A PURPLE PATCH Talented reinsman Kade Howson has struck a purple patch and he kept up the good work by driving El Machine to a stylish victory in the 2536m Lancaster Park Westbred Pathway Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. And then he travelled to Bunbury on Saturday night where he landed Boy O Boy, a fast-finishing winner at 5/1 over the 54/4 favourite Conniving Major Dave. These two winners gave the 25-year-old Howson ten winners from his past 23 drives, the others being Apache Cruiser and Multibet (at Pinjarra), El Machine and Balleybofey (Northam), Northern Fox (Gloucester Park) and Eerie Iris, Ohoka Samson and Miss Madoff (Bunbury). Howson, whose first winner was behind Lobo at Bunbury on July 9, 2004, now has driven in 2473 races for 286 wins, 240 seconds and 226 thirds. Howson trains El Machine at Pinjarra and races the Elsu four-year-old in partnership with reinsman Michael George. El Machine, favourite at 5/4, started from the back line and settled at the rear. Telham Lane led for the first 200m before Match To The Fuse took over, and then Kim Prentice sent the well-supported 5/2 chance Soho Monza to the front after 450m. Howson sent El Machine forward after a lap and the gelding moved to the breeze at the 1350m mark. He then travelled well before getting to the front 230m from home and winning by a neck from 6/1 chance Sparkling Seelster, who came home determinedly from fourth at the bell. Soho Monza held on for third. The winner, who rated 1.58.5, is still classified as an M0-class performer who looks set for many more wins. He has already earned $81,690 from 12 wins and ten placings from 33 starts. His dam Fashion Statement raced 22 times for three wins (one in Kalgoorlie and two in Geraldton) and three placings for stakes of $6290. KING CELEBRATES HIS BIRTHDAY WITH A CITY QUINELLA Pinjarra trainer Chris King celebrated his 41st birthday on Saturday, reflecting on a wonderful quinella result at Gloucester Park the previous evening when Lord Lombo set the pace and held on to win the 2130m Cowden Ltd Pace by 1m from stablemate Leda McNally. Lord Lombo, a 13/2 chance, caused a false start by galloping from the No. 1 barrier in the score-up and checking Benjamin Banneker. Then, at the second attempt, Nathan Turvey got Lord Lombo away smartly and the six-year-old gave a bold frontrunning exhibition. He dashed over the final 800m in 57.6sec. and won by 1m from Leda McNally, a 6/1 chance driven by Chris Voak, who trailed the pacemaker before finishing fast. Hez The Bart Man, favourite at 11/8, had a tough run in the breeze and fought on grandly to be 1m away in third place. Benjamin Banneker, second favourite at 9/4, was seventh at the bell and was looming as a danger approaching the home turn when he was badly checked and broke into a gallop before dropping back to finish last in the field of eight. Lord Lombo, a winner of two races in South Australia, eight in Victoria and one in New South Wales, has had 20 starts in WA for six wins and four placings. He has earned $135,472. By Blissfull Hall, Lord Lombo is out of Lady Lara Lombo, who earned $51,120 from five wins in Victoria and one in NSW from 42 starts. Lady Lara Lombo’s dam Decethree Lombo produced nine winners, including her first foal Lombo Skyrider, who earned $841,611 from 63 wins and 84 placings from 321 starts. Decethree Lombo’s dam Misty Maiden had 37 starts for 12 wins, 11 placings and stakes of $245,449. She then produced eight winners, including Lombo Pocket Watch, a winner of $1,522,638 from 45 wins and 17 placings from 83 starts. Misty maiden’s dam Smooth Gale produced seven winners after racing 45 times for 14 wins, ten placings and $56,707. TALK ABOUT MACH TOO STRONG AFTER ENJOYING A PERFECT TRIP Octogenarian trainer Bill Horn produced four-year-old Talk About Mach in fine fettle for the 1730m Retravision WA Mares Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night when she enjoyed the perfect trail behind the pacemaker Arch On Fire before finishing fast to snatch victory from that pacer. The win of Talk About Mach, a 9/1 chance, gave Kyle Harper the first leg of a double. He later scored with Bettors Fire. Arch On Fire (11/4) set a solid pace and sprinted over the final 800m in 56.7sec. But she was unable to hold out Talk About Mach, who surged to the front in the final 15m and rated 1.56.8. The Victorian-bred Talk About Mach, is owned by Dennis Connolly and is the only foal out of Talking Safe, who raced 21 times in Victoria for two wins, seven placings and $10,150. Talk About Mach, the winner of the Dainty’s Daughter Classic in February 2012 and third behind Sensational Gabby and Southern Legacy in the WA Oaks three months later, has earned $83,102 from seven wins and 12 placings from 39 starts. MARATHON LOOMS AS THE NEXT CHALLENGE FOR NIPPERINGHALL The $25,000 Marathon Handicap over 3309m next Friday night is the likely target for six-year-old Nipperinghall after Serpentine trainer Chris Brew drove him to a decisive victory in the Nova 93.7 Handicap over 2503m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Nipperinghall (7/2) has struck top form, with two wins and a close second from his past three starts and he appeals as a strong stayer. Polemarker Frankie Maguire led for the first 500m on Friday night when Brew gave Nipperinghall plenty of time to settle before sending him to the front. Anvils Big Punt and Rockyourbaby each had turns in the breeze, with neither threatening any real danger. Shardons Rocket, the backmarker off 30m, issued a strong challenge in the final circuit before battling on into fourth place. Frankie Maguire enjoyed sitting behind the leader and ran home gamely to be a 5m second, with Arden Bannister finishing strongly into third place after racing three back on the pegs. Nipperinghall has had 66 starts for 11 wins, eight placings and $68,316. by Ken Casellas  

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