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Eight heats of the Alabar Breeders Challenge for two year olds have been conducted across New South Wales.  The four winners of the colts and gelding heats were:         Bullet Stride - (Major In Art x Exotic Stride) Trainer Belinda McCarthy, Driver Todd McCarthy         Awesome Stride – (Art Major x Labretta Franco) Trainer Belinda McCarthy, Driver Todd McCarthy         Paternity Suit – (Rock N Roll Heaven x Rekindled Flame) Trainer/Driver Steve Maguire         Maxentius – (Mach Three x Eutropia) Trainer/Driver Blake Fitzpatrick The four winners of the heats for the fillies were:         Im With Lexy (Roll With Joe x Lexys Laughing) Trainer Bernie Hewitt, Driver Robbie Morris         Shez Sugarsweet (Somebeachsomewhere x River Valley Romance) Trainer/Driver Blake       Fitzpatrick         Dont Think Twice (Armbro Operative x Nikalong Boulevard) Trainer/Driver Jason Grimson         Rocknroll Emma (Rocknroll Hanover x Maristella) Trainer/Driver Michael Formosa Another round of heats will be conducted at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Tuesday May 31 with the two year olds attempting to qualify for the Alabar NSW Breeders Challenge Semi Finals.  In an attempt to clarify the situation, HRNSW Chief Executive John Dumesny has again stated there will be twelve runners in the semi finals and final. “There has been some confusion however it is important for all stakeholders to understand there will be twelve runners and a further two emergencies drawn in the Alabar Breeders Challenge heats (if applicable), semi finals and final for two year olds,” Mr Dumesny said. “A new two year old policy has been adopted and from the start of January a maximum of ten runners (and reserves) will be drawn in two year old races across New South Wales.  As it stands there will be twelve two year olds drawn in fields where applicable for the remainder of this season” The three year old Breeders Challenge heats begin this week and Mr Dumesny is excited by the upcoming racing. “The Alabar Breeders Challenge Final Day will be a great afternoon of racing on Sunday June 26 and I’m hoping the weather is as good this year as it was last year. “There is a lot of talent spread amongst the different age groups and divisions so the next month of racing will see the best NSW has to offer, compete for some great prize money.” Greg Hayes

The biggest successful bets of the week were $5,000 wagers with one punter placing a place bet on the Darryll Kell trained Hell Bent at Goulburn on Monday afternoon at $1.17.  Hell Bent was able to find the front and never looked like a missing a place from soon after the start and the punter walked away with a profit of $850. Other large winning bets (stake)                        $5,000 @ $1.16 Our Waikiki Beach – Menangle May 14                              $2,500 @ $1.55 Art Mistress – Young May 14                              $2,400 @ $1.55 Soynwasabi – Newcastle May 13 One punter landed a healthy return when they placed a $500 bet at $8.00 on Wabi Sabi to win race one at Bathurst on Wednesday May 11.  Despite over racing, the Bernie Hewitt trained four year old proved too strong and the punter turned their $500 into $4,000. Other large winning bets (return)                        $200 @ $18.00 Heza Swinger – Menangle May 14                              $150 @ $21.00 Coffee Bay – Bathurst May 11                              $500 @ $7.00 Highest Mountain – Goulburn May 16 Not everyone was successful, one punter placed $3,500 at $2.00 on the Paul Fitzpatrick trained Pay Me Sam to win at Menangle on Tuesday.  The son of Pay Me Christian looked the winner at Newcastle recently before he broke gear in the home straight and while he had no gear issues on Tuesday he wasn’t good enough to win and finished third. Other large losing bets (stake)                              $3,000 @ $1.70 Sport Report (finished sixth) – Bathurst May 11                              $3,000 @ $1.50 Valoroso Hanover (finished fourth) – Goulburn May 16                               $2,000 @ $1.75 Uncle Peter (finished second) – Bathurst May 11 There was no luck on ‘Black Friday’ for the punter who had $2,000 on Terry Barry at Wagga at $3.50.  Despite showing recent good form Terry Barry was overhauled in the straight and finished second by a half-neck to the Shane Hallcroft trained Keys Tothe Village. Other large losing bets (potential return)                                 $400 @ $17.00 Always My Mate (retired from the event) – Menangle May 17                                 $1,200 @ $3.50 Our Millwood Maizie (finished third) – Newcastle May 13                                 $1,000 @ $3.80 Monifieth (finished eleventh) – Menangle May 14 Greg Hayes

THE new Menangle Training Centre has attracted trainers like Shane Tritton, David Aiken, Nathan Jack, Amanda Turnbull, Darren Binskin, Narissa McMullen and Shane Sanderson.  Local Menangle trainer Jarrod Alchin also decided to make the move to the new facility and has enjoyed immediate success. Alchin has employed his brother Alex as his foreman and together they prepared three year old trotter Bacardi Hurricane to win at Group 1 level in Victoria earlier this year.  The brothers come from the small town of Temora, famous as the home of the star pacer Paleface Adios. Jarrod’s stable includes pacers such as Lombo Final Touch, Got The Scoop, Lauramegan and Floyd Mayweather while he also has well performed trotters including Bacardi Hurricane, Our Dainty Lady and Paris Pepperell.  While working for Jarrod, Alex also trains two year old filly Joyces Desire and trotter Cyclone Lucky Seven. In this edition of Inside My Stable learn more about Jarrod and Alex, their achievements and plans for the future.  To watch the story in full click here. Greg Hayes

While there is a lot of harness racing talent distributed across the Alabar Breeders Challenge heats at Bathurst, Penrith, Young and Newcastle this week, the field sizes are surprisingly small.  Bathurst’s two year old heats attracted 18 runners and Penrith’s heats on Thursday night have attracted six runners in both the colts and geldings and fillies divisions.  The heats at Newcastle on Friday are similar to Penrith in size however Young has attracted full fields for both divisions. Some owners and trainers are already turning their attention towards the Alabar Breeders Challenge Regional Finals, acknowledging their youngsters are not as fast as the leading horses. However, HRNSW CEO John Dumesny was quick to remind participants that horses competing in the major Breeders Challenge series get preference for the Regional Final. “It was quite surprising to see the field sizes for the first set of heats for the Breeders Challenge,” Mr Dumesny said. “Participants are reminded that those competing in the heats of the Alabar Breeders Challenge will receive preference in race field selection for the Regional Finals over those horses that did not.” Mr Dumesny also confirmed the Alabar Breeders Challenge Finals for two year olds will be twelve horse fields. “Twelve horses will start in the two year old finals, it is the current policy of HRNSW to have fields of twelve on the bigger tracks in New South Wales.  The recent Bathurst Gold Crown and Tiara both proved exciting events with similar sized fields. “The Australian Pacing Gold fillies final at Tabcorp Park Menangle saw ten horses compete, however with heats for that series conducted in NSW, Victoria and Queensland it was important that the heats and finals were the same size.” Participants can view the Alabar NSW Breeders Challenge conditions by clicking here The last chance for two year olds to qualify for the Breeders Challenge semi finals will be at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Tuesday May 31 with all eligible runners guaranteed of a start. Greg Hayes

Harness racing driver Wes Komorowski has been involved in harness racing for more than a decade and celebrated the biggest win of his career at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night when Popfromthebeach won the Joe and Michael Ilsley Free For All. The 37-year old doesn’t have a family link to the sport, but has spent time learning from some respected industry participants.  Komorowski has learned from Dennis Wilson, Liz and John Heath and Shane Tritton during his time in the sport and is currently doing some driving for the John Wheeler stable. “It has been a bit difficult for someone who doesn’t have a family in the industry, it’s hard to learn and it’s also hard to get the opportunities,” Komorowski said. “So I decided to try and learn from as many people as I could, I’ve taken little bits and pieces from all the people and taken their advice along the way.  I’ve got my horses with John Wheeler now and I think I’ve got to the stage where I can hold my own with everyone.” Popfromthebeach came with a well timed run to score and defeated Miracle Mile runners Bling It On, Monifieth and Blazin N Cullen in the process. “The first half of the race was run in 55 seconds and it set the race right up for Pop, he got out at the right time and ran straight past them. “I thought I was going to be in the race coming to the turn and I was just trying to hold Pop up for as long as I could.  I had Todd McCarthy behind me and I knew the pace was going to suit his horse (Blazin N Cullen) so when he came out, I came out and he sprinted very quickly over the first 100 metres and that was the best part of his race.” Komorowski has driven Popfromthebeach four times in the gelding’s last seven starts with the initial opportunity coming as a result of the success he was having driving other horses trained by Wheeler. “I brought a horse down for John to train called Lumos and the horse has been doing a very good job for us.  I’ve been getting a bit of luck on Lumos and John said to me you might as well have a go on Pop. “In the last couple of starts he has just been a bit unlucky because he has been racing in small fields and they’ve gone along pretty slowly.  He should of been winning those races but the races just haven’t been run to suit.” With a busy work schedule, Komorowski is happy to enjoy driving rather than training at this stage of his career. “I get more of a thrill out of driving, the training side of things is very difficult because I do have another job so spending the time with the horses to train them properly is something that I don’t have. “I’m happy with the way everything is going at the moment.  John (Wheeler) was absolutely ecstatic with the win, he does a very good job with his horses and his family were excited too because the horse is named after his father.” Komorowski has now driven in 395 races for 38 wins and 72 placings. Greg Hayes

Teenage reinsman Jordan Seary did everything asked of him to win his first race with Sokys Bigbullet at Wagga on Friday. Charged with the responsibility of driving the harness racing favourite from barrier five, Seary was cool under press outwardly but inwardly there were the obvious nerves. The 16-year-old from Junee was having only his fifth race drive and having the chance to drive a pacer with the record of Sokys Bigbullet brought with it added pressure. Sokys Bigbullet worked his way to the front after 650 metres and when challenged by Franco Noriega raised another effort for an easy 15 metre record. The in-form pacer has an impressive record of 40 top three finishes from 56 starts having recently also won the Coolamon Cup after a run of minor placings in other Riverina country cups. Seary was delighted to win and be given the chance to drive a pacer like Sokys Bigbullet by trainer Bruce Harpley. "I was nervous, but I just did what I was told," Seary said. "It's good driving these better horses because they make it a lot easier." Seary has driven Sokys Bigbullet in a lot of track work and also former stablemate, Frith. Harpley was delighted to see the schoolboy break through. "It's not easy when you start out but he did very well," Harpley said. "He drives to instructions and will keep improving with experience." Sokys Bigbullet has earned close to $125,000 and could soon be on the move as he continues to rise in class. "He is best to be racing in better class races now so we will see what happens," Harpley said. Greg Hayes

THE first heats of the Alabar NSW Breeders Challenge for this season will be conducted at Bathurst on Wednesday night.  Heats will be conducted at a number of different tracks across the state over the next month as horses attempt to qualify for the semi finals at Tabcorp Park Menangle. The aim of all owners, trainers, drivers and breeders is for their horses to qualify for ‘Super Sunday’ on June 26 with nine Alabar NSW Breeders Challenge finals to be conducted across three age groups. In Wednesday night’s two heats, thirteen different stallions are represented including Courage Under Fire, Art Major, Mach Three and Roll With Joe.  In the heat for the colts and geldings, the two leading stables in NSW are represented.  Belinda McCarthy has Bullet Stride drawn in barrier one while Steve Turnbull has three runners – Rainbow On Fire, Conviction and Atomic Red. Lightly race Mach Three gelding Machgower will have his first run since March for Bigga trainer Dennis Picker.  Machgower was scratched from a heat of the Bathurst Gold Crown and was immediately aimed towards the Breeders Challenge series. Local trainer Bernie Hewitt has four fillies in the second heat.  Leading Sydney drivers Todd McCarthy and Robbie Morris have been booked to drive for the Hewitt stable while Bathurst reinsman John O’Shea will also get an opportunity to drive in the race. Sydney trainer Rickie Alchin will make the trip to Bathurst with smart filly Decapria on Wednesday after she broke through for an impressive maiden victory at Menangle last start.  Out of metropolitan performed mare Betapic, Decapria recorded a 1:55.5 victory and won by more than twelve metres.  Elle Yeah finished second and will be forced to race the talented filly again this Wednesday night. Other Alabar Breeders Challenge heats will be conducted at Penrith on Thursday night, Young on Friday afternoon and Newcastle on Friday night. Harness Racing NSW (HRNSW) is the controlling body for harness racing in New South Wales with responsibility for commercial and regulatory management of the industry including 31 racing clubs across the State.  HRNSW is headed by an industry-appointed Board of Directors and is independent of Government. To arrange an interview or for further information please contact: Name: Greg Hayes Position: Media Manager Phone: (02) 9722 6600 Email: ghayes@hrnsw.com.au

Successful harness racing owner Harvey Kaplan knows that his pride and joy Bling It On is up against it when he resumes from a short break at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night. Bling It On last raced in the Miracle Mile and has drawn inside the second row over the mile in the Joe and Michael Ilsley Free For All. With a big campaign beckoning and possible trips to Victoria and Queensland on the cards, it is understandable why Kaplan is concerned by gate eleven. "There are two options, Luke eases back at the start, gets off the inside and then launches him which will mean he is having to do a lot of work first up and not how he is normally driven or he follows through on the back of a good beginner and hopes for a bit of luck," Kaplan said. "In the end the tactics will be up to Luke (McCarthy) but I wouldn't want to see him flattened and by staying to the inside I don't believe we are giving up our winning chance either, it just means we are going to need some luck." The 4&5YO Championship at Melton is a possible option in the short term where it is likely he would clash with Hectorjayjay. "That looks a suitable race for him but everything is being targeted towards the Len Smith Mile at Menangle at the end of June. After that he can look towards the Queensland carnival and at the end of the year the Inter Dominion is on again in Perth." Kaplan admitted he had already started to plan for the future when Bling It On is retired to become a stallion. "I haven't spent a whole lot of time but the thought has crossed my mind and being by American Ideal out of a Caprock mare there are a number of lines he will cross well with. "The best thing to say is that if I was looking at purchasing two yearling fillies at the moment and I liked them both equally as much as the other, I am buying the one that crosses best with Bling It On." Another of Kaplan's horses Whitershadeofpale will also race on Saturday night at Menangle. There have been suggestions she is coming towards the end of her racetrack career. "I think that is pretty close to the mark, whether Saturday night is her last run or whether she has another one or two starts, she is coming towards the end. John Crosbie is keen to breed with her. "She never really hit the heights that we thought she was going to get to. She has done a great job but when she first arrived on the scene I thought she could have measured up with the very best." Another of Kaplan's good horses Cruz Bromac has been spelling and he is looking forward to seeing him resume. "Cruz Bromac is very talented, he is a C4/M0 I think so it is a good place for him to be starting off from. The Melton Plate is a race that might be up his alley." Greg Hayes

The 63rd running of the Leeton Breeders Plate will be conducted over the Christmas and New Year period next season. While the Breeders Plate carnival will shift in 2018 and beyond, Harness Racing New South Wales confirmed the dates for this year's series will be Monday December 26, Tuesday December 27 with the $40,000 final conducted on Sunday January 1. As a result the two year old racing season in NSW will begin on December 26 when the heats of the Breeders Plate are run. HRNSW CEO John Dumesny made the announcement after lengthy discussion with the Leeton Harness Racing Club in recent weeks. "HRNSW has absolute faith in the consultation process carried out in the review of two year old racing. However with the crossover of the review and the issue of race dates it seems only logical that the Breeders Plate be conducted on these dates," Mr Dumesny said. "We will work closely with Leeton and all other clubs to ensure the best outcome for the industry as a whole for the future dates." A $250 nomination fee for the Southern Central Engineering MIA Breeders Plate is due by November 1. The Leeton Harness Racing Club has confirmed The Golden Apple (C0), Bells Produce (C1/C2), Coprice 3yo and the Kriden Park Invitation Ladies race will each be worth $10,000. While Leeton will have a two night carnival during the same period the following year, a new date and format for the Breeders Plate will be announced in the next two months. "We thank HRNSW for its support and allowing us some leeway to race the heats of the Breeders Plate six days earlier than the official start of the two year old season in 2016/17," Leeton Harness Racing Club's President Gary Punch said. "We also look forward to planning our changes for the 2018 season. The Breeders Plate will continue to remain a feature race and we will continue to liaise with HRNSW in selecting the best time to run this race into the future." Greg Hayes

Seven months is a long time for anyone but for Brooklyn Lodge boss Doug Moore it has seemed like an eternity. Doug suffered serious injuries in October last year when he fell six metres while working at his property. Some of Doug's injuries included damaged vertebrae which left him a paraplegic, broken ribs and a broken jaw. The rehabilitation process has been slow and gradual and while it is continuing, he was allowed to return home on Monday. Doug's wife Janet was pleased to return home and the couple are enjoying being back in familiar surroundings. "I spent all but two days in Sydney with Doug since the accident and it was great for us both to return home on Monday, it is something that Doug has been working towards for quite some time," Janet said. "Today (Wednesday) is a special day, we've hired a car with wheelchair access and we are going to take Doug to the top of the hill so he can look down on the property. We will also give him a chance to see the horses, he has been missing home and he's had a lot of time to sit and think." Doug's rehabilitation program has seen him increase his strength in his arm and his shoulders. "He has muscled up in his shoulders and arms through all of the work they did with him. Things could have been worse, we saw people in rehab that had no use of their arms and they were so much worse off than Doug. "Two things that kept Doug alive in the early stages were the horses and the Trotguide. There was no pay television in the hospital and the reception to watch the races on the internet was very slow, but we got the opportunity to watch the races and it kept him in contact with what was going on. "John Dumesny would bring Doug a copy of the Trotguide every week and he would keep up to date with what was happening in the industry." The couple were amazed at the support Doug received while he was in hospital. More than 50 people from the harness racing industry visited during his seven month stay. "It is hard to single people out because you always forget some that have been so helpful. Clients that come to mind are Peter Plummer and Peter and Maureen Green. They continued to visit and keep Doug's spirits up and even during their own tough times they were still there for Doug. "Michelle Manning was great, every time she was on the way to the races she would ring Doug and give him a full run down of what she was going to do. It is people like that who are so special." Doug will need the assistance of carers now that he has returned home and Janet has confirmed two employees will be playing a major role into the future. "Jo Heanes has already completed the course to be Doug's carer in the winter months. She was one of our night watchers during summer and she will still do that helping the mares foal. It is great because Joanne has worked for us for a long time and she is someone that we know well and really trust. "Mal Moody is doing the course at the moment and that will allow him to care for him when they go to the races." Ken Tippet has also helped with Doug's rehabilitation as he has been preparing a two year old trotter named Prosthesis. The son of Rocknroll Hanover broke through for his maiden victory on April 30. "We couldn't wipe the smile off Doug's face for the best part of three days and I think all the nurses and people working with him all had their $2 each way on him. "The sport definitely has some more followers as a result of Doug being in rehabilitation." It is hoped Doug will get back to the races soon. "He's keen to go out to Bathurst tonight (Wednesday) but it will depend on the weather. If he doesn't go I'm sure he will be at the trials next Monday." Greg Hayes

Tabcorp Park Menangle is proud to host the launch of The Joe Ilsley Story - Trotting's Mr 'Nice Guy' written by Peter Collier on Saturday night. Collier has worked on the book for a number of years and has been increasingly busy over the past twelve months collating different harness racing stories and photographs. Collier was only a young boy when he met Joe Ilsley for the first time and spent a lot of time with him and his family before Joe's passing in 2007 at the age of 83. "I spoke with the family last year and asked them if they had any information for the book and I was amazed at all of the stuff they provided me with," Collier said. "I'm a bit fussy and there was a lot of information that had to be researched into Joe's family so that took me a while but I am very proud of the finished product." The feature race at Menangle on Saturday night is the Joe and Michael Ilsley Free For All and the official launch will take place after the race presentation. "I spent a lot of time just talking and listening to Joe, if I had made a time and told him what I was doing he wouldn't have said much but he was just a great talker and I could listen to his stories for hours at a time. "I would go to Morriset and we would just chat, it really has been a labour of love putting this book together." The book will be available for purchase at the Information Office at Menangle and will also be for sale on eBay. "People will be able to get a copy of the book on Saturday night at Menangle and it will go up for sale on eBay on Sunday. I will be having a chat with Garrards Horse & Hound to see if I can get the book into a few of their stores in Queensland and Newcastle as well because I think there would be a number of people in those areas interested in getting their hands on a copy." Greg Hayes

Group CEO of the Cronulla Sharks Mr Lyall Gorman will present the keynote address at Harness Racing New South Wales' Harnessing Our Future Conference in June. Mr Gorman has over 30 years experience in senior management, project management and administration in both the public and private sector. Mr Gorman holds a Masters Degree in Administration with majors in finance, marketing and organisation management and administration. In 2010 Mr Gorman was appointed the boss of the Hyundai A-League before being announced as the founding Executive Chairman of the Western Sydney Wanderers in 2012. In 2014 Mr Gorman 'switched codes' and began his current role with the Sharks. One of his biggest challenges Gorman faced was getting the club back on track after the fall-out from the ASADA investigation which resulted in ten players copping bans. The Sharks have become one of the success stories of the National Rugby League under his leadership and after qualifying for last year's final series are well placed to play a big role in September this year. HRNSW Chief Executive John Dumesny was proud to confirm Mr Gorman as the keynote speaker for the conference and expects the announcement will excite delegates. "Aspects such as leadership, building a winning culture, high performance, brand development and fan engagement are where Lyall specialises and the local harness racing industry will learn something from his knowledge and experience," Mr Dumesny said. "Lyall oversaw the introduction of the Western Sydney Wanderers to the A-League and the team's instant on-field success was driven by a strong administration. He has also revitalised the Sharks into a strong club on and off the field. To have an administrator the quality of Lyall Gorman presenting at the conference is a significant announcement." The Harnessing Our Future Conference will begin on Friday June 24 and conclude on Saturday June 25. The venue is the Campbelltown Catholic Club. More than 20 other speakers have been confirmed for the two-day conference. For more information on the conference or to register click here. Greg Hayes

Forbes will host a Carnival Of Cups meeting on Sunday afternoon and Toby Vautin is hoping to take out the harness racing feature event. Vautin has two runners in the $12,240 Forbes Services Memorial Club Final and both were impressive winners in the heats. Vautin will drive Playful Fella (Artistic Fella) while Casey Williams will partner Early Decision (Dawn Ofa New Day) with both horses set to start off the front row. "It was great to see Playful Fella finally win a race this time in, he has been a little bit frustrating for me and funnily enough I only nominated him for the heats so Early Decision had a travelling companion," Vautin said. "Playful Fella won a number of races early in his career and I decided to give him a good long break after a run at Menangle in January last year. I thought he had the makings of a nice horse and the break might take him to the next level but he has come back and he is not the same horse." Playful Fella defeated Tuapeka Glory in a heat but Vautin has nominated the Wendy Turnbull trained runner as the hardest to beat. "I was able to beat Tuapeka Glory in the heat but it has drawn barrier one this Sunday so it is the logical horse to beat. I'll be trying to get the front early and if I can't I'll race up on the pace because that's where he likes to be. "I actually think Early Decision is the better of my two chances, I'm driving Playful Fella because he can be a bit of a handful to drive." Early Decision has been plagued by bad barrier draws recently and that trend continued this weekend with the gelding set to start from barrier six. "I think he has drawn inside gate five once in his last fourteen or fifteen starts, he is the most honest horse you could find. He tries hard every start you give him and he'll just need a little bit of luck in the early stages. "I will be instructing Casey to come out on him early and look to slot in somewhere. The owners wanted to give Casey a chance to drive him because she helps out around the stable when she can, it was definitely the right thing to do." Early Decision won his heat by more than ten metres and Vautin is confident the gelding can win more races if he can get some luck with the barrier draws. "His luck will come, hopefully he gets the luck on Sunday. If I was to run first and second this weekend I reckon it would make my day a great one." Forbes will run seven races on Sunday with the first timed to begin at 1:20pm. Greg Hayes

Our Waikiki Beach remains unbeaten after 16 runs and a large majority of harness racing followers expect the three year old to make it 17 on Saturday night at Newcastle when he resumes from a short break. The son of Somebeachsomewhere last raced in the New South Wales Derby and after winning that narrowly was taken home to New Zealand to prepare for another raid on the Australian racing riches. Should Our Waikiki Beach win on Saturday night he will join Glenerrol, Lombo La Fe Fe and Auckland Reactor with 17 successive victories and will only be one behind Radiant Venture, Garry's Advice, Take A Moment and I Can Doosit. Courage Under Fire won 24 in a row before he tasted defeat while San Simeon holds the record with 29 straight wins. Owner Trevor Casey will make the trip from New Zealand to Newcastle this Saturday but is not feeling any nerves in the lead up to Our Waikiki Beach's resumption. "I don't get nervous that he is going to lose because all horses get beaten. It is going to happen one night so instead of dreading that moment I'm going to enjoy having him," Casey said. "He is back in New South Wales to target the Alabar Breeders Challenge and then Mark (Purdon) is keen to take him down to Victoria so he can have a crack at the Breeders Crown." Our Waikiki Beach has had two trials in New Zealand and was beaten in both of them however the defeats are of little concern to Casey. "He ran third behind Locharburn in his first trial at Addington and then he went to Rangiora and he went head and head with (My) MacKenzie all the way down the straight and she just pipped him." "Mark is happy with where the horse is at so that gives me confidence and I'm just hoping I can find my way to the track on Saturday night because I have never been there before." Casey would have liked to see Our Waikiki Beach compete in the Jewels but understands why the gelding wasn't invited. "I think the horse would have been a drawcard for the day itself but I understand why he wasn't invited. He hasn't won the prizemoney at home to earn a start, there has been a bit of a fuss made of it here in New Zealand but I accept the final decision. "It wouldn't have been ideal for the horse anyway because he would have had to fly back and forth between New Zealand and Australia which is something he can probably do without." Our Waikiki Beach will compete in race six at Newcastle on Saturday night. Greg Hayes

Roulette is one of the simplest games to play at the casino. Punters can bet on red or black, or can place chips on a number hoping for greater odds. Menangle harness racing trainer Darren McCall has his fingers crossed and hopes the roulette ball drops on 24 black in the Newcastle Mile on Saturday. McCall's leading pacer Bettor Bet Black is aiming for career win 24 on Saturday night and he believes the odds are in his favour. "I'm amazed just how well Bettor Bet Black pulled up after his run in the Bulli Cup last week," McCall said. "I spent a number of years in North America with horses and I've also watched a lot of harness racing in my life and I can't remember horses breaking 25 seconds for a quarter before. Bettor Bet Black ran 24.8 for the first 400 metres last week and I remember looking across at the board during the race thinking that it must have been a mistake." Bettor Bet Black was entitled to stall a long way from home after burning through the first 400 metres but the veteran pacer fought tenaciously in the straight and held on for a credible sixth beaten less than ten metres. "He just got tired in the last 60 metres or so. I was so proud of him, he could have dropped right out but to his credit he stuck it out right to the line. "He was strutting around on Sunday morning like a two year old so it definitely didn't hurt him, if anything it may have actually helped him." McCall had been hoping to have Bettor Bet Black at his peak in the lead up to the Miracle Mile earlier in the year but small setbacks meant the son of Bettor's Delight was underdone going into the qualifiers. "He has had a few little things that have needed to be taken care of and therefore he didn't have the racing that I would have liked going into the Miracle Mile qualifier. He didn't disgrace himself in that and I've only recently been able to get some solid racing into him. "Bettor Bet Black is one of those horses that thrives on racing. He is a lazy trackworker and because of his hard going racing pattern it doesn't make sense to get too aggressive with him when working." Rival trainer Shane Tritton has publically commented Mach Beauty will not engage in an early speed duel with Bettor Bet Black in the Newcastle Mile. "I wouldn't be surprised to see a couple of horses attempt to kick up inside Bettor Bet Black in the early stages because it makes sense that a great spot to be will be on my back because they know I'm going to take them halfway up the straight. "You know what was so scary about his first quarter last week? I only asked him to go when he got to the winning post the first time and I eased him down 80 metres before the quarter so it is scary to think he could have actually gone faster." McCall gives Bettor Bet Black a big chance of winning the Newcastle Mile. "You can see it in the horse's eye when he is at his peak and he is spot on right now, I think he has got a great chance of winning. Avonnova went 1:52.2 winning it in 2014 and I think they'll go something like that again this Saturday night." Greg Hayes

Harness Racing New South Wales will reduce the costs of standing a stallion in the state from the start of the next breeding season. The Board will eliminate all HRNSW fees including the $750 registration fee, while the $110 paid to the controlling body by stallion owners for all Breeders Challenge eligible foals will be abolished for all progeny of NSW resident stallions. HRNSW Chief Executive John Dumesny believes the announcement will be a boost for the owners of stallions and local stud farms. "This initiative compliments the highly successful Colonial Stallion Scheme which demonstrates the HRNSW Board Members are thinking outside of the square when it comes to breeding in the premier state," Mr Dumesny said. Yirribee Stud boss Rod Woodhouse applauded the decision and hopes there will be further announcements in the future to boost breeding in New South Wales. "I think it is going to be a good help, especially abolishing the fee for the Breeders Challenge foals for resident stallions because the competition between states is so fierce for the best stallions," Mr Woodhouse said. "If a stallion is serving 150 mares the money soon adds up and when you are dealing with some of the stallions owners from America they want to know what the cost will be at the bottom line. With the removal of the fee it gets us closer to a level playing field with Victoria. "The announcement certainly won't do us any harm but I think a lot more can be done to attract stallions to New South Wales and importantly keep broodmares here as well." This comes on top of the news that the New South Wales Harness Racing Club will fully subsidise the breeder's payment of the $185 foaling fee for the next three years. Greg Hayes

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