Day At The Track
Search Results
1 to 11 of 11
1

EVERGREEN pacer Mega Alexander is defying the odds and still winning races at the age of 12. Facing a claiming pace at Bankstown tonight with a $6,000 price tag, the gelding added his 32nd victory to his name at Penrith last start. A win tonight will see the son of Barnett Hanover extend his earnings over $300,000 in stakes. Driver Jim Douglass (pictured) believes Mega Alexander could do just that. “He’s been working well and the barrier draw looks good on paper, he will just need some luck,” Douglass said. “It was nice to see him finally get a bit of luck last week and win . . . it was his first win back since having a long spell and first win in two years.” Mega Alexander, a rising 13-year-old, has raced competitively since the age of two and has gathered these statistics without winning a Group race. “He’s happy, fit and healthy and is enjoying himself so we’ll keep going with him,” Douglass said. “The day he shows signs that he doesn’t want to be there, we will pull the pin on his racing career. “But for the moment, he’s a gelding so will only be a paddock horse and he’s fitter and healthier being in work.” Having been trained by eight different mentors along the way, Mega Alexander’s current conditioner is Ian Wilson. The Theresa Park mentor has enjoyed a fruitful season having trained close to 30 winners. A pacer that has added to that number this season is Flirtatious Heart. The mare has won five of her 18 starts this season and will be chasing another victory in tonight’s Bankstown Sunday Markets Pace (2140m). The pair have shared many victories together over the years and tonight will also combine with Informality in the Tuza HR-X Pace (1740m).   AMANDA RANDO HRNSW

Prominent Tasmanian standardbred breeders Fred and Pauline Barker celebrated another harness racing feature race win when a filly they bred, Shezallapples, scored an impressive victory in the Group 1 Alabar NSW Breeders Challenge 2YO Fillies final over 1609 metres at Menangle last Sunday. Shezallapples started as one of the rank outsiders ($91.30) but she proved too good for her rivals scoring by almost three metres from Rocknroll Emma ($6.60) with Im with Lexy a close-up third and well ahead of the $1.50 favourite Don't Think Twice. The win gave driver Jim Douglass his first Group 1 success in his home state and the win also delighted the filly's trainer David Thorn who rated the daughter of Sportswriter-Apple Sorbet a top winning chance going into the race. Shezallapples clocked a mile rate of 1.53.3 to suggest she has a bright future. The Barkers have slowly but surely eased out of standardbred breeding with Apple Sorbet now residing with Ricky Hinds who put the mare to Modern Art which resulted in a filly foal born on Christmas Eve last year. Peter Staples

MIGHTY mare Frith has given trainer-driver Bruce Harpley plenty of headaches in the past six months. "If you went and watched her work you’d wonder if she could ever win anything," grinned Harpley after the four-year-old led most of the way to win Sunday’s Pepper Tree Farm NSW Breeders Challenge for four-year-old mares. Plagued with the widest draw at the top of the track, Harpley made his intentions clear from the start, racing wide until he found the front after his biggest danger, Priceless Gem, went straight to the early lead. The daughter of Four Starzzz Shark then gave nothing else a chance, rating 1:57.7 for her last mile, with a scintillating last half of 54.6 seconds (splits of 27.2 and 27.4 seconds) to easily account for the fast-finishing Bold Life (Jim Douglass) and the plucky Priceless Gem (Daniel Jack). Frith’s 1:57.7 was a track record, breaking Grin For Miss’s track record of 1:58.5 set on June 14, 2014. Owner Dianne Kelly said it was a huge relief to win as Frith had given them a few concerns in recent weeks. "Breaking a track record is a bonus and there would be no-one on this track today happier than my husband Bernie and Bruce [Harpley]," said Kelly. Harpley said he was just happy to get such a great horse back from the Kellys so he could continue was has been a wonderful association. Frith has now won more than $700,000 with 25 wins from just 34 starts in an amazing career which looks far from over. Frith   By Michael Court (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)

The combination of Ian Wilson and Jim Douglass enjoy competing at the Carnival Of Cups around New South Wales and will again be hitting the road this Friday for Temora's feature meeting. Stable star Scandalman will be aiming to emulate Rockets Reject by winning the Temora Cup and Douglass is looking forward to the challenge. "We are going to have Scandalman and Rockets Reject in the Temora Cup, Rockets Reject won it in 2010 as a very short priced favourite and hopefully they both can go well in the race this year," Douglass said. "Scandalman is getting back to his best on the back of some recent hard racing, to be honest I think his best run this preparation was at Bathurst last start in the Shirley Turnbull Memorial when he beaten but if you have a look at the times on the night and take into account that he didn't stop working you have to be impressed." Douglass confirmed Scandalman could be aimed at some rich Victorian features should he perform as expected on Friday night. "Scandalman has qualified from the stand and if he continues to keep getting better then Ian (Wilson) is tossing up whether to go to the Shepparton Cup and maybe even the Hunter Cup but a lot will depend on how he races this week." While the prize money is an attraction at the Carnival Of Cup meetings, Douglass admits the atmosphere at the bush meetings is also a major factor behind the stable targeting the series. "It is a real buzz to drive at the Carnival Of Cup meetings because there is always a big crowd and on the smaller tracks the crowd seems so much closer to you." "Ian and I were actually disappointed we didn't have a horse for the Inter City Pace meeting at Maitland, Scandalman won it last year and nights like those are very special to be a part of." Temora's Carnival Of Cup meeting will be broadcast on Sky Racing 1 this Friday night. Nancy O'Grady | Executive Assistant | Harness Racing New South Wales |    

The TAB Carnival Of Cups will be in full swing over the Christmas and New Year period and Penrith will host a big meeting this Thursday night. The Max Laughton Carnival Of Cups is race five and is the feature race on the card and has attracted a star studded line-up including last start Treuer Memorial winner Washakie. The placegetters from the Treuer Memorial will also compete in Thursday's event with Scandalman looking to return to the winners' list for the first time this campaign after finishing second in Bankstown's Gr. 1 while Freyberg will enjoy returning to the mobile start conditions after finishing down the track in last week's Newcastle Cup. Scandalman's driver Jim Douglass has been happy with the improvement that the five year old stallion has shown this preparation and is expecting the son of Live Or Die to continue on the upward spiral. "During his spell he got very fat and it has taken Ian (Wilson trainer) a while to get him back into peak condition, he had four trials and now with four runs under his belt he is getting back to something like his best," Douglass said. "Ian decided against going to the Newcastle Cup with Scandalman because he had raced weekly since resuming and that will be a bonus going forward." Scandalman will get his chance to turn the tables on Washakie after drawing barrier one in Thursday's feature event. People trackside will be well catered for and with free entry the club is hoping for a bumper crowd. The first of nine races will begin at 6:12pm and there are a number of strong support races on the card. Just by being on course at Penrith on Thursday, patrons will get the chance to go into the draw to win a brand new Toyota Yaris with the winner to be announced at the Harness Racing New South Wales Awards Night next October. Thirty entrants are drawn from all the participating Carnival Of Cup tracks across New South Wales and last year's winner of the car was the Penrith entrant. Nancy O'Grady | Executive Assistant | Harness Racing New South Wales |    

After finishing second in the Treuer Memorial at Bankstown, Jim Douglass believes former Victorian Derby winner Scandalman is nearly back to his best. Scandalman was having his fourth run back from a lengthy spell and has improved steadily with each run this campaign. "Ian (Wilson trainer) gave him four trials to get him ready to race and while the trials were good hit-outs he needed to get some racing under his belt," Douglass said. "He is a stallion and during his break he was very big and fat and it has been a job to get the weight off him but he is definitely getting fitter and fitter with each run." Douglass expected a good performance at Bankstown but was even more confident of a forward showing after completing the warm up. "He felt very sharp in the preliminary on Saturday night, he felt like he was ready to run a race and I actually thought on the turn I was a chance of beating Washakie but he held us to about a length all the way up the straight. "Scandalman won't be going to the Newcastle Cup, he chased very hard in the Treuer and has had four runs in four weeks so he won't be racing this weekend but I'm sure Ian will have him in somewhere the following week, there are a couple of options coming up including the Shirley Turnbull Memorial at Bathurst." Scandalman is still assessed M0 but Douglass expects him to take the next step in his career within twelve months. "I think we all expect this season to be the one when Scandalman starts racing against the better opposition and I'm sure he is ready to make that step up, he will benefit from the experience of chasing home horses like Washakie." "The Treuer was a good race for the stable because Tori Jack finished fifth as well and it was good to see him run so well." Nancy O'Grady | Executive Assistant | Harness Racing New South Wales |              

United Nations International Day of People with Disability   Sydney’s Bankstown Paceway harness racing club will mark the United Nations International Day of People with Disability (on Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013) by partnering with Sylvanvale Disability Services and Civic Lifestyles to host the Inaugural Accessibility Art Exhibition, No Barriers, in the Phil Lopez OBE Grandstand on Group 1 M. H. Treuer Memorial Gala Race Night, Saturday, December 7th, 2013.   ‘United Nations International Day of People with Disability plays an important role in promoting the inclusion of people with disability in all aspects of life – and Bankstown Paceway is elated to join with Sylvanvale Disability Services and Civic Lifestyles in commemorating the abilities and achievements of people with disability,’ Bankstown Paceway director Andrew Ho told Harnesslink.   ‘The International Day of People with Disability provides an opportunity for each and every one of us to increase our awareness of disability and to reflect on the barriers to accessibility,’ Mr Ho said.   ‘No Barriers: The Inaugural Accessibility Art Exhibition at Bankstown Paceway is about all of us recognising and celebrating the achievements of people with disability in our community, continuing our mission to break down barriers for people with disability and opening the doors for an inclusive society through our shared passion for art and the sport of harness racing,’ Mr Ho added.   The Inaugural Accessibility Art Exhibition, No Barriers, will be held in the Phil Lopez OBE Grandstand, Bankstown Paceway, 178 Eldridge Road, Bankstown, on Group 1 M. H. Treuer Memorial Gala Race Night, Saturday, December 7th, 2013, from 5.00 pm.  Entry is free.   A race night dinner at Bankstown Paceway featuring performances from the cast of The Burning Log Comedy Theatre Restaurant, hosted by Sylvanvale Disability Services and Civic Lifestyles, will also be held on the night.  Bookings can be made by calling 1300 843 564 or 1300 THE LOG.   Day and night racing returns to Bankstown Paceway   ‘Afternoon harness racing – as well as the spectacle of night racing under the ribbon of light – will return to Condell Park’s Bankstown Paceway trotting track for the Allied Express Summer Carnival of Harness Racing which begins on Monday afternoon, December 2nd, 2013,’ Bankstown Paceway director Andrew Ho has told Harnesslink.   ‘This will be followed by the historic 30th Anniversary Group 1 M. H. Treuer Memorial Gala Race Night on Saturday, December 7th, 2013, Sydney Christmas Cup on Monday, December 16th, 2013, Elvis Birthday Race Day on Friday, January 3rd, 2014, Year of the Horse Race Day on Monday, February 3rd, 2014, and Cancer Council Relay for Life Race Day on Friday, February 28th, 2014,’ Mr Ho said.   ‘Harness racing’s “King of Condell Park”, dual Bankstown Paceway annual drivers premiership winner Josh Willick, hopes to make it three years in row – taking an early lead in the 2013/14 season following his breathtaking five race wins during the Bankstown City Council Cup Carnival of Harness Racing,’ he said.   ‘The 2008 Grand Circuit race winning driver and the only Condell Park resident in a generation to personally claim the coveted Group 1 M. H. Treuer Memorial trophy (with Robin Hood) has been named “Driver of the Year” for the last two seasons – after defeating his Ellis Street neighbour, triple Group 1 race winning driver Lauren Panella.   ‘The Condell Park dad currently leads the 2013/14 drivers premiership on seventeen points from his five race wins and one placing.   ‘He is followed by last year’s state drivers premiership winner Amanda Turnbull on fourteen points from her two wins and four placings,  former Bankstown Paceway board member Glenn McElhinney on eleven points from his three wins and one placing, Colin McDowell and David Morris on eight points each, Steve Turnbull on six points, Jim Douglass, Blake Fitzpatrick and Robert Morris on five points each, and Kylie Barnes and Mat Rue on three points each,’ Mr Ho added.   Racecourse entry is free for all harness race meetings at Condell Park’s Bankstown Paceway, 178 Eldridge Road, Bankstown, which will be held on the following days during the Allied Express Summer Carnival of Harness Racing: Monday 2 December 2013 – Race 1 at 1.39 pm (Gates open at 11 am) – M. H. Treuer Memorial Prelude Race Day (Day Race Meeting); SATURDAY 7 DECEMBER 2013 – Race 1 at 6.10 pm (Gates open at 5 pm) – 30TH ANNIVERSARY GROUP 1 M. H. TREUER MEMORIAL GALA RACE NIGHT (NIGHT RACE MEETING); Monday 16 December 2013 – Race 1 at 1.39 pm (Gates open at 11 am) – Christmas Cup Race Day (Day Race Meeting); Friday 3 January 2014 – Race 1 at 2.04 pm – Elvis Birthday Race Day (Day Race Meeting); Monday 3 February 2014 – Race 1 after 1 pm – Year of the Horse New Year Cup Race Day (Day Race Meeting); and Friday 28 February 2014 – Race 1 after 1 pm – Cancer Council Relay for Life Race Day (Day Race Meeting). Bookings for race day lunch and race night dining packages can be made at admin@bankstownpaceway.com.au or on 02 9708 4111.   By Megan J Lavender  

‘Harness racing’s “King of Condell Park”, dual Bankstown Paceway annual drivers premiership winner Josh Willick, hopes to make it three years in row – taking an early lead in the 2013/14 season following his breathtaking five race wins during the Bankstown City Council Cup Carnival of Harness Racing,’ Bankstown Paceway president Les Bentley has told Harnesslink. ‘The 2008 Grand Circuit race winning driver and the only Condell Park resident in a generation to personally claim the coveted Group 1 M. H. Treuer Memorial trophy (with Robin Hood) has been named “Driver of the Year” for the last two seasons – after defeating his Ellis Street neighbour, triple Group 1 race winning driver Lauren Panella,’ Mr Bentley said. ‘The Condell Park dad currently leads the 2013/14 drivers premiership on seventeen points from his five race wins and one placing,’ the president said. ‘He is followed by last year’s state drivers premiership winner Amanda Turnbull on fourteen points from her two wins and four placings, former Bankstown Paceway board member Glenn McElhinney on eleven points from his three wins and one placing, Colin McDowell and David Morris on eight points each, Steve Turnbull on six points, Jim Douglass, Blake Fitzpatrick and Robert Morris on five points each, and Kylie Barnes and Mat Rue on three points each,’ Mr Bentley added. Photo: The King of Condell Park, 2011/12 and 2012/13 Bankstown Paceway Driver of the Year Joshua Willick, claims victory in the Allied Express Pace with five year old brown gelding Ambush Prince for trainer Dean McDowell. Megan J. Lavender

Three individual Group One winners are engaged in Saturday's (March 16) Cordina Chicken Farms Young Cup and while Scandalman might be giving away a lot of experience to his main rivals Washakie and Our Sixpence, driver Jim Douglass is not conceding defeat just yet.

With regular harness racing driver Jimmy Douglass sidelined through suspension, Gavin Fitzpatrick has been handed the reins for exciting four year old Scandalman in the Hondo Grattan Stakes at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night (February 16).

Sydney harness racing reinsman Jim Douglass is hoping his good strike rate at Maitland's paceway will continue when he heads to the Hunter Valley on Saturday night for the KS Black & Co Carnival Of Cups meeting featuring the running of the 50th Inter City Pace. Douglass will drive the Ian Wilson trained Scandalman in the $50,000 event after a dominant victory in the heats.

1 to 11 of 11
1