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TO win a Group One is always a great feat – to win two, with the same horse, is something extra special. So high-profile breeder Paul Kahlfeldt as well as the “gun” training-driving partnership of Belinda and Luke McCarthy felt like they had climbed the mountain when three-year-old Art Major gelding Lettucerockthem took out Sunday’s $100,000 Pepper Tree Farm NSW Breeders Challenge three-year-old colts and geldings’ final at Tabcorp Park Menangle. Reinsman Luke, who speared to the front from gate nine and led all the way to win, later explained that connections had always had a high opinion of Lettucerockthem and now most harness racing fans would know why. “He had a bit of a gut buster first-up from a spell and that seemed to really set him back a bit,” McCarthy said. “After that it took us a while to get him back to his best. We’ve got him right again now and he showed today what he could do with that terrific effort.” Lettucerockthem had his main danger, Theartofconfusion ($2.80 favourite), stuck outside him and there he stayed until he began to give ground on the home turn, fading to finish ninth. It was left to El Fuego (Josh Willick) to chase Lettucerockthem down, finishing 7.9m away in second spot, with Ideal Legacy (Bruce Birch) third in a 1:59.3 mile rate, with the last half run in a slashing 54 seconds. Luke said races like next year’s Chariots Of Fire and, the following year, the Miracle Mile were likely long-term targets for Lettucerockthem. Lettucerockthem   By Michael Court (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)

Former New Zealand mare Simple Saver, who was sent to New South Wales trainer Kevin Pizutto by Motueka's Dave Neal on the advice of her former trainers' Peter & Leonne Jones, kept her perfect Australian record intact when notching up her seventh straight victory at Tabcorp Park Menangle tonight. The five-year-old daughter of Live Or Die and good producer Debbie Duck, was buzzed off the gate by Josh Willick, who has steered the talented mare to all seven of her Australian victories, before dictating terms in front and kicking too strongly in the stretch to post an impressive time of 1-52.9. The mare that possess great gatespeed has continued to step up since arriving across the ditch and is now likely to compete in the $50,000 Robin Dundee Classic next Saturday on a card which will be made up of ten group or listed races, headlined by the $750,000 Miracle Mile. "Peter (Jones) told me that this mare would do a great job in New South Wales, but I'm not sure of either of us thought she would go this good," explained Neal. "Debbie Duck has been a great producer for me over the years and we rate Simple Saver's younger brother who is by Major In Art a fair bit as well," he added. Simple Saver won three races while trained by Peter and Leonne Jones in New Zealand. Her last start in the country resulted in a third in the Nelson Cup Meanwhile, New Zealand mare Elusive Chick disappointed in the same race, fading to finish sixth after racing outside Simple Saver. By Mitchell Robertson

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

‘“King Joshua” may not be the name of the new royal baby, but Bankstown Paceway member and harness racing reinsman Josh Willick will be re-enthroned as the “King of Condell Park” after winning trotting’s very own game of thrones – the 2012/13 Annual Sydney Drivers Premiership – for the second consecutive year in a row,’ Bankstown Paceway president Les Bentley has announced. ‘The 2008 Grand Circuit race winning driver and the only Condell Park horseman in a generation to personally claim the coveted Group 1 M. H. Treuer Memorial trophy will be crowned as the 2012/13 Sydney Driver of the Year at a star studded awards dinner on Bankstown City Cup Gala Race Night, Friday, August 23rd, 2013,’ Mr Bentley told Harnesslink. ‘With seventy two premiership points from his fifteen race victories and sixteen placings for the year, the Ellis Street dad claimed the mantle of Sydney harness racing’s hegemon – defeating triple Group 1 race winner Lauren Panella on sixty five points from her fifteen wins and twelve placings,’ the president said. ‘They were followed by Bankstown born Blake Fitzpatrick and former Bankstown Paceway board member Glenn McElhinney both on forty nine points, Jim Douglas on forty four points, Robert Morris on forty points, David Morris on twenty nine points, Darren Binskin on twenty one points, and Amy Day and John Ogden both on nineteen points,’ Mr Bentley added. Joshua Willick will be officially installed as the 2012/13 Sydney Driver of the Year on Bankstown City Cup Gala Race Night, Friday, August 23rd, 2013, at the heart of Australian harness racing, Sydney’s Bankstown Paceway, 178 Eldridge Road, Bankstown – with the first race set to start at 6.30 pm. Gates open at 5.30 pm and bookings for either the VIP awards dinner ($80 per person) or Champions Restaurant buffet dinner ($40 per person) can be made by contacting Bankstown Paceway directly on telephone 02 9708 4111 or via email at racing@bankstownpaceway.com.au SYDNEY DRIVERS PREMIERSHIP 2012-2013 For the period from 1 July 2012 to 30 June 2013   DRIVER 1STS 2NDS 3RDS TOTAL POINTS WILLICK, JOSH 15 11 5 72 PANELLA, LAUREN 15 8 4 65 FITZPATRICK, BLAKE 9 10 2 49 MCELHINNEY, GLENN 7 8 12 49 DOUGLASS, JIM 7 8 7 44 MORRIS, ROBERT 5 7 11 40 MORRIS, DAVID 7 3 2 29 BINSKIN, DARREN 4 3 3 21 DAY, AMY 4 3 1 19 OGDEN, JOHN 3 4 2 19  

'Instead of pistols at ten paces, it will be ten pacing races this Friday night, May 31st, that will determine just who will lay claim to the coveted crown jewels of Condell Park in the battle to be crowned the 2013 Condell Park Produce Premiership Driver of the Year,' according to Bankstown Paceway director Andrew Ho.

Joshua Willick will be officially crowned as the "King of Condell Park" this coming Thursday, August 16th, 2012, at a right royal coronation ceremony as part of the Bankstown City Cup gala harness racing awards and race night to held at Bankstown Paceway,' Bankstown Paceway director Megan Lavender announced today.

'Sydney's leading harness racing reinsman Joshua Willick - dubbed the "King of Condell Park" - has done his subjects proud again this week by scoring a hattrick of wins at Sydney's harness racing home, Bankstown Paceway, on Our Sir Vancelot Heritage Race Day, Monday, April 30th, 2012,' Bankstown Paceway director Megan Lavender told Harnesslink this morning.

'While Condell Park's Joshua Willick looks to have a seemingly unbeatable lead to be this year's leading driver at the undisputed home of Sydney harness racing, Bankstown Paceway, the race for who will claim the title of harness racing trainer of the year is wide open,' Bankstown Paceway president Les Bentley has exclusively revealed to Harnesslink.

Bankstown Paceway president Les Bentley has lauded the efforts of 'two of harness racing's finest participants'. Mr Bentley was speaking at the Paceway's coveted annual awards presentation which was held on Bankstown City Council Cup Race Night last Friday, August 26th.

Robin Hood hinted that back to back wins in the SEW-Eurodrive Victoria Cup might not be out of the question with a dominant victory in tonight's $125,000 Group 1 Treuer Memorial at Bankstown in western Sydney.

Scorpion Moon returned to his home track and captured the featured trot, while Fern Paquet, Jr. achieved his 2,000th career driving victory at Vernon Downs on Thursday night, Oct. 9.

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