Search Results
1 to 16 of 1820
1 2 3 4 5 Next »

Greg and Skye Bond, the State’s leading harness racing trainers, were shattered 12 months ago when Our Jimmy Johnstone received a fractured leg in a stable mishap and had to miss the 2015 interdominion championship series. But now they are in a buoyant, optimistic mood and are looking forward to the eight-year-old performing strongly in the rich TABtouch interdominion championship series which gets under way with the opening set of heats at Gloucester Park on November 25. Our Jimmy Johnstone will reappear after a three-month absence when Ryan Warwick drives him in the 2016 TABtouch Interdominion Begins Nov. 25 Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He will start from the outside barrier (No. 9), but has the class to overcome that disadvantage and get his championship campaign away to a flying start. “He was set for last year’s Inters, but he got kicked in one of his front legs in the paddock and we had to tip him out for several months,” Greg Bond said. “He suffered a hairline fracture to his leg, but has made a complete recovery.” The untimely injury kept Our Jimmy Johnstone out of action for nine months before he resumed racing in the final week of last May when he finished a close second to Mighty Flying Thomas. Our Jimmy Johnstone soon struck top form and won at three of his final four starts before going for a brief spell early in August. “Friday night’s race is really just a start-off point heading towards the Inters,” Bond said. “We thought that we would take the softer option (contesting a C10 to C15-class event) rather than run in the open-class event. “I don’t think we’ll come out all guns a blazing; we’ll probably let him find his feet and he can work into the race whenever Ryan thinks it is appropriate, at the 1100m or 1000m. His performance will give us a good gauge to where he’s at. “This will be a good platform to begin his campaign. We’ll probably give him a couple of more starts before the heats. He is pretty fit and forward and I expect him to be very competitive this week. After his latest run he had a couple of weeks in the paddock and then we brought him back and worked him up, nice and slow, just to get the miles into his legs. “He’s had a fair amount of work and his work would suggest he’s going to be right in the finish in Friday night’s race, for sure. “If John of Arc (drawn out wide at No. 8) goes forward gets to the breeze, and they walk, then John of Arc, who is a quality horse, will be hard to beat. But if it is a genuinely-run race it will bring Our Jimmy Johnstone right into it. “Our Jimmy Johnstone is no Lennytheshark or Hectorjayjay, but he is a horse capable of running fast times. If he is not over-taxed early in the Inters races, he should be hitting the line as well as most of the other horses.” The injury-plagued John of Arc, trained at Herron in the South-West of the State by Clive Dalton, should be close to his peak after two excellent efforts since resuming after an eight-month absence. He raced wide early and then in the breeze when a close first-up fourth behind Ima Connoisseur on September 30 and then two weeks later he had a similar run when a well-beaten second to the brilliant Chicago Bull. The Bonds will also be represented in Friday night’s race by Bettor Offer and Bounty Eyre and Gary Hall sen. will be looking for forward showings from his smart mares Ideal Alice and Delightful Jade. Bond declared that Our Jimmy Johnstone was his No. 1 hope for the Inters, ahead of Simply Susational, Phoenix Warrior, Delightful Offer and Ima Connoisseur. Ima Connoisseur notched his fifth win in a row when he gave a typical strong frontrunning performance to win at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon.  But Bond ranks the speedy five-year-old behind stablemates Simply Susational and Delightful Offer as an Inters prospect. “Ima Connoisseur is still developing as a horse and at this stage the other ones are a bit more hardened and seasoned. However, he is improving all the time and with his gate speed he’ll definitely be able to be up there in the firing line. But a lot depends on whether he has the mental toughness at the moment to handle racing against the best.” Ken Casellas

Busselton owner-trainer Barry Howlett and young harness racing driver Kiara Davies are on the crest of a wonderful winning wave and they have bright prospects of landing a double at Gloucester Park on Friday night with smart New Zealand-bred pacers Three Blind Mice and Fay Darling. Three Blind Mice is favourably drawn at barrier three in the $20,000 Slater Gartrell Sports Interdominion Ladies Luncheon Pace in which he will be strongly fancied. And the well-bred Fay Darling also will start from the No. 3 barrier and looks hard to beat in the $18,000 The Sports Daily On TAB Radio Pace. The 26-year-old Davies has struck a purple patch, with her most recent eight drives producing four wins, two seconds, a third and a seventh placing.  She also is in dazzling form behind Howlett-trained horses, with her past 15 drives for the stable producing eight wins, six behind the trotter Sunnys Little Whiz and one each behind Fay Darling and Major Stare. Davies, whose recent wins include a surprise victory behind Tanaka Eagle, a $42.30 outsider last Friday night, is driving with renewed confidence and admirable flair. Her 962 drives in a blossoming career have netted 88 wins and 175 placings. Howlett has had 574 starters as a trainer for 76 wins and 117 placings. Six-year-old Three Blind Mice, winner of the 2014 WA Derby, is ready to end a losing sequence of nine, stretching back to his victory in a 2500m stand at Bunbury last February. Howlett predicts that the gelding will be hard to beat at his third run after a spell. “He has enjoyed a good spell and his recent runs will have him close to his top,” he said. “He has had no major problems, but has always had a few little issues.” Davies has driven Three Blind Mice only three times for a second, a third and a fifth. Three Blind Mice raced in the breeze for the first 800m and then set the pace before finishing second to the talented Mynameskenny over 2100m at Bunbury last Saturday night when the final quarters were run in 28.2sec. and 27.7sec. Three Blind Mice’s clash with former Victorian pacer Cut For An Ace will create considerable interest. The nine-year-old Cut For An Ace has a losing sequence of 31 since his most recent success, at Melton in October 2013, has won 14 times from 94 starts. It is interesting to note that four starts ago, at Cranbourne in March 2015, he finished fourth in a 2080m event behind current star pacer Hectorjayjay. Cut For An Ace, trained at Pinjarra by Michael Brennan, will be driven by his nephew Michael Grantham and will start from barrier four, alongside Three Blind Mice. At his only appearance in Western Australia Cut For An Ace raced in the breeze for much of the way before finishing third behind Vanquished and Master Jaxon. Friday night’s race also includes another former Victorian performer, nine-year-old Jaccka Luke, to be driven by Chris Voak for Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri. Jaccka Luke, unplaced at his first three WA starts, has not been successful since his all-the-way success over 2240m at Swan Hill in January 2014. Fay Darling is a lightly-raced New Zealand-bred mare who has won at four of her 14 starts. A winner in Albany last February, Fay Darling has resumed after a long spell in fine form with a close first-up second to Now I Get Around over 2185m at Pinjarra followed by an impressive fast-finishing win over Sea Me Smile and Now I Get Around at Pinjarra a week later. Few of Fay Darling’s nine rivals have shown much form in recent months. Her chief opposition is likely to come from Zacharia, Franco Joaquin and Qtown Rip Roaring. Ken Casellas

Star pacer Dodolicious finished third in a trial at Byford on Sunday morning, but harness racing co-trainer Greg Bond is bubbling with confidence about the four-year-old’s prospects in her first-up assignment in the $18,500 TABtouch Interdominion Barrier Draw December 4 Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. “She’s ready to go and it’s a nice drawing barrier two,” Bond said. “It looks a good race for her to start this campaign. She’s ready to win first-up. We’ve been taking our time with her; she has been in work for a fair time and we’re very happy with her work.” Dodolicious, winner of the WA Oaks last season and amassing $405,613 in prizemoney from 13 wins and seven seconds from just 22 starts, finished third, two and a half length behind the winner New World Order in a 2185m trial at Byford on Sunday morning. But Bond warned punters to take little notice of her defeat, saying: “It was just a quiet trial for her. We have changed some gear on her, including removing the lugging pole,” he said. “So we took her to the trials just to get accustomed to the change of gear and to make sure that we were happy with it all. “She went back to last and hit the line full of running. Her final half was pretty slick and she did it well within herself.” Bond explained that Dodolicious was not asked for a strong effort in the trial because she had worked impressively on the stable’s private track on Friday morning. “It was a pretty good hit-out on Friday morning when we asked her to knuckle down to it --- and she beat one of our open-class horses,” he said. Dodolicious, who will be having her first start since the second week of July, will be set for the $125,000 Mares Classic at Gloucester Park on December 9 if her form warrants a start. “She has just turned four and we’re going to let her tell us if she’s ready for these big races,” Bond said. “We’re hoping that her form in the next three to four weeks dictates that she  is worthy of going into a race like that.  It’s her in our own back yard and we won’t be afraid to have a crack.”  Dodolicious, the least experienced runner in Friday night’s race, will be driven by Ryan Warwick, who has shot to an early lead on the Statewide drivers’ premiership table. Warwick has driven 37 winners and leads from Gary Hall jun. (27) and Chris Lewis (23). Dodolicious, a smart frontrunner, might have to be content racing in the breeze because the Mike Reed-trained Foxy Dame has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier and is an excellent frontrunner. Mary Catherine will start from barrier three and should also be prominent. She has finished second to Royal Myth and Hidden Bad at her past two outings and is sure to break through for another win in the near future. Ken Casellas

All-conquering pacer Chicago Bull should continue on his winning ways by proving too good for his 11 harness racing rivals in the $25,000 Preux Chevalier Classic over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He is racing with such dash and enthusiasm for ace trainer Gary Hall sen. and star reinsman Gary Hall jun. that he should have little difficulty in overcoming the disadvantage of starting out wide at barrier seven on the front line. The winner of the WA Derby last April, the New Zealand-bred Chicago Bull has an outstanding record in Western Australia where his 16 starts have produced 13 wins, one second and two thirds. He is well and truly on target for a trio of rich feature events at Gloucester Park --- the McInerney7 Ford Classic on November 25, the Four-Year-Old Championship on December 2 and the Golden Nugget Championship on December 9. Chicago Bull gave another sample of his class at his latest appearance when he scored a runaway win over open-class performers and TABtouch interdominion championship hopes John of Arc and Billies A Star, rating 1.5.48 over 2130m last Friday week. He started from the No. 6 barrier and raced three wide early before bursting to the front after 700m. He dashed over the final three quarters in 28.7sec., 27.6sec. and 28.2sec. to beat John of Arc by more than three lengths. The Colin Brown-trained Franco Rayner was also an impressive winner last Friday week when Maddison Brown drove him with great assurance to an all-the-way success over Livura and Mach Time. But Franco Rayner's rate of 1.57.8 was considerably inferior to that recorded by Chicago Bull. The Hall stable holds a strong hand in Friday night's event, with Overboard Again (barrier two), King Lebron (four) and Mach Time (inside of the back line). Overboard Again was untroubled to race without cover before proving too strong for his rivals in winning from King Lebron at a 1.55.9 rate over 2130m last Friday night when Mach Time was an unlucky third behind Tanaka Eagle and Limelight Bay. He covered extra ground early before getting to the front after 700m, but was hampered by a punctured sulky tyre over the final 1400m. The Hall stable also has excellent prospects of winning the Book Now For The TABtouch Interdominion   Pace with Beaudiene Boaz, who has been unplaced at his two starts since smashing the track record for 2130m on September 30 when he scored a runaway victory over Bettors Fire. Beaudiene Boaz had a tough run in the Mount Eden Pace last Friday night when he raced three wide early and then in the breeze before fighting on to finish fourth behind the pacemaker Libertybelle Midfrew. The opposition is not as strong this week and he is capable of overcoming the wide draw at No. 7 and winning from Elegant Christian. Ken Casellas

Six-year-old Libertybelle Midfrew has struck peak form and is poised to become at Gloucester Park on Friday night, only the eighth harness racing mare in the 62-year history of the Mount Eden Pace to win the Group 3 $50,000 feature event. Her prospects in Friday night’s event  soared when she drew the prized No. 1 barrier and Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed and reinsman Shannon Suvaljko are planning for an all-the-way victory. In a major departure from the norm, the race will be decided over 2130m. The Mount Eden Sprint has been run over 1730m or 1700m for many years. The only mares to have won the Mount Eden Sprint, formerly known as the State Sprint Championship, and first run in 1955 when Bernie Cushing drove Village Chief to victory, are Dainty’s Daughter (1970), Pyramus (1971), Virgil Queen (1977), Kiwi Cloud (1978), Line On (1986), Whitbys Miss Penny (1992) and Sensational Gabby (2014). Reed has yet to train a winner of the Mount Eden Sprint, while Suvaljko will be keen to replicate his effort in 2010 when he drove 6/1 chance Real Life to an all-the-way win from barrier three in the Mount Eden Sprint. Reed has the high-priced New Zealand-bred Libertybelle Midfrew well and truly on track to be a major player in the TABtouch interdoiminion championship, which will get under way with the opening set of heats at Gloucester Park on November 25. The Christian Cullen mare started from barrier six and was a 25/1 chance in the 2015 Mount Eden Sprint when she finished strongly from seventh at the bell to be third behind Waylade and My Hard Copy. She also contested the 2014 Mount Eden Sprint when she started from barrier four and at 9/2. She ran home solidly, out wide, from eighth at the bell to be fifth behind Sensational Gabby. Libertybelle Midfrew cashed in on the preferential conditions for the 2536m Media Guild Cup and the 2130m Stratton Cup at her past two starts. Suvaljko made the most of the No. 1 barrier in both events in which Libertybelle Midfrew was untroubled to set the pace and win. She beat the fast-finishing Heez On Fire by a half-length in the Media Guild Cup and she sprinted over the final three quarters in 28.5sec., 27.3sec. and 28.1sec. when she scored by 4m from The Bucket List and Bettors Fire in the Stratton Cup. Her most recent success improved her record to 49 starts for 18 wins and 11 placings for earnings of $607,497.    Only two pacers have won the Mount Eden Sprint twice ---- Kolworth in 1961 and 1963 and Im Themightyquinn in 2011 and 2012. Trainer-reinsman Kyle Harper’s hopes of winning the Mount Eden Sprint again with Bettors Fire were dampened to a degree when the outstanding eight-year-old drew the outside barrier (No. 9). Bettors Fire led from the No. 1 barrier in 2013 when he defeated Im Victorious by almost three lengths at a 1.53.8 rate over 1730m. Then a year later Bettors Fire was a 20/1 chance when he surged home from the rear to be third behind Sensational Gabby. In last year’s race, Bettors Fire (14/1) thundered home from last the bell to be fourth behind Waylade. Last year’s winner Waylade will start from the No. 4 barrier on Friday night, but he faces a hard task after being unplaced at his past four starts. Waylade is one of five runners in the race prepared by champion trainer Gary Hall sen. Hall’s chief hope looks certain to be the brilliant five-year-old Beaudiene Boaz, who is awkwardly drawn at barrier seven on the front line. In the Stratton Cup last Friday week Beaudiene Boaz was restrained at the start from barrier six and raced at the rear in the field of eight before starting a three-wide move 550m from home. He fought on determinedly to finish sixth, three lengths behind the winner. The final fast sectionals recorded by Libertybelle Midfrew set Beaudiene Boaz a hopeless task. A week earlier Beaudiene Boaz gave a sample of his great class when he rated 1.52.9 to smash the track record for 2130m in winning the Navy Cup by two and a half lengths from the pacemaker Bettors Fire. Gary Hall jun. sent Beaudiene Boaz forward with a three-wide move from last with 1050m to travel and the Badlands Hanover stallion burst to the front 680m from home. His final quarters were run in 27.3sec. and 28.2sec. Comeback pacer Heez On Fire, now trained by Bill Horn, is ideally drawn on the inside of the back line and the WA-bred seven-year-old should enjoy a perfect run behind the likely pacemaker Libertytbelle Midfrew. Heez On Fire, to be handled by Chris Lewis, enjoyed an ideal passage, one-out and one-back, when fifth behind Libertybelle Midfrew in the Stratton Cup last Friday week. That followed his eye-catching first-up effort a fortnight earlier when he was eighth and last 250m from home before sprinting brilliantly in the straight to finish second, just a half-length behind Libertybelle Midfrew. Ken Casellas

Leading harness racing trainers Greg and Skye Bond are setting a scorching pace in the early stages of the 2016-17 season and their ten runners, all bred in New Zealand, will have a massive following at Gloucester Park on Friday night. They have bright prospects of making a flying start by winning the second event, the $20,000 Clipsal By Schneider Pace, with Risk, a highly-promising five-year-old by Changeover. Risk, to be driven by Ryan Warwick, faces a stern test from the outside (No. 9) in the 2130m event. But he has the class to overcome that disadvantage. He started from the No. 9 barrier at his most recent appearance, over 2130m on September 23 when he raced in ninth and last position before dashing forward, three wide, to be fourth at the bell. He fought on grandly to finish second, just one metre behind Mynameskenny when the final quarters whizzed by in 27.8sec. and 28.3sec. His first five starts in WA have produced three wins and two seconds. His chief rival on Friday night is likely to be stablemate Burning, who is ideally drawn at barrier one. Burning raced three back on the pegs before running home solidly to be fourth behind Chicago Bull over 2130m last Friday night. He also produced a powerful burst when second to stablemate Ima Connoisseur two starts before that. Last-start winners Commander Chapel (Chris Lewis), Jambiani (Chris Voak) and Firebomb (Shannon Suvaljko) also will have admirers. The Bond stable has established a commanding early lead on the WA Statewide trainers’ premiership table, with 41 winners, followed by Gary Hall sen. (17) and Ross Olivieri (12). The Bonds also head the national table, with Queensland’s Chantal Turpin in second place with 29 winners. Warwick is in devastating form in the sulky and he leads the WA premiership table with 34 winners, well ahead of Gary Hall jun. (21), Chris Lewis (20), Nathan Turvey (18) and Michael Grantham (17). Warwick also leads the national list, 13 winners ahead of Queensland’s Shane Graham. He boasts a tremendous winning strike rate of 40 per cent.    Like the Bonds, Hall sen. has ten runners, all bred in New Zealand, engaged at the ten-event program on Friday night. All have sound prospects, with his best chances likely to be Beaudiene Boaz, Tact Major, King Lebron and Mach Time.  Ken Casellas

Versatile harness racing pacer The Revolution continues to impress with his wholehearted efforts and he will pay to follow. The WA-bred five-year-old, owned and trained by Kody Charles, looks ideally placed at barrier two in the third heat of the Princi Butchers Preux Chevalier Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night in which he will again be driven by Nathan Turvey. The Revolution started from the inside of the back line and raced three back on the pegs in fifth position before finishing with a sparkling late burst to be second to the pacemaker Rycroft over 2130m last Friday night. He raced without cover for much of the way when a fighting third behind Kurious at his previous outing and before that he impressed when he surged home from last at the bell to be a half-head second to Tact Major. His latest success was when he led from barrier three and beat Loaded Aussie over 2130m early last March. The Revolution, by Canadian sire Northern Luck, is the first foal out of My Royal Doreen, who was retired after having six starts as a two-year-old in 2010 for wins at Gloucester Park and Geraldton. The Revolution is sure to be seriously tested by the two youngest runners in the race, talented four-year-olds Overboard Again and King Lebron, who are racing with great heart for leading trainer Gary Hall sen. Overboard Again has revealed excellent fighting qualities in his five wins and two seconds from his 11 starts. He is handily placed at barrier three on Friday night. King Lebron, who will start from the outside of the back line, has won at eight of his 20 starts. He dashed to an early lead and sprinted over the final quarters in 27.7sec. and 28sec. when he won in good style from Borntobeanartist at a 1.57.2 rate over 2130m on Tuesday of last week. The Storm Chief can end losing run of 29 Victorian-bred pacer The Storm Chief has a modest winning strike rate of just nine per cent and will start from the outside of the back line in the 2130m Choices Flooring Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. But he has sound prospects of breaking through for an overdue victory and ending a losing sequence of 29. Trained at West Swan by Merv Jupp, The Storm Chief caught the eye at Northam on Sunday afternoon when he was ninth at the bell before unleashing a sparkling sprint 500m from home which took him on terms with the hot favourite and pacemaker Chuck Norris on the home turn. Chuck Norris survived the scare and dug deep to win by just over a half-length from The Storm Chief after a final quarter in 28.2sec. The Storm Chief, who will again by driven by Michael Grantham on Friday night, has won seven times from 81 starts, but has chalked up 34 minor placings. His most recent success was over 1800m at Globe Derby Park last November when he raced behind the pacemaker and took full advantage of the sprint lane. Giuliana Rancic, who has a losing sequence of 16, will start alongside The Storm Chief on the back line and will have many admirers after some sound recent efforts. The Ross Olivieri-trained Frostyflyer will be driven by Chris Lewis from barrier six on the front line and is likely to be the opening favourite. He started from the back line and raced in eighth position before Lewis started a three-wide move 650m from home. Frostyflyer dashed into second place at the 300m mark before wilting slightly to finish fourth behind Rycroft. He is sure to appreciate weaker opposition this week. Ken Casellas

Smart harness racing five-year-old Quite A Delight will reappear after an absence of five months when she contests the $20,000 Slater-Gartrell Sports Pace for mares at Gloucester Park on Friday night. She boasts a splendid record of nine wins and seven placings from 20 starts and has the potential to develop into a leading candidate for the $125,000 Mares Classic at Gloucester Park on December 9. Boyanup trainer-reinsman Justin Prentice has the happy knack of producing his pacers in excellent condition for strong first-up performances and Quite A Delight is sure to prove hard to beat on Friday night, despite the disadvantage of starting out wide from barrier eight on the front line in the 2130m event. The Bettor's Delight mare has been wonderfully consistent and has been unlucky in feature events, finishing second to Nuala in the group 2 Dainty’s Daughter Classic in February 2015, a nose second to stablemate Major Reality in the group 1 WA Oaks in May 2015 and third to Major Reality and Tricky Styx in the group 2 Empress Stakes last February. Baileys Gold and Lovers Prayer, favourably drawn on the front line, are sure to be prominent and Baldivis trainer Nathan Turvey holds a strong hand with three runners, Anna Faye, Royal Myth and Hidden Bad. Turvey will handle Royal Myth, a winner at nine of her 20 starts, and he has engaged Clint Hall to drive Anna Faye and Chris Lewis for Hidden Bad. Royal Myth was an easy all-the-way winner two starts ago, but she faces a stiff test from out wide at No. 7 on the front line on Friday night. Anna Faye, who will start from barrier four on the front line, was an all-the-way winner over 2185m at Pinjarra two starts ago and then enjoyed an ideal passage, one-out and one-back, before finishing strongly to be a head second to Baileys Gold over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Tuesday of last week. Hidden Bad won for the 14th time from 48 starts when she was untroubled to lead and beat Mary Catherine at Gloucester Park last Friday night, rating a smart 1.56.4 over 2130m. Hidden Bad has the disadvantage of starting from the outside of the back line on Friday night, but cannot be disregarded as an each-way prospect. Ken Casellas

Star pacer Elegant Christian, beaten into last place, 24 lengths behind the record-breaking Beaudiene Boaz last Friday week to give him the unwanted record of three unplaced efforts in a row for the first time in a glittering harness racing career, is poised to bounce back to his best by winning the $23,000 Fred Doy Memorial Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The brilliant six-year-old fared well in the random draw and should burst to an early lead from the No. 3 barrier on the front line in the 2130m mobile event. Clint Hall had no hesitation in opting to drive the Clive Dalton-trained Elegant Christian ahead of up-and-coming five-year-old Mynameskenny, who will start from the No. 2 barrier. Hall has driven Mynameskenny to 15 of his 19 wins in a distinguished 34-start career. Trainer John Oldroyd has engaged Chris Voak to drive Mynameskenny for the first time. Mynameskenny started out wide from barrier seven in the J. P. Stratton Cup last Friday night when he raced three back on the pegs in fifth place and finished a close-up seventh behind Libertybelle Midfrew after being hampered for room in the home straight. He had won at nine of his previous ten starts. Elegant Christian warmed up in excellent fashion for this week’s assignment when Dalton drove the gelding to an easy all-the-way 10m win over Major Catastrophe in a five-horse trial over 2185m at Pinjarra on Sunday morning. He was not extended in clocking 28.8sec. and 29.8sec. over the final quarters. He had a torrid run at his most recent appearance when he started from the outside (No. 9) on the front line in the 2130m Navy Cup last Friday week. He began speedily and raced five wide for the first 200m and then three wide for the next 600m before working in the breeze until he began to wilt over the final 500m. At his previous start, a fortnight earlier, Elegant Christian galloped badly from the No. 1 barrier before making up an enormous amount of ground to finish seventh behind Bettors Fire. Trainer Gary Hall sen. holds a strong hand in Friday night’s feature event, with four runners, Ideal Alice, Run Oneover, Waylade and Cyamach. Gary Hall jun. has opted to handle Run Oneover, who is poorly drawn out wide at barrier eight. Run Oneover has been freshened up since his excellent second to Bettors Fire in the 2536m August Cup on August 26 when he worked very hard in the breeze for the final two laps. He is a strong and versatile pacer capable of a bold showing. Forrestdale trainers Greg and Skye Bond, who won the Statewide trainers’ premiership last season, will be represented by the highly-promising and lightly-raced five-year-old Delightful Offer and the consistent Phoenix Warrior. Delightful Offer, to be driven by Ryan Warwick from the inside of the back line, notched his 15th win from only 30 starts when he raced without cover in the middle stages before proving too strong for the pacemaking Mighty Flying Thomas over 2130m last Friday night. Mighty Flying Thomas, trained by Peter Anderson, will start from the No. 2 barrier on the back line this week. Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri has two runners in this week’s event --- the polemarker Our Jericho and Our Blackbird, who is awkwardly drawn at No. 7 on the front line. Ken Casellas

Talented young reinsman Stuart McDonald, cooling his heels in recent weeks, has completed a 19-day term of suspension and is looking forward to returning to action with six drives on the ten-event harness racing program at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He has labelled the Ross Olivieri-trained Ona Happy Note as his best drive. McDonald drove the experienced New Zealand-bred Bettor's Delight seven-year-old to a smart victory at his first appearance in Western Australia when the gelding rated 1.56.5 to defeat Plati and Zacharia over 1730m last Friday fortnight. “Ona Happy Note is not well drawn at barrier six on Friday night, but with the right run he can certainly be right in the race,” McDonald said. “From barrier six he’ll probably take a sit back in the field. Soho Wonder looks the leader from the inside barrier and there are a few horses likely to make a mid-race move which should enable us to get a good cart into the race. “When he draws closer to the pegs he can certainly lead them up. Since his win he’s done very well and has got better.” At his first WA appearance Ona Happy Note started from the back line and settled at the rear before McDonald sent him forward with a three-wide burst approaching the bell. Ona Happy Note took the lead 400m from home and won by just under a length from Plati, who followed him throughout the race. Ona Happy Note is one of several runners with sound prospects in Friday night’s race. The Bob Mellsop-trained Soho Wonder (Lauren Jones) was a smart all-the-way winner last Friday night when  Plati impressed in surging home from 11th at the bell to win over 2536m 30 minutes later. Olivieri has two other handy performers engaged in Jambiani and Bonny Under Fire and Gary Hall sen. has undeniable claims with the in-form Tact Major (eight wins from 17 starts) and Delightful Jade, an M4-class performer with a distinct edge in class over her rivals. But she has to overcome the disadvantage of starting out wide at barrier nine on the front line. Apart from Ona Happy Note, McDonald will drive Fire of Rock, Say It Now, My Mate Stride, Our Blackbird and Bashful Compton. He is not particularly confident about the prospects of 12-year-old Fire of Rock, who will be at long odds from the wide draw at No. 8 in the first event on the program. Fire of Rock has won once from his past 99 starts and currently has a losing sequence of 66. However, McDonald fancies the chances of nine-year-old Bashful Compton, who will start from the inside barrier on the front line in the Book Your Conference and Seminars at Gloucester Park Handicap, a 2503m stand. Bashful Compton, trained in Collie by David Hunter, is a proven frontrunner and a standing-start expert, whose 14 wins have all been in stands. His most recent 34 starts have been in stands. “Bashful Compton goes pretty good from barrier one and while there’s a few good ones outside of him, I reckon he will give them something to chase. The plan will be to lead.” The favourite is sure to be Char Do Neigh, a comparatively lightly-raced seven-year-old in the stables of Greg and Skye Bond whose seven starts in this campaign have produced five wins, a second and a seventh placing. Char Do Neigh, to start from barrier four on the front line with Ryan Warwick in the sulky, worked hard without cover for much of the way before winning from the fast-finishing bettors Ace in a 2130m mobile event last Friday night. His past five outings have been in mobiles, but he has a good record in stands, having won over 2400m in New Zealand last February and from 20m at Pinjarra in May and at Narrogin in July, when he beat Kiwi Legend. McDonald is also looking forward keenly to representing Western Australia in the Australasian Young Drivers series during the TABtouch interdominion championship series in November and December. He won the Garrard’s Young Drivers series in WA last season and represented WA in the New South Wales series. He also won an international drivers’ series, which featured American ace Tim Tetrick last summer. Ken Casellas

Ace harness racing reinsman Gary Hall jun. has driven brilliant injury-plagued pacer John of Arc 19 times for 15 wins. But this week he is planning ways and means to defeat the New Zealand-bred star, a winner of 16 of his 27 starts, in the Chef Batson’s Famous Ribs Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Hall will be in the sulky behind rising superstar and winner of the 2016 WA Derby, Chicago Bull, who is prepared by his father Gary Hall sen. Chicago Bull by Bettor's Delight, is a M0-class performer with earnings of $274,254 from 14 wins and four placings from 22 starts, has an awkward draw at barrier six on the one-line field of eight over 2130m, while John of Arc, now prepared by Clive Dalton, will be driven by Chris Lewis from barrier eight. John of Arc has an M6 classification and he made an impressive return to racing after an absence of eight and a half months when he finished a close fourth behind Ima Connoisseur over 2130m last Friday week after racing three wide for the first 500m and then working hard without cover. Chicago Bull has won at 11 of his past 12 starts. He gave a bold frontrunning display when he romped home by almost four lengths from Rycroft at a 1.56.9 rate over 2130m last Friday night. “This is one of his first real tests, particularly the way John of Arc went first-up,” Hall jun. declared as he assessed Chicago Bull’s prospects on Friday night. “But I think Chicago Bull is capable of beating John of Arc. Barrier six is not ideal and it won’t be easy. If John of Arc has taken no harm from his first-up run, then obviously he’ll be the one to beat.” Hall said that Chicago Bull was well on target to contest the rich four-year-old classic late this year and that stablemates Mach Time and King Lebron also were being aimed at the Golden Nugget Championship and McInerney Ford Classic. Mach Time looks a star bet in the second heat of the Book Now For the TABtouch interdominion Preux Chevalier Pace in which he will start from the favourable No. 3 barrier on the front line. Mach Time has resumed after a four-month absence in fine style with two convincing wins over 2100m at Bunbury. “He’s gone really good in those two runs in which he was a bit underdone,” he said. “Now he should be on the way up and the Golden Nugget is the main aim. At the moment he’s probably the stable’s No. 2 hope behind Chicago Bull. But there’s not much between him and King Lebron.” King Lebron, driven by Hall, notched his seventh win from 19 starts when he raced wide for the first 500m before getting to the front and going on to win from Borntobeanartist at a 1.57.2 rate over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Tuesday night. Mach Time, a winner of five races in New Zealand, has had eight starts in WA for six wins. Ken Casellas

Michael Ferguson, one of the State’s best young harness racing drivers, has no hesitation in declaring that four-year-old Americanbootscoota is on the doorstep of a highly successful career and he is confident of driving him to victory in the Book Your Next Function at Gloucester Park Westbred Pace on Friday night. Ferguson was full of praise for the gelding, trained at Boyanup by Dennis Roche, and said that he gave him “a really good feel” when he drove him for the first time in a 2100m event at Bunbury on Tuesday of last week. The Allamerican Ingot gelding began speedily from barrier four and burst to the front after 350m before going on to win from veteran pacer Shardons Rocket at a 1.56.9 rate over 2100m, with final quarters in 27.5sec. and 28.3sec. That was the gelding’s first start for three months. “He’s a really nice horse who has got good gate speed and should lead and prover hard to beat on Friday night. Ginger (Roche) said that he would improve with the first-up run. “I don’t think that anything will cross him, even though Extreme Dreams (barrier two) and Paid Twice (six) get out quickly. He’s definitely a horse on the way up and I’d say that if he keeps going the way he’s going, he will be set for the big four-year-old races later this year.” Ferguson has also been engaged to drive the Matt Scott-trained pair of Brookies Jet (race one) and Jaxon Fella (race five) and Gary Hall senior’s smart mare Delightful Jade in the Steelo’s Bistro Pace. “Brookies Jet probably will work forward from barrier four and sit outside Rycroft,” Ferguson said. “I think he is in career-best form and he was unlucky when held up and fourth behind Kurious two starts ago. I expect him to run a good race. “Jaxon Fella is going better than his form reads and is a good each-way chance.” Ken Casellas

Brilliant five-year-old Beaudiene Boaz, who became Australia’s latest harness racing million dollar pacer when he smashed the 2130m track record with an awesome display of his great ability to win the Navy Cup last Friday night, is poised to chalk up his eleventh victory in a group feature event by proving the master of his seven rivals in the $35,000 J. P. Stratton Cup at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The New Zealand-bred star, Western Australia’s leading hope in the TABtouch interdominion championship in December, is awkwardly drawn at barrier No. 6. But he has the raw speed and fierce determination to overcome this disadvantage against several top-flight pacers. Trainer Gary Hall sen. dominated last year’s Stratton Cup in which he prepared the trifecta, with Gary Hall jun. driving 7/4 on favourite Waylade to an easy victory over stablemates Classic American and Ideal Alice.       Hall jun. will again be in the sulky behind Beaudiene Boaz this week, with him and his father aiming to win the Stratton Cup for the fourth time --- after wins with Bengeeman in 2002, Alzona in 2011 and Waylade last year. After winning at three of his seven starts in New Zealand, Beaudiene Boaz has raced 27 times in Western Australia for 20 wins and three placings. His Navy Cup victory at the lucrative odds of 7/1 boosted his earnings to $1,021,344. His 20 WA wins include five in group 1 company, three in group 2 events and two in group 3 races. Beaudiene Boaz went into last week’s race after being unplaced at his three previous outings. Hall jun. said after the stallion’s devastating victory in the Navy Cup that the pacer had thrown off the effects of a debilitating virus. Hall restrained Beaudiene Boaz from barrier eight and the horse raced in last position before Hall set him alight with 1050m to travel. Beaudiene Boaz mustered speed brilliantly and in windy conditions and on a soft, rain-affected track he burst past the pacemaker and 7/4 on favourite Bettors Fire 680m from home. Beaudiene Boaz then streaked away from the opposition and won by two and a half lengths from Bettors Fire, rating 1.52.9 which eclipsed the 2130m track record of 1.53.6 set by David Hercules in May 2013. Bettors Fire fought on tenaciously to finish second last week when Beaudiene Boaz sprinted over the final quarters in 27.3sec. and 28.2sec. He began fast from barrier seven, but had to work hard, out four wide for the first 200m, three wide for the next 300m and then in the breeze before getting to the front 700m after the start. It was a fine performance by a horse who had scored stylish victories at his three previous starts. Bettors Fire, trained and driven by Kyle Harper, is favourably drawn at barrier two this week, with Libertybelle Midfrew drawn the prized No. 1 position. Both possess excellent gate speed and excel as frontrunners. Libertybelle Midfrew bounced back to her best form last Friday week when she gave a bold frontrunning display to win the 2130m Media Guild Cup at a 1.57.6 rate from the fast-finishing  Heez On Fire, who was having his first start for seven months. Heez On Fire, who is now trained and raced on leas by Bill Horn, has recovered from a damaged near foreleg and looks set for a successful campaign. At his return to racing Heez On Fire started out wide at barrier seven and he was most impressive in charging home from last with 250m to travel to finish a half-length behind Libertybelle Midfrew, who will again be driven by Shannon Suvaljko for Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed, who prepared Capitol V for his win in the 2008 Stratton Cup. Twenty-five years ago Chris Lewis teamed with Horn to win the Stratton Cup with Village Kid. Horn and Lewis had previously won the Stratton Cup with Black Irish (1983) and Village Kid in 1985 and 1988. Subsequently, Lewis has won Stratton Cups behind Ohoka Ace (2005), Sneakyn Down Under (2009) and Sensational Gabby (2014). Adding quality to Friday night’s Cup field are The Bucket List, Tricky Styx and Mynameskenny. The Michael Brennan-trained The Bucket List (Michael Grantham) is in splendid form with two wins, a second and a third from four starts since resuming after a spell, the Jesse Moore-trained Tricky Styx has earned $347,883 from 18 wins and 11 placings from 42 starts and five-year-old Mynameskenny, trained by John Oldroyd, has created an excellent impression with 14 wins from his past 17 starts. Ken Casellas

All-conquering trainers Greg and Skye Bond have made a flying start to the 2016-17 season and the stable looks set for further successes with 12 talented runners engaged at the ten-event harness racing program at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The Bonds will be strongly favoured to dominate the $23,000 Slater-Gartrell Sports Pace in which their three runners, Phoenix Warrior, Ima Connoisseur and Delightful Offer, are in splendid form and are the only last-start winners in the field of 12. Six-year-old Phoenix Warrior is the best credentialled of the trio, with earnings of $194,550 from 20 wins and 21 placings from 62 starts. But he is the worst drawn at No. 9, the outside of the front line in the 2130m event. Ima Connoisseur (17 wins, 17 placings and $186,216 in prizemoney) and Delightful Offer (14 wins, six placings and $163,346) are five-year-olds by Bettors Delight who are racing with commendable spirit. Ima Connoisseur, one of the State’s most improved pacers, is favourably drawn at barrier No. 3 on the back line in the 2130m event, while Delightful Offer will start out wide at No. 7 on the front line. The Bonds have raced away to an early lead in the Statewide trainers’ premiership, with 30 winners in the first 35 days of the season. They lead from Gary Hall sen. (14 wins) and Ross Olivieri and Nathan Turvey (nine). Ryan Warwick, the stable’s No. 1 driver, has landed 23 winners and leads the drivers’ premiership table from Michael Grantham (16), Gary Hall jun. (15) and Turvey (14). Phoenix Warrior notched his fifth win from his past 13 starts when he raced in sixth position before sustaining a powerful last-lap burst to win narrowly from the pacemaker Our Jericho over 2550m in Kalgoorlie last Friday week. He sat behind the pacemaker Bettors Fire when a sound third to that pacer over 2130m at Gloucester Park at his previous outing and a week before that he gave a grand performance to race three wide for much of the way and win from El Machine and Change Gear over 2130m Ima Connoisseur notched his fourth win in a row when he began speedily from barrier seven, led after 175m and went on to win  by more than a length from fast-finishing stablemate Burning and Lisharry at a 1.54.8 rate over 2130m at Gloucester Park last Friday night. He revealed abundant stamina at his two previous starts when he finished strongly after racing without cover all the way. Delightful Offer gave a sample of his class at Gloucester Park last Friday week when he started from the outside barrier and settled at the rear before starting a three-wide run at the bell which carried him to victory over the pacemaker Commander Chapel. The Bond stable also holds a very strong hand in the $21,000 Hi Temp Services Pace over 2130m on Friday night, with four runners, Bungalow Bill, Burning, Ima Tragedy and Offtocullect. Bungalow Bill, to be driven by Lauren Jones, has a 44 per cent winning record and looks the pick of the quartet from barrier three on the front line. Bungalow Bill worked hard in the breeze before finishing determinedly to score a narrow in over the pacemaking Ima Tragedy at a 1.55 rate over 1730m last Friday night. The final sections were covered in 27.8sec. and 28sec. Ken Casellas

Harness racing nine-year-old Tuapeka Kahu is the oldest runner in the $21,000 Del Basso Smallgoods Pace over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Friday night and he has a losing sequence of 36. But he looms as a realistic winning chance after several encouraging efforts over the past few months. The New Zealand-bred gelding ran an excellent trial for this week’s race when he galloped at the standing start, settled in ninth position and finished boldly to be third behind smart pacers Im Full of Excuses and Bettor Scoot in the 2518m Kalgoorlie Cup last Friday week. Two starts before that, he also galloped at the standing start and did well to run on from last to be fifth behind Im Full of Excuses over 2631m at Pinjarra. That followed impressive efforts at his two previous outings ---third to The Bucket List and Our Ideal Act over 2692m at Pinjarra and a nose second to Risk over 2560m at Northam. The Bettor's Delight gelding, trained and driven by Kristian Hawkins, is past his prime, but will pay to follow. In an even field, Tuapeka Kahu chief rivals appear to be Bettor Offer, Nicnak Paddy Wak, Jaxon Fella, Im Riddick and Sonic Classic. Nicnak Paddy Wak, to be driven by Morgan Woodley for Bunbury trainer Stephen Reed, has the best form of the 12 runners, with two wins from his past four starts. None of the other 11 runners has won at his past nine starts. Nicnak Paddy Wak deserves to be favourite after his recent wins (defeating Changeable and The Revolution over 1730m at Gloucester Park and Royal Mach and Smokey The Bandit over 2100m at Bunbury. After those two wins he finished solidly to be second behind Unsinkable Boxer over 2130m at Gloucester Park. He has the ability to overcome the disadvantage of starting out wide at barrier seven. Bettor Offer, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, has been unplaced at his past nine starts and is at quite a disadvantage from out wide at barrier No. 8. However, he has shown glimpses of form and should fight out the finish. Ken Casellas

Champion reinsman Chris Lewis has been engaged by Baldivis harness racing trainer Nathan Turvey to drive smart, lightly-raced mare Royal Myth in the $18,000 Choices Flooring Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Turvey will drive his other runner, Hidden Bad, who has returned to form with strong efforts at her past two starts. Lewis has not driven the New Zealand-bred Royal Myth, who has created a good impression with eight wins from her 14 starts in Western Australia. She is a good frontrunner and looks hard to beat from the prized No. 1 barrier. Royal Myth reappeared after an absence of nine months when she started from the back line over 2130m last Friday week.  The Royal Mattjesty mare was heavily supported and started at 9/4. She raced one-out and two-back in sixth place before Turvey sent her forward, three wide at the bell. However, she failed to flatter and finished tenth, seven lengths behind the winner Gota Good Lookadda. Hidden Bad, who will start from barrier five on the front line on Friday night, revealed excellent fighting qualities when she worked hard in the breeze and battled on determinedly to finish third behind Forever Remembered and Gota Good Lookadda over 2130m last Friday night. At her previous outing, two weeks earlier, Hidden Bad settled down in ninth place before Turvey sent her forward, three wide, after 720m. She then raced in the breeze and got to the front 250m from home before winning by almost two lengths from Forever Remembered. The Turvey-trained mares are likely to be tested by Andrew de Campo’s promising four-year-old Nowuseemegirl, who has set the pace and won at Bunbury at three of her past four starts. Ken Casellas

1 to 16 of 1820
1 2 3 4 5 Next »