Day At The Track
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Auckland Reactor is on the board as a sire after Gotta React took the honors in the two year old race at the Kilmore harness racing meeting last night. Showing plenty of determination and heart, Gotta React made up late ground in the home straight and won by a half head with the plugs still in. Trained by Leigh Miles for South Australian trainer Scott Ewen and breeder Charles Okmasich and driven by Greg Sugars, Gotta React is the first foal of the Live Or Die mare Gotcha who is out of the Vance Hanover mare Harp. Charles Okmasich and his family made the long trip over from South Australia to watch Gotta React win at his first start.  Gotta React is now on his way back to race in South Australia and to be trained by Scott Ewen and will possibly be a starter in the Kindergarten series at Globe Derby Park. On the other side of the Tasman,‚Äč Auckland Reactor was represented by a very impressive qualifier last week at Addington. Miss Ethel Sunshine defeated some nice two-year-olds in exciting fashion. The progressive daughter of Auckland Reactor made a midrace move to take the lead and then proceeded to sprint home in 57.9 and win easily. She will now head towards the New Zealand Sires Stakes. With plenty of qualifiers already, the winners will continue to flow for Auckland Reactor in the months to come.

Reinsman Rodney Petroff nailed the tactics aboard Zedalite to win the Vulcan Trotters Free-For-All at Tabcorp Park Melton last night. Petroff took the Brent Lilley trained five-year-old gelding straight to the front from gate three and refused to hand up to Josh Aiken aboard the short-priced favourite, My High Expectations, in the 1720-metre feature event. The pair, who punters favoured with My High Expectations starting $1.50 favourite and Zedalite the second pick at $4.20, sat one-two for the bulk of the race but Petroff’s charge had the upper hand. In the finish My High Expectations loomed large late and almost got level with the early pacesetter in the final 200 metres, but Petroff lifted Zedalite to a memorable half-head win. Zedalite has been a terrific money-spinner for connections and last night’s success was his 22nd career win from 75 starts. The son of Zooma stopped the clock at 1:58.1 for the mile rate. Stoned I Am ran on at the finish to grab third for Simone Walker, while Lightning Joy was fourth for Gavin Lang. Earlier in the night Inky Cullen bounced back to winning form after some out-of-character efforts with a win in the Tabcorp Park Melton Claiming Pace. The Amanda Grieve trained five-year-old scored a three-metre win over stablemate Catch Your Breath; Alex Ashwood driving the winner and Chris Alford piloting the second horse. Other Melton winners were Palais Du Louvre for Leigh Miles and Scott Dyer in the first race, Smiling High for David Aiken and Nathan Jack in Race 2, El Paco for Joe Attard in Race 4, Keayang Cullen for Marg Lee and Jason Lee in Race 5, Goodtime Mike for Emma Stewart and Alford in Race 6, Im Barney Rubble for Lance Justice and Brian Gath in Race 7, and The Majestic for John Newberry in Race 9. The early quaddie paid $520.30 on the numbers 9-5-9-8, while the traditional quaddie paid $1453 on a 1-2-10-3 combination. Don't forget tomorrow's guaranteed $200,000 quaddie pool at Ballarat for semi-final night of the rich Breeders Crown Series. Details at the TAB website. Cody Winnell - Harness Racing Victoria  

Oddly named former New Zealander Frank The Duck was successful in taking the Melbourne Cup Day Pace for C0 class over 2150 metres at Yarra Valley on Monday September 30 when making his first appearance on Australian soil. A winner at Addington on July 26, Frank The Duck hadn’t raced since August 23 and was sent out an almost unbackable $1.30 favourite after starting from outside the front line. Trained by Joe Borg at Melton and driven by John Caldow, Frank The Duck a 4-Y-0 gelded son of Jeremes Jet and Take Her Easy Tiger was given an easy time one/one following Lets Go Happy after being restrained at the starter released the field, with Ryans Lane (gate three) leading for Dianne Giles. Moving outside the pacemaker approaching the final bend when Lets Go Happy had dropped to the back of the leader, Frank The Duck was much too strong over the concluding stages for Ryans Lane and Lets Go Happy in a mile rate of 2-01.5. Raced by Simon Sciberras who has been a staunch stable client, Frank The Duck chalked up his 3rd victory in 15 outings. Popular Romsey trainer Leigh Miles’ 4-Y-0 Four Starzzz Shark/Norwood Abbey mare Sukhovey Wind brought up her second victory when scoring in the Oaks Day Pace for C0 class (mares) over 2150 metres. With Greg Sugars in the sulky, Sukhovey Wind was given an easy time one/one from gate two and when eased three wide in the last lap, finished her race off well in defeating Melegend along the sprint lane from three back the markers, with the last start Cranbourne winner Hunzarella weakening to finish third after leading. The mile rate 2-03.6. The age old adage in racing – the more you win – the better the price certainly applies to Cohuna owner Grant Lunghusen’s 4-Y-0 Browning Blue Chip/Above The Rest mare Joelles Dream who brought up a hat-trick of wins by taking out the Harness Breeders (Vic) Pace for C1 & C2 class restricted to the fairer sex over 1650 metres, paying Supertab odds of $10.60. Trained and driven by Whittlesea horseman Mark Peace, Joelles Dream starting from gate two on the second line settled three back in the moving line, before being sent forward three wide uncovered in the last lap. Asked for a supreme effort on straightening, Joelles Dream responded to the call, scoring by a half head over a death-seating Miss Fidelity in a rate of 2-01.3. Eleventh Command was a half head away in third place after leading in the closest finish of the day. Impressive Kiwi import Macho Commacho a gelded 5-Y-0 son of Royal Mattjesty and Alberts Daughter made it two from two in Australia, when greeting the judge in the Eastland Pacers Handicap for C1 or better class over 2150 metres. Raced by prominent owners Tony and Pam Coniglio, Macho Commacho trained by Dean Braun at Lara and driven by Nathan Jack had little trouble in finding the front running from a 20 metre equal backmark, before toying with his rivals to win in a breeze from Hellfire Angel (three back the markers) along the sprint lane and The Dip (four back the markers - four wide home turn) in an unextended mile rate of  2-02.9. Sidelined Bolinda trainer Chris Alford landed the De Bortoli Pace for C3 & C4 class over 2150 metres with bonny Bettors Delight/Forest Glory 5-Y-0 mare Bellasario. Bred and raced by Jack & Nola Munnerley, Bellasario taking a concession for the stable’s Josh Duggan, led throughout from the pole to defeat Conflict Of Interest which trailed by 2.6 metres in a rate of 2-00.3, with Magical Molly third from mid-field in the running line. By Len Baker      

Sebastopol harness racing owner/trainer/driver Tina Ridis' 7-Y-0 Classic Adam/Denver Jane mare Town Player keeps on getting better and better as the season progresses and chalked up her fourth win in succession with a dominant front running display to take the Spencer Accountants Trotters Handicap for T3 or better class over 2710 metres at her home track Bray Raceway Ballarat on Wednesday November 2.

The Kilmore harness racing club conducted a successful meeting at Tabcorp Park Melton on Tuesday July 19, with a mixed bag of winners coming especially from the Melton area. Romsey trainer Leigh Miles continued his terrific season when D M Dilinger/Miss Philpotts gelding Top Tamba scored in the Bolinda Publishing 2-Y-0 Pacers Handicap over 2240 metres.

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