Search Results
1 to 16 of 1201
1 2 3 4 5 Next »

Eight year old Jet Laag / Preserved entire Im Blue Double Dee was victorious in taking out 57th running of the harness racing $50,275 (Group 2) Park Douglas Printing Mildura Pacing Cup for M0 or better class horses over 2600 metres at Mildura on Saturday April 13. In what was a real family affair, Im Blue Double Dee trained at Bathurst (NSW) by Steve Turnbull, raced by wife Jenny and driven by daughter Amanda settled four back along the markers after starting from gate two on the second line, with the polemarker Maastricht leading as the start was effected keeping the favourite Flaming Flutter (gate three) wide and Machin Out even wider on the track from outside the front row. Driven with aggression by Greg Sugars Flaming Flutter was able to assume control within a lap. The action didn’t stop there however, as runs came thick and fast with Hilltop Hustler and Mark Dennis both making forward moves through the middle stages. This allowed Shayne Cramp aboard the home town hero Washington Heritage to ease away from three back the markers into the running line mid-race after starting from inside the second line and going forward to park outside the leader with around two laps to travel. Putting his foot to the floor at the bell, Cramp and Washington Heritage pressured the leader which kicked away on the final bend. While all this was going on, Im Blue Double Dee which had moved to be three back the markers after Washington Heritage left the inside appeared to be travelling approaching the final bend. Gaining an inside passage on turning (no sprint lane), Im Blue Double Dee ran home best to score by two metres in a thrilling finish over a game Flaming Flutter, with Maastricht running the race of her life to finish third .9 metres away. Both the runner up and third placegetter shifted away from the inside on straightening. Kotare Roland finished fourth after following the winner throughout. In quarters of 30.7, 31.7, 29.7 and 28.4 for the final mile, Im Blue Double Dee returned a mile rate of 1-59.1 for the journey, nine tenths of a second outside Safari’s 1-58.2 set in 2007 and in winning, took his stakes tally to almost $200,000. A winner of 21 races from 110 outings prior to the race, Im Blue Double Dee has been a consistent performer in the Western part of NSW since he first graced the tracks. Im Blue Double Dee was the fourth NSW trained winner of the prestigious race, the others being Wongala Glen (Bill McKenzie 1965), Dillon Light (Kevin Robinson 1973) and Ben’s Image (Vic Frost 1987), although Wongala Glen did the majority (if not all) of his racing in Victoria as he was trained just across the Murray River from Swan Hill. On a night of features, S-A visitors Caribbean Crest (Toby Ryan – Scott Dyer) scored in the $30,275 (Group 2) Mark Gurry & Associates Cup and Glenferrie Affair (Ryan Hryhoric) the $15,275 Tankard Dental Mildura Guineas, while Uncle Wingnut (Vince Costa – Michael Bellman) the $17,775 Loddon Valley Stud Free For All. Len Baker Harness Racing Victoria

Once a year the square gaiters take pride of place at Mildura as part of the Pacing Cup Carnival and Thursday April 10 was the night this year, with Kiwi bred four year old Monarchy/Sunny Gem gelding Unico Crown scoring a brilliant all of the way victory in the $14,505 Seelite Windows & Doors Mildura Trotters Cup for T5 or better class over 2600 metres. Trained at Lara by Dean Braun and driven by the stable’s number one reinsman Chris Alford, Unico Crown began smoothly from the pole to lead and rated to perfection around the tight circuit, ran out an easy 7.7 metre victor in advance of Sandys Boy which trailed, making no impression in the run home, with Monte specialist Motu Young Jacob a further 2.7 metres back in third place from a 20 metre handicap after racing mid-field in the moving line. With quarters of 31.1, 31.1, 31.2 and 29.9 for the last 1609 metres, Unico Crown returned a mile rate of 2-05.5, well outside Si Capisco’s track record of 2-03.3 set in 2012. Unico Crown has made only one blemish since crossing the Tasman, when unable to handle the tiny Boort track in the Boort Trotting Cup. Earlier in the evening the VSTA Trotters Handicap for T0 to T4 class over 2190 metres was taken out by the Brent Lilley (Bolinda) trained and Lance Justice driven in-form five year old gelding Like It Chilled, a son of Sundon and Rite Effort. Raced by Bruce and Margaret Dalton, Like It Chilled coming from a solo 20 metre backmark settled six back along the markers, with the South Australian visitor Buff Orpington leading out from from the pole before going off stride entering the straight on the first occasion which allowed The Final Cut to take over. Set alight racing for the bell, Like It Chilled was able to stride clear when the leader galloped with a circuit to travel. Travelling easily, Like It Chilled coasted to the wire by 18 metres in a mile rate of 2-08.4 over Candy Digger which was always handy, with Featherfoot Sun another S-A raider third. By Len Baker (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)  

Six year old Village Jasper/Cultured Lombo gelding Savesomtimetodream landed his third country cup for the season, when successful in the $25,505 Renown Silverware Ararat Pacing Cup for M0 or better class (Discretionary Handicapped) over 2570 metres at Ararat in the heart of the Western District on Saturday March 5.   Raced by Ballarat Trotting Club CEO Paul Rowse and partners, Savesomtimetodream which already had captured both the Yarra Valley and Gunbower Cups, began smoothly from a solo10 metre mark to possie one/one on the back of the roughie Farmersntradies, with Narra Operative (barrier five) going forward after a tardy start to race in the open after competing a lap.   Jodi Quinlan then set Savesomtimetodream forward three wide to tackle the leaders (favourite) Jadahson (barrier three) and Narra Operative (barrier five), parking outside the leader mid-race.   Applying plenty of pressure to Jadahson in the final circuit, Savesomtimetodream outstayed his rivals to record a courageous 1.6 metre victory over Jadahson, with Arber (three back the markers) using the sprint lane for third.   The well supported polemarker Inky Cullen galloped away from the pole, while equal 20 metre backmarker Our Blackbird with Arber, settled at the rear from a 20 metre handicap, before moving three wide racing for the bell, with Inky Cullen following.   In quarters of 31.7. 31.1, 28.9 and 28.8 for the final mile, Savesomtimetodream returned a mile rate of 2-04.6, well outside the track record of 2-01.1 set by 2010 winner I Am Sam.   Race sponsor John Hawke on behalf of Renown Silverware has sponsored the Ararat Pacing Cup for the last 20 years.    Supplementing the program was the $10,505 Clive Reed Memorial Ararat Trotters Cup for T5 or better class (D-H) over 2570 metres which was a blow out for punters with $73.70 rank outsider Idle Suntime scoring for Great Western trainer/driver Michelle Wight (formerly Michelle Manning).   Settling on the back of the leader Im Whitney (barrier three) from the pole, Idle Suntime sailed through along the sprint lane to gain the day by 5.8 metres in advance of Im Whitney which hung rather badly on the final bend, with Wildenstein (three back the markers) running his usual honest race for third. The mile rate 2-07.6.   A six year old gelded son of Sundon and Foreign Interest, Idle Suntime chalked up his 10th victory from 67 outings.   The country cup scene moves to Sunraysia next week, with the Mildura Pacing Cup being held next Saturday. By Len Baker (Harness Racing Australia)

It might have been Geelong Pacing Cup night on Saturday March 29, but without doubt the biggest harness racing winner of the evening was young seventeen year old Patrick (Paddy) Lee, the younger brother of talented concessional reinsman Jason following the victory of nine year old Keystone Salute / Amanda Branach gelding Salute Branach in The Weekly Review Greater Geelong Trotters Handicap for T1 or better class over 2570 metres. Trained at Terang in the name of mother Marg, Paddy after pleading with the family purchased the horse which had been spending his life lost in the wilderness in a paddock at Warrnambool after being given a couple of tries by Portland’s Garry Jennings for a mere $500. Paddy does all of the work with the horse which was making only his fourth appearance at the races and second for the week after having been in work for a considerable time, having finished third at Terang the previous Wednesday when first up since August 2012. Driven by cousin Glen Craven, Salute Branach bred by Burrumbeet’s Brendan Cahill came into the race on bad terms having never won a race, but jumped straight to the front from barrier three, before surrendering to Gazoline which began like a rocket from 30 metres. Travelling beautifully all of the way, Salute Branach used the sprint lane to register a 1.8 metre victory untouched over the former Breeders Crown victor Triumphant Monarch (three wide home turn from one/two at bell), with Armed Guard third after racing in the open for the final circuit. Trotters are rather new to the Lee stable which is famous for the Keayang brand and Paddy is going to have plenty of fun along the way. The victory would also have given grandparents Harold and Alice Craven a tremendous thrill. Len Baker Harness Racing Victoria

Outstanding Kiwi bred Elsu / Make It Hot four year old harness racing gelding Chilli Palmer was a brilliant victor of the $30,505 Corio Waste Management Geelong Cup for M0 or better class over 2570 metres at Beckley Park on Saturday.   A small but select field contested the event – the biggest in Geelong each season, with multi millionaire and crowd favourite Smoken Up (gate three) and Chilli Palmer (gate five) appearing to be the main chances and that’s the way the race panned out.   Our Blackbird from the pole was the best to begin, with Lance Justice and Smoken Up ambling to the front shortly after the start, multiple cups winner Arber three back the markers being followed by Magical Telf, Chilli Palmer, Smudge Bromac and Savesomtimetodream all in indian file behind him.   Magical Telf was taken away from the markers by Alex Ashwood within a lap to race in the open, with Chris Alford immediately following to possie Chilli Palmer one/one and Smudge Bromac also following to be three back in the moving line.   In quarters of 30.5 and 30.9 for the first half of the last mile, Smoken Up was expected to break the clock for the last half after such an easy time as Lance Justice started to up the tempo.   Easing three wide approaching the final bend, Chilli Palmer sprinted like a gazelle in the straight to overtake Smoken Up and register a 3.8 metre untouched margin over Smoken Up who wouldn’t shirk the issue being the champion that he is, with Our Blackbird holding his ground to finish .7 metres away in third place.   In a last half of 56 seconds (28.5 & 27.5), Chilli Palmer returned a mile rate of 1-59.7 for the journey which was nothing special when you take in the quality of the field.   Trained at Lara by Dean Braun who continues to provide winner after winner with ex-Kiwi talent, Chilli Palmer has recorded 10 wins from only 14 race appearances and without doubt is one of harness racing’s future stars.    Kyneton trainer Joe Attard has Yankee Paco / Kellybrooke five year old gelding El Paco absolutely flying at present, chalking up his 11th victory (4 this season) by taking out the prestigious $10,505 James & Son McNamara Memorial Trotters Cup for T5 or better class over 2570 metres on the Geelong program. . Driven by brother Julian as Joe had family commitments in Adelaide, El Paco flew away from the 10 metre mark to lead and rated to perfection, just held on to score by a half head in a thrilling finish over Duke Of The Moment (three wide home turn) from a 20 metre handicap, with the well backed pole marker Quite A Moment coming from last at the bell to finish third after throwing away her chances by galloping shortly after the start. The mile rate 2-06.5.   Bred by Greg Clark who races the horse in partnership with Joe, El Paco is an owners dream, always finishing close up in his races. Len Baker Harness Racing Victoria    

Thursday night harness racing was held at Kilmore with most classes catered for in an entertaining eight event card. Former Kiwi trainer/driver Warren Cochrane now based at Bagshot in Central Victoria, brought up victory number three with much improved four year old Mach Three / Executive Lady gelding Uroc Mman in the VHRSC Pace (Heat 2) for C1 class over 2180 metres at Kilmore on Thursday. Given the run of the race from inside the second row trailing the pole line pacemaker The Major League, Uroc Mman finished hard along the sprint lane to gain the day over the leader in a rate of 2-00.1. Rogers Joy (three back the markers) finished third. Axedale trainer/driver Mick Carbone’s New Zealand bred Mach Three / Vermillion five year old gelding Master Pip overcame a 30 metre backmark to land the Harness Thursday Trackside Treats Pacers Handicap for C1 class over 2150 metres. Stepping safely, Master Pip gradually made ground to be one/two mid-race, before moving a spot closer when the heavily backed Miss Toolern Vale crossed the leader Forever Arma at the bell leaving Sunrise Lady in the open. Taken three wide in the last lap to be outside the leader on the home turn, Master Pip gained the upper hand shortly after, holding a 4.5 meter margin to the wire in accounting for Miss Toolern Vale and Forever Arma in a rate of 2-02. Parwan trainer Geoff Walker combined with Jodi Quinlan to capture the Catch It To Kilmore 2-Y-0 Trotters Handicap over 1660 metres with Muscle Hill / Adellas Dash filly Glenferrie Burn. Making her third race appearance, Glenferrie Burn raced by Peter Chambers’ Glenferrie Farms Pty Ltd was safely away from barrier four, settling four back along the markers, before moving to be one/one in the final circuit following her stablemate Glenferrie Belle. Easing three wide on the final bend, Glenferrie Burn ran home stylishly to score by 3.2 metres in a slick rate of 2-07.2 for the babies over Mister Oz which did everything right to lead, with Glenferrie Belle third. Melton’s Alison Chisholm snared the www.facebook.com/kilmoreracing Claiming Pace over 2180 metres with Kiwi bred six year old Falcon Seelster / Mustang Sally gelding Jaccka Murphy. Trapped outside the pole line pacemaker Jaccka Tom from gate three in the early stages, Jaccka Murphy was driven with aggression to take over and once in front relaxed beautifully after spending plenty of petrol. Kicking clear on straightening, Jaccka Murphy defeated Summer Ace which raced outside him from the bell, giving the Melton district the quinella, with Jaccka Tom holding down third. The mile rate 2-00.8. Long Forest duo Andy and Kate Gath brought up victory number eleven with honest It Is I/Shot Of Sugar four year old entire Quadentate in the Kilmore Timber Hardware Mitre 10 Pace for C5 & C7 class over 2180 metres in a rate of 1-57.8. Starting from the extreme draw, Quadentate settled four back in the running line, with Salem leading from gate four. Commencing a forward move three wide solo at the bell, Quadentate gradually made ground on the leaders before finishing his race off well to score from Nimble Jack along the sprint lane after trailing the front runner. Artoc (three back the markers – four wide home turn) finished third. by Len Baker Courtesy of Harness Racing Victoria

It was Moama Bowling Club Echuca Pacing Cup night at Frank Ryan Raceway situated on the banks of the Campaspe River on Friday March 21, with a large crowd in attendance to witness harness racing on the tight 804 metre circuit. A massive ten event card was programmed keeping those on track active all throughout the evening in anticipation of the feature event scheduled as race number eight. The Cup itself, a $25,390 standing start race (Discretionary Handicapped) for M0 or better class horses over 2530 metres was taken out by the in-form Philip Nott bred and raced seven year old Village Jasper / Any Danger gelding Arber. Trained at Anakie by Tim Bolitho who should take plenty of accolades for the marvellous job he has done with the horse since joining the stable, Arber driven by Greg Sugars was quickly away from a lone 10 metre handicap, with Sugars wasting no time in sending him forward to park outside the favourite Jadahson which crossed the old timer Baltic Eagle after travelling a couple of hundred metres. Gavin Lang urged Riverboat Jasper (one/three) forward mid-race to shadow the leader giving Arber the cover he was looking for and nothing changed until the bell when Kerryn Manning angled Narra Operative three wide from near last to commence a run. Arber was eased three wide in the back straight on the final occasion and quickly joined Jadahson prior to the home turn. Finishing brilliantly, Arber had 1.2 metres to spare on the wire to defeat Jadahson in a rate of 2-02.2 (last half 58.9 – quarter 29.9), with the Riverina visitor Itcan Happen using the sprint lane from five back the markers after a slow beginning third. It was Arber’s third country cup for the season, having already captured both the Stawell and Wangaratta features. Seven year old Sierra Kosmos / Panbrake gelding Tsonga was a tough victor of the $12,390 J A Connelly Crystal Bucket for T5 or better class trotters (Discretionary Handicapped) over 2530 metres. Trained at Bolinda by Paul Males and driven by Shepparton based David Moran, Tsonga stepped cleanly from a 30 metre backmark on this occasion to tack on to the field, with Gazoline showing his customary slick beginning tolead from barrier four. With the speed nothing to write home about, Nathan Jack sent the favourite Theywannacallmesue forward through the middle stages to join the leader, with Tsonga also being sent forward with a lap and a half to travel. Trapped on a limb three wide for the remainder of the journey, Tsonga showed tremendous courage to join the leaders on straightening a forge clear to score by 5.4 metres in a mile rate of 2-06 over Wildenstein (three back the markers – one/one home turn), with Gazoline holding down third. A former smart juvenile, Tsonga had recorded 14 wins and 24 placings from 76 race appearances. Narrandera trainer/driver Blake Jones a regular visitor to the Victorian scene, took the honours for the night with a stable double – Rustys Reject taking the Kevin Phillips Pace for C4 to C6 class and Bryce Cooper the 3rd Heat of the George Croxford Tribute for Three Year Olds. Videos are attached Len Baker Courtesy of Harness Racing Victoria

Terang based brothers Matthew and Glen Craven had a day out at the Stawell trots on Thursday, with Glen snaring a driving treble and Matt also providing a winner, as well as figuring in two quinella’s during the afternoon. Matt continued his stellar season when It Is I/Shy Star gelding Okelerho Lad was a brilliant all of the way winner of the Doctor DC 3-Y-0 Pace over 2175 metres, running his rivals ragged from gate three in accounting for the hot favourite Our Petite Soeur (one/one) and Usage (one/two) in a rate of 2-01.1. Glen and Matt Craven fought out a thrilling finish to the James McLeod Memorial Pace for C1 class over 2175 metres when Partnersinvancelot nosed out Our Uptown Girl. Trained at Dunnstown by Robert McCartney, Partnersinvancelot did all of the work from gate three racing outside Our Uptown Girl (Matt) which exploded away from outside the front line to lead. Dropping down to follow the pacemaker for a brief breather approaching the home turn, Partnersinvancelot when asked for a supreme effort on straightening, rallied under hard driving to gain the decision in a tricky finish, with White Eyed Girl (one/two – three wide at bell) third. The mile rate 2-01.3. Glen partnered Hamilton trainer David Lewis’4-Y-0 Life Sign/Royal Franco mare Twentyfivetolife first up since November to register an impressive victory in the Stawell Farm Supplies Pace for C2 & C3 class over 1780 metres. Starting outside the front row, Twentyfivetolife settled four back in the running line, with the pole marker Big Gorilla leading easily as the mobile gate pulled away. Easing three wide at the bell, Twentyfivetolife was accommodated by Paris To Berlin coming out ahead of her, thus receing a nice trail home. Charging down the centre of the track in the straight, Twentyfivetolife scored by 1.6 metres over the well supported The Ole Buckaroo along the sprint lane after trailing the leader, with Arr En Special third from three back the markers. Glen was to finish the day with a driving treble after border hopper Forced Out greeted the judge in the Landmark Harcourts Pace for C1 class over 1780 metres. Trained at Allendale East by David Kemp, Forced Out a most consistent 5-Y-0 daughter of Safely Kept and May Be Trouble led throughout from gate two in defeating Peters Ace (Matt) by 4.5 metres in a rate of 1-58.8 giving the brothers another quinella for the day. Bella Hotshot (one/three – three wide last lap) finished third. By Len Baker (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)  

Wednesday night trotting was held at the Swan Hill Racing Centre when the Nyah HRC conducted a neat seven event card, highlighted by the running of the $25,505 Alabar Bloodstock Northern Region Championship Final for C1 & C2 class over 2240 metres which contested the heats and Semi-Finals held at Mildura on March 6 and 12. Mildura’s Shayne Cramp (Victoria’s leading trainer of last season) held a strong hand with four of the 12 runners in the final and snared the quinella with four year old Mach Three/Aldebaran Bromac gelding Aldebaran Macha defeating Changing Code in a rate of 1-57. Driven by Nathan Jack, Aldebaran Machastarting from gate three on the second line settled a mile off the Lake Boga leader Gollahman (gate four). In a race where the position outside the leader chopped and changed several times as three of the Cramp runners took turns to face the breeze, Aldebaran Macha latched to the back of Beach Star from four back in the running line at the bell which originally parked outside the leader as the start was effected. Gaining a lovely ride home, Aldebaran Macha after an easy time raced to the front halfway up the running and in a punishing finish, held off Changing Code from mid-field by a half neck in a thrilling finale, with Beachstar  a game third after leading on turning. Wood Wood owner/breeder/trainer Greg Fleming does a grand job with his small team and captured the Ray & Grace Hepworth Memorial 3-Y-0 Pace Final over 2240 metres with Armbro Operative/Highly Rated gelding Rate Highly, giving the locals something to cheer about. Driven by Ararat’s Mick Bellman, Rate Highly possied three back in the moving line form gate six, with Dawson Street leading from gate three. Taken three wide in the final circuit, Rate Highly ran home stylishly to gain the day in advance of Billy Mack which raced in the open from the bell, with Glitzy Gal running home late from last to finish third. The mile rate 1-58.9. The wraps were huge on the first starter Midnitedelite in the Courage Under Fire 2-Y-0 Pace over 1609 metres and the Bettors Delight/Aimee Sheffield colt on debut didn’t let his supporters down. Trained at Elmore by Keith Cotchin and driven by Bendigo based Scott Dyer, Midnitedelite led throughout from the pole to easily account for Justbritell which raced outside him in a rate of 1-57.9. Will Cooper(one/three – three wide last lap) finished third. By Len Baker (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)

Bray Raceway Ballarat was the venue for Monday harness racing and with the Great Southern Star only a matter of five days away, it was appropriate for the trotters to take centre stage and that they did, with four of the nine races programmed for them. Impressive Wind Cries Maori/Tachometer gelding Glintintheeye trained at Bolinda by Brent Lilley made it two from two when successful in the Porter Industries 2-Y-0 Trotters Handicap over 1710 metres. Driven once again by Chris Alford, Glintintheeye coming from 10 metres avoided a number of gallopers on the first turn, settling four back along the markers, with Welkin Park leading from barrier two for Graeme Whittle. Moving to trail the pacemaker at the bell, Glintintheeye joined Welkin Park in the run along the back straight to stride clear on the home turn, assisted by Welkin Park galloping. Cruising to the wire, Glintintheeye scored by 12.7 metres from Welkin Park which got going again, with Trade Wind (four back the markers at bell) a further 14 metres away in third place. The mile rate 2-10.7 Very smart Armbro Variable/Maoris Lass colt Asdenro brought up four wins in succession by taking the Windmill AG Vicbred Trotters Mobile for T0 class over 2200 metres in a rate of 2-02.6. Trained at Maiden Gully (Bendigo) by David Van Ryn, Asdenro driven by stable reinsman (nephew) Haydon Gray led throughout from gate four to account for the roughie Brisharlo (three back the markers) which gave the leader a scare on turning when moving up swiftly to issue a challenge. Tiroroa Tom ran on late from mid-field for third. Being St Patricks Day, the Guinness would have been flowing after the Tanya Daniels The Good Guys Trotters Mobile for T1 & T2 class over 2200 metres, as Dunnstown brothers John and David Murphy snared the quinella, with Tommy Kay (Mick Stanley) defeating Monica My Dear (Glenn Conroy) by the shortest possible margin. Sent forward from outside the front line to join the pole line leader Im Anonymous in the back straight on the first occasion, Tommy Kay trained by John showed a great deal of courage to score in a thrilling finish, while Monica My Dear may have been the unlucky runner, as she was badly held up on the back of the leader before gaining a late split in the shadows of the post to just fail. Im Anonymous weakened to finish third 1.7 metres away. The mile rate 2-05.2. The Laser Electrical Trotters Mobile for T1 & T2 class over 2200 metres saw Nagambie maestro Chris Lang in the winners stall, when talented Dream Vacation/Invasions Pride four year old gelding Lord Liam greeted the judge much to the delight of owner/breeders Richard and Pauline Matthews. Trained and driven by Chris, Lord Liam had little difficulty in retaining the inside running from the pole and despite being covered by a hard pulling Frances Annie from the bell, was never really let go in defeating the last start Ballarat winner Happy Hombre which trailed by 4.1 metres in a rate of 2-02.4. Frances Annie fought on extremely well to finish third. By Len Baker (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)

The Choice Hotels Carnival of Country Cups continued at Boort in Central Victoria on Sunday March 16, with the oldest surviving trotting club in the state (established 1891), staging their once a year event in front of a very large crowd. The feature of the day – the $14,505 Loddon Valley Stud Boort Pacing Cup for C5 or better class (Discretionary Handicapped) over 2612 metres on the small 712 metre circuit attracted a small field of eight, with Tontine winner Flaming Flutter an almost unbackable favourite ($1.20). Trained at Bannockburn by Geoff Webster, Flaming Flutter with regular reinsman Greg Sugars handling the ribbons scrambled slightly from barrier five, before being sent forward once balanced to tackle Flash Of Freedom for the front running, taking over at the judge on the first occasion. Although Narra Operative shadowed him most of the way, Flaming Flutter was coasting at the head of affairs and kicked clear on the home turn to register an untouched 5.2 metre victory over Narra Operative who stuck to his guns well in a new track record mile rate of 2-02.7 (last half mile 57.6 – quarter 27.4). Farmersntradies finished third 8.7 metres away after a one/one trip. Raced by Geelong residents Ron Anderson, Neil Richmond and Garth Allen, Flaming Flutter a Kiwi bred four year old entire by Bettors Delight from Twice As Hot has fronted the starter on 25 occasions for 12 wins and has plenty more to come his way. The other attraction of the afternoon being the $14,505 Doyles Boomspraying Boort Trotters Cup for T5 or better class (D-H) over 21612 metres which saw injury plagued seven year old pacing bred Grinfromeartoear / Hiclass Souix mare Paparazzi Snapshot successful in a mile rate of 2-07.4. Trained at Ararat by Brook Hansen for her family, Paparazzi Snapshot driven by Kerryn Manning stepped safely from barrier two on the second line to immediately possie outside the leader Gazoline which bounded clear from barrier five as the tapes released, whereas the red-hot favourite Unico Crown galloped away from barrier two refusing to settle and was tailed off. Keeping the leader honest all through the race, Paparazzi Snapshot crossed to lead approaching the final bend, with Theywannacallmesue (one/two – three wide at bell) joining her to issue a serious challenge and momentarily take a slender margin on the home turn. Under vigorous driving, Paparazzi Snapshot rallied in the straight to record a strong 5.8 metre victory over Enjoy A Coldie along the sprint lane after being held up by the weakening Gazoline which he followed throughout, with Theywannacallmesue dying on his run to be 1.4 metres away in third place. Len Baker  Harness Racing Victoria

The ultimate test of speed and stamina – the Lyn McPherson Memorial Breed For Speed Trotting Series restricted to mares over 1609 metres commenced at Lord’s Raceway Bendigo on Saturday March 8, with both the Silver and Gold heats taking place. Considering the association that Duncan McPherson and his family have had with the Lang stable over the years, it was appropriate that trotting maestro Chris Lang was going to dominate on the night winning both races. Without doubt, the Gold Heat was the highlight  – the victor being five year old Shes An Image bred and raced by the Humphrey’s from Melton. Beginning brilliantly from outside the front line, Shes An Image almost crossed the well tried Quite A Moment (gate two) as the mobile gate pulled away, however Greg Sugars was able to retain the inside running approaching the first turn, with Shes An Image being restrained to immediately take a trail on her back. Kerryn Manning aboard the local hope Aleppo Midas (gate three on the second line) was off and running prior to the bell and joined Quite A Moment with a lap to travel. With the two favourites engaging in a two horse war along the back straight, the pace was a cracker with neither giving an inch. Just as Aleppo Midas was being hailed the winner in the shadows of the post, Shes An Image a daughter of Last Sunset and Joyces Choice sprouted wings along the sprint lane to score by a head in a tricky finish, with Quite A Moment 1.3 metres away in third place. With splits of 28.9, 30.5, 28.5 and 29.6, Shes An Image returned a mile rate of 1-57.4. The Silver heat going the way of long odds-on favourite Maori Time ($1.40), a well performed daughter of Pegasus Spur and Sundonna bred and raced by Fred Crews which goes back to the famous Maoris Idol dynasty. Not bustled from gate four with Im Anonymous leading from gate two, Maori Time ambled to the breeze, before taking over at the bell. Always in control, Chris allowed Maori Time to cruise to the wire, scoring by 1.4 metres only from Queens Vacation (three back the markers) and Canadian Dream (four back) in a mile rate of 1-59.8. Further heats including the Bronze, will be conducted at Shepparton on Friday March 14. Finals are held on Saturday 22 March - Pryde's EasiFeed Great Southern Star & Girls' Night Out at Tabcorp Park Melton. Videos attached of both races Len Baker Courtesy of Harness Racing Victoria

Phenomenal eleven year old Tinted Cloud - Carnlough Bay gelding Smoken Up returned to the track after a few weeks off to score an exciting narrow fighting victory in the SEW-Eurodrive Flying Free For All over 1720 metres at his home track Tabcorp Park Melton on Friday.   Showing his customary speed from gate two to hold out Inter Dominion finalist Keayang Cullen (gate five), Smoken Up first up since February 1 was given a comfortable time, before sprinting home his last half mile in 55.7 – quarter 27 to nose out Savesomtimetodream (one/one) in a rate of 1-54.7, with Keayang Cullen fighting all the way to the wire to be head away in third place.   Trainer/driver Lance Justice was thrilled with the performance, saying “the horse was nowhere near fit as yet and would contest a couple of minor Free For All’s over the next few weeks prior to possibly heading for a fifth victory attempt in the Len Smith Mile at Tabcorp Park Menangle on April 27”.   It was the dual Miracle Mile winners 72nd victory in 142 outings.  .................................................................................................................................   Daylesford duo – Mick Barby and Anne-Maree Conroy’s 5-Y-0 It Is I - Glenlyon Glad gelding It Is Billy continued his rise through the grades, by destroying his rivals in the 2nd Heat of the Empire Stallions Vicbred Platinum Metropolitan Pace for M0 class over 1720 metres.   Again showing exceptional gate speed from outside the front row, It Is Billy took over from Royal Witness inside him on the first turn, before coasting to a 5.7 metre victory untouched over Royal Witness in 1-54.5, with Cyrus a gallant third after racing three wide for the final circuit.   The $30,000 Final will be held this Saturday. Len Baker For Harness Racing Victoria

Former New Zealander Unico Crown was again the victor in Heat Two of the prestigious Tontine Series for Trotters T0 or better class over 2590 metres at Stawell on Monday February 3. A winner of the first round heat at Geelong on January 27, Unico Crown was again eligible to compete due to a paucity of numbers accepting for the race and scored in almost identical fashion. Trained at Lara by Dean Braun and driven by Chris Alford, Unico Crown as he did at Geelong began swiftly from the 10-metre mark to lead and was never headed, defeating Craig Demmler’s smart gelding Glenferrie Typhoon which raced outside him for the majority of the trip when first up since August, going down by 3.6 metres in a rate of 2-08.9, with Will Atone (20 metres) 44.1 metres away in third place after making a mistake hitting the back straight on the final occasion. Unico Crown four year old gelded son of Monarchy and Sunny Gem will now head to the $7,000 Semi-Finals to be conducted at Terang this Sunday, with the $30,000 Final to take place at Ballarat on February 14. Last season’s very smart Yankee Spider/Rockolina gelding Miracle resumed in the Grampians Estate 3-Y-0 Trotters Handicap  over 2175 metres and as expected was untroubled to score. Trained and driven by Bolinda’s Chris Alford for owner Dolores Murphy, Miracle an almost faultless trotter, led throughout from the pole, winning with something in hand over Bacardi Breeze which trailed, moving to the outside on turning to fail by 1.5 metres in a rate of 2-10.8. No Trumps No Glory (three back along the markers last lap was a further 16.5 metres away in third spot. Miracle hadn’t been seen since finishing fourth in The Redwood at Maryborough on July 14. Mingbool (Mount Gambier) trainer/driver David Drury has a terrific strike rate when he crosses the border and landed the Renown Silverware Pace for C2 & C3 class over 1780 metres with four year old Blissful Hall/Art For Art Sake gelding Big Gorilla. Driven with aggression from gate two, Big Gorilla led throughout to record a 4.8 metre victory in 1-59.4 over Evil Trickster which raced outside him, with Jerry Marshall (one/one) dropping down to use the sprint lane on straightening to finish third 1.8 metres away. Heywood co-trainers Kevin Brough and Bec East have their team firing on all fours at present and snared the Brian Gunnell Memorial 3-Y-0 Pace over 1780 metres with ever reliable Total Truth/Mama Tembu gelding Always Wantano in a rate of 2-00.8. Starting from the extreme draw, driver Matt Craven sent Always Wantano forward from near last racing for the bell to park outside the pacemaker My Mach Scooter for the final circuit. Gaining the upper hand on straightening, Always Wantano scored by 3.4 metres in advance of Bungalally Boy which trailed the leader easing wide on turning, with My Mach Scooter weakening to finish third a head away. The Kaye Matthews Tribute a C1 class race over 2175 metres named in honour of the late Kaye Matthews an administrator with the club for a number of years, went the way of Long Forest trainer Andy Gath’s most consistent Mach Three/Fingers Crossed four year old mare Lems Cameo. Driven by wife Kate, Lems Cameo (gate four) made an unsuccessful bid for the front running as the mobile gate pulled away, but couldn’t head off Sorority Sister (gate two). Gaining cover shortly after when Cullen Time moved to race in the open, Lems Cameo enjoyed a perfect passage. Easing three wide in the last lap, Lems Cameo sprinted sharply to lead on the home turn, before racing away to record a 12.8 metre victory from Franco Seelster from last off a three wide trail in the final circuit, with Additallup flying home late for third after being shuffled back from three back the markers when Beau Ciel ahead of him was held up for a clear passage. The mile rate 2-02.7. Childers Cove duo Ange and Clare McDowell made a long awaited return to the winners list, when four year old Blissful Hall/Childers Elite gelding Masterofthurles (unplaced in six starts prior) greeted the judge in the Mussett Upholstery Pace for C0 class over 1780 metres. Despite racing without cover from gate three for the entire trip, Masterofthurles outstayed his rivals in defeating Glenway Hustler which led and Rose Devine (one/one) in a rate of 2-01. Great Western’s Michelle Wight was victorious with Armbro Operative/If Iseeyouinheaven five year old mare Shanira in the Pyrenees Smallgoods Pace for C1 class over 1780 metres. Given every opportunity one/one from gate five, Shanira when eased three wide at the straight entrance, finished best to score by a half neck over a death-seating Khaleesi and Tipperary Seelster which led in a rate of 2-01. By Len Baker (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)

Trotting returned to the Mallee wheat belt area of Ouyen (South of Mildura) on Sunday January 26 2014, when the Ouyen HRC conducted their once a year Cup Day program on a lightning fast track. An even field lined up to contest the $25,000 standing start feature – the Greggs Electrical Ouyen Pacing Cup for M0 or better class (Discretionary Handicapped) over 2809 metres, with all runners starting from the front row. The tote favourite being  the Boris Devcic (Irymple) trained Timeless Era coming off a great 5th in the recent South Australian Cup won by Caribbean Blaster. In the semi-walk in start, Flash Of Freedom was best to begin from barrier three, with Copthewrath from the pole trailing and Baltic Ice (barrier two) three back the markers. Timeless Era was knowhere near the start from inside the second line as were a number of others and settled mid-field, while the highly fancied Johnny Quid from the all conquering Emma Stewart camp possied beautifully one/one from outside the front row. In an exciting affair where several moves were made, Johnny Quid crossed the leader with two laps to travel, with Timeless Era after going forward in the back straight crossing to race in the open. As the tempo increased, it allowed Nathan Jack to ease away from the markers to be one/one with around 1200 metres to travel. Taken three wide in the final circuit, Copthewrath sprinted sharply to lead prior to the home turn and raced away to record an easy 9 metre victory over the roughie Farmersntradies off a three wide trail in the last lap, with Timeless Era a gallant third. A seven year old gelded son of The Wrath Of Pan and Kentucky Sarah who was badly in on handicaps being assessed as only C5 class after winning at Swan Hill during the week, Copthewrath returned a new track record rate of 2-01.1 (last half 59.6 – quarter 29.6). Prepared at Mildura by last season’s leading Victorian trainer Shayne Cramp, Copthewrath did his early racing in South Australia before joining the Cramp stable. No doubt connection will now be heading towards the big Mildura Cup Carnival in April. By Len Baker (Courtesy of Harness Racing Australia)

The Ballarat Trotting Club’s feature harness racing event for the season – the $175,00 (Group 1) Petstock Ballarat Pacing Cup for M0 class over 2710 metres, was held at Bray Raceway in front of a enthusiastic crowd on Saturday January 25 – the victor being five year old Art Major / Shes Innocent entire Restrepo for Smythes Creek co-trainers Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin. Favourite backers gasped with horror at the start when Keayang Cullen began with a wing on every foot from gate five to cross the heavily supported Cranbourne and Shepparton Cups winner The Gold Ace who tried to muster from the pole. Despite Luke McCarthy trying to came away from the inside to tackle the leader, Lance Justice drove tight with the crowd favourite Smoken Up (gate four) to hold him in a pocket, before crossing to take over entering the front straight on the first occasion. This shuffled The Gold Ace to three back the markers, with Abettorpunt after following The Gold Ace being relegated to five back along the markers. The race changed complexion two laps out with Caribbean Blaster coming away from the markers, as did The Gold Ace who moved to face the breeze, while Christen Me was also sent forward to park in the open along the back straight approaching the bell. Racing for the bell, it was Smoken Up leading from Keayang Cullen, Christen Me in the open being followed by Caribbean Blaster, with Abettorpund moving to three back on the inside. At this stage Gavin Lang eased Restrepo from mid-field in the running line to improve three wide. There was more drama approaching the home turn, when Smoken Up shifted away from the inside allowing Keayang Cullen to gain an inside run forcing Christen Me three wide and Restrepo four wide. Smoken Up then rolled back to the markers on the final bend checking Keayang Cullen, with Christen Me taking over and Restrepo giving chase, with both The Gold Ace and Caribbean Blaster revved up to make ground. Kicking clear on turning, Christen Me looked all over a winner, however a vigorous Gavin Lang hammered Restrepo to the wire, gaining the day in a thrilling finish by a half head from Christen Me, with Caribbean Blaster a half head away in third place. Smoken Up finished fourth with Keayang Cullen fifth and Abettorpunt again having no luck in finishing sixth. Following the race, a protest by Glen Craven (Keayang Cullen) against Smoken Up for interference on the home turn was upheld. With quarters of 29.5, 31.3, 28.2 and 28.1 for the last mile, Restrepo returned a mile rate of 1-56.8, taking .5 of a second off Stunin Cullen’s record set in 2011. Other highlights of the evening were The Pure Steel, a Discretionary Handicapped event for M0 class over 2710 metres and two heats of the Australasian Trotting Championship for TM0 or better class over the same distance. Last year’s A.G. Hunter Cup victor seven year old Mach Three / Dancing On Winds gelding Mah Sish showed he was on target again for next week’s big race when successful over Im Corzin Terror and Jadahson in 2-00.4, leading for the majority of the journey. Heat one of the Australasian Trotters Championship was taken out by six year old Earl / Cinders gelding I See Icy Earl for squaregaiting whiz Chris Lang and reinsman Greg Sugars. Given a sweet passage one/one for most of the journey, I See Icy Earl bloused the hot favourite Blitzthemcalder right on the wire by a nose in a tricky finish, with ever reliable mare Cold Sister third. The mile rate 2-03.4. Heat two went the way of David Aiken’s in-form Ken Warkentin / Kovel rig My High Expectation who blitzed his rivals after a slow beginning in a rate of 2-03.6, defeating the backmarker Mister Zion which raced outside him for the last half of the journey, with Empire Earl third. The $50,000 Final will be held at Melton next Saturday. Len Baker for Harness Racing Victoria

1 to 16 of 1201
1 2 3 4 5 Next »