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Miami owner Gordon Banks rated American Dealer’s upset Sires’ Stakes Final win over white hot favourite Krug as one off his most thrilling wins in nearly 40 years of racing horses. But, unbelieveably, Banks missed seeing the last 100 metres of the thrilling duel when his excited partner in the horse Marc Hanover rang. Banks’ mobile phone was in delay and Hanover, watching 6km away on his laptop already knew the result, unable to contain himself over winning a Group I feature in the middle of the night. “I knew it was going to be close but I had to answer the call as I knew it would be Marc. I could still hear the commentary in the background and Marc was very excited so I thought he must have won.” It was 3.40am Miami time and Banks says the Alexandra Park race played out like comedy central as he got more and more excited throughout the race but was unable to shout out with his 98-year-old mother sleeping only two rooms away. But when he saw American Dealer full of running turning for home, his muffled urgings became ever louder.   Read the full story click here   by Barry Lichter Courtesy of Lincoln Farms

Funding to the codes for next season’s race stakes will be known on Friday and it could be up to 25% down on this year. The revelation yesterday, from Harness Racing New Zealand’s interim chief executive Phil Holden, confirmed fears that the industry is on the verge of severe stakes reductions. The Racing Industry Transition Agency board is meeting today and Holden says it will reveal its budget to the codes on Friday. “We’ve had some broad conversations with them and it’s fair to say it’s going to be significantly less. It could be anywhere up to 25% less.”   Read the full story here! Reprinted with permission of Barry Lichter Lincoln Farms

My night on the couch watching the trots on TV didn’t start well. Friday nights in front of Trackside used to be a real highlight of the week and with the wee man Ricky May making his comeback after ‘dying’ in January, it promised to be good viewing. With the horses for race six out on the track at Addington, and only four minutes and 20 seconds until race start time, all I wanted to do was check out their preliminaries. But no, we’re whisked off to Kawasaki in Japan where five horses who have never faced the starter before are lining up for a 900 metre race, with the favourite paying $1 to win. The horses’ names are different but I’ve heard the commentary many times before - five horses in competition, three corners in play, a nice clean start by all the horses and down the stretch they come, yada yada. Read the full story click here Reprinted with permission of Barry Lichter Lincoln Farms

A ray of light has emerged for the racing industry with betting on harness meetings stronger than expected since racing resumed 12 days ago. Figures obtained from Harness Racing New Zealand for the first eight meetings predictably show the highest turnovers in the South Island, with public track-based North Island stables still cranking up their operations. Friday nights at Addington have been particularly pleasing, says HRNZ racing and marketing manager Darrin Williams, with fixed odds betting clearly more popular than tote betting on weekdays. With 12-race cards, and the prime betting slot, Addington has returned figures of $1.17 million and $1.01 million for its Friday meets. Read more click here Reprinted with permission of Barry Lichter Lincoln Farms

Every day for the last 10 years that he’s been at Trackside, Greg O’Connor says he’s never felt like he was going to work. New Zealand racing’s greatest presenter thought he was blessed to be doing what he loved, bringing the emotion-charged stories of racing to the viewers. But sitting in a studio, 250 metres from Addington raceway last week, the stark reality of his future struck home. And it wasn’t one that he liked. So today he became the latest victim of the TAB’s demolition of its broadcasting arm, opting to take redundancy. “It’s just not working for me now,” says O’Connor, 47. “It hit home that night when Blair (Orange) drove his 2000th winner and I wasn’t there to capture the moment. I was sitting in a cold environment thinking this is what it’s going to be like from now. “It’s never felt like work for me but it does now. I’ve loved getting out and about and telling the stories of the industry but all of the tools we’ve had are no longer available and none of the team are here any more.” With the Racing Industry Transition Agency having all but stopped presenters working on course and dismantled their production crews, O’Connor says he’s virtually a “Lone Ranger” now. “Whale’s gone, and he was the biggest driver of turnover, Mick Guerin’s gone and so is Maryanne Twentyman who had vast experience in broadcasting and gave me the confidence to be able to do it.” Harness racing’s top three presenters, from left, Craig “The Whale” Thompson, Mick Guerin and now Greg O’Connor have all gone as a result of the TAB’s drastic cost-cutting. Not for O’Connor the drudgery of reading out the dividends for the next race at some obscure venue in Australia. “When you’ve had what I’ve had, it’s a big drop and change. Some can accept it and keep taking the money but I’m not one of them. “I like helping people and am passionate about what I do -whether it’s interviewing a new driver and helping develop them or helping a racing club using the expertise I’ve picked up in the last 25 years.” O’Connor is sad that he won’t be able to tell heartfelt stories like Terrill Charles’ win in the 2019 New Zealand Cup with Dee And Gee, which came two years after she was diagnosed with cancer. He won’t miss the terrible day when he had to announce on air that jockey Ashlee Mundy had died. But he will miss the good times he’s shared with some of his friends - like covering Todd Mitchell’s fourth New Zealand Trotting Cup win, or Tony Shaw’s Cup win with Yulestar, or their Interdominion triumph. “Those are the moments that bring people to the races, rather than just those who want to back horses race to race. “But when we’re not on track and when all your tools aren’t there, how do you tell those stories and how do you increase turnover?” O’Connor says his own suggestions, and those of his colleagues fell on deaf ears during the consultation process, and nothing changed. “I’m hopeful the hierarchy might recognise how important that coverage is at some stage. Once it’s gone you can’t relive it. “Am I sad I won’t be part of that process any longer? Of course. I’ve tried to portray the image of harness racing as a great sport, and I genuinely believe it is. “But while the decision to go wasn’t an easy one, it’s the right one for me and the family and the timing is right. “My wife Karen has a team of 10 young horses and after my dad passed away a couple of years ago, she needs a hand. There’s a fair bit of shit to pick up every day. “And honestly another big part of my decision is that I don’t want to miss my kids growing up. “Every Friday night I was going to be stuck in the studio covering Addington and that’s when Flynn plays football. He’s nearly 15, is a pretty handy player and I want to watch his games.” O’Connor was absent, covering the Interdominion Finals last year when his daughter Maia, 15, was dancing in her end of year production. O’Connor says he’s lucky that he’s reasonably secure financially, and while he’ll definitely need a job, he doesn’t have to rush into one. “That’s what COVID’s done for all of us, we’ve been able to take a step back and reassess things. “I’d be keen to get back into administration and I know there’s a job coming up at Addington that hasn’t been listed yet and if that happened, I’d certainly be happy.” O’Connor has years of experience in marketing and promotion, spending the best part of the 1990s at Addington, before a three year stint at Harness Racing New Zealand and time at Jade Stadium as its commercial and marketing manager. “I would have been at Trackside 10 years in August and I’ve loved every minute of it. I’ve had a great run and there are no regrets.” It’s the racing industry that will regret O’Connor’s loss. His unflappable nature, knowledge of both harness and gallops and it’s players was unmatched.   Reprinted with permission of Barry Lichter

Pukekohe owner-breeders, Lindsay and Pam Turner of Top Notch Lodge, have won their first Franklin Park Yearling Parade after placing in the annual event last year. Their brown American Ideal – Tigerswish colt named Tycoon Tiger, won the supreme award at the Pukekohe track on Station Road on July 29. That victory came 12 months after Tiger Tycoon’s older brother, Bit Of A Tiger (by Bettor’s Delight) placed last year. Tiger Swift (by Mach Three and out of Tiger Tina) also placed at that same 2015 Yearling Parade. “Pam and I have always loved the annual Parade because it puts all horses and their breeds out there. It’s great for all owners. Todd Macfarlane is training Tiger Tycoon and he has had two preps now. “Todd thinks he will make an early two-year-old and wants to line him up in the Young Guns Series in December. So here’s hoping. We never get carried away with babies but we do have the Breeders Crown in mind this time next year if he’s good enough,” Turner (Lindsay) said. He said Tycoon Tiger was the only horse that he and his wife bred in 2015 so they decided to keep him. “He’s always been very independent since then. A loner you could say. Todd likes him and that’s good enough for us,” said Turner. Tycoon Tiger is the grand-son of the best horse that the Turners have owned - the late Butler B G mare, Tigerish. The multiple Group One winning filly and mare won 15 of her 79 starts and $491,957 in New Zealand and Australia between 1990 and 1996. Tigerish left 11 foals between 1997 and 2010. Tigerswish (by Holmes Hanover), who won one of her 12 starts, was foal number five. She in turn has left four foals between 2009 and 2015. Turner said Tigerish’s first foal, the 2009 Mach Three filly named Tiger Tamer, fetched $5,000 at the 2011 Australasian Classic Yearling Sale and was bought by Bill and Paulette Screen, before going on to be trained by Derek Balle and then Todd Mitchell. She won two races. Two years later Tigerswish gave birth to a Changeover colt named Haunui Tiger. That now brown gelding was sold for $35,000 to Rosslands Stud at the 2013 Australasian Classic Yearling Sale. "He had three starts here and then went on to win one in Australia. After him came Bit Of A Tiger in 2014. He's by Bettor's Delight and is three now. He qualified in January and is coming along okay for us," Turner said. Then in November 2015 Tycoon Tiger was born. "We have kept the mare empty this year. She breeds better when she is left empty for a season. We will probably take her back to American Ideal again," Turner said. He said he was delighted that Tigerish’s family had performed well at Franklin Yearling Parades over the years. “We will keep attending them. We want to thank all the sponsors and people who organised the day. We are very proud of what Tycoon Tiger achieved. “It would be a dream come true if he could be our next Tigerish,” Turner said. Tycoon Tiger races in the familiar Turner crimson and white colours. Results from the 2017 Franklin Park Yearling Parade: NRM McMillan Equine Feeds Yearling-of-the-Year: TYCOON TIGER (American Ideal – Tigerswish colt) TROTTING: Veterinary Associates Equine & Farm $500 product prize for first: SUNNYS LITTLE JESTIC (Majestic Son - Our Sunny Whiz filly) HR Fisken & Sons voucher for second: PEAKZ LUCK (Peak - Howz Lucky filly) The Stables Cafe Z voucher for third: ADELLE (Orlando Vici - Scusi Boyz filly) PACING: Franklin Vets – Equine $500 Voucher for first: SILVIA (Art Major - Hi Ho Silver Lining filly) H R Fisken & Sons voucher for second: ANAMAJOR ((Art Major - Mary Anastasia filly) The Stables Cafe Z voucher for third: EYESPYWITHMYLITTLEEYE (Mach Three - Eye Contact filly) PACING COLTS: The Vet Centre $500 voucher for first: JETSON HUNTER (Changeover - Saucy Operator colt) H R Fisken & Sons voucher for second: PALIO ARDEN (Panspacificflight - Ruby Morn colt) The Stables cafe Z voucher for third: FRANCO NIVEN (Christian Cullen - Nigella Franco colt) BEST OF THE REST: Dunstan voucher - RECKON IM SMART (American Ideal - Pacing Grace colt) Lincoln Farms Service fee to Sir Lincoln: THE BLUE BEAT (A Rocknroll Dance - The Blue Lotus filly)   (Horse was drawn out of a hat.)   Duane Ranger

The nominations for the 2017 North Island Always B Miki harness racing awards have been released. The ‘Silver Jubilee’ (25th) Awards, which will be held at Alexandra Park on Saturday September 2, will see Better B Amazed, Dream About Me, Hug The Wind, Maxim, and The Orange Agent competing for honours in the Auckland Trotting Club’s Aged Pacer of the Year category. Gentleman Sir, King Of The Roses, Princess Mackendon, and Temporale will vie for the other prestigious 'on track' award - the Harness Racing New Zealand North Island Aged Trotter of the Year. The function is again being organised by the quartet affectionately known as ‘The Fab Four’ - aka Raelene Balle, Janene Cole, Karen Blanchard, and Suzanne Herlihy. "We are so looking forward to the 25th anniversary awards. We are very grateful to our sponsors who remain so loyal sponsoring us year on year, and big thanks also goes to Always B Miki, who has come on board," Pukekohe-based Balle said. "This year some of the nominees have been very close in the running, which is great to see as this means the wins and stakes are getting spread around.  “There are a lot of new owners names amongst the nominees, and also a broader range of trainers names training these horses. I would like to think that this is very healthy for our industry in the North," she added. Balle reminded people that the Awards are merit-based and did not operate the same way as the National Awards ceremony. "The Racing Achievement and Outstanding Contribution Awards are always a highlight as there are no nominees and the recipients have no idea they will be receiving the accolade. “Of course we are celebrating 25 years of awards in the north, which is just wonderful and we girls ('the Fab 4') have had the pleasure of organising them for 11 years now," Balle said. ALWAYS B MIKI 2017 NORTH ISLAND HARNESS RACING AWARDS NOMINEES – (in alphabetical order): KAHUKURI BLOODSTOCK HOLLIS & ROBERTSON - NORTH ISLAND GROOM OF THE YEAR: Taitlyn Henara, Yvette Hughes, Christopher Morrison, Sheridan Rapley, Danielle Rowden. MAGNESS VIDEO LTD / VID-COM LTD - NORTH ISLAND LICENCE TO TRAIN / OWNER – TRAINEROF THE YEAR: Ray Darby, Dave Iremonger, Rod MacKenzie, Fred Mitchell, Tim Vince. MITAVITE - NORTH ISLAND JUNIOR DRIVER OF THE YEAR: Robert Argue, Ben Butcher, Tony Cameron, Dylan Ferguson, Jack MacKinnon. DEXION – NORTH ISLAND AMATEUR DRIVER OF THE YEAR: To be announced. PGG WRIGHTSON - NORTH ISLAND 2-YEAR-OLD COLT OR GELDING OF THE YEAR: Alta Maestro, Culpeka, Mach Shard, South Beach Arden. PGG WRIGHTSON - NORTH ISLAND 2-YEAR-OLD FILLY OF THE YEAR: Caitlyn Clarke, Dontstopbelievin, New York Rain, Purest Silk, Spandau Ballet. BRECKON FARMS - NORTH ISLAND 2-YEAR-OLD TROTTER OF THE YEAR: More Shades Of Gold, Paramount King, Star Of Olesya, Stress Factor. BRECKON FARMS - NORTH ISLAND 3-YEAR-OLD TROTTER OF THE YEAR: C K Spur, Heavyweight Hero, Kissmeimloaded, Sertorius. DUNSTAN - NORTH ISLAND 3-YEAR-OLD COLT OR GELDING OF THE YEAR: Alta Intrigue, Jack’s Legend, More The Better, Star Galleria. DUNSTAN - NORTH ISLAND 3-YEAR-OLD FILLY OF THE YEAR: American Empress, Gotta Go Dali Queen, Juice Brogden, Step Up. MERV & MEG BUTTERWORTH - NORTH ISLAND FEMALE RACING ACCOMPLISHMENT AWARD: Nicola Chilcott, Arna Donnelly, Gayleen MacKinnon, Michelle Wallis. GARRARDS HORSE AND HOUND - NORTH ISLAND OWNERS OF THE YEAR: Breckon Bloodstock, Bernie Lim, Stonewall Stud, Tim Vince. CADUCEUS CLUB - NORTH ISLAND FILLY / MARE OF THE YEAR: Better B Amazed, Dream About Me, Rocknroll Princess, The Orange Agent, Yagunnakissmeornot. NORTH ISLAND STANDARDBRED BREEDERS ASSOCIATION INC – NORTH ISLAND BREEDER OF THE YEAR: Breckon Farms, Charles Roberts, Kahukuri Bloodstock, Stonewall Stud, Woodlands Stud. IRT – NORTH ISLAND DRIVER OF THE YEAR: Salish Abernethy, David Butcher, Zac Butcher, Josh Dickie, Andre Poutama. VETERINARY ASSOCIATES EQUINE AND FARM – NORTH ISLAND TRAINER OF THE YEAR: John & Josh Dickie, Arna Donnelly, Tony Herlihy, Barry Purdon, Steve Telfer & Chris Garlick. VETERINARY ASSOCIATES EQUINE AND FARM – NORTH ISLAND BROODMARE OF THE YEAR: Alta Camilla, Galleons Supreme, Lady Fingers, Splendid Dreams. WOODLANDS STUD – NORTH ISLAND STALLION OF THE YEAR: American Ideal, Art Major, Bettor’s Delight, Majestic Son, Pegasus Spur. HARNESS RACING NEW ZEALAND – NORTH ISLAND AGED TROTTER OF THE YEAR: Gentleman Sir, King Of The Roses, Princess Mackendon, Temporale. AUCKLAND TROTTING CLUB – NORTH ISLAND AGED PACER OF THE YEAR: Better B Amazed, Dream About Me, Hug The Wind, Maxim, The Orange Agent.  SIR LINCOLN AT LINCOLN FARMS – NORTH ISLAND RACING ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: To be announced. ALWAYS B MIKI - ALABAR / NEVELE R STUD – NORTH ISLAND AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION TO HARNESS RACING: To be announced.   Duane Ranger

The last 16 months of Vasari’s career has hardly panned out as his connections could have liked. And it really hasn’t panned out the way Vasari would have liked it. But when the highly-talented three-year-old bolted to an effortless win at Alexandra Park on Friday night he finally looked like the horse he promised to be as a late juvenile. The long-striding son of Art Major may have been harshly judged for much of this season, with perhaps the worst thing that could have happened to him being his win in a Sires’ Stakes heat at Addington last year. That night he lead and beat juvenile of the year More The Better, just a month after thrashing his opponents in a SIres’ Stakes heat at Cambridge by six lengths in a 1:55 mile rate. After that level of performances anything but group one glory was going to seem like a waste of Vasari’s talent but luck deserted him in the best races as a juvenile and then an old problem kicked in this term. Trainer Ray Green told driver David Butcher that by the time colts get to midway through their three-year-old season they either adapt to being a boy around girls or they can’t handle it. “One night at Alexandra Park he didn’t try and when I came back in Ray summed it up nicely. He said ‘he has turned into a werewolf,” laughs Butcher. So Vasari was gelded and now his mind is back on racing he looks more like his old self. “He has always had the ability and the good thing about him is he relaxes so well. “He felt great out there tonight and that is a very handy ability to have, the ability to park out and relax then kick hard  “So who knows how far he can go now, after all, he is still only a three-year-old.” The win was Vasari’s fifth and he should have little problem adding more in coming weeks and then the question will be whether Lincoln Farms want to keep him here in New Zealand or send him to somewhere like Menangle, where he would look suited. But with the stake rises coming at Alexandra Park, maybe the days of handy mid-grade horses heading off shore will become less common, with a Vasari well capable of winning good money at home if the better-end races get off the ground. His win extended Butcher’s huge lead in the North Island drivers premiership on a night when his son Zac landed two and brother Phil reined Pakipaki to an impressive win in a good fillies and mares race. With Alta Intrigue second to Vasari it provided Ray Green with the quinella and took him to 28 wins for the season, still with a shot at his personal best of 31 set in 2012. Already Green has bettered last season, is almost level on stakes won that term and has a better strike rate so has done another huge job to sit fifth of the northern trainers on the premiership. Michael Guerin  

Promising juvenile pacer Aramis might be one of the great bargains in harness racing history. Because whether he becomes a top horse or not it is hard to argue with his price: he was free. The Brian Hughes-trained gelding made it back to back wins at Alexandra Park last night, leading throughout to down fellow classy youngster King Of Swing with a 55.9 second last 800m. Hughes will now discuss with Aramis’s connections the idea of giving him a two-week spell so he can be set for the two northern Sires’ Stakes heats in October. “Two weeks doesn’t sound like much but he hasn’t been up to long and on what he has shown he deserves a shot at the Sires’ Stakes,” says Hughes. Aramis is owned by a group managed by Paul Charlton, who was the one who secured him at a mixed bloodstock sale. “The story goes the mare (Ca Cest Lamore) went through the sales with a foal at foot and was bought by Rod Croon but he didn’t want the foal,” explains Hughes. “So he gave it to Paul, who brought the other owners in and obviously they are pretty chuffed about it now.” Ironically Ca Cest Lamore, from the Interchange family, hasn’t produced a foal since but is in foal to Bettors Delight. While the winner ended the unbeaten run of King Of Swing, that wouldn’t have felt like a disaster to his connections Lincoln Farms considering Aramis is by their sire Sir Lincoln. On a quiet night at The Park, speed freak three-year-old Star Galleria was again too good for his intermediate grade rivals with much-improved Princess Makendon headed home a mares trifecta in the main trot. Michael Guerin    

Ray Green’s Pukekohe stable has four talented 2-year-olds lining up in $25,000 Young Guns heats at Alexandra Park tonight (Friday), but he believed Northview Hustler (R4) and Alta Intrigue (R8) were his best winning chances. Fresh from a stint in Singapore, the Pukekohe trainer reckons he has a couple of winning prospects at ‘The Park’ tonight, but thought Northview Hustler’s trials form and Alta Intrigue’s consistency gave them the edge over the others. Stable junior, Andrew Drake, who turned 21 yesterday (Thursday), rated Spring Campaign as his best drive of the night. “I would be all over Sea Of Gold if it wasn't for the draw. She is a lovely filly, but from seven I will be going back and then having to go forward again, and that just might be a bit tough for her. “Spring Campaign is a lovely horse drawn two and he might have enough gate speed to hold the front and that’s where he likes to be. He’s tough horse,” Drake said. Green currently sits on 198 training success. Here’s what the man from Lincoln Farms had to say about his seven chances: Race 2: Recco Lover (3) – "He’s a nice horse who is scratched due to a bruised heel." Race 2: Royal Gamble (4) David Butcher – "He’s a good little horse and I think he will just keep on improving. He reminds me a lot of Beaudiene Boaz, who was the same early on and then developed into a nice pacer. They have similar traits. He’s got better and better and I like him in this.” Race 4: Northview Hustler (4) – David Butcher - "This colt has been trialling real well and I like his chances a lot from the kind draw. He won real well on debut and won’t be far away this time either.” Race 5: Alta Shangri La (3) – David Butcher – "She is a nice filly who has the edge over her stablemate in this race simply because she has the better draw. We have kept a low profile with her. She is a half-sister to Alta Intrigue and can go close if things go right for her.” Race 5: Sea Of Gold (7) - Andrew Drake (j) - "This filly also has quite a bit of talent but she is drawn out a bit and will need a nice trip to get some of it. She won a trial and beat some nice fillies in doing so. If she does get luck in the running she won’t be far away either.” Race 6: Naya (1) – David Butcher - "She is a little bit green still, but has ability, She’s drawn to lead and if she does that it will suit her racing style down to the ground. She’s drawn to get some of it.” Race 8: Spring Campaign (2) Andrew Drake (j) – "He goes very well and has run two nice seconds at Cambridge and Alexandra Park behind some nice horses. He has a better draw this time around and won’t be far away. I think Andrew will give the colt every possible winning chance in this.” Race 8: Alta Intrigue (4) Zac Butcher - Another 3-year-old colt who was only just beaten last start and before that was runner-up in the Waikato Guineas behind the talented Mark Purdon runner (More The Batter). This appears to be a bit easier, and even though they are all nice horses, I rate this fella as one of our better winning prospects on Friday.” Duane Ranger

As the Calendar year draws to a close it is time to review Lincoln Farms current season of harness racing and let our partners and friends know what to expect for the remainder of the 2016/17 racing season. Lincoln Farms had a positive start to the season on the track with 12 victories, and 22 placings in the first 4 months of the season, the remainder of the season looks very promising with our young horses now in work, at the trials or about to start racing. John, Lynne and Ray have selected and invested in good quality racing stock at the sales over the past two seasons, which is evident in the fact that 77% of Lincoln Farms horses are 3 year olds and younger. This time of the year is particularly exciting with the 2 year olds about to start qualifying to race at the trials, some will have a Young Guns campaigns, others will need time to mature but will likely make an appearance at the workouts as part of their learning curve over the summer month. This season we have seen the start of the first crop of Sir Lincoln’s progeny, hit the tracks, they have reached  2 year old status with several already qualified to race. Sir Lincoln has certainly stamped his progeny, they are nice big athletic types with both genders impressing at this early stage. Lincoln Farms 3 year olds, have several exciting racing options open to them, with races in the upcoming Sales Series, Sires Stakes and hopefully eventually the Jewels to aim for in the next few months. During the year, John and Ray made some hard decisions with our older horses who had won their share of races in New Zealand, some of these fine animals were sold, which benefited not only Lincoln Farms but also the loyal partners who have continued to race horses with us. By selling these fine animals it assists Lincoln Farms to purchase young stock at the upcoming Yearling Sales, so while we all may miss seeing Zac Maguire, Reine Des Gitan and Lincoln’s Superstar to name a few, their stakes earnings ability was limited as they went up in grade, while they can still be worthwhile for their new owners in Australia, as racing and breeding propositions. Aussie Bound Not all horses realise their true value in a sale so Lincoln Farms and their partners decided to race two horses in Australia, while retaining full ownership. Earlier this month we sent Killer Queen and Strike the Gold to NSW to Jay Jay Stables, Paul and Lyn Fitzpatrick’s racing operation 75 kilometres South West of Sydney, located close to Tab Corp Park, Menangle .  One of the advantages of racing in Australia is that both of these horses will drop back in class and will be better suited racing against the lesser rated opponents across the pond. One of the rules is that we have to change their names when registering with Harness Racing Australia, also no apostrophise are used, so they will now be known as Lets Strike the Gold and Shesa Killer Queen. Sir Lincoln Progeny All of us at Lincoln Farms have eagerly await the Spring, as the time has come to finally have our wonderful NZ Bred stallion, Sir Lincoln’s progeny hit the race track.  His first crop of 2 year olds are very impressive youngsters who have proven to be nice rangy athletic types, with early indications of some special horses in the making. There are several progeny in the South Island that have qualified to race with top trainers Bruce Negus and Cran Dalgety, one to remember who has impressed namely John the Plumber, is due to race at Addington on the 23rd of December.  In the North we have had several fillies and colts winning at the workouts, two having qualified to race.  Lincoln Farms have 7 x 2 year old colts and 5 x 2 year old fillies sired by Sir Lincoln in our barn at Pukekohe, some will develop into good racing prospects at 2, others will take a little longer. The quality of his progeny have meant  increased demand in the services of Sir Lincoln as a stallion, the 2016 breeding season is expected to see well in excess of 200 services from both sides of the Tasman.  An update on the racing team. Older Horses.    (Lets) Strike the Gold a 5 year old  by Bettors Delight Strike flew to NSW earlier this week to Paul Fitzpatrick’s stables to do his future racing in Menangle, he left New Zealand after surprising a lot of people except his owners by beating a small but highly rated field over the 2700 meter trip from a standing start. For a gelding who had a lot of time off from surgery where he has several pins in his legs, he showed he still has the class and ability to win races. Strike starts in Australia on a lower rating band and should prove to be a tough horse to beat. He won $84,920 in stakes in his limited starts in NZ.   4 year Olds (Shesa) Killer Queen Flew out with stablemate Strike the Gold and will also do her further racing in NSW, she has been a great mare, stakes placed as a 2 and 3 year old, has had her challenges with fibrillation  however she keeps bouncing back, loves racing and is very hard to beat when she gets to the front. The tighter turning tracks in Sydney will suit her racing style, with further wins across the Tasman her value will increase as a broodmare. Queen has won $131,959 in stakes winning in NZ.   King of Rock by Love You This nicely bred trotting gelding, a very athletic horse who has bulked up nicely following his recovery from a leg operation last season. He has proven more than a hand full and has been sent to Derek Balle’s Stable to see if he can get him to concentrate on trotting as he wasn’t sure which gait he preferred. A full brother to You Rock and a half to other multiple win horses, he is still a work in motion.   Like A Hurricane by Mach Three This classy gelding who has had his share of setbacks, he is currently recovering from a suspensory problem and enjoying his time in the paddock, he will be back in the stables in early January. Hurricane showed in his first campaign that he has genuine speed by winning a 2200 meter race in 2.41 and change at Alexandra Park, that he is capable of winning his share of races.   Perfect Storm by American Ideal A tough little gelding, and a full brother of Besotted. He had a good start to his racing career last season with 10 starts for 2 wins and 6 minor placings for stakes of $32k. Storm then developed a problem with his stifles where his cartilage was thinning, he is now receiving stem cell treatment to the area which takes time to repair, he will also be reviewed in the New Year.    Thephantomtollbooth by Real Desire A speedy gelding, this talented big boy has had time out to let him grow into his big frame, His limited time on the track last season earned him, 2 wins and 2 minor placings from just five starts.  Our vets had known that Phantom had a couple of small floating bone chips which it was decided to remove, following his win in August. His surgery was successful with no apparent nerve or ligament damage, he is back in the stable and been in work for the past 2 weeks, he is also swimming and  will likely be another 3 weeks away from the workouts.   3 Year Olds. A nice group of Lincoln Farms 3 year old horses will be seen on the track over the summer months, most are lightly raced or just starting their racing careers, others have come through a 2 year old campaign and will now step up to the Stakes races ahead. Alta Intrigue by Mach Three A very speedy colt who had his second start of the season last Friday evening where he ran third in the Northern Stakes, he appears to be a more tractable horse after his break, and will be improved by his recent races. He will now target the Sales Series and Sires Stakes over the next few weeks, he appears stronger this time in and should prove competitive in his races. Amaro by Badlands Hannover A nice tidy little pacer who has had a handful of starts, he has shown he can run however Ray feels he would benefit from a month in the paddock to freshen him up.  He has good speed but needs to develop a little more to be competitive on race day, as even non winners are running 2.41/42 over the 2200 meter distance at Alexandra Park. Lincoln Lady by Somebeachsomewhere A very well bred filly who needed time to develop, she is with Derek Balle stables, she has raced 4 times and while showing ability on the training track has not been able to convert this to race day.  May just need time.   Lincoln’s Delight by American Ideal A very nice filly who has above average ability, one who needed time but is showing up on the track now with good speed and a nice gait. Ray will step up her work and aim for a qualifying trial around the end of the month. A filly to watch this season. Unraced. Northview Hustler by Bettor’s Delight A nice colt out of a Western Australian champion family, improving type but needed a little more time.  Hustler had a few growing issues and need the extra time to fill out his frame.  He will start light work within the next 3 weeks, he has qualified to race during his last preparation where he showed good quality, a nice colt who will be one to watch over the holiday period.  Good at the workouts last week a week away from racing. Unraced.   Onedin Amethyst by Sportswriter By an exciting American Sire, he is a big clean gaited pacer, had one start for a 4th placing on debut, Ray decided he was still growing so he was turned out. Sporty is just coming back into work having a few tendon issues, he will start his preparation swimming and on the walker to ease him back into more pace work.    Rocknroll Lincoln by RockNroll Hanover A nice pacer who has had 4 starts to begin his racing career including a first-up second at Cambridge. A colt that Ray feels will improve with experience, he may not be a champion but  he has the ability to develop into a tidy racehorse.   Sky Diamond by American Ideal This colt from the same dame as Sky Major had 2 starts in his first preparation as a 2 year old with 2 more in October to kick off his 3 year old campaign. Sky has been given time in the paddock to fill out his large frame, he is back in work just now, jogging at this stage but will likely be at the workouts in just over a months’ time. Expect more this time in.   Spring Campaign by Courage Under Fire This speedy colt is a strong type from a quality family, Spring had his first race back this campaign in the Northern Stakes where he was in a speed battle and finished 5th, he is better than that and is more tractable this time in, we should see improvement from him over the holiday season. He has genuine speed and will be freshened up this week before racing on the 22nd of December. Vasari by Art Major  A colt with a lot of natural ability, was competitive with the best of the 2 year olds last season and looks to have the depth to make an even better 3 year old. Vasari has had 16 starts for almost $60k in stakes winnings, for his efforts. He had a short setback with a suspected joint injury which has since been positively diagnosed and he is responding well to treatment, he will need a little more time but will be ready to go in the New Year.   2 Year Olds. This is the start of a new life for these young horses, some will cope well and get straight into their work, others take longer to adapt needing several preparations to make the races. This is a special year for Lincoln Farms as the first racing crop of Sir Lincoln’s progeny will make their way onto the training and racetracks. New Zealand is in need of a quality homebred stallion with Christian Cullen now retired, there has not been a local entire to stand up, Lincoln Farms believe that Sir Lincoln, may just be the type to deliver good quality off-spring, which is becoming increasingly apparent from the trials and workout results. His current crop of 2 year olds are well structured, athletic and are starting to run times that are very impressive and receiving accolades and attention from trainers in both Islands. This has meant more interest in his demand as a sire with current bookings running way ahead of last season and from both sides of the Tasman. Alta Shangra La by American Ideal A striking filly a half-sister to Alta Intrigue both being out of a strong USA family bloodline, she will likely go early, as she has good size and maturity. In work and will be aimed at the Young Guns Series for Fillies. Annaliese Lincoln by Sir Lincoln A nice big filly may make a 2 year old has a bit of attitude but powerful type with dame bloodlines back to a strong USA family. She is starting her first preparation and has shown ability. Benriach by Sir Lincoln A nice black colt, may need a little time but is a very nice type of horse from an In the Pocket race winning mare. Big colt who is showing up early, goes good, may make an autumn 2 year old. Best Shot by Bettor’s Delight A strong solid type, from a great family on the dame side, by NZ’s most prolific sire. He will likely need a little time, he is not currently in work. He has recently been gelded and is a month away from starting work. Betterhavtime by Bettor’s Delight A nice neat little pacer from a Mach Three, 7 win mare, possible early 2 year old, nice horse. He was recently gelded and  will come into work prior to Xmas, showed promise earlier. King of Swing by RockNroll Hanover A nice forward colt, nicely gaited with a great temperament from an exceptional family on the dame side, who won as a 2 and 3 year old. Had a bone chip removed, been back in work for 2 weeks 3 weeks away from the workouts. A horse to watch.   Lincoln’s Image by Sir Lincoln Very nice type of colt out of a seedy winning mare, a big strong type who may need time, had first prep then sent to the paddock back in after Christmas.   Lisa Lincoln by American Ideal A half-sister to Ideal Quest, from an In the Pocket winning mare, she is a nice strong filly with a nice easy gait, she is in the stables doing pace work, one to watch.   Lincoln Lovely by Sir Lincoln The pick of our fillies, beautiful pacer, nice filly from a multiple winning mare. Ray feels she will make a nice autumn 2 year old. She is currently in the paddock until the New Year.   Lincoln Road by Sir Lincoln Nice colt may need a little time, from a good family on the dame side. He has just come back into work, Ray feels he has done well during his time out and expects to see an improved horse this time in.   Lincoln Sky by Sir Lincoln Colt that has needed time, who has just started back in work, an improving type, a big nice gaited colt, look for later in the season.   Lincoln Street by Sir Lincoln Related to a Northern Derby winner, this colt is a big strong type who has needed a little time as he is still growing, will be brought back in after Xmas.   Linc’s Bute by Sir Lincoln A nice big colt out of a Badlands Hannover mare, who has needed time but is well gaited and showed early ability, look for him as a late 2 year old or early 3 year old.   Linc’s Grace by Sir Lincoln Nice big filly, still growing so has needed a little time, back in, a nice pacer and is improving another to watch, early in the New Year.   Linc’s Tiger by Sir Lincoln The first foal out of a Real Desire mare, showed some ability first time in however Ray feels he will be best given a little more time. Tiger will go to the paddock to enjoy the spring grass, until after  Xmas when he will be brought back into work.   Naya by Sir Lincoln A nice pacing filly who feels as she may run early, does everything right at this stage. Nice type from winning family. She is advanced in her work and has been at the workouts, had a trial and qualified to race after Xmas.   Recco Love by Bettor’s Delight A nice big colt and a good pacer, out of a very fast mare, he has qualified and had several workout runs in preparation for the Young Guns heat Friday evening at Alexandra Park. Nice horse.   Royal Gamble by Bettor’s Delight The golden cross with Cristian Cullen multiple winning mare, this colt is a nice pacer has come a long way recently, he qualified and will also contest the Young Guns heat on Friday evening, nice horse.   Sea of Gold by Bettors Delight Trained for Woodlands Stud, she has shown above average ability at the workouts and her trial where she qualified to race, winning her trial. A full sister to Strike the Gold and Gold Ace, bred to be a star. She is a nice pacing filly we would expect to show up early at the races.   Vinabaka by Christian Cullen A nice big colt from a very good family, he is still growing, needed gelding, is just back in work so will need time, he should be at the workouts in the New Year, has obvious talent and more adaptable this time in.   Yasmine Bromac by Sir Lincoln A very correct, nice big filly who has done everything right on the track, she is currently spelling and will come back in the New Year. Yasmine is from a very nice well-bred family which shows in her gait and demeanour, the filly to watch. Lincoln Farms also have several well-bred yearlings at the farm in Pukekohe, which we will advise people of in the future, when they get closer to the race track. All of us at Lincoln Farms are proud of the fine group of well-bred younger horses that John and Lynne have purchased and Ray and his team are developing, some we hope will prove to be the stars of the future. We will have a few available for partnerships once we have put a little more work into them to ascertain the likely readiness to race.  The comments above are Ray’s current plans for our horses, which can and do change from time to time for various reasons.  I will keep individual owners updated as their horses start workouts, trials and races. After watching our current racing stock at the workouts over the past few weeks, I am sure that Lincoln Farms will have their share of successes over the festive season and summer months ahead.  Finally from all of us at Lincoln Farms, John & Lynne, Ray and his team, Merry Christmas to our partners, friends and our associates, I hope your horses run well, Santa is good to you and your investment and enjoyment in the racing industry, are a continued success over the holidays and during 2017. Merry Xmas and Happy New Year Ian Middleton For Lincoln Farm Bloodstock Limited  

An aborted trip to Denmark has ultimately paid dividends for promising Pukekohe junior driver Andrew Drake. The 20-year-old was scheduled to visit friends in Scandinavia in August but when plans fell through he was left jobless and uncertain about his harness racing future. The Palmerston North-born and educated horseman had already handed in his notice to Todd Mitchell at Tauwhare when Green heard that Drake had been left out in the cold.  "I came to Todd’s from Stephen Doody’s in mid-January and would probably still be there if it wasn’t for the Denmark trip being called off. “I’ve been at Lincoln Farms for almost a month now and I am really enjoying it a lot. Todd gave me some great opportunities and now that Andre (Poutama) has finished his junior driving days I’m hoping I might get more drives up here,” Drake said. “I'm rapt with the start I've had and the opportunities I’ve been given so far. I just hope they continue,” he added. Drake has started the season in fine fashion with two wins from seven drives and is one win behind the North Island’s leading junior, Sean Grayling. Ironically his two wins have come behind his former boss’s two standardbreds - Creamee (August 18 at Cambridge) and Stunin Banner (September 8 at Cambridge).  “Todd trains them both and he has always been a great help to me. Both he and Ray are very high up on the trainer’s premiership and it has, and is, a privilege to have worked for them both. “Ray has a strong team with really nice horses, but like I said if the Denmark trip had still been on this wouldn’t have happened. I was going to go for a year and have a real good look around but then fate stepped in. “Ray needed a worker at the time and it has all fallen into place. I moved up here (Pukekohe) and started straight away. They have horses for junior races and I just gotta hope I can get more outside drives now that I’m working around the Franklin training track,” Drake said. Drake has reined home nine winners and 27 place-getters ($74,673) from 148 drives since first taking out his licence in 2014. Four months after having his first New Zealand drive Drake drove his first winner via the Stephen Doody trained Eyre Hostess at Manawatu Raceway in February 2015. “I would not be driving today if it wasn’t for Stephen. He inspired me to become a horseman. It was because of him I wanted to leave school and become a driver. He has taught me so much. “Stephen great to work for and the reason I am doing what I do today. I live for driving. I wouldn’t ever want to do anything else. I owe it all to him – and Mum of course,” Drake said. Drake’s Mum, Tracey was Doody’s former partner when he was growing up and Drake became hooked on harness racing through Doody. He left Palmerston North Boys High at 16 and then when he was 17 he went to Perth to further his career abroad. “I worked for Kade Howson and had eight drives but never saluted. I was there for nine months but the drives were few and far between so I returned to New Zealand and worked for Stephen again. Then I went to Todd's,” Drake said.   Duane Ranger

Sir Lincoln raced 53 times in New Zealand for 20 wins in a harness racing career spanning from 2008 to 2013. He raced with distinction against the best horses in New Zealand and has a Jewels win and an Auckland Cup to his name, beating champion horse Terror To Love in the Auckland Cup in 2012. He also had 4 starts in Australia for 1 win and 2 seconds during his racing career.  In his first season at stud Sir Lincoln served over 100 mares and that first crop have just turned two. Many of those 2yos are starting to excite trainers on private tracks around New Zealand and I talked to Canterbury trainer Bruce Negus about a couple of his young Sir Lincolns that are impressing him at an early stage. Bruce said he has a 2yo colt by Sir Lincoln out of Eves Apple(Red River Hanover - Adam's dream) that he says has gone as good as anything else he has had at a similar stage of their career. On 1st August 2016 the day he turned two, the Eves Apple colt paced a quarter in 29.9 on his home track, a time that stacked up to horses the caliber of Ginger Man on his track at the same age. That colt is very good says Bruce, and has done every thing asked of him so far. Bruce has a couple of fillies that have also shown plenty early, including a filly he has a lot of time for from Sir Lincoln out of Graceandtemika(Courage Under Fire - Detach). That filly has paced 31.4 for a quarter and is also a well gaited filly. The other filly Bruce spoke highly of that has shown a lot of ability at this early stage is by Sir Lincoln out of the mare Monaveen(Sands A Flyin - Stronechrubie). One of the things Bruce likes about the stock of the Sir Lincolns is that they are so cleanly gaited. He said two of the above mares were bad knee knockers but the resulting Sir Lincoln foals have been well gaited and have shown none of the knee knocking tendency of the mares. Colin DeFilippi who has driven the young horses in work agrees and says their best assets are their gait as well as their speed. The colt in particular ran 29.9 but did it so easily and was very well mannered said Colin. Bruce thinks Sir Lincoln is great value as a sire from what he had seen of the foals on the ground so far and has another four of his mares going to Sir Lincoln this season. Sir Lincoln is standing at Lincoln Farms Sir Lincoln website   Harnesslink Media  

Pukekohe horseman Derek Balle looks set for a nice juvenile season in 2016-2017 if last Saturday’s annual Franklin harness racing yearling parade is anything to go by. Yearling colt Cullen's Caviar (Christian Cullen – Callie O’Malley) was judged the top yearling at the Franklin Trotting Club’s track on Station Road. Balle cleaned up the two major prizes with stablemate, Bit Of A Tiger (Bettor’s Delight – Tigerswish colt) also judged the ‘Best-of-the-Rest’. Balle received an NRM voucher while the Cullen’s Caviar’s gelding’s owners received a McMillan Feeds voucher. Bit Of A Tiger’s efforts earned Balle a Dunstan voucher sponsored by North Island Standardbred Breeders Association. Balle said there wasn’t much between the two yearlings. “I couldn’t separate them at this early stage. They are both very nice horses and the pick of my yearlings so far,” Balle said. Cullen’s Caviar is owned by his breeders (D M J Verryt, P J Cowsill, Mrs P Cowsill, Miss K Verryt, Miss T Verryt, Mrs D Farrell) – the Syndicate that owned the colt’s dam – Callie O’Malley, who won five races for Balle. They also have a Bettor’s Delight weanling out of Callie O’Malley with Balle. The mare was served by Auckland Reactor in September. “Cullen’s Caviar is very well put together and a bit more mature than most I’ve had. He feels like a 2-year-old but probably not a Young Guns horse. He will more than likely front after Christmas if he keeps developing the way he has,” said Balle. He said Cullen’s Caviar had paced a mile in 2:20, a half in 65, and a quarter in 31. “I broke him in, and like a lot of Christian Cullens he took a while to gait up, but once he got the hang of it he took to it well. He’s been in work for 10 weeks and I’ll give him a break now,” said Balle. He said Bit of A Tiger was a nice little horse, who had eight week’s work since he was passed in at the this year’s Karaka Yearling Sales. His reserve prize of $60,000 wasn’t reached. “He will have his second prep in about a month. He should also make a 2-year-old, but after Christmas as well,” Balle said. Meanwhile the Steve Cornwall (Pukekohe) trained Monkey Bones - Immortal Beloved gelding, Tobruk, was judged the best trotter at the parade. He was also named the ‘Best-Turned-Out-Trotter. The Robert Dunn trained Monkey Princess (Christian Cullen – Sheza Monkey) was judged the best pacing filly and the Ray Green trained Yasmine Bromac (Sir Lincoln – Jasmine Bromac) was the 'Best-Turned-Out'. The Brent Mangos trained Culpeka (Mach Three – Tuapeka Maddy) was named the best pacing colt and gelding and Balle's Cullen’s Caviar, the 'Best-Turned-Out'. Two Lincoln Farms service fees to Sir Lincoln were won by the Paulette Scree trained Petite's Majestie / and Joe Powell. Twenty five yearlings (eight trotters, nine pacing fillies, and eight pacing colts and geldings) took part in the Parade. Franklin Park Yearling Parade results - Overall Yearling-of-the-Year - The Derek Balle trained Cullen's Caviar (Christian Cullen – Callie O’Malley colt). Owner received an NRM voucher and trainer received a McMillan Feeds voucher. Best-of-the-Rest: Dunstan voucher sponsored by North Island Standardbred Breeders Association – The Derek Balle trained Bit Of A Tiger (Bettor’s Delight – Tigerswish colt). Trotters: Veterinary Associates Equine & Farm $500.00 product – The Steve Cornwall trained Tobruk (Monkey Bones – Immortal Beloved gelding) 1; HR Fisken & Sons voucher - Sir George Bowen 2; The Stables Cafe voucher - Traveller Girl 3. Takanini Feeds Merit Award - Out Of The Box; Takanini Feeds Best Turned Out - Tobruk. Pacing Fillies: Pukekohe/Waiuku Vet Centre $500 Feed Voucher – The Robert Dunn trained Monkey Princess (Christian Cullen – Sheza Monkey) 1; H R Fisken & Sons Voucher - Tiger Swift 2; The Stables Cafe voucher - Bettathanapokeindeye 3; Takanini Feeds Merit Award – Eyes Blazing; Takanini Feeds Best Turned Out – The Ray Green trained Yasmine Bromac (Sir Lincoln – Jasmine Bromac). Pacing Colts: Vetpro $500.00 product prize – The Brent Mangos trained Culpeka (Mach Three – Tuapeka Maddy) 1; H R Fisken & Sons voucher – Lincoln Road; The Stables Cafe voucher - Bayardo 3; Takanini Feeds Merit Award – Diamonds N Cash; Takanini Feeds Best Turned Out – The Derek Balle trained Cullen’s Caviar. Others: Betavet Random Trainers Draw - Ray Green; Muang Thai Voucher Horse/Owner Random Draw – Diamonds N Cash (Breckon Racing Syndicate); The Stables Cafe Voucher = ‘Sam'; Two Lincoln Farms Service Fees to Sir Lincoln Horse/Owner Random Draw - the Paulette Scree trained Petite's Majestie / and Joe Powell. Every horse that entered received a halter.   Duane Ranger

Lincoln Farms produce a newsletter for all their clients each month which covers all their harness racing horses in work. With their permission that newletter is reproduced below. John, Lynne and Ray have been hard at it again this season purchasing some wonderful horses at the Weanling, Australasian and Premier Yearling Sales, the later which has just concluded in Christchurch last week.  They purchased 14 beautifully bred yearlings to enhance the 7 homebred horses currently at the farm. I will list the purchases at the bottom of the page and will let everyone know more about their breeding in future correspondence.   It has been a reasonable start for Lincoln Farms 2016 season with 17 wins, 19 seconds and 14 third placings to the stable, which places Ray Green up near the top of the trainer premiership at Alexandra Park. Over the past 6 to 8 weeks many of the stables around Pukekohe, have been infected by a virus which also found its way to many of our horses. In horse talk many ailments are put down to virus’s however this latest outbreak has shown influenza like tendencies with snotty noses, temperatures and horses becoming listless. While we try to limit contact with infected horses, it is very difficult to contain but with regular testing by our veterinarians, medication and the assistance of our Centurion Transpiration Units, it helps to speed up the recovery. The Sales Blurb on Transpirations. Originally designed for high performance athletes the system uses colloidal silver, a natural antibacterial and heated distilled water. The Transpirator Therapy has demonstrated improvement in cases where obstructive respiratory conditions or airway water loss contributed to decreased performance levels. By working with the mucous blanket in the lungs, the Transpirator helps to expel the excess mucous and in most cases, any bacteria living there. Common respiratory ailments such as bronchitis, viruses and colds, may be shortened with the use of Transpirator Therapy, allowing many horses to get back to regular training and racing faster. The general health of horses who are exposed to dust, allergens and air pollutants may be helped with the Transpirator. Fortunately as with humans these bugs pass and time seems to be the only real healing process, we are pleased to report that it appears that we are over the worst of this virus and our racing stock are mainly all back in work. Some we will give a little more time to recover however Ray feels that the majority are starting to feel their oats, so to speak and are more alert with their daily jogging routine.    Western Australia.   On New Year’s Eve, the Perth hall of fame trainer, Gary Hall Snr visited our stables and drove Beaudiene Beaufighta as a trial prior to purchasing the colt for future racing with his brother Beaudiene Boaz in Western Australia. Boaz was sold shortly after winning the Jewels as a 2 year old, he has gone on to win 17 of 21 starts in W.A. In conjunction with the sale of Beaufigta, John agreed to send our open class horse Besotted over to Perth where he could race off the front markers rather than staying at home and being handicapped 30 and 40 meters in most of his appearances. Besotted had a minor setback on arrival, with a foot abscess which has since cleared up and he will be due to start racing for Lincoln Farms within the next three to four weeks. You may remember one of the great NZ bred horses successfully raced by Gary Hall, Themightyquinn, who was also bred by the same breeder as Beaudine Boaz and Beaufighta, Mr W D Kennedy.   Lincoln Farms NZ racing stock. 4 Year olds.   Strike the Gold - Has not raced since April 2015 due to two major injuries, is due back in work in 6 to 8 weeks, he had to have a pin inserted across a fracture that would not mend, he is a talented colt who won 4 times in his young career, we are looking forward to having him back in work. He is a full brother to Gold Ace the open class pacer who is now at stud.   Rein Des Gitan - The 4 year old trotting mare was affected with the virus and has been turned out to put on some conditioning before coming back into light work. She is about two weeks away from a slow build up. She has shown good speed in her first campaign and won a race, watch for her when she returns, she should be stronger next time in and become more adaptable in her races.   Angus Fogg -  Our 4 year old trotting gelding with Derek Balle, finally showed a glimpse of form when placed at Alexandra Park on the 12th of February before he was also hit by the virus. He is still in light work but he is a day to day proposition until he shows he is over the virus completely.   Ideal Quest - The Bettor's Delight mare who won 3 races in her brief career has been retired to stud duties. She has had breathing issues, operations and a continued tendency to flip her pallet which restricts breathing during racing. She was a lovely free legged (no hobbles) pacer who showed real promise and ability but despite efforts to cure her ability of switching off during races she continued to choke down and stop the flow of oxygen whether a physical or mental issue, Lincoln Farms had no choice but to retire her at this point. 3 Year Olds. Lincoln’s Keepsake -  The 3 year old half-sister to Lincoln’s Megastar and Sir Lincoln, who has won two of her three starts has had time in the paddock to strengthen up, she is in slow work but will step up to fast work in 2 weeks’ time. She is 6 to 8 weeks away from the workouts.   Awesome Dude - The son  of Modern Art, is back in light work, he is a slow developer and may need more time, we will know more about his ability after this current campaign.   Nightime Gambler Another son of Modern Art, he is a nice type who showed pace in his last preparation, he is 6 to 8 weeks away from the workouts but more is expected of him this time in. He is still unqualified but showed enough at the workouts to let Ray know he is a capable pacer.   Thephantomtollbooth - Out of Zentafold, dam of Tintin in America, this 3 year old gelding is bred to be a racehorse, he ran a credible 3rd at his one start in 2015 before  being turned out for growth spurts. He is a nice big horse that has shown ability, currently in light work 6 weeks to workouts.   Like a Hurricane  Has come back much more robust since his spell and this 3 year old gelding is expected to step up this time in, he is currently in light work but will be at the workouts in 4 to 6 weeks. Look for a step-up in performances, he has some talent and showed in his last campaign when he came home strongly for a 3rd placing beating several horses who went on to win races.   Zach Maguire has been one horse who has really felt the effects of the virus, he has fooled us a few times looking good yet putting in lack lustred runs and showing viral symptoms after his runs. Fortunately like others he is almost back to normal and carries his fitness forward, he will race this Friday and is capable of a sharp improvement.   Samaritan - This son of Christian Cullen is a nice big colt who has been given time to grow, he is about to start pace work and is a month away from the workouts. Expect to see this horse make an impact he is strong, has good speed and has a very nice action, a promising type.   Killer Queen - Our tough 3 year old filly by Rocknroll Hanover, she developed an entrapment in her throat which results in a pocket that impedes normal breathing. Tthis was diagnosed just prior to her start in the Sales Series final, a listed race at Addington where she challenged on the turn to fade to 7th. She tried hard and we have no doubt that she would have been a lot harder to run down if she was 100% fit. She came home and underwent her minor surgery and is enjoying a month’s freshen up, she will be back and a lot stronger after her break Queen has done well in her two seasons,winning just under a $100k in stakes money.   Habibiti Sadie a trotting filly by Pegasus Spur, from a very good family who have produced 2 Oaks winners. She is having her first campaign and showing a nice temperament she may make the workouts this time in yet more likely to look for her later in the year, shows definite promise. Tuapeka Sky - She was one who was affected by the virus earlier than most but is over it now, she is back working and Ray has had her running along free legged (without hobbles) and he reports she is pacing nicely. Ray feels that she has grown considerably which proved his theory of her having a growth spurt when we turned her out, she has filled out nicely and appears a lot stronger and freer in her action. We feel that she should show improvement in her ability this time in and knowing she has been competitive in the past, bodes well for her new campaign.   Perfect Storm - What a great start this nice American Ideal gelding has had to racing, 2 seconds then a win in 2.43 a mile rating of 1.59 in a tough race. We are sure he will learn from his few starts and carry on competitively from here. He will start again on Friday night in the next grade up so he will need to repeat his last start effort which Ray feels he is capable of doing. Although not a big horse he is tidy in his action and shows good determination in his races so let’s hope he continues in his big brothers (Besotted) footsteps.   King of Rock  - This nice 3 year old trotter keeps on growing so Ray has had to turn him out for another 2 months, he has shown some real ability in his track work but has growing issues that just need time to settle. By Love You who has produced some outstanding trotter like Monbet and Habibiti and our own youngster Reine Des Gitan who we hope will join the ranks later in her career.     2 Year Olds Lincoln’s Superstar - The full sister to Sir Lincoln and Lincoln’s Megastar has been in work for almost 2 months and will proceed to the workouts this weekend. She is a nice filly who paces well and tries hard in pace work andRay expects her to measure up when she gets to the track. Superstar ran a competitive second at her only workout appearance on the 13th of February.   Lady Lincoln - She has been in work for some time, she qualified last weekend at Alexandra Park well within the allotted time, running second in her trial. This Somebeachsomwhere filly is very well bred, shows good speed and determination in her track work. Look out for her when she starts racing and note she is being trained by Derek Balle.   Another Bute - Out of a mare who has left stakes winners, this colt by Badlands Hannover shows ability but will not run early, he needs time so look for him at the work outs in 3 to 4 months.   Lincoln Hannover - Another colt who will need time,this son of RocknRoll Hannover is jogging and doing everything right at this stage. Ray feels he needs another 6 weeks to assess his ability.   Lincoln’s Delight - This American Ideal filly showed good manners and ability on her recent workout placing on the 13th of February where she ran a close second in a strong heat. She has a few minor issues that Ray feels will mend themselves in time so she is likely to have a few more weeks in the paddock as she grows.   Rocknroll Lincoln - He has had one workout to date, showed ability, is a tradesman like colt who will need a few more workout experiences before qualifying to race, showing good promise at this stage, look for him to race in a months’ time, nice horse.   Alta Intrigue - Very smart Mach Three colt who has impressed with his racing so far with 2 wins a second and a third from 4 starts. He is our Young Guns colt with the form however he has been under the weather with the virus and raced on pure ability last start when obviously not 100%. He has turned the corner since then and Ray has allowed him a little more time to recoup but he will likely be back racing in a weeks time (maybe Young Guns Final). Born to be a star.   Spring Campaign has been given a short break in the paddock as he was having growth spurts. He has certainly put on good condition while out and he is almost over the virus which seemed to hit him more than most. However he is expected back in work next week as he recovers. He is a horse with a few behavioural issues but an enormous amount of ability and speed. The issues can easily be dealt with in time but ability and speed are an commodity that you are born with which bodes well for the future.  Sky Diamond - This beautifully bred American Ideal colt has been very competitive at the workouts and trials. He has qualified and had one race at Alexandra Park on the 26th of February but he is still in learning mode and made a few mistakes in his only start. He will learn from his outing, was a little nervous and will likely start again in two weeks’ time after a workout this weekend. He is a nice big long striding colt who can get better.   Blind Faith  Another American Ideal colt who is a brother to The Faithful and he has grown 6 inches in the past month He is a beautiful big colt who is back jogging and will likely get to the workouts in  6 to 8 weeks. He is a very nice type who could go on to become one of Lincoln Farms stars, he has the temperament and the looks.   Vasari   This Art Major colt has way above average ability on the track to date. While he has suffered with the virus he continues to show determination at the workouts, his winning run was sensational last weekend where he came home from the rear of the field in the following times. Mile Rate: 1-58.3 Last 800m: 56.1 Last 400m: 26.6 which turned into a sprint home. He was still showing signs of the virus after his run and will be improved by the effort. Another expected to step forward at the Young Guns finals.   Northview Hustler This colt by champion sire Bettor's Delight is also highly regarded by Ray but has needed a little longer in his first preparation. He has grown considerably lately and is starting to muscle up into a nice sized colt but he is still a good 6 weeks away from the workouts but he already looks a nice type with real ability. Watch out for Hustler when he starts racing.   Onedin Amethyst - This colt by the up and coming American sire Sportswriter, was at the workouts last week at Alexandra Park. He is a nice big colt with a nice long gait and he made a few mistakes but was right in behind the leaders on the line. He showed good speed and managed to get himself back into the heat. Josh Dickie who drove him said he gave him a very nice feel and had good acceleration, one to watch as he grows and learns. Amaro - This Badlands Hannover colt is a nice mannered animal who shows good ability and above average speed He has been steady in his first campaign and will not be too far away from his first trip to the workouts. Has the ability to run early, watch out for him in a month to 6 weeks’ time.    A new face at Lincoln Farms A warm welcome to our new employee at the farm, Andre Poutama, who is a very accomplished junior driver. In his last year as a junior, Andre has had several remarkable seasons and was successful on Lincoln’s Keepsake in her first race at Cambridge Raceway in September 2015. Andre will be an asset to our stable drivers during normal training days as well as a back-up for race days. Andre recently moved up to Pukekohe from Palmerston North with his family.   Meet Lincoln Farms young stars of the future. Yearlings and Weanlings   Colts Lincoln’s Image  -- by Sir Lincoln—Feverish   Lincoln Street --by Sir Lincoln--Tarseal Queen   Lincoln Road --by Sir Lincoln--Tania Tandias   Yankie Lincoln --by American Ideal—Carribean Blue   Royal Lincoln --by Well Said—Black and Royal   Lincoln Sky --by Sir Lincoln—Toast of New York   Luciano Lincoln --by Sir Lincoln—Finiamo   Best Shot --by Betters Delight—Lislady   King of Swing --by RocknRoll Hanover—Twist and Twirl   Vinabaka --by Christian Cullen—Presidential Ball   Linc’s Tiger --by Sir Lincoln—Tigerzureal   Recco Love --by Betters Delight—Castillian Lover   Royal Gamble --by Betters Delight—City Light   Betterhavtime --by Betters Delight—Donthavtime   Fillies Alta Shangri La --by American Ideal—Samantha Q   Yasmine Bromac --by Sir Lincoln—Jasmine Bromac   Lincoln Lovely --by Sir Lincoln—Its Nukes   Clare’s Girl  --by Well Said—Clare de Lune   Lincoln’s Grace  --by Sir Lincoln—Badabing Badaboom   Annaliese Lincoln --by Sir Lincoln—Preside Over   Lisa Lincoln --by American Ideal—Pocket Quest   Weanlings.   Linc’s Bounty --by Sir Lincoln—Badabing Badaboom   Linc’s Girl --by Sir Lincoln—Tania Tandias   Blue Glory --by American Ideal—Caribean Blue   Good luck and happy punting    Ian Middleton - Lincoln Farms   

Here at Harnesslink we get a lot of material sent to us by people in the industry, a lot of which never sees the light of day but ever now and again we get something really worthy of publication. The following is the latest newsletter from Lincoln Farms and we thought it deserved a wider audience so we hope you enjoy it.                                                            Lincoln Farms Newsletter Well summer is supposed to be around the corner, and with Cup week not too far away, racing for Lincoln Farms Standard Bred horses starts to heat up hopefully along with the weather. It has been a relatively warm spring so the new farm at Pukekohe continues to get excellent growth in the paddocks for our stock, where there is plenty of new lush grass. Ray Green and his team are well into their build-up to get a few of the new 2 year old horses ready for the Young Gun’s Series, while preparing the older horses for major assignments over the summer months. Our war horse Besotted has been kept in the North where he will be aimed at the Auckland Cup, instead of travelling south to the NZ Cup meeting, which came upon him a little early in his preparation. He has had a short break since his first preparation but is due back and should be seen at the work outs within the next three weeks.   To give you an idea of where our racing stock is at present, below is a brief report on some of Lincoln Farms race horses.   Older Horses Besotted Will have had 10 days in the paddock to freshen for a new campaign, expected to be at the work outs in 3 weeks’ time. Ideal Quest Has been racing consistently against strong fields of late, she will line up Friday evening at Alexandra Park in a junior drivers event. Strike the Gold Strike has had further treatment to an injury that has taken time to heal but is enjoying his time in the paddock where he will have another month off before being brought back to light work after our veterinarian inspects him early next month. Reine Des Gitan After an exciting win at Alexandra Park on the 9th of October Reine has been given time off as she continues to have a few growth issues, she just needs a little time while she fills out in her frame, she is an exciting young trotter in the making. Angus Fogg Has been back in work with Derek Balle for 6 weeks, he has come back stronger and over a few feet issues that slowed him down in the past, he is 2 weeks away from the workouts. Lincoln’s Megastar Sadly, Megastar has been sent to the breeding paddock, where she will spend the rest of her days. Her legs never responded to treatment ruling out any chance of making it back on the race track. Being a full sister to Sir Lincoln her foals will surely draw attention in the sales ring.                                                                          . 3 year Olds   Stolen Romance A gelding by American Ideal, he has begun slow work and is due to step up his work rate and is about a month away from the workouts. Lincoln’s Keepsake Classy filly who is a half-sister to Lincoln’s Megastar and Sir Lincoln. She has performed above average in her races to date but now requires a little downtime as she grows, which we hope will allow her to get to a different level. Awesome Dude A gelding by Modern Art he has required time but is now on the walker in preparation for some slow jogging when he starts track work next week. Nightime Gambler A nice black gelding by Modern Art he has shown good ability early in his preparation and should be seen at the work outs within the next two weeks. Zanibar Babe A talented filly by Rocknroll Hanover she has been competitive in all of her 4 starts to date which have been in strong fields. Ray feels that she has some improvement in her as she is a strong type who enjoys her racing. Bute Boy A nicely bred gelding by Badlands Hanover who has had several work outs and has shown that he may be better suited to a turning track like Cambridge. Thephantomtollbooth A speedy gelding by Real Desire, who needs time to fill out his large frame. Ray has started him twice once as a 2 year old but feels it is best to give him a little more time now so he is having three weeks in the paddock before his next preparation. Like A Hurricane Nice Mach Three gelding who like his stablemate above will be improved by time he also is having a 3 week break before coming back into slow work, he has lots of natural ability. Zach Maquire Has shown that he can be competitive in the best of company however he has been racing a little too keenly so Ray has given him a short break to freshen him up, he will be back in training in 10 days and racing next month.                                                                                                                                                    Samaritan                                                                                                                                                                      Nice colt by Christian Cullen working well, needed time but now showing up and impressing, he has good speed and expected to step up this time in, one to watch. Killer Queen Ran another strong second last week in the Alabar Sires Series heat but needed the run after a short break, she is competitive every time she lines up and will be improved for this Friday night. Habibti Sadie A trotting filly by Pegasus Spur, given time to develop, she has shown ability at her recent track work, Ray feels she will develop into a nice type, expect to see her on the track after Xmas. Tuapeka Sky Nice speedy Mach Three filly, Ray trained her without hobbles this morning and she trained very well, she will race Friday night and has improved since her last run, drawn 1 she will be competitive. Designer Arden By Rocknroll Hanover, nice gelding, has trained well this week and races Friday evening against a very strong field of 3 year old colts and geldings, could surprise from barrier one, late news he jogged roughly this morning and Ray wants our veterinarian to look at him prior to racing. He will be scratched on Friday evening. Beaudiene Beaufighta Nice big speedy colt who is still learning his trade, keeps racing well against good fields, this week is no different and has a good barrier to race from, will be competitive. Perfect Storm Nice American Ideal gelding full brother of Besotted. Nice type of horse who is now back jogging but likely a month away from full speed work and work outs, Ray is happy with him this time in. King of Rock Fine Love You trotting gelding, very athletic horse had a few setbacks but is doing slow work and trots nicely. Ray feels he will improve with the time he has had on the side-lines one to watch in the New Year.    2 Year Olds All of our new group of 2 year olds are in their initial stages of work, where they are taught the routine of a race training session, track work, short break in the paddock then taken to the stables for inspection, boxed and fed. A new life for these young horses, some cope well and get straight into their work, others take longer to adapt and the odd one never adjusts. The Young Gun horses are already showing up, an exciting bunch of horses. Lincoln’s Superstar Mach Three filly a full sister to Lincoln’s Megastar and Sir Lincoln and half-sister to Lincoln’s Keepsake. She has started working and may well make a late 2 year old, Superstar is bred to be a star. Lincoln Lady Somebeachsomewhere filly, with Derek Balle, he reports that she has grown considerably since last season and filled out nicely. Lady has been back in work for 10 days and will get to the workouts in 8 to 10 weeks. Another Bute Badlands Hanover colt, full brother to Badlands Bute, nice colt who is in slow work and coming along nicely. Lincoln Hannover By Rocknroll Hanover, nice colt who is currently jogging, nice clean pacer due to step up her work rate, out of a 5 win mare. Lincoln’s Delight American Ideal filly who will need time expect to see her after Xmas currently in slow work, nice filly.                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rocknroll Lincoln                                                                                                                                                          A half-sister to Nightime Gambler, nice pacer look for her later currently slow pace work. Alta Intrigue Mach Three colt who is showing up early, one for the Young Guns Series working nicely and is due to step up work rate exciting prospect. Sky Diamond American Ideal standout closely related to Sky Major also Young Guns material, lovely colt who paces nicely coming along and due to step up work rate. Blind Faith                                                                                                                                                       American Ideal colt out of top mare needs time, brother to The Faithful, nice type after Xmas. Vasari Art Major colt with a lot of natural ability, likely Young Guns participant, speedy, keeps improving, stepping up in work rate looks the early type. Northview Hustler Betters Delight colt out of a Western Australian champion family, improving type forward showing and improving will step up after Xmas. Spring Campaign Courage under Fire colt, strong type quality family, nice type has shown good improvement lately, one for the Young Guns with steady improvement. Onedin Amethyst By Sportswriter, nice clean gaited pacer possibly needs time, big horse look for him after Xmas. Amaro By Badlands Hanover colt out of a Live or Die mare, paces nicely but will need time, after Xmas to step up.   The 2 year olds are now starting to take shape with the earlier types improving daily, where Ray can tell which horse’s will need time and who he can press forward to 2 year old racing career. All in all, a fine group of well-bred youngsters who will be some of the stars of the future. Lincoln Farms will have a few available for partnerships once we have put a little more work into them to ascertain their likely readiness to race. This weekend Lincoln Farms have 5 starters in Auckland on Friday evening in mixed fields. Zanibar Babe starts in race 2 at  7.05, she is much improved from her last start and from 1 at the barrier is a danger. Race 4 at 8.05pm sees Beaudiene Beaufighta compete in a 3 year old colts and geldings event which has a field of the best northern horses of their age bracket, he has drawn 2 at the barrier, so should be competitive in this small field. Tuapeka Sky and Killer Queen line up in race 6 at 8.05pm where they have drawn 1 and 4 respectively, both have improved from their recent racing and should be competitive Friday evening. Finally, Ideal Quest starts in race 8 at 10.04 in a junior drivers event where Joe Moka will take the reins, while she has been racing consistently Ray feels the she can improve and be competitive in this race.   Ian Middleton - Lincoln Farms  

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