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A tragic coincidence involving a promising north west Victorian pacer has dealt a devastating blow to one of the Mallee Reactor's most enthusiastic harness racing owner groups. In the space of eight days, the eight-member group of mates from the Ouyen region, suffered the untimely death of not only their star three-year-old Mallee Reactor (Auckland Reactor-Our Angel Flight (In The Pocket), but also his promising two-year-old half-sister Wonforthegirls (Village Jasper-Our Angel Flight (In The Pocket). Mallee Reactor was broken in and prepared by astute Ouyen trainer Murray Jardine for eight wins and two placings from 10 starts before being transferred (on Jardine's recommendation) to Adam Kelly, at Toolern Vale. "They were two lovely horses and the owners' group, who are friends of mine, are just absolutely shattered," Jardine said. Wonforthegirls was a full sister to the syndicate's successful pacer Carload (11 wins, $94,000) (Village Jasper-Our Angel Flight (In The Pocket) and had showed enormous promise in her early preparations with Jardine. "She was a late foal and she was a fiery little thing who took a little while to start putting it together, but at the same stage, she was better than either Mallee Reactor or Carload," Jardine said. "She was definitely going to win a lot of races, but we thought in mid-May she had done enough, and she still needed a bit of maturing, so I recommended to the owners that they turn her out for the winter. "I let her down for about a week, before they came and picked her up for her spell." Wonforthegirls was spelling on a property owned by one of the connections near Speed, but tragedy unfolded when they found the filly dead in the paddock on the Monday of the Queen's Birthday long weekend. The group was further devastated by the loss of Mallee Reactor eight days later. Mallee Reactor became the pin-up horse of the Northern region after bursting onto the scene as a two-year-old and winning his first five races in brilliant fashion. At his final start in the north west, Mallee Reactor was driven by Jardine's son Simon and ran second in the Guineas during the Mildura Pacing Cup Carnival, behind Victorian rising star three-year-old Im Sir Blake. Simon had a good affinity with the horse, driving him to seven of his eight wins. To watch video of Mallee Reactor winning click on this link.  "Mallee Reactor was best-suited to do his future racing somewhere closer to Melton and nearer to a lot of the bigger tracks, because he was a terrible traveller - he'd get hot and sweaty just travelling 100 kilometres from Ouyen to Mildura, which was doing him no good," Jardine said. After his move south, the pacer finished third at his first start for Kelly at Ballarat in mid-May, then was given a short freshen-up. Mallee Reactor had trialled at Melton and Kelly was pleased with the run which was a leadup to his return to racing at Kilmore last Wednesday. On the Saturday prior, Kelly noticed the horse had a high temperature and called a vet, but Mallee Reactor could not be saved. "It's absolutely tragic for the boys because all of them just loved their horses and they were having the time of their lives in the sport," Jardine said. Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura               P 0498 490 672   E hello@newsalertpr.com.au   W www.newsalertpr.com.au      

A father and son harness racing combination from the small north west Victorian township of Ouyen teamed up with boom sire Auckland Reactor to steal the limelight in spectacular fashion at Mildura on Wednesday night. Astute horseman Murray Jardine produced highly-talented Mallee Reactor (Auckland Reactor NZ-Our Angel Flight (In The Pocket) and Ian Raymond (Auckland Reactor NZ-Black Dress (Village Jasper) to post an eye-catching double. Both winners were handled by his reinsman son Simon, who drove copybook races to get “the chocolates” on the short-priced fancies. “I’m really enjoying it at the moment because dad has them flying,” a jubilant Simon said. “They’re the only two by Auckland Reactors in our stable, and we are now wishing we had a few more,” he said. “They are two nice horses and we aren’t rushing them, just bringing them along slowly and picking out suitable races in our area as we go. “I don’t know if dad will be tempted in a few months to make a trip south to Melton or not, but I reckon he should certainly think about it.” Mallee Reactor was at least 40 metres off the leaders in the early stages of the opening race on the Mildura program, the DNR Logistics Pace for C1 class pacers, after being caught wide and snagged back to second last. Come On Elvis and Friends set a blistering pace with a sharp lead time, followed by quick opening quarters of 28.6 and 29.7 secs. “I was actually wondering when they were going to ease up because they certainly weren’t waiting for anyone,” Simon said. Friends, a well-backed second-favorite, was pulled up out of the race with broken gear with a little over a lap to go, but Denbeigh Wade still kept her foot on the accelerator with Come On Elvis, recording closing splits of 29 and 29.6 secs. Mallee Reactor, three wide and three back with a lap to go, appeared to be cruising. And this was certainly the case, because when Jardine launched down the back straight, they charged to the lead on the home corner for a super win. While the mile rate of 1.56-4 was a few seconds outside the track record, it’s rarely posted by C1 class competitors on the not-so-spacious 805 metre Mildura circuit. “I think I might have made a bit of an error in running Mallee Reactor at Mildura on December 28 when it was so hot,” Murray said. “His next run about 10 days later when he got third was okay but he wasn’t as sharp as he could have been,” he said. “In saying that, I’m not taking anything away from the two who beat us. They were very good on the night.” Mallee Reactor now has the awesome career record of seven starts for six wins and a third placing for over $21,000. He will race at the Ouyen Cup meeting on Sunday week, March 24, then Mildura on April 2 with his major assignment, the $14,000 Mildura Guineas, on Mildura Pacing Cup night, April 13. The second leg of the Team Jardine/Auckland Reactor double came via four-year-old gelding Ian Raymond, who took out the Tasco Petroleum Pace, also for C1 horses. The pacer, raced by popular Ouyen identity Helen Chisholm, was bred by Helen along with her late brother Ian Raymond, hence the name. “He was always travelling comfortably and dug deep when I asked him for an effort,” Simon said. Ian Raymond lobbed in the sweet seat from the wide six draw and did look the winner a long way from home. After zipping out three wide at the bell, the gelding worked past the leaders on the home corner and cruised to the line with plenty in the tank. Former SA junior driver Jayden Brewin, now based in Victoria, drove a well-deserved double at Mildura, with Cashwrangs Smoker (Chief Marty-Glassawyne (Sports Town) and Ned’s Beach (Somebeachsomewhere-Winter Rose (In The Pocket). Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

The pin-up boy of Victoria’s Northern Region, the exciting Ouyen-based pacer Mallee Reactor, faces his biggest test when he lines up at the harness racing meeting at Swan Hill on Wednesday night. The three-year-old, who is undefeated in five runs for unassuming trainer Murray Jardine, has drawn barrier four in the prestigious feature event, the $9000 2019 Pearl Blue Classic. “We are all looking forward to it because there’s some nice horses in the race – it will be a good guide to find out just where we are at,” Jardine said. “The spacious Swan Hill track should suit Mallee Reactor, but in saying that he’ll still be driven quietly early and hopefully work home hard when it counts.” Jardine is a cool customer renowned for keeping his feet on the ground but is thrilled by the raw ability shown by the son of the emerging star sire Auckland Reactor. “Some of his closing sectionals in his races have been pretty good,” he said. Jardine never races a big team, preferring the breaking and educating side, has another handy Auckland Reactor at home in Ian Raymond. “He’s a four-year-old who has three wins from six starts and goes along quite nice.” After combining farming and successfully preparing horses for many years, Jardine and his wife Barbara made the decision nearly 30 years ago to concentrate on harness racing. The couple established a picturesque complex on the edge of town, featuring an impressive 900metre track and open, shady paddocks. “It was more a lifestyle thing for our children, but it has worked out well for Murray because he’s done well over the years with the horses,” Barbara said. Jardine certainly had one of the best mentors when he spent two years with legendary horseman Alf Simons as a teenager. “I wish I’d stayed with Alf longer, but I was a farm boy and came back home,” Murray said. The eight owners of Mallee Reactor must be pinching themselves as his half-brother Carload has already provided them with many thrills in recent years. The group was offered Carload’s dam, the unraced broodmare Our Angel Flight, who was in foal at the time – the result being none other than Mallee Reactor. According to Jardine, who broke in both racehorses, they showed ability from day one, with Mallee Reactor being more relaxed. And it seems there just could be another bright prospect on the horizon with a beautifully-conformed two-year-old full sister to Carload (by Village Jasper). When asked future plans for Mallee Reactor, Jardine said he would use a well-worn cliché and say “we’ll take it one run at a time”. “There’s a heats and final series coming up at Mildura in a few weeks and then we’ll have to sit down and go from there. He may be looking for a break because he’s still growing, but we’ll wait and see.” Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

There is real interest in the three-year-old Mallee Reactor going for his fifth straight win tomorrow night at the Mildura Harness Racing Club meeting. The Auckland Reactor gelding started twice as a late two-year-old for two wins and then was turned out to mature. Two exceptional winning runs back have got the locals talking up this Murray Jardine trained three-year-old as a possible Derby horse in the making. Winning by wide margins of 19 metres and 21 metres at Mildura in his two runs back, he is expected to win again from the outside post in a six horse race at 8:12 pm local time Friday night. This time Mallee Reactor has a new driver at the helm, Ellen Tormey. Previously Mallee Reactor has been driven by Simon Jardine who this time is driving a part owned stablemate first starter Not A Cracker. Murray Jardine told Harnesslink today that he is adopting a wait and see approach on whether Mallee Reactor comes through the race this week well, before he embarks on a possible South Australian Derby start. But to date he says that Mallee Reactor has done everything asked of him so far and more. The times he has run here at Mildura, 57 halves is as good as the Free For All horses do, it is a very tight track Mildura. At his last start driver Simon Jardine says that he still had another gear in him so I mean he shows all the signs of a top horse in the making but he is still lightly framed and is still growing so I do not want to put too much pressure on him too soon. He has not really been tested yet and he has gone very good times around the Mildura track but the competition is not strong here. He will be tested a bit this week as it is going to be 47 degrees here. This area is called Mallee in Northern Victoria and that is what Mallee Reactor is named after. It is the hottest place in Victoria but he is coming along very good, he is a lovely horse. If he keeps improving we are thinking about the South Australian Derby in early February. He is still a bit immature and lightly framed and that, he was only a little fella but he is growing at the moment and as I say I do not want to put too much pressure on him. If the owners here are patient they will end up with a very good horse. From the In The Pocket mare Our Angel Flight, Mallee Reactor is a half-brother to the good horse Carload 1:56.5, (10 wins 19 placings) with $86,503 in the bank to date. For the fields at Mildura click here. Harnesslink Media   Mallee Reactor - 11th of December Mallee Reactor - 29th November  

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