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The owners of Ivana Legacy are having the time of their lives. So far the diminutive American Ideal mare has provided them with four wins and a trip to Christchurch for Cup Week and the ride looks set to continue. She’s owned by the Chop A Nick Syndicate which is made up of members of the Squash City Club, Jess Ramsay, Karen Ramsay, Anika Sollitt, Grant Milne, Steve Clarkson, Danny O’Connor and Kayla Rusk. She qualified and was trained initially by Wyndham trainer Brendon McLellan before the group bought her off the Horse Trader website run by new Southern Harness board member Tom Kilkelly. “Scott Ramsey rang up and bought her off Brendon for $1,000. We were looking for a horse to replace trotter Nathan D. We watched a few replays of her races and thought we might have a bit of fun and get a win out of her. We’ve got four now,” said driver and stable spokesperson Andrew Armour whose wife Shannon trains Ivana Legacy. In yesterday’s Invercargill Workouts Committee Handicap Pace Ivana Legacy got the perfect trip tucked in behind the pacemaker Go Getta. “She’s a good standing start horse and has got good manners and if she gets the suck along she’s got a potent 200 metre sprint.” Little horse beats Big horse - Ivana Legacy beating Go Getta - Photo Bruce Stewart  Despite running out of the money on Cup Day, Armour says the trip to Christchurch has done the mare the world of good. “That’s what the trip was all about. The long term aim is to hopefully take her back up there for the South of the Waitaki Winter Series. She’ll have a couple more runs and we’ll turn her out because she’s been up for a while now.” Trainer Shannon Armour wasn’t on-course yesterday to enjoy the win. She was away at a horse show with her hack. She’s into her second season as a trainer taking over the colours her husband used up until 2017. “She’s taken over and does a fair bit with her (Ivana Legacy). She maps out her programme. She’s been placing her quite well to be fair.” Happy bunch - Photo Bruce Stewart  Andrew, who has been involved in the harness industry for a good part of his life now works for ICC Parks and Reserves Department at Queens Park while Shannon manages the Travelex Foreign Exchange Booth at House of Travel Lakers. They have two children; Brooklyn who is three and Beauden who is five months. “I’m really enjoying it. I’m able to mix work and horses and the children. So we’re just busy enough.”    Bruce Stewart

In what could be considered one of the drop backs of the season, there’s only one serious concern for Hopeful Harriet ahead of her assignment at Nelson today. And that concern is herself. The dour little Regan Todd trained mare drops from a Group One Harness Jewels Diamond last Saturday to a Rating 50-65 event today on the opening day of the Nelson Harness Racing Club’s winter meeting and her driver Robbie Close is confident that will make her super competitive. “We’ve just got to get the first bit right,” Close said of the stand start affair. “It’s probably not so much the actual stand start, but she tends to get a little rough after 100 metres or so, but if we can get through that then we should be right in amongst it I would have thought.” Beaten 25 lengths behind Piccadilly Princess last Saturday, Hopeful Harriet’s performance in the Group One was probably better than what it may have initially looked. Close was more than happy with the effort too. “She was going to run in the top five I think, but she got the speed wobbles around that last bend. “So her effort actually looks a lot worse than it was.” The pair have a good record when they travel to the top of the South Island having won the Marlborough Cup earlier this year and they’ve placed twice on the course before as well. They meet an even field today with the in-form It’s All Over Now appearing to be one of their toughest opposition. Close has a strong book of drives throughout the day including Hopeful Harriet but rated Terrier for John Bartlett as one of his better hopes. “I would like to think Harriet will be my best chance, but Terrier is going good races without a lot of luck and I think with a bit more of that we can get a slice of that race. “Sunny Bill wouldn’t be the worst either if he trotted all the way.” He also drives debutant Lily Ducket, newcomer to the Regan Todd barn My Nikayla, Got A Beauty and Paul’s Verdict.   Selections by Matt Markham Race 1: Mr Farenheit, Ali Lindenny, Girlz N Boys, Star Pride Race 2: Boults On Fire, Beach Skipper, Rishi, Mister Slick Race 3: J Nine, My Nikayla, Fear Rockn, Playingintheshadows Race 4: Spondulicks, Theboyslightup, Chelsea Ella, Command Lustre Race 5: Trouble Giero, Redwood Invasion, Jayceekay, Bacardi N Coke Race 6: Takitimu Express, Bella Jones, Exceptional Man, Born Again Delight Race 7: Gunpowder, Cullenz Diamond, Jakira, Terrier Race 8: Benicio, Alpha Rock, Culley Backy, Bevan’s Cullen Race 9: Hopeful Harriet, It’s All Over Now, Our Quinn, Emily Blunt Race 10: Billy Badger, Ace High, Hypervelocity, English Rose Best Bet: Billy Badger (Race 10) Value: Hopeful Harriet (Race 9)

2016 Harness Racing Cadet of the Year final is just around the corner. The majority of the day will be held at Addington Raceway on Wednesday 6th July starting at 10.30am through until 3pm. Supporters and spectators are more than welcome. Click here to view the COTY Booklet with more information on our four finalists, Erin Isherwood, John Morrison, Kim Blakemore and Chelsea Faithful. Good luck to you all! HRNZ

The Franklin businessman who bred and owned two New Zealand Cup winners; an Inter Dominion quinella; won 300 races; and netted more than $6 million in stakes passed away on Waiuku on Sunday (June 5). Robert Reid was 82. The retired market gardener bred and owned Luxury Liner and Christopher Vance to win the 1988 and 1991 Cups with his late brother Leo. Luxury Liner also won the 1987 and 1988 Auckland Cups while Christopher Vance won that Group One feature in 1991. He also quinella-ed the 1991 Inter Dominion grand final with Mark Hanover (Mark Purdon) and Christopher Vance. Tony Herlihy (MNZM) drove both Cup winners. Mr Reid’s wife Janice said her late husband was born in Ngaruawahia and then relocated with his family to Franklin when he was just four. Ten years later he left school to work in local market gardens. “He was a workaholic from the time he left school. Robert was destined to be a farmer. He harvested his first crop of vegetables when he was about 10 from their home garden. “He later established Reid Brothers with Leo and started off with several crops before specialising in onions, pumpkin and squash. “Robert talked his father into leasing some land off him, then when they proved they were capable they leased some more. Well before he was 20, Robert and Leo bought their first land. together which was the Kidd road base we still farm today. One great crop of carrots went towards paying for this property,” his wife said. She said Mr Reid and his brother bought their first horse - Steads in 1961. Then Miranda Bay, a mare that was acquired for the “none too cheap” sum of $1000 guineas. “It couldn’t run to save itself. Although that was probably his biggest ‘punt’, he definitely wasn’t a betting man!” Mrs Reid said. She said her husband’s number one hobby was the horses and he would spend hours looking through stud books and bloodlines. “It was about the only reading he did. We had many trips following the horses around Australia and New Zealand. The whole family has very fond memories of those times. “Certainly, there were lots of proud moments with the races won, Robert said ‘it was a bit hard on the ticker’. His biggest achievement was having the first two horses home in the Inter Dominion grand final in Auckland in 1991. “In his stable there were 50 horses than won 300 races. Robert was disappointed his brother Leo didn’t get to share the glory as he passed away just prior to the success of Luxury Liner and Christopher Vance,” Mrs Reid said. Wiauku horseman, Steve Hunt, who worked for Mr Reid for 25 years up until January, said he was sad to hear of his former boss’s passing. “I was his private trainer and early on I used to prepare his horses for trainers like Roy, Barry, and Mark Purdon, and also Tony Herlihy. “He was a good friend of mine and very good to work for. He never ever told me what to do. He trusted my horsemanship. He was good to me and I will never forget him. He played a big part in my life,” Hunt said. Mrs Reid said her husband had a heart bypass at 56 which bought him another 26 years of good life. “He was proud of what he achieved and even in his hospital bed he wanted to know how the planting was going, and what the price of onions were doing,” she said. Mr Reid’s funeral was scheduled for Graham’s Funeral Parlour in Tuakau at 10.30am today (Thursday). He is survived by his wife of 56 years Janice, their four children, six grand children and one great grand child. Robert Reid Winners (with broodmare in CAPS and wins and stake earnings): MIRANDA STAR: Top Star 5 17,825 Country Star 10 45,532 Disco Girl 1 1,775 Proud Star 6 34,723 Top Vance 8 72,440 Christopher Vance 38 1,747,167 Mikes Pal 9 139,730 Disco Night 2 25,410 Christopher Too 2 16,450 Dynamite Girl 2 24,274 Operation Dynamite 2 9,365 Star Baron 1 4,065 Alert Motoring 8 147,813 Napoleon 11 124,515 Pacific Cruise 4 22,570 York Star 2 7,495 111 wins total and $2,441,149 MIRANDA BELLE: Kiwi Lord 8 34,355 Julie Vance 7 73,168 Knight Vance 8 120,249 Motoring with Julie 2 10,136 Luxury Liner 37 1,721,984 Me An Roy 740,655 69 wins and $2,000,547 MIRANDA LASS: Vance Glory 13 119,365 Willy Run 7 31,850 Star Glory 8 50,625 Star Motoring 7 42,470 Major Danger 4 21,905 39 wins and $266,215 FOYS FOLLY: Jodi Vance 1 win and $10,635. PLEAD: Miss Clevedon 13 79,930 Mark Hanover 18 700,597 Roy’s Advice 2 15,283 Mark Roy 11 249,916 Vance Lee 3 31,820 Clevedon Lord 3 15,755 Nippy Lord 4 25,810 Surdon 5 44,125 Miss Ardmore 5 62,180 OK Roy 1 4,420 Vice Regal 3 17,295 Hunter’s Valley 3 16,500 Miss O’Shea 2 11,860 Vicky Hanover 1 1,875 Upshot Harry 1 4,330 75 wins total and $1,281,696 STEADS 3 wins and $2,520 LE CHARLES 2 wins and $1,630 TOTAL WINS 300 TOTAL STAKES $6,004,392. Duane Ranger

This is our 3rd edition of “Horse’s to look out for at Forbury Park”, last time we featured Oamaru Junior Driver Brad Williamson. That night Williamson picked up a treble, in 3 consecutive races when he saluted with Winners Shout ($6.10), Elusive Flight ($11.50) and Caesar Rocks who provided the upset of the night at $56.10. This week, Christchurch based Jonny Cox will run us through his 8 drives. Race 1: 5 The Toiler – G & J Knight – “He’s a new addition to the Knight team; obviously his form is average so he’s probably a watch horse first up for them” Race 2: 6 Jetenara – K Barclay – “She won her maiden well last start, and while she steps up a grade the field lacks standout form, she’s a nice each way chance with a good trip” Race 3: 2 The High Achiever – G & J Knight – “They had a wee bit of a wrap on this fella, he’s only a 2yo but the draw helps, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was fighting out the finish” Race 4: 2 Shies Good – W Heads – “She was super first up, but we had no luck last time. Another one that draw well and she can definitely win this” Race 5: 4 Strathmores Charm – W Heads – “Obviously the back markers will be hard to beat, but he has good manners and could sneak into a place or top4 spot” Race 8:  6 Ma Cille – W Heads – “Her last couple of runs have put the writing on the wall, from the draw we will look to get handy, she’s my best chance of the night” Race 9: 9 Superior Desire – M House – “He won nicely at the workouts, but he will probably need the run and it’s a hard draw to play with” Race 10: 4 The Charging Moa – G & J Knight - “There are a couple of 3yo’s in this race who look tough to beat” Ma Cille's last start 3rd.  _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Even from a tricky draw, the Brent White trained Shards Halo looks tough to beat in the Junior Drivers race. Brad Williamson jumps aboard and with the speed maps showing that she should be no worse then 3 back the fence, the 4yo America Ideal mare will be looking to slice through gaps and pick up the penalty free win. Earlier on in the night, Elusive Flight looks poised to add victory number 2 from just the 3 start for Westwood Beach trainer Graeme Anderson. Known as a leading improver of horses, Anderson also had Laughing Cavalier in Race 9, and with the services of leading driver Dexter Dunn again, the 5yo Mach Three gelding is another looking to double up for Anderson. Elusive Flight's last start 2nd. Andrew Fitzgerald

3rd February 2015 - Over the last 12 months Addington has contributed significantly to a number of local charities and been involved in the community to make a positive difference. Throughout 2014 a huge contribution was made to “The Breakfast Club”, supporting Aranui High School and Linwood College by supplying breakfast twice a week for approximately 600 students. This ensured that a large number of under privileged students were guaranteed a hearty and healthy breakfast that many would have normally gone without. As a result, students were fuelled up and focussed on their schooling and education. “The Breakfast Club” will continue into 2015. In October last year Addington took part in an initiative with the Canterbury Rugby Football Union whereby we gave away 7,500 tickets to the Canterbury versus Tasman ITM rugby match to local community organisations including schools, charities and retirement homes. This initiative extended to members of The Met, owners, trainers, drivers and to our business partners. Later this year we will be undertaking the initiative again. During Cup Week in November we partnered with St John and Ronald McDonald South Island. Volunteers from St John sold our race books on Cup and Show Day and Ronald McDonald South Island volunteers sold Cup Day pins with both organisations receiving a significant donation. Late last year our bar and bistro Spectators got behind the Christchurch City Mission through our “Can for a Coffee” promotion. By bringing in a can of food, customers were given a free coffee. Hundreds of cans were bought in and donated to the Christchurch City Mission just before Christmas. We have also donated recently to Heart Kids NZ, Fostering Kids Family Fun Day, The Kids Foundation, Going Bananas Show – Brain Injured Children, Lions Club of Christchurch South and Rotary Club of Avonhead Charitable Trust. It it.s important to Addington that we reach out to our local community and support many charitable and not for profit organisations. Our support by way of sponsorship or donations plays a vital part to many community organisations ensuring they continue to operate within a positive environment. Ged Mooar Marketing & Commercial Manager Addington

Alexandra Park chief executive Dominique Dowding is delighted to confirm her harness racing club’s official partnership with the Blues which will see Alexandra Park become the long-term home of the popular Super 15 rugby franchise by the end of this year. Her comments follow both Alexandra Park and the Blues formally committing to a 15-year lease which will see the Blues build a high performance training and administration centre at Alexandra Park near Campbell Crescent and develop a practice field in the middle of the track. This follows an Auckland Trotting Club Special General Meeting in September last year where club members formally ratified the board proposal after the overwhelming majority voiced strong support for the leasing arrangement. The agreement will see the construction of a world-class stand-alone facility including a high-tech gym and the development of a training field in the park’s inner-track complete. The resource consent has been obtained, with the building consent pending. The cost of the new centre is budgeted at $4m plus fit-out. Dominique Dowding: "Getting the Blues is another really exciting development for our club which will help sustain and grow harness racing in this wonderful and unique central Auckland location." For Alexandra Park, this news comes on top of members last year voting to support transforming part of the club’s car-park into a urban lifestyle village dubbed ‘223 Green Lane West’ with boutique retail stores and 231 apartments coming to market in the coming weeks, with those interested in that residential development registering at www.apliving.co.nz. For both projects Alexandra Park says it has worked closely and positively with Auckland Council. Ms Dowding says rugby is not a completely new thing for the area. Formerly known as Potter's Paddock, Alexandra Park hosted the 14th All Blacks test, won 29-0 by New Zealand over the British and Irish Lions in 1908 in front of 12,000 people. "So let’s just say over 100 years on, rugby is making a bit of comeback at Alexandra Park. The club is very excited and there are a lot of synergies we can both gain from each other. Let’s not forget we’re both in the business of sport and we both attract a good Auckland following - harness racing at Alexandra Park mostly on a Friday night and the Blues more so on Saturday. "We also hope to develop a closer marketing relationship where we can both support each other’s codes, including getting some of Blues players along to the Friday Night Trots when they’re not busy the next day. "Like the Blues, we’re really excited at the enormous opportunities to engage the community with the new facilities and training ground, particularly when you consider all the nearby schools." Ms Dowding pays tribute to the leadership of the Blues who she says have been great to work with and to her commercially-focused board at the Auckland Trotting Club ably led by President Kerry Hoggard. This year Alexandra Park celebrates 125 years of racing on its Epsom site. Reprinted with permission of Voxy.co.nz    

Any NZ$60,000 race is a big one but for Gold Ace the Flying Mile at Cambridge tonight could be a life changer. Win and the harness racing speedster could head back to Australia for one last shot at making an impression for his future stallion career there. And not to mention the small matter of the A$1.6million worth of races he can contest in the space of just six weeks at Melton and Menangle. But lose tomorrow, most likely to Adore Me, and trainer and part owner Steven Reid has to think seriously about staying home and concentrating on the Auckland Cup and Gold Ace ending his racing days here in New Zealand. “I’d love to take him over there for another crack at the big races cause I feel he has some unfinished business. “He was great in both the Victoria and Hunter Cups last year and I’d also like to have a go at a really fast mile time at Menangle. “So if he can win, especially beating Adore Me this week, that is all on.” With that in mind the barrier draw was crucial, Gold Ace securing barrier two and Adore Me to start from four. “All I wanted was to draw inside the mare and have a chance,” said Reid. “We have got that now and I think everybody knows we will be trying for an all the way win. “If Adore Me can sit outside us and beat us then so be it.” Reid says Gold Ace is starting to feel more like the horse who won both the NZ Free-For-All and this race two seasons ago. “I actually think he is back to something like his best,” says Reid. “He has really seemed to come on in the last few weeks and you know that when he starts bucking. “When he was at his best as a three-year-old he used to buck in the prelims and sometimes even in a race. “And he has been doing in this week. I worked him on Wednesday and he bucked like seven or eight times in the warm up. “So he is feeling good. Whether that is good enough to beat the mare we will see.” The NZ TAB opened Adore Me a $1.40 to win tomorrow night, with Gold Ace at $3.40 to upset her, as he did when he downed Adore Me’s stablemate Smolda when he was hot favourite for this race two seasons ago. by Michael Guerin Courtesy of Harness Racing Victoria

Three hundred Catholics converged on Addington Metropolitan Raceway in Christchurch in November for an evening of harness racing celebrities, dining, and the inaugural John Paul II Centre for Life, “Parish Priest Punter of the Year”. Sponsored races such as the J. Butler & Co & Mairehau Catholic Parish Pace, and John Paul II Centre for Life Handicap Trot, created an evangelistic atmosphere for the meeting. The evening brought parishioners together, and raised awareness of and funds for the John Paul II Centre for Life. Fairy money of $100 a race was allocated for each priest’s betting. As competition intensified, Fr Paulo Filoali-i hurried down the stairs, past the birdcage, and onto the track. He was seen racing down the course in the mobile barrier starter truck, no doubt to gain a closer assessment of racing form, tinged with a taste for speed. This same ploy was used by Fr Anthony Prendergast, from St Theresa’s parish, Riccarton. Race six saw Fr Bill Middleton’s horse, Donaldson, cheered on with great fervour. Faces pushed up to the glass window of the Silks Lounge. All eyes were on Donaldson as the horses raced for the finish line. Well, almost all. It is said Fr Dan Doyle, parish priest of Ferrymead-Lyttelton, had his fairy money on Dr Hook, who won by a nose. Fr Doyle’s smile grew with every race and by race 10 the evidence was clear. He became the first John Paul II Centre for Life “Parish Priest Punter of the Year”, receiving the trophy, a beautiful bronze harness horse in a glass case. The initiator of the evening, diocese programme director Phil Gourdie, has had more than 40 winners in harness racing. MC Jack O’Donnell spent 30 years as race commentator in the Wairarapa, Nelson-Marlborough area and on the West Coast. He was president of the Greymouth Jockey Club and the New Zealand Racing Conference. He raced gallopers and harness horses. Bishop Barry Jones spoke of the centre’s work as being close to his heart, supporting the Gospel of Life so powerfully preached by St John Paul II, who knew the culture of death threatens society in many ways. The centre, which is available to the whole community, he said, puts time, effort and resources into honouring the dignity of persons when they are under threat. Bishop Jones, who is patron of the centre, established a trust in 2011. In one year the centre fielded 1217 phone calls, 75 pregnancy consultations and 59 after hours calls. It distributed 95 packets of nappies, 11 high chairs, 12 bassinets, 25 cots and 14 prams. One hundred and fifty five donations of baby clothes were given out, and 127 layettes. The centre facilitated the Catholic family camp, with a theme of raising kids Catholic, giving them roots and wings. by Jenny McPhee Reprinted with permission of the NZ Catholic

Geoff Dunn has been left shaking his head about the draw for tonight’s Alexandra Park return for Venus Serena. Because he is stunned how his champion three-year-old filly of last season could draw worse than Adore Me under the preferential conditions. Venus Serena will start from the outside of the front line in the $30,000 mares race, with Adore Me at three on the second line. That is based on the track grid, which means the outside of the second line is rated the worst draw. “I doesn’t make sense to me, I reckon I have had about 20 calls about it,” says Dunn. “Any chance we had of beating her is gone now.” But Dunn is confident Venus Serena has recovered from a shocking season debut when she raced well below her best, even allowing for the incredible time posted in her comeback race on Cup Day. She convinced Dunn she was back on track with a strong second at the Rangiora workouts last week. The only problem is, that second was to Adore Me. “I am not saying we would have beaten Adore Me this week anyway, not the way she is racing,” he says. “But drawing worse than her has all but ended that hope. I will be happy with second.” So too will most if not all of Adore Me’s rival’s trainers tonight as they all count down to next week’s $100,000 Rosslands Queen Of Hearts, where all would also be happy to draw one, Adore Me two and gets dragged into a lucrative group one second. Barring bad luck it is impossible to see the great mare beaten tonight or any time in the next two months racing only her own sex, even allowing for the fact Venus Serena, Helena Jet and a few others are very serious mares. Adore Me’s stablemates will dominate the totes on plenty of other races tonight as the intensity of the Christmas meeting raises a few notches. Petite One (race 10) staged a huge recovery after an early gallop last week and meets an easier field so if she trots, she wins. Paramount Queen and Hot Pants will have plenty of supporters in race eight, even though they meet smarts locals in Lucky Fortune and San Diego Love. But it is the Sires’ Stakes fillies heat which could provide the brightest fireworks of the night as the leading stable have Supersonic Miss and Linda Lovegrace against some very sharp locals. As good as the Purdon-Rasmussen pair are, Katy Perry is back from winning the Breeders Crown and Democrat Party from injury, both having the stamp of top class fillies . With the likes of The Orange Agent in the race before that, the three-year-old fillies could even provide the most competitive racing of the premier meetings ahead. By Michael Guerin Courtesy of Harness Racing New Zealand

Addington is pleased to announce that two of the main races on a premier night’s racing on Friday 30 January have new sponsors. The Group 3 Summer Cup and Group 3 Summer Trotting Free-For-All, both with stakes for $25,000, will be named the United Steel Metalcraft Roofing Summer Cup and Teltrac Communications Ltd Summer Trotting Free-For-All respectively. United Steel and Metalcraft Roofing are both long-time supporters and sponsors at adington and operate under the United Industries Group of Companies that was formed in 1991. Drawing on the expertise of some of the steel industry’s most experienced people; the United Steel team prides itself on making the specification and use of steel as simple and economical as possible. Metalcraft Roofing is New Zealand’s largest and privately owned building products roll former and installer, with an extensive range of long run roofing profiles, metal tiles and rainwater systems solutions. Teltrac Communications, with branches in Auckland, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch and Dunedin, has also been a sponsor at Addington for many years. The company started in 1991 in Christchurch with just 14 staff and now has over 70 skilled staff across the five cities. Teltrac Communications Limited has a diverse range of telecommunications products with specialised divisions focusing on distinct telecommunications products sets. Further information about United Steel and Metalcraft Roofing can be found at www.unitedindustries.co.nz To find out more about Teltrac Communications visit www.teltrac.co.nz Ged Mooar Marketing & Commercial Manager Addington 

Addington is pleased to report that in the seven harness race meetings in the 2014-15 season to date, combined turnovers of both on and off course are up on the corresponding time period last year. On course figures are up a significant 15% and combined figures for off course and fixed odds betting are up 4.4% on the seven harness meetings up to and including 10 October.  Total turnover is up 5% even though there have been five fewer races in the season to date.  A considerable contributor to the improved on course figures is the new Kiwi Punters Championship – (KPC) that was introduced on 5 September and has been run at five meetings through September and October to date.  This initiative has obviously attracted punters on course with substantial cash prizes up for grabs throughout the championship. With a total of seven KPC heats at Addington and the winners of each heat receiving $2,000 cash, team numbers taking part have been excellent as they punt to gain a spot in the KPC Final on Show Day, Friday 14 November where’s there’s $80,000 to be won.  Just last Friday there were 34 Teams taking part. Organiser Richard Bromley commented “numbers and turnover for the competition have been pleasing and with just three heats left to gain a spot in the final there’s sure to be good numbers competing.” Two heats remain at Addington and one at Alexandra Park before the final.  It’s just four weeks to go to Christchurch Casino New Zealand Trotting Cup Day and tickets are selling well. The 11th of the 11th could be a very special day as champion pacer Terror To Love shoots for his fourth consecutive Cup win and would write his name in the record books.  For Cup Week tickets and details on the KPC visit www.addington.co.nz GED MOOAR MARKETING AND COMMERCIAL MANAGER  

A victory by Lord Baltimore has helped talented harness racing horsewoman Michelle Neilson snare a last gasp win in the McMillan Equine Feeds NZ Junior Drivers Championship at Addington. Needing victory in the last race of the three-race series as well as some other results to fall her way, Neilson ensured her side of the equation was complete with a heady drive on the heavily backed Geoff Dunn trained winner. Then it was down to fate, or more importantly the placing of championship leader Dylan Ferguson. The North Island hoop needed to finish in 7th position to ensure himself victory but fell agonisingly short with his 8th placing netting him five points which left him one short of Neilson who closed out the championship on 35 points. I knew I had a wee chance going into the last heat,’’ Neilson said. But I needed others to finish well back too, once I got past the line first I tried to have a look back but gave up because it was too hard to tell where they all were. 24-year-old Neilson is originally from Australia but moved over to New Zealand last year, initially to work in the stable of Mark Purdon and good friend Natalie Rasmussen before she joined the stable of Mark Jones. She admitted to not knowing a lot about the series but took an interest when people started talking about it and realising that she was in with a shot of making the championship. Backed into a $3.40 favourite to win, Neilson finished third in the first heat with Billy The Bus and then fifth with Paint The Moon in the second heat. That left her 11 points behind Ferguson who finished second in the first heat with Cullen’s Mercy and then won the second heat with Summer Vacation. Lord Baltimore was sent out a commanding favourite and Neilson didn’t let favourite punters down, taking full use of the passing lane to snare the win. It's a pretty awesome feeling to win to be honest. People have been telling me all week that I had a good chance, but you still have to get that luck. Ferguson finished in second position – a notable achievement considering this his first season of driving while Robbie Close who won the first heat of the night with Hit The Spot. The North Island versus South Island challenge – a separate contest between the 12 drivers was taken out by the Southerners in commanding fashion. By Matt Markham Harness Racing New Zealand

The McMillan Equine Feeds 2014 NZ Junior Driver Championship is set to be a great spectacle this year with 12 drivers from all over New Zealand once again competing for supremacy. Sailesh Abernethy, Tony Cameron, Andrew Veint, Dylan Ferguson, Shane Butcher and Andre Poutama make up the North Island team. Sam Ottley, Robbie Close, Michelle Neilson, Katie Cox, Craig Ferguson and Brad Williamson make up the South Island team. The championship will be run over three races at Addington Raceway on Thursday night (July 31). These  fields can be seen below. As the highest point scorers, Sailesh Abernethy and Sam Ottley, will captain their respective islands in the Inter-Island Challenge, a competition which was won last year by the North Island team. Sam Ottley, Andrew Veint, Brad Williamson and Andre Poutama all competed in the Championships last  year.  Fixed odds betting for the Championship will open on Thursday morning with the TAB. Unfortunately Katie Cox and Shane Butcher miss drives in the first heat, but they will be accorded 7 points each under the conditions of the series. For the fields on Thursday night  click here

The Christchurch earthquakes and rebuild have thrown up a lot of characters in the last few years and none are any bigger than the owner of Southern Demolition, Alan Edge. This larger than life character, who has earned a reputation for being brusque and tough talking in the teak tough demolition game, is one of the major players in the massive demolition industry that has sprung up since the Christchurch earthquakes. The Edge name has also been around in Canterbury harness racing circles since the involvement of Alan's father Noel nearly fifty years ago. Today Alan's brother Neil trains a handy team from Maddisons Road in Weedons just south of Christchurch and its here that Alan has honed his driving skills in recent years on members of Neil's team. Always highly competitive throughout a very successful sporting career, Alan has become a regular in the amateur driving events. At last Sunday's Oamaru meeting Alan took the drive behind the well tried Edge stable runner Alta Capone. Drawn wide at nine, Alan dropped Alta Capone out to last early in the 2600 meters  mobile event and thats where he stayed until joining the three wide train at the 1100 meters mark. Getting a lovely drag into the race from there, Alta Capone finished stoutly in the straight to just get his nose in front at the right time. This was the fifth win lifetime for the son of The Big Dog who is owned by Alan and Neil and took his stake earnings to $28,973. Alta Capone paced the 2600 meters in 3:19.6, a mile rate of 2:03.5 with closing sectionals of 58.2 and 29 in the bitter winter conditions. This was Alan's third win in an Amateur drivers race along with seven placings from just 25 drives. If Sundays inch perfect drive is anything to go by, it certainly wont be Alans last winning drive. Hrnesslink Media

Margo Nyhan and Peter Davis always have a sizeable team at the Nelson harness racing meetings and this weekend was no exception. Their horses are always thereabouts and not many meetings go by without the black and white colours being seen in the winners circle. But even they wouldn't have expected Sounds Like Us to turn around a pretty bleak form line today. Developed initially by noted Mid-Canterbury horseman,Kerry O'Reilly and raced by him with well known Mid-Canterbury breeder, Vic Lamb, Sounds Like Us showed a lot of promise early in her career, running several placings to nice horses without ever breaking through for that elusive win. Sent to the Margo Nyhan barn for help with a leg problem in May 2013, Sounds Like Us was then leased by the Red and Blue syndicate in October last year. Since then she has lined up over 20 times for the syndicate with two seconds and three thirds her best performances in that time. With the Nyhan barn having three runners in todays race, a catch driver was required for Sounds Like Us and who better to fill in than Dexter Dunn, New Zealands leading reinsman. Sent straight to the front from a wide draw by Dexter, Sounds Like Us then trailed the stablemate Royal Cynic driven by Peter Davis who took over after 300 meters. She was still in the trail as they turned for home before Dexter angled her down on the inside and surged through for a narrow but deserved victory. Dexter Dunn has been in sublime form in the bike in recent weeks and todays inch perfect drive on Sounds Like Us was just another example of how good he is driving at present. Harnesslink media

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