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In a mixed day of selling, first season sire Vincent produced a NZB Standardbred record after Lot 237 (ex Suzys Delight) was sold for $215,000, the highest-ever price received for a yearling by a freshman sire.  Prolific owner Jean Feiss was active amongst the international buying bench, leading the buyer by aggregate title for the first pacing session, purchasing four lots for $346,000. Feiss commented on her top purchase stating, “He’s a lovely colt, I had to pick him out off the website but I thought he was an outstanding type with a great pedigree.” “I knew he was going to be expensive, although I didn’t think he was going to be that expensive but I had made my mind up and decided I was going to buy him,” she said. Feiss, who is the previous owner of Vincent, saw some similarities between the colt and his brilliant sire. “I have to say he was slightly more mature than Vincent at this stage but he has certainly got the body of his father and is a lovely all round horse,” she said. Helen Conaghan, owner of Lot 237 was on the reversing end of the record price for the colt out of Suzys Delight (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight), which was consigned by Spreydon Lodge.   The highlight of the day came later, being a Bettor’s Delight colt out of star mare Bonnie Joan who was purchased by agent Peter Lagan on behalf of prominent buyers Emilio and Mary Rosati for a session-topping $240,000. Lagan was pleased he managed to secure the colt on behalf of the Rosati’s. “Emilio asked me to look at the best colts in the sale and I thought this lot was one of the best.” “Emilio and Mary love coming to New Zealand and are great supporters of our domestic racing,” Lagan said. The stunning colt out of star mare Bonnie Joan was bought out of the Tuapeka Lodge draft and is owned by the estate of the late Father Dan Cummings, his sister Julie Davie and brother Peter Cummings. Julie commented on the Lot’s success, which remarkably was presented on Father Dan’s birthday and was named Tuapeka Dan. “This was a very special sale, the colt was clearly sought after and stated himself from the time he was born.” “Katrina Price prepared him and she did a beautiful job for us. It really is a family affair because Peter’s son did the work with him as a weanling when Dan couldn’t. “We have been coming to the Christchurch Sale for around 45 years and it is a lovely result,” she said. The third highest priced yearling of the day was bought by Grant Eynon, a Bettor’s Delight colt out of Some Legend (Lot 225) for $160,000. Purchased from Ken Spicer’s Rosedale Farm, Eynon plans to send the colt to trainer Robert Dunn. NZB Standardbred’s Cam Bray commented on the days selling. “Competition was strong for quality lots, with the buyers being somewhat selective.” “We are looking forward to the final pacing session tomorrow and expect some solid results for the standout yearlings catalogued,” he said. The second pacing session at Christchurch commences tomorrow on Wednesday 24 February, with Lot 306 to 430 going under the hammer from 1PM (NZT). The Parade of Pacers will begin tomorrow at 10AM (NZT). The Sale will continue to be beamed to viewers on Freeview channel 200, with coverage streamed live at and on the NZB Standardbred facebook page. Presenter Greg O’Connor will host a Preview Show commencing at 12:30PM (NZT). All horses purchased today are eligible for the Harness Million Series with approximately $1 million in prizemoney for graduates of the Yearling Sale Series. To make enquiries about any Passed Lots, contact NZB Standardbred’s Cam Bray on +64 21 737 199 or email 2021 Christchurch Sale of Pacers Day One Results   2021 Christchurch Pacers Sale - Day 1 2020 Christchurch Pacers Sale Total 2019 Christchurch Pacers Sale Total Aggregate $3,016,500 $6,479,500 $6,471,500 Average $44,360 $43,487 $40,959 Median $31,000 $30,000 $30,500 Clearance 62% 78% 85% Catalogued 122 209 206 Sold 71 149 158 Top Price $240,000 Lot 289 (B.C) Bettor's Delight - Bonnie Joan $280,000 Lot 243 (B.F) Bettor's Delight - Pemberton Shard $170,000 Lot 267 (Bl.C) Bettor's Delight - Pemberton Shard; $170,000 Lot 369 (Bl.C) Bettor's Delight - Beaudiene Maja Babe   NZB Standardbred

The final session at Christchurch gets underway tomorrow on Wednesday 24 February, with Lot 306 to 430 of pacers going under the hammer from 1PM (NZT). The Parade of Pacers will begin at 10AM (NZT).  The Sale will continue to be beamed to viewers on Freeview channel 200, with coverage streamed live at and on NZB Standardbred’s facebook page.. Presenter Greg O’Connor will host a Preview Show commencing at 12:30PM (NZT). All yearlings are eligible to enter the NZB Standardbred Harness Million Series, with approximately $1 million in prizemoney on offer for graduates of the Yearling Sale Series. Entries close on Monday 1 March 2021. To make enquiries about any Passed Lots, contact Cam Bray on +64 21 737 199 or use the 'Bid Now' function on the website. PLEASE NOTE:  Due to a regrettable misidentification at the consignor’s property, Lot 392 (B.C. Captaintreacherous – Lily Lancome), was inadvertently presented by Studholme Bloodstock for sale today as Lot 232 (B.C. Bettor’s Delight – Start Dreaming).   This has been corrected and both lots will now be presented for sale tomorrow. Lot 392 (B.C. Captaintreacherous – Lily Lancome) in catalogue order and Lot 232 (B.C. Bettor’s Delight – Start Dreaming) at the end of the sale session.  Both horses will be available for inspection from 8:00am tomorrow at the Studholme Bloodstock boxes in J Row.   NZB Standardbred

Some big ticket items have sold on day two of the NZB Standardbred yearling sales in Christchurch. Highly successful Victorian owner Jean Feiss has been to the fore with a $210,000 purchase (Vincent – Suzys Delight) while Grant Eynon is one of several others to fork out six figures. Today is the first of two days for the pacers, after the trotters and champion trainer Robert Dunn were centre stage yesterday.   Harness Racing New Zealand  

Today is day two of the NZB Standardbred’s 2021 National Yearling Sale in Christchurch, with the pacers taking centre stage. The sale will be broadcast live to viewers on Freeview Channel 200, streamed on and on NZB Standardbred’s facebook page. Diamond Racing, Woodlands Stud and Southern Bred Southern Reared will support the coverage of the NZB Standardbred yearling sale sessions. There will also be  Preview and Review shows, as well as key sale highlights and interviews, viewers can be assured they will not miss any of the live sale action. Sale highlights: Lot 217  Bettor's Delight colt out of the good mare Safedra sells for $120,000 Lot 224 (Bettor's Delight – Simply Devine)  Another good price for a Bettor's Delight colt selling for $140,000 Lot 225 (Bettor's Delight – Some Legend) Eynon Farms Ltd goes to $160,000 to puchase this Bettor's Delight colt    

With the whole country now at Alert Level One, racing will now be held throughout the country without restrictions.  Auckland moved to Alert One at midnight.  That means that all race meetings, including the one at Alexandra Park on Friday night, will go ahead  with no limits on crowd numbers.  Racegoers, owners, trainers and other industry members are still encouraged to  scan everywhere they go, maintain good hygiene, social distance where possible,  and wear face masks if using public transport.    HRNZ

By Jonny Turner    Having almost beaten cancer, selling the top lot at NZB Standardbred’s trotting sale in Christchurch on Monday was a moment to savour for Southland breeder Dave Kennedy Kennedy’s Father Patrick colt from Sundon mare Rae Galleon topped the trotting section of the National Yearling Sales in Christchurch when knocked down to leading trainer Robert Dunn for $120,000. Kennedy is no stranger to yearling sales success having produced the equal top-selling pacing lot at Christchurch two years ago The Otautau breeder is set to cherish selling his Father Patrick colt more than his 2019 sale-topper or any other yearling he has offered in his 29 years as a National Yearling Sales vendor. Kennedy’s battle with B cell lymphoma – a form of blood cancer – has taught him to savour every moment he can. “You have just got to take what comes – it has never worried me I have just gone with it.” “But I was very weak for a while there, I couldn’t pull the skin off a sausage.” “I couldn’t walk from here to that (nearby) box over there.” “But we are good now, we are on the road to recovery.” “You don’t know what is around the corner, you have to enjoy every moment.” Kennedy hopes his Father Patrick colt has started what could turn out to be a brilliant week. He will offer five pacing yearlings at the National Yearling Sales on Wednesday and Thursday. Kennedy will then see his oncologist on Thursday to assess the next stage of his cancer battle. “I will see the oncologist on Thursday, I have still got a couple of tumours in there and I am going to be having radiation [therapy] to zap them.” Robert Dunn beat out rival bidders to secure the Father Patrick-Rae Galleon colt for his Diamond Racing Stables. Kennedy said he was rapt to see his yearling going to the trainer of the country’s best trotter, Sundees Son. The Southland breeder went into Monday’s sale hopeful of a good result, but far from expecting his Father Patrick colt would take top billing at the Christchurch trotting sale. “I am absolutely delighted, it is totally unexpected,” Kennedy said. “I knew he was a nice horse but I didn’t expect him to do anything like that.” Kennedy not only has preparer Katrina Price to thank for his standout result. Lot 140, named Cochise, is the only foal he has bred from Rae Galleon after he was offered the chance to breed from her by long-serving harness racing administrator and fellow breeder Gary Allen. “Gary offered me the chance to breed from her, so I put her in foal to Father Patrick and here we are,” Kenned said. “It is unbelievable, really.” Southern vendors dominated the top end of Christchurch’s trotting sale with Dunedin breeder Lex Williams’ $110,000 Majestic Son colt from champion mare One Over Kenny the second-top lot. Williams admitted it was an emotional return to the National Yearling Sales following the death of his late wife Heather in November of last year. The husband and wife had produced outstanding results together over several decades as National Yearling Sales vendors. Williams’ Majestic Son colt was knocked down to the McLean family of Victoria. 31 of 48 catalogued yearlings sold at Monday’s trotting sale at an average of $35,867. That result represented an increase from last year’s $34,642 average. The sale’s aggregate fell from last year, largely because of a 10% drop in clearance rate to 69%. The biggest movement in figures came from the trotting sale’s median jumping sharply from 2020’s $24,000 to this year’s $31,250.

By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk    Stratford trainer Jason Cossey is proud to be the third generation in his family to train in his green and red silks, and he is hoping they can return to the winner’s enclosure at Manawatu Raceway on Tuesday. The Taranaki dairy farmer will take Dramatist and Zip Code south on Tuesday and he is hopeful they can go one better at the Palmerston North track after both mares finished runner-up in their respective races last week. Cossey was pleased with Dramatist’s last start performance and he said she benefited from a light freshen-up after a series of unplaced runs. “She was quite impressive, we were really rapt with her,” he said. “She has been training really well and we were hoping for a better run. “She has just come off the unruly and we have started having workouts back at Hawera in the last month or so, and I think that has helped her a lot. “After Kapiti (last month) we gave her a bit of time off and that has helped her out.” The daughter of Big Jim has drawn gate two in the Outback Trading Company Mobile Pace (2000m) and Cossey said driver Brendan Towers may have his hands full with the boisterous mare. “I am a bit worried because she is a bit of a puller,” Cossey said. “If she gets out in front she might over-race a bit. We are hoping to get some early cover.” Later on the card Zip Code has drawn one on the second line in the Hughes Joinery Mobile Pace (2000m). “She is another one who enjoyed her freshen-up and she is loving the workouts at Hawera,” Cossey said. “I am just hoping she gets a bit of luck and can get out and have a decent run at them.” Cossey is pleased the Palmerston North meeting has received strong support from trainers from around the country, and he is hoping more meetings can be programmed for the region in the racing calendar. “It’s awesome, but it would be good if we can get some more grass tracks back up and going. We are really missing them around here,” he said. The Cosseys are one of the longest established racing families in the region, and he is proud to continue that legacy and become the third generation in his family to train. “My Dad (Spencer Cossey) got his license when he was 17, back in the 1960’s,” Cossey said. “I have been interested in racing right from the start. My set of colours were Dad’s, and they were his father’s as well. They have been in the Cossey name for a long time.”

Welcome to todays segment from our harness racing analyst who provides you with free expert tips and selections for harness meetings run in New Zealand. Harness racing hits Palmerston North today with a five race program starting at 3:59pm and we highlight some specials and value runners we think can give you a run for your money on a good day of racing. Manawatu selections 23rd February 2021 Best Bet:  R2 It's A Laugh Best Value:  R1 Haka Pride   Race 1 Haka Pride Ardee Trouble Mackali Leesa Castleton   Race 2 It's A Laugh Mop I Won't Back Down Easy Does It   Race 3 Santanna Mach  The Kapiti Express Ticking Over Mac's Tomado   Race 4 Emmi Rose Smokin Annie Golden Lace Frank The Tank   Race 5 Superstar Legend Manhattan Sunshine Mahia Classey Robin   Harnesslink Media

This past week has been an explosive one for harness racing Empire Stallions Somebeachsomewhere and his sensational son Captaintreacherous.. A Group 2 victory at Menangle, a heat of The Young Gun Series at Alexandra Park, a track record at Terang, all three heats for the NSW Oaks and the GR1 $150,000 NZB Standardbred Harness Million 3YO Fillies Pace at Addington were all won by progeny of the Empire Stallions . What is interesting to note is that all these race winners were conceived with frozen semen. Tabcorp Park Menangle featured an exceptional race card on Saturday and was the setting for an Empire-sired winning sweep of the three NSW Oaks heats which were all contested over 2400m. In the first heat, TOUGH TILLY showed that she is aptly named with a terrific front-end performance winning with a final quarter of :26.8. The Captaintreacherous 3YO filly was driven by Kath Gath, is trained by Emma Stewart, was bred by Benstud Standardbreds and is raced by Benstud Standardbreds & CURE EB. Rogue Wave by Somebeachsomewhere raced strongly to finish a close third. In the second heat for the NSW Oaks, Joanna by Somebeachsomewhere out of Repelem (by Dream Away) took the early lead and never looked back to win in a MR 1:55.2 with a last quarter of :27 seconds. This win pushed the 3YO filly over the $100,000 mark in earnings for trainer Emma Stewart and driver Amanda Turnbull. Joanna was bred by Mark Carey and is owned by D & J Zavitsanos and WR Viney. Beach Music by Somebeachsomewhere out of the Bettor's Delight mare Musical Delight was brilliant winning the third heat of the NSW Oaks. In an exciting stretch battle with the favourite, Beach Music went on to win in MR1:55.4 with a last quarter of :26.4 for driver David Moran and trainer Emma Stewart. Also securing a spot in the Final was Arma Renegade by Captaintreacherous who finished third to also make the Final. The next race at Tabcorp Park Menangle produced yet another Somebeachsomewhere winner. It was a sensational victory for the 4YO mare Maajida in the (GR2) Robin Dundee Stakes winning in a MR1:50.3 for driver Kate Gath and trainer Emma Stewart. This talented filly out of Arterial Way (Art Major) was Victoria’s 2 & 3-Year-Old Filly of the Year and was bred and is owned by the Johnson Family. Also on Saturday night, Honolua Bay set a new track record of 1:52.6 at Terang in Victoria with his sizzling win in the Neville & Patsy Clarke Memorial. The 4YO son of Somebeachsomewhere x National Gallery (Artsplace) posted his last quarter in :27.5 for driver Josh Aiken and trainer David Aiken. He was bred and is owned by Lauriston Bloodstock. And over in New Zealand on Friday night, Montana D J was impressive with his win in a heat of The Young Guns Series in Auckland. By Captaintreacherous and out of the Dream Away mare One Dream, this 2YO colt was bred by Jill Smolenski and purchased by Montana Park last year for $175,000 at the NZB Standardbred Sale in Christchurch. There are 26 Captain yearlings scheduled to go through the ring in Christchurch on Tuesday and Wednesday this week. Captaintreacherous colt Montana D J winning impressively at Alexandra park Also, in New Zealand only one week ago, the $150,000 (GR1) Listed NZB Standardbred Harness Million 3YO Fillies Pace was won by Off N Gone. After being caught wide in the early stages and racing without cover for the entire 1980m, this classy daughter of Somebeachsomewhere burst to the lead on the final turn to win by open lengths. Off N Gone, out of the Bettor’s Delight mare Kabet, is trained by Robert Dunn and was driven by John R Dunn. She was bred by Mrs, JM Davie and PT & DJ Cummins and is owned by BD & SM Williams and CA & KJ Woodham.   Harnesslink Media

After a week of anticipation heading into the postponed Christchurch session of NZB Standardbred’s 2021 National Yearling Sale, Day One of selling at Canterbury Agricultural Park kicked off positively.  At the close of selling, the average and median were both up on last year’s figures, with the median increasing by an impressive 30%. NZB Standardbred Bloodstock Sales Representative and Auctioneer Cam Bray commented on today’s action. “The trotting breeding market has wide access to sensational stallions from across the world, which was evident in the top purchases made today,” he said. “To have a 30% increase in the median from last year’s trotting session is a very encouraging sign.” “We are pleased where we are sitting at the moment but we’re aware there will be a number of lots sold overnight, which should bump up the clearance rate. “We are looking forward to the next two days of selling which will present a strong line up of pacers set to go under the hammer,” he said. The biggest purchase of the day was made early in the session after Robert Dunn secured Lot 140 for $120,000. Buying under his Diamond Racing banner, the colt by leading trotting sire Father Patrick out of Rae Galleon (NZ) (Sundon) was bought from Dave and Dawn Kennedy’s Beaudiene Breeding. Dunn, who was the leading purchaser by aggregate at the close of selling, is excited to have the new addition to his stable. “He is from a great family and he was a stunning individual.” “We missed out in Auckland with a colt who I thought was a real stunner, so I wasn’t going to miss out here.” “You’ve got to pay for quality and he was a standout horse,” he said. Lot 135 was the second highest purchase secured by McLean Racing via the online bidding platform from the draft of White Stables. The Majestic Son colt has a pedigree page stacked with black-type, out of multiple Group One-winning mare One Over Kenny (NZ) (Sundon), making him a half-brother to track star Ultimate Stride (NZ) (Love You). The leading consignor by aggregate title was picked up by Brian West’s Studholme Bloodstock, selling four lots for a total turnover of $180,500. International stallion Father Patrick topped the leading sires by average table, with eight lots selling for an average of $53,500. The Sale of Pacers at Christchurch commences tomorrow on Tuesday 23 February, with Lot 184 to 305 going under the hammer from 1PM (NZT). The Parade of Pacers will begin tomorrow at 10AM (NZT). The Sale will continue to be beamed to viewers on Freeview channel 200, with coverage streamed live at and on the NZB Standardbred facebook page. Presenter Greg O’Connor will host a Preview Show commencing at 12:30PM (NZT). All horses purchased today are eligible for the Harness Million Series with approximately $1 million in prizemoney for graduates of the Yearling Sale Series. To make enquiries about any Passed Lots, contact NZB Standardbred’s Cam Bray on +64 21 737 199 or email 2021 National Yearling Sale Statistics – Christchurch Trotting Session   2021 Christchurch Trotting Sale 2020 Christchurch Trotting Sale 2019 Christchurch Trotting Sale Aggregate $1,106,000 $1,281,750 $1,203,500 Average $35,867 $34,642 $30,088 Median $31,250 $24,000 $21,500 Clearance 69% 79% 83% Catalogued 48 48 50 Sold 31 37 40 Top Price $120,000 Lot 140 (B.C) Father Patrick - Rae Galleon $280,000 Lot 146 (Ch.C) Love You - Queen Kenny $105,000 Lot 192 (B.C) Love You - Diedre's Jewel   2021 Top Lots – Christchurch Trotting Session Lot Type Breeding Consignor Purchaser Price 140 B.C Father Patrick / Rae Galleon Beaudiene Breeding Diamond Racing (Auckland) $120,000 135 B.C Majestic Son / One Over Kenny White Stables McLean Racing (Victoria) $110,000 139 BR.C Father Patrick / Quite A Moment Dancingonmoonlight Ltd Mr G Hope (Canterbury) $80,000 136 B.C Father Patrick / Paramount Queen Studholme Bloodstock Ltd Mr J Curtin (Auckland) $50,000 141 B.F Muscle Mass / Roydon's Jewel R. & J. Aubrey Mr AN & Mrs JE Rich (Canterbury) $50,000 148 B.F Father Patrick / Superbowlcheerleader Studholme Bloodstock Ltd Aldebaran Lodge Pty Ltd  (Victoria) $50,000 174 B.F Love You / Ethereal L. Smith Darren Keast Ltd (Canterbury) $50,000 168 B.C Love You / Diedre's Jewel Mansfield Farm Mr J Dickie (Auckland) $45,000 159 B.C Father Patrick / Bree Studholme Bloodstock Ltd IG & LF Thomson (Southland) $42,500 144 Ch.C Love You / Shell Seeker L. Smith Mr AG Herlihy (Auckland) $40,000   2021 Leading Purchasers by Aggregate – Christchurch Trotting Session Purchaser Bought Aggregate Average Top Price Top Lot Diamond Racing 3 $172,500 $57,500 $120,000 140 McLean Racing 1 $110,000 $110,000 $110,000 135 Mr G Hope 1 $80,000 $80,000 $80,000 139 Mr AG Herlihy 2 $78,000 $39,000 $40,000 144 Aldebaran Lodge Pty Ltd 1 $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 148 Darren Keast/A Fitzgerald Standardbreds 1 $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 174 Mr AN & Mrs JE Rich 1 $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 141 Mr J Curtin 1 $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 136 Mr J Dickie 1 $45,000 $45,000 $45,000 168 IG & LF Thomson 1 $42,500 $42,500 $42,500 159   2021 Leading Consignors by Aggregate – Christchurch Trotting Session Consignor Entries Sold Aggregate Average Top Price Top Lot Studholme Bloodstock 4 4 $180,500 $45,125 $50,000 136 Beaudiene Breeding 2 2 $157,500 $78,750 $120,000 140 L. Smith 6 4 $156,000 $39,000 $50,000 174 White Stables 2 1 $110,000 $110,000 $110,000 135 R. & J. Aubrey 4 3 $92,500 $30,833 $50,000 141 Dancingonmoonlight 1 1 $80,000 $80,000 $80,000 139 Rosedale Farm 3 2 $47,500 $23,750 $30,000 177 Mansfield Farm 1 1 $45,000 $45,000 $45,000 168 G. M. Murray 5 2 $42,500 $21,250 $32,500 142 Arden Lodge 1 1 $22,500 $22,500 $22,500 149   2021 Leading Sires by Average (three or more sold) - Christchurch Trotting Session Sire Entries Sold Average Aggregate Top Price Top Lot Father Patrick 11 8 $53,500 $428,000 $120,000 140 Love You 5 4 $43,500 $174,000 $50,000 174 Majestic Son 7 4 $39,250 $157,000 $110,000 135 Muscle Mass 4 3 $36,500 $109,500 $50,000 141 Creatine 7 4 $23,250 $93,000 $37,500 153   NZB Standardbred

By Jonny Turner    Lauren Pearson showed she had lost none of her skill in the sulky when winning her first race in more than fifteen years with Fanny Hill at Winton on Sunday. Having a partner who is one of Southland’s best drivers in Brent Barclay has meant Pearson has not had any more than seven drives in each season since she won with Lady Of The House at Wyndham in February of 2006. Clearly Pearson’s focus has been on training in that time going by the excellent strike rate her stable has produced. Barclay suggested his former New Zealand Junior Driver Championship winning partner return to the track over summer and she showed she had not lost her winning touch with Fanny Hill despite only having had a handful of drives over the last decade and a half. “I didn’t realise it was 15 years, I have had a few seconds and placings, but I haven’t had many drives in the last 15 years,” Pearson said. “When you have got Brent – he is out there all the time.” “We have just had a couple of trotters in lately and Brent has had other drives.” “I have been driving them at the workouts and driving them in work, so he said you might as well get on and have a blat around for a bit.” “I am really only filling in, but I quite enjoy it while I am out there.” Pearson landed Fanny Hill the best possible spot in race 8, behind the free-wheeling leader Whatwillbeewillbee. The five-year-old dashed along the inner to score in her first start from her driver’s stable at upset odds. Though Fanny Hill had competed well in her recent workouts, winning in the slick time of 3.02.8 for 2400m was not something Pearson expected. “She had been going good at the workouts but we thought she might have needed another run. “But obviously her class took her through.” Owner John Duff sent Fanny Hill to Pearson in the hope the mare could bounce back to her best form. After taking over her training from Phil Williamson, Pearson’s initial hope was to have her racing “half as good as Phil had her going”. That plan did not look like it would come to fruition in the early stages of Fanny Hill’s shift south. “She is a horse that if you get her out of her routine she is a bit funny,” Pearson said. “She showed nothing at home for a while.” “It wasn’t until we took her to a workout that she improved.” “And she has just got better and better.” Sunday’s win was the fifth of Fanny Hill’s career and Pearson’s 42nd career victory in the sulky. Pearson has no plans to drive more often after producing her pinpoint winning drive on Sunday. Barclay is quite safe in his position as her stable’s number one driver. “He is always number one,” Pearson said.  

By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk    You could be forgiven for thinking Angel Of Montana sprouted wings down the home straight at Rangiora on Saturday. The Bettor’s Delight filly flew home late from the rear of the field to nab Haiti Franco on the line to win by a half head. It was Stephen Anderson’s first training win and he was delighted with the result. “I was pleased to get it off my back. I am very happy about it,” he said. “She was very good today, particularly after drawing the second line.” Angel Of Montana finished runner-up first-up for Anderson at Oamaru last week and he said a gear change assisted his filly on Saturday. “I put the pulldown blinds on her today and Robbie (Close, driver) thought that made a difference,” he said. “She didn’t take the passing lane at Oamaru as quick as she should have, but she was still fighting at the end.” Previously trained by Barry Purdon and Scott Phelan at Clevedon, Angel Of Montana came into Anderson’s care after his grandson, Connor Harker, thought he needed an interest in another horse after selling his only stable runner, Social Media, offshore. Harker saw Angel Of Montana on online auction house and thought she fitted the bill, going to $12,000 to secure the former northerner. Anderson has fallen in love with the mare and said she is a complete contrast from her more boisterous stable predecessor. “My grandson and his mate bought her off gavelhouse for me because I sold Social Media to Australia. He reckoned I needed something to do, so he bought her,” Anderson said. “She is a beautiful horse to do anything with. Social Media was either trying to bite me or kick me. This one is a totally different horse altogether.” Anderson said he fulfilled a lifelong ambition on Saturday, with the former dairy farmer wanting to carry on in the training footsteps of his father, John Anderson. “I did that in honour of my old man, I was using his colours,” Anderson said. “That was my ambition – to get a horse on the track and win a race for him. “I took my license out just a bit over three years ago. It was a bucket list thing, I have always been interested in racing, but I was dairy farming most of the time and I didn’t have the time to do that sort of thing.” Angel Of Montana is the only horse Anderson has in work, but he said he enjoys getting up to work her at Ashburton Raceway every morning. “We live in town and I am training out of the racecourse at Ashburton,” he said. “I am in a barn with Terry McMillan, who gives me good advice, and Nigel Perkins. I enjoy the comradery between us.”

Rory Mcllwrick loves a bit of banter whether it be with the Williamson family, or the wider harness racing community. Today he was at the top of his game, winning a double at the Winton meeting including the feature mare’s race the Southern Belle Speed Series, with the Owen Lawrence trained Miss Auckland. The Auckland Reactor mare is in peak form at the moment having won her last three starts which includes today’s mares feature in which she beat Pay Me Speedy trained by Chelsea Faithful. “Chelsea and I have had a bit of banter going for a long time. I told her  I was coming for her and the banter started when Miss Auckland was dropping out and finishing last in a maiden. I really enjoyed that win. It was one of the better ones,” Mcllwrick said. From a handy inside draw Mcllwrick positioned Miss Auckland back on the inside after beginning well and trailing pacemaker Silk. Silk was pressured by A Taste Of Honey but took Miss Auckland to the passing lane and McIlwrick drove her up the inside to beat a brave Pay Me Speedy by three quarters of a length. “I was surprised we beat her to be fair but we’ll take it. She’s turned a corner. Speedy’s a pretty nice horse. Maybe if we reversed the draws it would have reversed the results but this girl she just hits the line real good. She’s now one of those horses that just keeps savaging the line. The harder they go the better. She’s got great gait speed and she can stay. She’s doing it all at the moment.” This is the first time Ascot Park trainer Owen Lawrence has won three races in a row with any horse. In the early 2000s Armbro Invasion trotter The Jailer won three of his last five starts running second in the other two. “I’ve always had faith in her. She’s improved as she’s got a wee bit older. When I first started her she ran last in her first three races. Hopefully there’s a wee bit of improvement yet,” Lawrence said. The win qualifies Miss Auckland for the $20,000 Southern Belle Speed Series final at the Winton Meeting on the 20th March. Earlier in the programme another mare continued her winning form for Mcllwrick. The Craig Laurenson trained trotter Miss Bamboocha won her second race in three starts when she came from back in the field to run down favourite Afterburner The eight year old mare has now won five races and has recorded eleven seconds and eleven thirds in ninety three starts.   by Bruce Stewart

Branxholme trainer Alister Black has a good bunch of quality three year olds this season and Idealism got his name on the winner’s board when he impressively won the John Kennan Memorial Mobile Pace at Winton today. “He’s a pretty laidback character like most of the American Ideals. He just goes about his job and does it well,” said Black. From a second line draw driver Nathan Williamson positioned the three year mid field before moving up to sit parked. “It didn’t worry me at all. I was dumbfounded that he wasn’t a $1.80 favourite after his last race. That run was nothing short of superb.” Idealism let down nicely in the straight to win by a length and three quarters from favourite Captain Pins. “He’ll go to the Nuggets and then we’ll give him a wee let up. We’ll look at the Supremacy in May but he’ll have to win another race at least.” The three year old is owned by Craig Milne, his father Ian, Pete and Lorraine Carnie, Lyn Philp, Paul McEntyre and Black’s wide Sheree. Winning connections                           --Bruce Stewart Photo Both Milne and McEntyre work for Black on a casual basis. “Paul brings his own wages. He does the boxes and has a couple in work including Wai Key Wee so he’s having a good run. Most of these owners were in Dazzle Me.” Black said winning the John Keenan Memorial bought make memories of when he drove as a junior driver. “This win was special. I drove a couple of winners for John (Glen Atom 2002 and Cool Man Cam 2001). He was a real good guy.” Another promising three year old Ohoka Agent, owned by Black’s key stable clients the Thomson brothers finished on for third after having no luck in the run home. “I’m pretty lucky. Ian and Lindsay Thomson are massive supporters. They put a lot of money into the game.” The next Nuggets Final will be run at the Riverton meeting at Winton on Thursday 4th March and it promises to be a cracker with the Thomson owned Keep On Dreaming set to clash with Idealism and a number of other promising three year olds.   by Bruce Stewart

Welcome to todays segment from our harness racing analyst who provides you with free expert tips and selections for harness meetings run in New Zealand. Harness racing hits Winton today with a nine race program starting at 12:08pm and we highlight some specials and value runners we think can give you a run for your money on a good day of racing. Winton selections 21st February 2021 Best Bet:  R9 Buck Best Value:  R8 Fanny Hill   Race 1 Sheza Gift Domination's Call Tease My Tartan Svelt   Race 2 Endless Dreams De La Renta Delightful Chevron Sista Sammy   Race 3 Wonthavtime Captain Pins Sportscam Tommy Waterhouse   Race 4 Afterburner Insist The Win Horse Of Course Miss Bamboocha   Race 5 R K Finn Sentry Alexsjoy Leithen Burn   Race 6 Pay Me Speedy A Taste Of Honey Miss Auckland Silk   Race 7 Memphis Tennessee Chuckles Macandrew Aviator Four Starzzz Shiraz   Race 8 Fanny Hill Tweedledee Andy Hall Aveross Majesty   Race 9 Buck Alexy Fireforefiddle Vintage Rose   Harnesslink Media

By Jonny Turner    Salvo produced the middle leg of a treble of outstanding performances with her flying late finish to win at Addington on Friday night. The nine-race card started in the with a simply outstanding effort from Shut Up N Dance, who bolted in in race 1 by a massive ten and a half lengths for trainer Regan Todd and driver Matthew Williamson. Next up, Salvo produced a sizzling last 100m to clinch her maiden victory right on the line for trainer Jack Harrington and driver Tim Williams. Williams made it a double with Love You three-year-old trotting fillies when Wanna Play Me served up a record-breaking first-over crush to take out the listed Sires Stakes 3YO Fillies Classique. Wanna Play Me stopped the clock in sizzling 2.24.7 to equal the fillies and mares national and track record for 1980m alongside both Dark Horse and Missalyssa. The three-year-old also smashed the mobile mark for three-year-old fillies she set in her win in the rescheduled Sires Stake 2YO Trotters Championship in October by 1.6sec. Salvo showed potential in three starts last time in and contested the Harness Million Two-Year-Old Trotting Final. It was in that feature event that the three-year-old last saw the mobile gate. And according to Jack Harrington it could be a while before she sees it again. “We found, especially in the rescheduled Harness Million final that the gate wound her up quite a fair bit.” “We are trying to steer away from the mobiles to let her learn her ringcraft a little bit.” “We are thinking her first mobile this time may very well be the Trotting Oaks, so long as everything goes to plan.” With the New Zealand Trotting Oaks a potential target for Salvo, Harrington clearly must have a decent wrap on the filly. The way she let down in the last 100m of Friday night’s race to catch Jakarta, who looked to have race 2 won, suggested she has a slice of class about her. “At this stage, it is probably too early to take on some of the better three-year-olds – but later on in another five or six races – to let her really get screwed down she could, ” Harrington said. “Hopefully she will get better and better and she can be thereabouts against those good one.” Salvo’s win comes almost two years to the day after Harrington purchased the filly at the NZB Standardbred National Yearling Sales in 2019. The trainer was initially drawn to the filly by her pedigree, being by Love You from the Pegasus Spur mare Sungait Sally. “The Love You factor was a massive plus.” “I remember her mother had a few issues but she had a really nice way of going.” “I just remembered her from watching her go and that was what drew me to Salvo.” “And when I saw her she had really big ears and you love trotter with big ears.” Harrington will be back at the NZB Standardbred National Yearling Sales in Christchurch next week trying to find another Salvo. The trainer, who welcomes new owners to join him in his purchases, is best known for his strong results with trotters. However, his stable has undergone a slight change in direction with most of his winners coming in the pacing gait recently. “You look at my record and I have had a lot of trotting starters and a lot of trotting winners.” “But if you look at this season Salvo is my fourth trotting starter and my first trotting winner and all of those starts have been hers.” “It has been a bit of a reversal of roles the last couple of years.” Harrington can head to the sales after a perfect one-from-one strike rate for the weekend after Salvo’s win.

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