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It's one of our most iconic harness racing events, and this year Mike Thorpe of Seven Sharp was oncourse to share the secret of what makes this day so special.

Down Under harness racing pacer takes out $35,000 Preferred Pace at Yonkers Raceway. The New Zealand bred, Have Faith In Me successfully paced a sharp mile in 1:51.4 on Saturday night around the half mile (800m) Yonkers race track. The 8yo gelding was steered to victory by Jason Bartlett and is trained by Jose Godinez. The son of Bettor's Delight has impeccable bloodlines and they continue to shine through his successful career. To date in North America he has had 35 starts for 10 wins 7 seconds and 6 thirds for $200,452 in earnings. Have Faith In Me is the son of well renowned mare Scuse Me (by BG's Bunny). Prior to racing in North America, Have Faith In Me was trained in New Zealand by Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen. He was the winner of 16 races and earned over $1.5 m in stake money. With his most impressive performance coming out of Sydney’s Menangle Park where he won the Miracle Mile in a time of 1:47.5. Have Faith In Me seen here winning at Yonkers New Zealand Great Northern Derby winner wins first race early in North American racing career. Smart Down Under pacer Raukapuka Ruler won his first race in just his second start in the US on Saturday. The win came out of the $22,000 Pace at Yonkers Raceway where he clocked a 1:53.1 mile around the half mile (800m) track, for trainer Peter Tritton and driver Jordan Stratton. Raukapuka Ruler is an exciting pacer to follow throughout his future racing career racing in North America, being held in high regard by connections. The son of Bettor's Delight was the winner of 9 races and just short of $240,000 in prize money while racing in New Zealand and Australia. With his most noticeable win being in the Group 1 Great Northern Derby in Auckland in the hands of Dexter Dunn. Consistent Down Under pacer ticks over $100,000 in US stake earnings for the season. New Zealand bred and formerly raced pacer Bontz won the $14,000 Pace at Saratoga on Thursday in a time of 1:54.1, for driver Shawn T Gray and trainer Gary Levine. The win took the mares earnings to over $100,000 US for the season. The daughter of American Ideal has been ultra-consistent throughout the whole season, winning 8 races and placing on a further 15 occasions. Formerly raced in New Zealand, Bontz was the winner of 5 races. Auckland Reactor three-year-old The Great Buzz continues to shine in North America. The former Clark Barron trained pacer had 8 starts in New Zealand for 3 seconds and 2 thirds prior to flying to North America in early June this year. Since arriving in North America The Great Buzz has had 16 starts, all on a half-mile track, for 10 wins and 5 thirds for $46,945 in earnings to date for trainer Paul Zabielski and Owner Kevin Quinn. Monday 28th October   Hollywood Gaming Dayton Raceway OH Crombie A – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $4,500   The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono PA Fiery Lustre N – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $6,000   Tuesday 29th October   Monticello Raceway NY Feel The Need A – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $5,500   Yonkers Raceway NY Beyondthesilence N – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $12,500 Quite A Delight N – Time: 1:55.2, Stake: $12,500 Classy Chapel N – Time: 1:55.1, Stake: $17,000 Dream Out Loud N – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $14,500 Lettucerockthem A – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $14,500 Mcclinchie N – Time: 1:54.2, Stake: $17,000   Wednesday 30th October   Bangor Raceway ME Milwood Faith N – Time: 1:57.2, Stake: $4,500 Rosecroft Raceway MD Our Jerry Lee N – Time: 1:54.4, Stake: $4,500   Thursday 31st October   Harrahs Hoosier Park IN The Empiressister N – Time: 1:57.3, Stake: $6,000   Monticello Raceway NY Terror Time A – Time: 1:58.2, Stake: $3,000   Saratoga Harness NY Bontz N – Time: 1:54.1, Stake: $14,000 Lady Dela Renta A – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $18,000 Sea Change N – Time: 1:56.3, Stake: $6,400   Yonkers Raceway NY Amrcanbootscoota A – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $12,500 Marty Monkhouser N – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $17,000   Rideau Carleton Raceway CA Uncle Ben N – Time: 1:57.3, Stake: $4,500   Friday 1st November   Harrahs Hoosier Park IN Saying Grace N – Time: 1:49.3, Stake: $20,000   Harrah’s Philadelphia PA Rollin Withholly A – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $11,000 Jive Dancing A – Time: 1:51.4, Stake: $17,000   The Meadows PA The Spinster N – Time: 1:55.3, Stake: $9,600   Yonkers Raceway NY Sudden Change N – Time: 2:00.1 (1 1/16 Miles), Stake: $27,000   Saturday 2nd November   Batavia Downs NY In Runway Bay N – Time: 1:55.3, Stake: $9,500 Brunello N – Time: 1:55.1, Stake: $10,000 Classic American N – Time: 1:57.1, Stake: $4,900   Hollywood Gaming Dayton Raceway OH Sammy The Bull N – Time: 1:50.4, Stake: $15,000 Return To Sender N – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $6,500   Meadowlands NJ Kerrin Joseph A – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $11,250   Northville Downs MI Delightful Offer N – Time: 1:58.0, Stake: $5,800   Saratoga Harness NY Teo Enteo A – Time: 1:55.4, Stake: $9,100 Crockets Cullen N – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $18,000 The Great Buzz N – Time: 1:55.3, Stake: $8,000 Epaulette A – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $14,000 Lifeonthebeach A – Time: 1:54.4, Stake: $11,000   The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono PA Torrid Bromac N – Time: 1:52.1, Stake: $11,000   Vernon Downs NY Mister Livan N – Time: 1:40.0 (7/8 Miles), Stake: $5,000   Yonkers Raceway NY Bit Of A Legend N – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $20,000 Havefaithinme N – Time: 1:51.4, Stake: $35,000 Raukapuka Ruler N – Time: 1:53.1, Stake: $22,000   Sunday 3rd November   Harrah’s Philadelphia PA Vega Star N – Time: 1:51.2, Stake: $14,500 Big On Personality N – Time: 1:52.4, Stake: $14,000 Extreme Machine N – Time: 1:54.2, Stake: $7,000 Tact Tate N – Time: 1:50.3, Stake: $14,500 Billy Badger N – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $8,000   Saratoga Harness NY Mr Cool Seaeyre N – Time: 1:57.4, Stake: $18,000   Previous weeks 5th of Nov 2019 + Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 29th October 2019 + Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 22nd October 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 15th October 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 8th October 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 1st October 2019 - Down Under Winners with Carter Dalgety 24th Sep 2019 - Down Under Winners with Carter Dalgety 17th Sep 2019 - Down Under Winners with Carter Dalgety 11th Sep 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 3rd Sep 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 27th Aug 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 20th Aug 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 12th Aug 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 5th Aug 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 29 Jul 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety 24 Jul 2019 - Down Under winners with Carter Dalgety Carter Dalgety

Welcome to the Harness Half Hour Podcast brought to you by HRNZ marketing and Airpark Canterbury. Jess Smith brings the latest harness racing news and interviews with colorful and interesting industry participants from New Zealand and around the world. We chat to Robert Dunn following his milestone of 1500 winners, including Classie Brigade taking out the Kaikoura Cup. Nigel Armstrong talks syndication and Westview Racing and Richard Wilson is with us for the Bookie Update.   Jess Smith

When and if Self Assured lines up in the NZ Free for All on Show day at Addington it will be either his 10th or 11th start, probably the 10th. If he wins, history will be made. No horse has ever won the NZ Free for All with so few starts going back to the first edition in 1914. He will not be the first four year old to win the race of course. By a long shot. All Stars have already posted wins at 4 by Ultimate Machete, Lazarus, Auckland Reactor, Young Rufus and Il Vicolo on their own. It was Ultimate Machete’s first try in open company a singular achievement at such a young age. A decade before Lordship, underlining what a great horse he was, added the Free for All to his NZ Cup win at 4 in an era of pacing giants beating the mighty Cardigan Bay in the process. His was one of the most popular wins in the history of Addington for the little black who was one of the most stylish and courageous horses ever seen on the track given his bouts of injury and the long marks he had to run from. Walk into some liquor locations on a Saturday even now and someone will tell you Lordship was the greatest of all. Self Assured may yet show he is in that class. Think of it for a moment. He had not raced until May. He has never been further back than third in a race even though thrown in the deep end having to compete against the best open horses around after his three year old Queensland campaign when unbeaten. All of the other four year olds to have won this race had a lot more experience. But there is one exception even though it was outside of the NZ Free for All. Self Assured’s grandad, Christian Cullen, put up one of the most astonishing performances of modern times winning a $100,000 Free for All at the Addington Cup meeting-as a three year old! It wasn’t the official free for all but a brave promotion at the time by the Met (who said clubs can’t be innovative given the chance ?) to lift the final night of the meeting, a G1 event over 1950m-the first time the distance had been tried- with bonus payments for pacesetters. The race was full of talent. Anvil’s Star was second, Brabham third andrise Master Musician further back. While Lordship won a free for all as a three year old it was in the autumn. No horse of that age ever looked like winning an all aged free for all in November. To be truthful none had ever tried Christian Cullen did. A week after he won the Sires Stakes final So perhaps no surprise his grandson who will have had fewer starts by FFA day could add another record. It was Christian Cullen’s 12th start the night he made history. Self Assured can top that in one respect if he can win on Show Day More of the same only better could be coming up!   Courtesy of All Stars Racing Stables http://www.allstarsracingstables.com/

These are the Final NZ Cup Rankings with 16 horses left in play. The Dominion Trot will be finalised following the Group 1 Commodore Airport Hotel NZ Trotting FFA which will be run on Tuesday. The Rankings/Fields will be available next Wednesday. View the final rankings here.   Courtney Clarke Communications and Marketing Co-Ordinator | Harness Racing New Zealand Inc

The word is out and plans are well underway with QHR Ltd assisting Addington Raceway & Events Centre in promoting the world’s first Fast10 Horse Racing event being held at Addington Raceway on 20 December. There has been a lot of work behind the scenes to ensure everyone in the industry will benefit from this exciting new horse racing extravaganza. Get your groups together for your end of year function. A couple of hours with 10 exciting sprint harness races, a sumptuous luncheon and after match entertainment on course. Book now on the Addington Event page link. https://www.addington.co.nz/events-centre/events/fast10-horse-racing/ Pure racing, pure excitement, pure fun, Fast10 Horse Racing will be something that NZ horse racing has never seen before. It will cater for everyone, from true racing enthusiasts, to a completely new fan base and also reignite the passion for those who may have fallen away. There will still be lots for the experienced punter, but there will be some easy betting packages for those unfamiliar to betting. New fans can follow lucky colours, with the brightly coloured saddlecloths and caps making your horse easily identified. The horses and drivers will be profiled as the heroes of the day. An Information Stand will be set up at Addington after Cup Week to provide details to the trainers and drivers on how the event will run and what is expected to make this work. This will also give them the opportunity to offer their thoughts and feedback. If you have any questions about the event please contact Glenn Hames E: ghames.qhr@gmail.com M: 027 203 2746

By Jonny Turner Inter-island trainer Robert Dunn created history by notching his 1500th win in New Zealand in sensation fashion when Heisenberg headed a stable trifecta just minutes after Classie Brigade won the Kaikoura Cup on Monday. Classie Brigade reminded punters he has the game and manners to be a New Zealand Cup contender with a fast beginning to set himself up for a front-running win with Dunn’s son, John, in the sulky. The perfect dress rehearsal for New Zealand’s greatest harness race took Dunn to career win 1449, before the trainer made triply sure he would reach 1500 wins. When the field turned for home in the Yearling Sales Aged Classic, there was almost no chance that it would not be a Dunn runner hitting the line first. Eventually, Heisenberg sealed the trainer’s milestone win, holding out his stablemates Stars Tonight and Franco Niven. Heisenberg winning the $50,000 Aged Classic Dunn’s 1500-win record includes 19 group 1 victories spread across some of New Zealand’s greatest races. The trainer said he rates the notching his 1500 wins and the style it came in at Kaikoura as big as any thrill he has had during his career of more than 40 years.  “To go one-two-three is quite amazing,” Dunn said. “That is right up there with all of my biggest thrills.” “To have three special owners – Ross and Angela Gordon, Dean and Allen Neumann and their wives Judy and Christine and their family and friends, and Ian Dobson.” “To have three of my biggest owners going one-to-three is something you only dream about really.” Dunn’s next focus will firmly be on both the Interdominions and next week’s New Zealand Cup Carnival. Beyond that, the trainer is looking to throw back to the days of Master Musician – the horse that put him on harness racing’s biggest stages early in his training career.   Dunn’s horses could revisit some of the destinations the winner of almost $2,000,000 took the trainer during his prolific career across Australasia. “We might have to do a bit of travelling this season, we have got a lot of nice horses coming through.” “Australia could be beckoning some of our trotters – but we will get through the Interdominions first.” Dunn’s 1500th win followed a wave of success from his family that has peaked in the past month. The trainer’s son, Dexter, confirmed his status as one of hottest reinsman in North America with two wins at the star studded Breeders Crown meeting in Canada, recently. Dexter’s elder brother, John, has been keeping up the family name in lights back home, recently passing 1100 driving wins. He sealed his father’s milestone win with Heisenberg with the same kind of well rated, front running drive he produced on Classie Brigade. Father and son could enjoy their biggest thrill in racing together if the 7yr-old can win the New Zealand Cup. With the same kind of beginning he made in his Kaikoura Cup win, Classie Brigade should put himself in a position to strike.   Classie Brigade winning the Kaikoura Cup The Robert and John Dunn combination sealed their brilliant day out at the picturesque Kaikoura Cup meeting by completing a hat-trick of wins in its final three races. John produced his third consecutive front-running drive to win with Jay Tee Tyron. Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

By Garrick Knight Tonight’s Melbourne Cup Day meeting at Cambridge marks the first stop in a long season for promising local filly Emmber. The blueblood will go around as an even-money favourite in an $8,000 maiden, and co-trainer Matthew White expects a forward showing. “She goes quite nice; I have got a bit of time for her,” he told HRNZ. “She’s forward enough and is there to win, there’s no doubt about that. “We felt it was a good race for her to start off in as we head towards the better three-year-old fillies’ races throughout the season.” Emmber was unplaced in two runs as a juvenile but White says she has furnished in to her frame now. “She’s quite a big filly and has really grown in to her frame nicely.”’ Emmber has two big things in her favour. One is her father, the all-conquering champion stallion Bettor’s Delight. The other is her mum, former Filly of the Year and three-time Group 1 winner, Lauraella. White is a pretty relaxed operator but when pushed he admits that together with training partner Mike Berger, they could have some real fun this season. “I am quite excited by her; she gives me the feel of a pretty good horse.” The stable has two other runners on the card – the resuming Arty Pharty and the departing Mhai Uptown Girl. The latter has drawn one but strikes a handy field and White is underwhelmed by her chances. “I think she’ll be a bit outclassed – maybe an outside place chance at best. “She’s on the plane to Brisbane on Thursday and I think she’ll be better off over there.” Arty Pharty has shown glimpses of ability in his career to date and White just hopes his work at home translates to race night finally. “It’s not a strong field and I don’t think it’s a bad race for him. “I’m not too worried about drawing one on the second line – it’s probably not bad for him. “He’s been working well but is a horse that has done that in the past; he can show a bit in his training. “He’s probably let the side down come race day before so hopefully he’s grown out of that this time.” Elsewhere, the stable’s star, three-year-old colt Eagle Watch, is back in work after suffering a virus. “We late scratched him from the sires stakes heat here and then pulled stumps for a couple of weeks. “We’ve got him right and he’s on his way back.” In something a bit different in honour of Melbourne Cup day, the Cambridge club has put on two two-miles races, one each for the pacers and trotters. Each race carries a $10,000 stake plus a $2,500 bounty if the winners can break a track record for their gait and sex. The trot only has four horses, but three of them - Temporale, Lemond and Massive Metro – are Group 1 winners which will make for a fascinating contest. Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

By Jonny Turner Northern pacer Triple Eight will be on a mission of his own in the Kaikoura Cup while his rivals are being primed for next week’s New Zealand Cup. Addington’s greatest race will be the furthest thing from trainer Steve Telfer’s mind when he lines the 5yr-old and his stablemate Check In up in the final lead up race before the New Zealand Cup. The $50,000 feature will instead serve as an opportunity for Telfer to show off a bigger and stronger Triple Eight and prep him for the Auckland Inter-Dominions. The American Ideal pacer looks to have taken his game to a new level with two brilliant wins at Alexandra Park in two spring starts. Telfer confirmed that is the case and that the timing is right for his pacer to make a mark on the country’s open class ranks. “He has come back a bit stronger and he has matured a bit from last year - he is racing well and we are very happy with him.” trainer Steve Telfer said. The tight turning Kaikoura track, with its noted front runners bias, is set to have horses fighting to be on the speed. That puts Triple Eight in a vastly different scenario from his two starts this season – where he has begun fairly before launching big finishes. “Hopefully he can make a fairly fast getaway,” the trainer said. “At Kaikoura it is important to be in the first couple because it is hard to make ground.” “He has been beginning solidly – he hasn’t been brilliant – but he has not looked like making a mistake.” Check In has had to chase his stablemate home in his last two starts, which has relegated him to Telfer’s second stringer in today’s event. “He is probably a touch below the good ones, but he has got good manners, he is tractable and he follows speed really well.” The Kaikoura Cup favourite Another Masterpiece is in the same position as Triple Eight, as the New Zealand Cup is not on his radar. The 4yr-old has made a respectable start to his season by running fourth behind Ultimate Sniper, first up, and going on to hold fifth behind Spankem in the Ashburton Flying Stakes. While his last effort was not spectacular, after racing three back on the markers, it was good enough to see him easily beat the rivals he faces in today’s race. They included his All Stars stablemate, Cruz Bromac, who galloped without good reason at Ashburton. Despite that below par effort and it being reported that the horse broke in his final serious training run, the 8yr-old has been well supported in early fixed odds betting. Cruz Bromac is not the only horse needing to seriously lift his game to get his New Zealand Cup campaign back on track. Australian Raider Our Uncle Sam is in a similar position after fading out of Spankem’s Ashburton Flying Stakes. A Bettor Act and Nandolo also need to impress ahead of the New Zealand Cup. The pair are effectively fighting over the final spot in next week’s race, if Sheriff and The Devils Own are withdrawn as expected. Another New Zealand Cup position may open up if Ashley Locaz is unable to recover from the setback that ruled him out of the Kaikoura Cup. However, it is hoped the pacer will be back in action at the New Zealand Cup trials on Wednesday.  Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

Powerhouse Aussie veteran San Carlo is primed for his first Kiwi raid. San Carlo shares a flight with emerging trotter McLovin to Christchurch, via Auckland, next Wednesday. “It’s not ideal going through Auckland, but they have the chance to get out and spend a bit of time there before the flight down to Christchurch,” co-trainer and driver Bec Bartley said. “They get to Christchurch Friday morning, so it’s still plenty of time to settle in before the big one.” Bartley is adamant Kiwis will get to see the very best of San Carlo. “I truly believe he’s never been better,” she beamed. “It’s like he’s gone to another level this campaign. It’s so exciting.” San Carlo won the Kilmore Cup sitting parked first-up and has since produced runs of the race for fourth in the Victoria Cup and second in the Swan Hill Cup after doing all the work in quick times. “Colt Thirty One had the perfect sit on him and it took the whole straight for him to nose us out. And Colt Thirty One is a really, reallt nice horse,” Bartley said. This will be Bartley’s first drive in an NZ Cup, but she’s got great memories of the race. “I’ve been twice. The first time I went, I was lucky enough it was year Kerryn (Manning) won with Arden Rooney. We joined the victory celebrations afterwards and it was fantastic to see Kerryn treated like a celebrity,” she said.  “I’ve had such a great time both trips over and never thought for a moment I’d get to compete in it myself. I can’t wait.”  San Carlo looms as such an important horse in all the NZ races he contests because he so often makes moves in his races and connections aren’t afraid to go and sit parked. He’s sure to make the races genuine contests.  And the way he’s racing, he’s good enough to win a big one with the right sort of luck.   by Adam Hamilton

By Garrick Knight An eye-catching run seven days prior gave an indication of what was to come from Accelere at Alexandra Park on Friday night. On the back of an aggressive drive from usual pilot Todd Mitchell, the Logan Hollis and Shane Robertson-trained gelding thumped his opponents with a jarring 2.40.2 (1.57.1 MR) run. Punters sent him out second favourite after an impressive finish in stronger company the week prior, despite only finishing sixth. “We were pretty confident heading in to tonight,” said Hollis. “His last three starts have been good, he’s just either had bad draws or bad luck.” They thought enough of him to tackle the Sires Stakes series this time last year and then the Northern Derby back in March, suffice to say his connections have turned down numerous decent offers to date. “He was just big and weak so we gave him a good two-month spell.” Mitchell went forward and set a strong tempo, not giving anything else a look in, though Magilligan Point mounted a strong late challenge to push him close to the line. “We don’t ever really tell Todd how to drive him. “Basically, it was just ‘pop him out of the gate and see how he feels.” Obviously, he was feeling pretty good. There are no major plans for the son of Auckland Reactor, though he will be “raced sparingly” according to his trainers. “We’ll just race him here and there and look after him. “It’s nice to be able to win a race as a rating 50 that carries a stake of $15,000. “It wasn’t the richest race on the night but it’s still good money.” Accelere continues the good record of his dam, Exposay who has now left four decent horses, including the former Hollis & Robertson pacer El Jacko, now a star in Perth. “He’s won 22 races. She’s also left Pakipaki, who did a good job for us, and VC Manoevure (13 wins). Emilio Rosati purchased the current two-year-old out of the mare – a filly by Somebeachsomewhere – and it’s in training next door to Hollis and Robertson’s at Lincoln Farms with Ray Green. The stable couldn’t quite pull off a double with their promising three-year-old maiden, Christianshavtime, who managed only fourth. They make up two thirds of the current race team, one which has been eroded in recent months by the sales of the likes of Big Mach, Katamach, Destined For Heaven, Three Kisses and The Notorious One. “We’ve sold six horses this year, which has really depleted our barn. “So, it’s pretty quiet at the moment but the yearlings are about to come in later this month to get ready for the sales. “We are preparing 14 this year, which will keep us very busy.” Elsewhere on the night, John and Josh Dickie, Arna Donnelly and Barry Purdon all recorded training doubles while Inter Dominion prospects, Temporale and Massive Metro, got their preparations back on track with good placings off long marks in the night’s feature trot. Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

The New Zealand harness racing scene has its fair share of picturesque tracks. Not one of them would beat South Bay Racecourse Kaikoura. Overlooking the giant Pacific Ocean, the track, as picture perfect as a postcard, plays host to the Kaikoura Trotting Clubs annual two-day swing where the sound of hooves on cinder is coupled with the squawks of seabirds and the sighs of unsuccessful punters. It's become a must-do, a tick-off-the-bucket-list thing for anyone with an interest in harness racing and it deserves to be well patronized because it's unique and memorable and just a good couple of days. Everybody wants something that's hard to get. The boutique nature of the track and the popularity it has created over the years has seen the club implement an abbreviated twilight meeting the day before the main race card. It's proven popular and successful and has added to the spectacle without ruining its character. Invariably the day of the cup sees a roasting hot day - although there has been the odd cold breeze from off the big blue in times gone by. The climbing of the hill behind the home straight is a must do if your a keen punter as it offers the best views of both the action on the track and the surrounding scenery. Those in the middle of the track see little of the action given the number of cars and camper-vans that pile in and obscure the horses down the back straight although monitoring their charges efforts would seem of secondary importance to most who are preoccupied with catching up with friends or sampling a beer or three.                                                                                photo Courtesy of kaikouraraces.co.nz The track itself is tight turning and harder than most. It's also lightening quick with front running types generally prospering with those in the tail of the field having to cover too much ground in too little time to feature. The Kaikoura Cup, although not seen as the most traditional way of making your claim for New Zealand Cup glory these days, has seen quality winners throughout its history. Manaroa, Palestine and Hands Down have all won the Kaikoura Cup and in more recent years Master Musician, Il Vicolo and Smiling Shard have all won the cup twice. The Australian trained Arden Rooney, driven by Kerryn Manning, won the Kaikoura Cup and New Zealand Cup double in 2015 after winning at South Bay the year prior and the Purdon / Rasmussen speed freak Lazarus also came and conquered scorching around the tight bends in record time. Lazarus winning the $50,000 Alabar Kaikoura Cup. (Photo: Race Images, Christchurch) Along with the feature pacing event the meeting is known for its Trotters Cup (Free-For-All) and Aged Pace fields. The flashy chestnut Bordeaux, a hit with the fillies and mares, won the trotting feature stylishly from the front for Dexter Dunn in both 2016 and 2017 while I Can Doosit could have run for the office of mayor after being triumphant three years in succession from 2010. Stig, Stent and Speeding Spur have also been victorious while taking in the sights and salt air. Overall the New Zealand harness racing scene is better off for having Kaikoura and its racetrack and its once-a-year carnival. The town of Kaikoura itself, only recovering from recent earthquake damage, benefits from the influx of visitors. The pictures sent out over the airwaves are undeniably spectacular. The feature racing is good and the crowds go away having experienced something that they'll remember for years to come. In conclusion it's a gem of a place and a great meeting to attend. If you haven't been to the Kaikoura races yet then I'd encourage you to think about it and then to go and do it.   Ben McMillan Harnesslink

By Jonny Turner Canterbury trainer Stephen Boyd and leading reinsman Blair Orange are set to rock Saturday’s Forbury Park meeting. They will combine with three runners, with each looking to have strong winning claims. Walk All Over You is the first of two runner Boyd and Orange will combine with that are named after songs by the rock band AC/DC. Walk All Over You comes in to race 2 after fading out of his debut at Addington, last week. The 4yr-old has drawn barrier two on the second row and is set to follow out an outsider in Carter. What kind of a run through that horse allows Walk All Over You could have a big effect on whether he will be faced with a tough trip again, Boyd said. “He goes alright, he will need a bit of luck and it will depend on where he gets to from that second row draw.” Walk All Over opened the $5 second equal favourite with rival Tuapeka Jesse. The pair will clash $2.10 early favourite, Bono Brown. The Graeme Anderson starts for the second time this campaign following his strong resuming run for third, behind Hands Up Jack at Forbury Park earlier this month. Boyd will start another horse named after a song by Australia’s biggest selling band when Whole Lotta Rosie starts in race 3. The 3yr-old goes in to the 2200m standing start after winning a qualifying trial in sedate time at Ashburton. Boyd said he was happy with that effort and that Whole Lotta Rosie had the scope to produce a more impressive effort in her race debut. “She is a nice wee filly, she will improve a lot because she has only been off the place twice.” “She didn’t qualify in a flash time, but she did it well.” “She goes nice, she is a typical wee Bettor’s Delight, she does everything right.” “She is in with a right, royal show to be fair.” Whole Lotta Rosie opened the $4 favourite for race 3. Bookmakers rated both Cotton Socks and Dynamite on the second line of betting at $4.60. Virginia Cool brings a patchy formline in to race 4 for Boyd and Orange. The trainer is hopeful the 4yr-old can turn her fortunes around on Saturday from barrier 6. “She is going well enough, but she hasn’t had much luck to be fair.” “She has and awkward enough draw, but I would expect her to go pretty well.” Virginia Cool opened at red hot $1.75 win odds with bookmakers. Oamaru trotter Springbank Lachie will start for the first time since May in race 6, Saturday’s feature trot. The Phil Williamson trained 5yr-old trialled at Ashburton last week, running second to Overzealous, to prepare him for his return. Springbank Lachie opened the $3 favourite for race 6 ahead of Sea Rover, who was at $3.20. Sea Rover will have his first start for Waikouaiti trainer Amber Hoffman today. The 7yr-old, who has not started since March, won a trial at Oamaru earlier this week. Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

By Jonny Turner  Group 1 winning trainers Brendon Hill and Mark Jones will start their first runners on the first day of their new partnership at Methven on Friday. Five runners will represent what could develop in to a super stable that has brought the two time New Zealand Cup and two time Dominion winning trainers together, Hill admitted the pair are still finding their feet and negotiating the finer points of how their new venture will operate. However, there is no doubt about the excitement around the new partnership. And that is not just limited to the trainers themselves. “It has been nice that there has been a lot of positive talk about us giving it a go and some people are saying there should be more trainers doing it and that it is the way of the future,” Hill said. “It is a new venture – we are just finding our feet.” “There is a lot to take on board, but we are taking small steps and trying to look after our owners and do the right thing by our horses.” Hill will produce the partnership’s first two runners from his Swannanoa base when Fine By Me and Washington Lady start in race 4 at Methven. Fine By Me has had little luck in four previous starts for Hill and driver Ricky May. It is hoped that can change when she starts from barrier 1 for her new stable. “She has been going better than it looks, she has had no luck,” Hill said. “We have got the draw, hopefully she can get off the gate and get handy.” “She has blinds on this time, so she should be on the bit and on the job behind the gate.” Washington Lady has drawn barrier 8, relegating her to the stable’s second hope. “She should only improve off this run, but it isn’t a great draw.” Donegal Gilbert, who also has May in the sulky, also strikes a tricky draw in race 8. But, he should be better placed to over come it than Washington Lady. The 4yr-old went a strong race first up when doing plenty of work sitting parked at Oamaru when finishing little more than a length away from the winner, Sounds Lika Gem. “Ricky really likes this little horse, he tries his heart out,” Hill said.  “He has been working really nice and he has benefitted from that run the other day.” “We haven’t tried him on grass before, but hopefully it works.” Beaudiene Overtake returns from a spell in race 5 for Jones and Hill. Though the horse has not had a trial or workout leading in to her resumption, she could still go a big race for stable junior driver Korbyn Newman. “She’s fresh up with no trials or workouts, but her work has been really nice,” Hill said  “Her win was just in maiden grade but I thought it was a pretty good win.” The Jones arm of the trainers’ new venture starts just one runner at Friday’s meeting in Sioux Princess. The 5yr-old went a strong race for second in her second-last start at Methven, almost three weeks ago. The trotter disappointed when galloping behind the gate in a subsequent start at Addington. Sioux Princess will have another attempt from behind the mobile in race 7 on Friday.  Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

By Garrick Knight Michelle Wallis and Bernie Hackett have had a rather interesting boarder at their Waiuku property recently. Group 1-winning trotter Temporale has been utilising their beach training services as connections look to get his career back on track. His usual trainer and part-owner, Tony Herlihy, made the decision earlier in the month. “He’s been out here for about three weeks,” said Wallis. “There was nothing seriously wrong with him; Tony just felt the old fella would benefit from something different.” The son of Monarchy had an inauspicious finish to his racing last season, dropping out to be beaten 28 lengths in April’s Anzac Cup and then galloping in the Rowe Cup a week later. After a good spell, Temporale resumes at Alexandra Park tonight in Herlihy’s name, but will be on the track up the Southern Motorway alongside Wallis and Hackett’s own open class trotter, Massive Metro. “They trialed together at Pukekohe last Saturday and did it nicely. I know Tony was very pleased with Temporale.” While it would make sense to work two Group 1-winning trotters together, Wallis says they aren’t specifically training partners. “They have done some work together but they do a bit of work on their own as well. “Temporale really seems to be enjoying life out on the beach. He’s a lovely horse who has been working nicely.” It’s not the first time Herlihy has sent his stable star to Wallis and Hackett – he famously did it with injury-plagued pacer Sly Flyin in 2007 and again with Bettor Dream in 2015. Wallis doesn’t know how long they’ll have Temporale – whether it is through until the Inter Dominions later this month or in to next year. “It’s entirely up to Tony and he hasn’t given us any indication at this stage.” Both Temporale and Massive Metro face an almost insurmountable 50-metre handicap over the shorter 2200-metre trip this week and Wallis is none-too-pleased. “We are happy with both horses but I can’t see them winning off 50 metres. “But we need to get the racing in to them if we are going to target the Inter Dominions. You can’t go in to it too fresh. “There’s a race for them in two weeks but it’s a mobile mile, which is ridiculous. I bet the pacers don’t have to contest a mile two weeks before the series. “We’ve nominated Massive Metro for a two-mile race at Cambridge on Tuesday but there are only five horses so I doubt that race will get off the ground. “It’s a shame because that race would have been perfect for him.” Reprinted with permission of HRNZ

McMillan Equine Feeds 3YO C & G Sires Stakes Series 36 Click here! All five heats have been run for the above series, click on the link above to see how the McMillan Equine Feeds Final field is shaping up (in ranking order), which will be run on Cup Day, Tuesday 12th November. Alabar 3YO Fillies Sires Stakes Series 36 Click here! Click on the link above to see the results from the first two heats run for the Alabar 3YO Fillies Series.     Michelle Harris Harness Racing New Zealand | Communications & Website Coordinator

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