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Exceptionally-bred filly Makes Every Scents will be out to emulate amend a blemish on her mother’s record when she competes at Tabcorp Park Melton Saturday night. A member of the powerful Belinda McCarthy stable, Makes Every Scents is engaged in the Victoria Oaks. The youngster’s dam – Scent – finished third in the 1997 edition of the Blue Riband. Prepared by astute horseman Peter Walsh, Scent managed to capture the New South Wales Oaks. Second in her heat last weekend, Makes Every Scents has drawn awkwardly in barrier six, with McCarthy stating the daughter of Four Starzzz Shark “will need a bit of luck”. “We are very happy with her and she is in perfect condition for this,” McCarthy said. “It’s a tremendous Oaks, with so many wonderful fillies engaged. “The draw is a little tricky, but with a touch of luck and the right run she will be right in the finish. “She went well in her heat and her work has been terrific this week.” Ironically, Walsh prepares Makes Every Scents’ biggest danger, Delightful Lana. A strong winner of her qualifier, the daughter of Bettors Delight is expected to settle in, or close to, the lead from gate four. Following her southern trip, Makes Every Scents will return to New South Wales for a short spell before embarking on another feature race campaign. PAUL COURTS

With several features on the wonderful program, Saturday night’s meeting at Tabcorp Park Melton will also send enthusiasts on a trip back in time. One of the highlights of the evening is the Captain Sandy Free-For-All, which is named in honour of the former outstanding pacer. A New Zealand-bred performer of the highest calibre, Captain Sandy thrilled enthusiasts on both sides of the Tasman during the late 1940s and early ‘50s. Foaled in 1942, Captain Sandy was triumphant in numerous top shelf events and became the industry’s first dual Inter Dominion winner. In fact, it was his 1950 success in the Melbourne-based series – the first held in Victoria – that is catalyst for this week’s honour. The $20,275 race is part of a series dedicated to Melbourne Inter Dominion winners. Prepared by Jock Bain, Captain Sandy had a tumultuous campaign during the prestigious Championship. Driven in his heats by Freeman Holmes, Captain Sandy finished a gallant fourth on the opening night after coming from a 24-yard handicap in a qualifier won by Avian Derby. On the second night, the seven-year-old was poised to strike at the 800-metre mark when he was checked. Losing 100 yards as a result, Captain Sandy recovered for a respectable seventh in a field of 13. The backmarker in the last round, Captain Sandy was an eye-catching third behind South Australian, Nevamaid, and Jack Hope. With his status as the fastest mile rate runner, Captain Sandy scraped into the 10,000 pound Final as the lowest points earner. Holmes, however, wasn’t as lucky. The top reinsman was disqualified for three months after causing interference to raging favourite, Claude Derby, which won his first two heats. Claude Derby suffered an injury in his offside fore fetlock, which saw him miss the decider. Holmes appealed the stewards’ decision, but not only was it dismissed, his sentence was doubled. Top New South Wales driver Jack Watts got the call up to partner Captain Sandy just hours before the scheduled starting time. Watts certainly made the most of his phenomenal opportunity in front of a record crowd of more than 36,000. Beginning well from the tapes, Captain Sandy settled near the tail of the field as Dawn Volo worked to the lead. With Globe Direct taking over the front with 900 metres to travel, Captain Sandy was angled to the extreme outside along the back straight. Coming with a sensational run, Captain Sandy grabbed the lead in the last stride to score by a head from Globe Direct, with Sprayman three yards away third. The son of Sandydale rated 2:11.8 for the 2800-metre trip. Winner of two Auckland Cups before his Inter Dominion triumph, Captain Sandy failed to register another success in the two years after his biggest triumph. He did manage to make his way into the 1951 Addington Final, but missed the 1952 running. Midway through 1952 Captain Sandy was all but retired when Adelaide trainer Dinny Nolan purchased him for 525 guineas. Captain Sandy was rejuvenated under Nolan’s care, where he became one of the most travelled pacers of all time. Competing in Sydney in early 1953, Captain Sandy was then floated to Perth for the Inter Dominion. Finishing fourth on the opening night, the 10-year-old was second behind New South Wales star, Ribands, during an action-packed second round when driven by Holmes. Racing in the breeze as Ribands set the pace, Captain Sandy was blamed for keeping local hero, Beau Don, in a pocket. Just after the line, Beau Don placed a hoof in Ribands’ sulky, with both falling to the track. Fans were so infuriated by the incident that they crowded Captain Sandy’s and Ribands’ stalls, with police called in to monitor the situation. So worried about the threat of violence, and the prospect of his topliner being poisoned, owner Mr Kelloway hired armed guards to mind Ribands. With Bob Pollock taking the reins during the third night, Captain Sandy finished second behind Ribands. Partnered by Pollock in the Final, Captain Sandy began swiftly from his 24-yard mark to settle midfield as Ribands worked to the lead. Weaved through the pack along the back straight, Captain Sandy was ready to pounce on the home turn. Responding to vigorous driving, Captain Sandy lifted close to the line to score by a yard-and-a-half from Ribands, with Kellett three yards away third. Rating a track record 2:05.8 for the 2600-metre trip, Captain Sandy was now the Southern Hemisphere’s richest standardbred with earnings of more than 35,000 pounds. Captain Sandy also created history by winning a second Inter Dominion and remains the only 10-year-old to secure the Final. Two nights after his sensational win, Captain Sandy time-trialled at Gloucester Park in 1:59. He was pitted against the clock again a few nights later to lower his mark to 1:57.5. The times have never been officially recognized as the pacemaker headed the veteran on both occasions. Towards the end of the season, Captain Sandy time-trialled at Harold Park, stopping the clock in 2:02.2 and at Whyalla in 2:04. As an 11-year-old Captain Sandy was again victim of the handicapping system, with one of his rare wins coming at the Ascot Vale Showgrounds from a 72-yard mark. Transferred to A J Howard the following year, Captain Sandy qualified for the 1954 Adelaide Inter Dominion Final. The old warhorse finished a worthy fourth behind Tennessee Sky. Captain Sandy was then moved to the Claude Tupper team at Bankstown, where he won the 1954 Easter Cup at Harold Park from a 36-yard handicap. Captain Sandy was retired soon after, with his earnings tipping over the 40,000 pounds mark. PAUL COURTS

Obviously Victorian harness racing couple Gary and Debbie Quinlan would like to continue their strong affiliation with the rich Australian Pacing Gold series. The duo have captured two of the last three editions of the fillies’ division, scoring with Musical Delight in 2012 and her half-sister, Queen Of Pop, last year. As for this season’s running, the Quinlans annexed both fillies’ heats at Melton last Friday night with Sahara Sunrise and Magical Delight. The latter youngster has become the stable’s sentimental favourite due to the ill-health of breeder Geoff Fothergill. “We’d love to see both fillies win for their owners, but Magical Delight has a bit of a story behind her,” Debbie said. “She was bred by Geoff Fothergill, but sadly due to a kidney disease he’s had to sell his horses. “We happened to be at Benstud and when Gary saw this filly he made an inquiry whether she was up for sale. “Geoff owned her and her dam, Modern Girl, which he loved, but he had to sell them and sold the mare with foal at foot. “Within 10 minutes of her win the other night, Geoff was on the phone congratulating us.” Driven by Chris Alford, Magical Delight impressed at her debut run when accounting for Jilliby Jitterbug and Rockstar Angel in 1:58.2 for the 1720 metres. Also partnered by Alford, Sahara Sunrise rated 1:59.9 to beat Tricka Treat Lombo and Gallifrey Mystique to register her maiden win from five starts. PAUL COURTS

We are all aware of the term Gentleman Jim. While few may know its original, the moniker has no more deserving place than serving as a prefix for harness racing’s legend Jim Hurley. A true Gentleman Jim in every sense, Hurley was a star, which has sadly been lost to the industry with his passing at the age of 90. In a career spanning more than five decades, Hurley won more than 1000 races, including being associated with 1964 Inter Dominion winner, Minuteman. Trained and driven by Eric Hurley, Minuteman was part-owned by Jim, his brother and their sister, Phyllis. Just last January, Hurley trained Heza Presidente to compete in the South Australia Cup…a race Minuteman captured in 1966. Harnesslink and the entire Australian harness racing community extends its sympathy to Hurley’s family and friends. PAUL COURTS

Life has been tough for astute harness racing trainer Sam Dimarco in recent times, but he has every reason to smile at the moment. Battling depression, Dimarco returned to the industry last year and has enjoyed a sensational rate of success. Leading the charge is boom youngster Shadow Runner, which is unbeaten from four starts, including the Bathurst Gold Crown. Driven by Michael Formosa, Shadow Runner worked hard from his second row draw before scoring by a short half-head from Karloo Damajor. In a ‘blanket finish’, Sams The Master was a half-head away third. “It got tight at the finish, but he got there, which is the main thing,” Dimarco said. “I’m rapt, couldn’t be happier. “That’s my first Group One win and to share it with my daughter Marissa, who owns Shadow Runner is amazing.” Covering the last half in 57.2 seconds, Shadow Runner rated a brilliant 1:55.7 for the 1730-metre trip, smashing the race record set by Jaccka Taurus in 1999 by 2.4 seconds. To be given a brief let-up, the gelded son of Shadow Play will then be set for the New South Wales Breeders’ Challenge. “He is already bucking around in the paddock and ready to go again,” Dimarco said. “You wouldn’t even know he’d raced on the weekend. “I will give him an easy week, then get ready for the Breeders’ Challenge.” PAUL COURTS

One of harness racing’s modern-day greats will be honoured at Tabcorp Park Melton tonight with the running of the Sundons Gift Free-For-All. Climbing the ranks to become Australasia’s premier squaregaiter, Sundons Gift set records seemingly at will before his retirement in 2012. Connections attempted an ill-fated comeback in 2013, but those four starts are best forgotten! Prepared by astute trainer Chris Lang, Sundons Gift was initially retired with 41 wins from 82 starts, with 10 seconds, six thirds and earnings of $1,272,264 also to his credit. The gelding’s ‘comeback’ netted a second. Not only is he the richest Australian-trained trotter, Sundons Gift captured a record 10 Group Ones, including an amazing four consecutive victories in the Australian Grand Prix. “When he got here he’d had seven starts in New Zealand for no wins, so I didn’t expect that much from him,” Lang admitted. “Then as I began to work him, he just felt like a good horse and I was waiting for the wheels to fall off at some stage. “Then as he started racing he was a bit erratic, but never stopped improving. “If you’d told me what he was going to achieve I would have thought you were dreaming. “The funny part about it is I’d never met or spoken to Neven Botica when the horse turned up. “It was Michael Doltoff who recommended our stable and organised for him to come here and the only thing I knew about him was when he arrived and his rug had Bernie on it, so he just became Bernie to us.” Despite his impressive haul, Lang rates one of Sundons Gift’s defeats as his biggest highlight. “For me his biggest legacy is his trip to Europe,” Lang declared. “He finished sixth in the Elitlopp, but it was his presence there and the publicity generated that helped lift not only our stable, but the local industry onto an international stage.” On the topic of international interest, tonight’s event will mark the Aussie debut of American trotter, Imperial Count. Ironically, the stallion is also owned by Botica, who sent the son of Angus Hall to leading trainer David Aiken. Aiken has given the trotter three trials, but stated he will “need the run”. “His trials have been really good. We’ll see how he goes but he’ll need the racing,” Aiken said. “At home he works like a nice horse and he’s great to have around the place.” Imperial Count will begin from barrier seven. PAUL COURTS

Exceptionally-bred filly Makes Every Scents will be out to join an elite harness racing sorority at Bathurst on Saturday night. A member of the powerful Belinda McCarthy stable, Makes Every Scents is poised to become the fifth youngster to complete the Gold Tiara/Bracelet double. The two feature haves been run simultaneously since the Bracelet’s inauguration in 2000. Nemeeshar was the ground breaker in 2003 and ’04 for leading Victorian horsewoman Jayne Davies. Lady Euthenia followed suit the 2009 and ’10 before being joined by Aussie Made Lombo in 2010 and ’11 and Frith in 2012 and ’13. As for Makes Every Scents, she moved closer to becoming a member of the group when she captured her heat yesterday. Driven by McCarthy husband, Luke, Makes Every Scents embarrassed her rivals as she cruised to a 19-metre win from Sally Fletcher, with Catalina Rainbow 10-and-a-half metres away third. “She’s a very nice filly and will be hard to beat in the Final,” McCarthy said. “Hopefully we will have a bit of luck with the draw as well.” Covering the last half in a slick 56.4 seconds, the daughter of Four Starzzz Shark rated 1:57.2 for the 2260 metres, with her time the quickest of the four heat winners. McCarthy also secured a heat with classy filly Smooth Showgirl, which worked to the lead before registering a soft win from Lombo Medlyn Miss and Lettucesomewhere. “She is a very capable filly, which is right in the mix,” McCarthy said. “We will just have to wait and see how the draw unfolds.” McCarthy will also contest the Gold Chalice with Show Me The Bling, which won is heat in stylish fashion. After working to the lead with Luke in the cart, the well-bred colt was never fully extended to score from Sonny Studleigh and Lombo Idle Belief. By Grinfromeartoear, Show Me The Bling is from broodmare gem Alldatglittersisgold, dam of Baby Bling and Bling It On. PAUL COURTS

Last Saturday night’s Sapling Stake at Globe Derby proved to be a Bain family affair. The time-honoured feature was captured by promising filly Hilltop Sophia, which is prepared astute horseman Peter Bain. Driven by Bain’s son, Aaron, Hilltop Sophia is owned by the trainer’s mother, Val. “It was a nice win for the whole family to be involved in,” Bain declared. “She is a nice little filly and it made for a good night out.” Settled two-back along the pegs as the field raced in ‘Indian file’, Hilltop Sophia gained a one-one trip at the bell as Dont Tell Linda was moved to the ‘death seat’. Forced three-wide along the back straight, the daughter of Rocknroll Hanover sustained a strong sprint to complete an eye-catching win from Queen Of Sharkz and Tyrion. “She is a pretty nice filly,” Bain said. “That’s two wins and three placings from five starts, so you can’t ask for much more than that. “With the trip she got she was always going to be hard to hold out and she finished it off as you’d expect.” Covering the last half in 59.4 seconds, the two-year-old rated 2:01.7 for the 1800 metres. Set to enjoy “a week to 10 days off”, Hilltop Sophia has been aimed at several features, including the Southern Cross and Vicbred Super Series. “There are plenty of options for her before the end of the season, including the Golden Nursery,” Bain said. “That said, I don’t want to over race her, so I will keep her fresh where I can. “She will have a week to 10 days off now, then I’ll get her going again.” PAUL COURTS

Boom harness racing youngster Bettermatch maintained his unbeaten record by registering an effortless victory at Bathurst last night. Capturing a heat of the prestigious Gold Crown, the Colin Thomas-trained freshman is a dominant pre-draw favourite. Stretching his winning streak to five by leading throughout from barrier four, Bettermatch is a $2.20 favourite for next week’s Final. Bettermatch’s rivals include three fellow unbeaten pacers – Shadow Runner, Karloo Damajor and Sams The Master. Shadow Runner is one of two prospects astute mentor Sam Dimarco has in the Group One, with Gotta Go Gold also successful in his heat. The draw for the $100,000 feature will be conducted tomorrow. PAUL COURTS HORSE TRAINER Allnight Story Bernie Hewitt Bettermatch Colin Thomas        Blingittothemax Darren Hancock Charlaval Kerry Ann Turner Gotta Go Gold Sam Dimarco Jumping Jack Flash Mark Hewitt Karloo Damajor Peter Gavin Machamillion Michael Muscat Regal Nightshade Bill Trembath Sams The Master Jack Butler Shadow Runner Sam Dimarco Somepartysomewhere Belinda McCarthy Fouroeight 1st EMERGENCY Mat Rue  

Following a sensational program of harness racing action, the field for the prestigious Bathurst Gold Tiara has been decided. Heat of the futurity were conducted last night, with the first two past the post – along with the two fastest thirds - guaranteed a berth in the Final. Bathurst’s favourite son, Steve Turnbull, has qualified three runners – Cherry Mahoney, Heavenly Shades and Pixies Parlour. Turnbull also prepares the emergency, All In Your Hands. Cherry Mahoney and Pixies Parlour captured their heats, while Heavenly Shades scraped into the field after finishing third behind Three Squared, which is one of two Belinda McCarthy-trained runners in the decider. McCarthy will also be represented by heat winner, Soho Madeleine. McCarthy’s winners were driven by her husband, Luke. The all-important barrier draw for the $100,000 Gold Tiara will be conducted on Monday. PAUL COURTS  HORSE TRAINER Allnight Mlady Bernie Hewitt Art Mistress Bernie Hewitt Cherry Mahoney Steve Turnbull Gracie Taljuice Michael Teuma Heavenly Shades Steve Turnbull Hot Shot Woman Rob Xerri Lettuce Reign Mat Rue Milias Ideal Michael Formosa Pixies Parlour Steve Turnbull Shot To Stardom Josh Turnbull Soho Madeleine Belinda McCarthy Three Squared Belinda McCarthy All In Your Hands  (1st EMER) Steve Turnbull

Boom harness racing youngster Bettermatch will be aiming to join an elite fraternity this month. Beginning with Saturday night’s heats, the Colin Thomas-trained freshman is looking to complete the Sapling Stake/Bathurst Gold Crown double. Having captured the Sapling at Tabcorp Park Menangle last month, Bettermatch is the early favourite for the prestigious Bathurst series. Only seven pacers have registered the double since the Crown’s inauguration in 1987 when Rocket Jason annexed both features. Woy Woy Karamea followed suit in 1989, before being joined by Bastille Beggar in ‘94, Dream Mover in 2001, Kathryn Dancer in ’03, Lombo Pocket Watch in ’06 and Emjayem Grand in 2008. As for Bettermatch, he will contest the last of the six qualifiers and is expecting to be untroubled in extending his unbeaten sequence to five. Drawn well in barrier four, the son of Kenneth J is poised to lead throughout the 1730-metre trip. Pleased with the two-year-old’s progress, Thomas is confident Bettermatch can provide him with an elusive Group One win. “He just hasn’t stopped improving,” Thomas said. “He is getting better with each run and will take a lot of beating. “I’ve had a few Group One runners, including the Gold Crown, but just haven’t been able to win one. “With a bit of luck, we can do it this year.” PAUL COURTS

Top harness racing trainer Dean Braun had two choices, but one option, when deciding on where to race impressive filly Sudden Change this weekend. A stylish winner of last Sunday’s Tasmania Oaks, Sudden Change could remain on the Apple Isle for the state’s Derby or return to Victoria for the VHRSC Cup. Either way, Sudden Change had to race against the boys! “No matter which race she went in, she had to go against the colts,” Braun said. “The Derby is worth a little more, but it also meant keeping her interstate longer. “This way she is back home, settled in and can race at Melton.” Drawn well in barrier three, the daughter of Changeover is expected to settle close to the lead for master reinsman Gavin Lang. “There are a few nice types in the race,” Braun said. “Sir Macs Man has won his last three, Glenferrie Boss has won his last four and The Culture has won three of his four starts. “That said, my filly has her share of ability and will let them know she is there.” Despite drawing the second row, The Culture is the early favourite at $2.80, Glenferrie Boss is at $4, while Sir Macs Man is posted at $6. Sudden Change is regarded as an $8.5 chance. Following Saturday night’s assignment, Braun will keep the three-year-old fresh ahead of next month’s Victoria Oaks. - PAUL COURTS

It is the best move I have made... That’s the call from harness racing owner Charlie Debono when discussing his decision to send promising pacer Another Safari to power couple Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin. Debono co-owns Another Safari with his son, Brett. Since joining the duo’s stable Another Safari has won five of his seven starts, with a second and fourth also to his credit. The pacer’s latest victory came at Maryborough yesterday when he outstayed his rivals in 1:59.6 with Gavin Lang in the cart. “They are doing wonders with him,” Debono declared. “I couldn’t be happier. “He got crook on me as two-year-old and didn’t really recover from it even at three. “He had the better part of a year off and has now only come good again this season.” With no major targets in mind for the four-year-old, Debono stated he will leave all plans up to Stewart and Tonkin. “I’ve got no schedule for him,” Debono said. “It’s up to Emma and Clayton. “They’re doing a great job and there is no point in me interfering…that’s why you send them horses.” By former tough pacer Safar – which was also trained by Stewart and Tonkin – Another Safari is from Debono’s former top mare, Living Angel. A member of the Peter Manning team, Living Angel won 23 races, including the Ararat, Echuca, Stawell and St Arnaud Cups. At stud, Living Angel boasts two starters for two winners, with Debono training the mare’s first winner, Teejay Cullen. To Debono’s dismay, the gelding was limited to 28 starts, which netted five wins and three placings. While he is happy to have Another Safari at the Stewart/Tonkin base, Debono also enjoys training as a hobby. “I like to have one or two in work,” Debono said. A passionate industry supporter, Debono’s introduction into harness racing was unusual to say the least. Spending his younger days “riding hacks” around Melton, Debono first crossed paths with standardbreds when he noticed a trainer preparing one of his stable members and basically thought the man in question had lost the plot. “I was riding hacks at the time and we would go all over the place, but I saw a bloke going around and around in circles and I thought he was crazy,” Debono said. “As it turned out that bloke was Frank Scicluna in his Kams Revenge days and little did I know how good she was.” Debono then received the misleading advice that eventually changed his life and passion for the industry. “I had a mate of mine come up to me in the late 1980s when the country was going through the recession, and he said I should buy a harness horse as they are giving them away,” Debono declared. “So I went out and got a colt, which I named Amanadas Bear, and have been hooked since. “He never won a race, only running a few placings, but it was enough to get me right in. “I soon bought more horses and have had a lot of fun. “I like to do a bit of the training myself and now I’m the crazy bloke who goes around and around in circles as I work my horses.” PAUL COURTS

The interstate stranglehold on the Tasmania Derby will be broken by default at Hobart on Sunday. Such has been the dominance of raiders, no local has won the classic this century! Former handy youngster Joesashyguy was the last Tasmanian to secure the Derby when driven to glory by Barrie Rattray in 1999. As for this year’s edition, only a small field of six has been assembled, with no ‘mainland’ interest in the Blue Riband. Fresh from his effortless victory at the same venue last weekend, Mister Lennox shapes as the one to beat after drawing well in barrier two. Racing in sensational form for prominent trainer Juanita McKenzie, Mister Lennox has won six of his last seven starts and was an unlucky second in the other! As such, the son of Changeover has been installed a $2.80 favourite, with Mojo Major considered his main danger after drawing perfectly in the pole. Winner of his last two starts, including the demolition of a maiden field last weekend, Mojo Major has been posted at $3.20 for trainer Rod Ashwood. Four Ex Dan, also a last-start winner, is the only other runner under double figures at $8. PAUL COURTS

Harness Racing Victoria stewards, acting under the provisions of Australian Rule of Harness Racing 183, has suspended Craig Demmler’s trainer’s and drivers’ licences. Stipes based their decision after the analysis of a raceday sample collected from a horse prepared by Demmler. The Chemistry Centre in Western Australia, and the National Measurement Institute in New South Wales, reported the sample contained cobalt at a concentration in excess of the permissible threshold, which sits at 200 micrograms per litre in urine. Demmler has appealed the stewards’ decision to suspend his licences. The appeal will be heard by the independent HRV Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board on Wednesday. HRV stewards will continue their investigations into the reported cobalt irregularity. Earlier today, Harness Racing SA stewards suspended local horseman Mick Micallef. This action was taken after receiving advice from the Chem Centre, Western Australia that cobalt above the threshold was detected in a post race urine sample taken from Glenthorne followings its win at Mount Gambier on November 30, 2014. The “B” sample has been confirmed by the National Measurement Institute, New South Wales. Micallef was given an opportunity to be heard on the imposition of Rule 183, but elected not to provide a submissions No date has been set for the inquiry. PAUL COURTS

Connections of promising youngster Sudden Change will make a decision today on whether to extend the filly’s stay in Tasmania. A stylish winner of last night’s Tasmania Oaks in Hobart, the crew are contemplating tackling the ‘boys’ in Sunday’s Derby at the same venue. Trainer Dean Braun explained a start in the Blue Riband will depend on Sudden Change’s recovery. “We targeted the Oaks as soon as we bought her, but now we may stay in Tassie for the Derby,” Braun declared. “It all depends on how she pulls up, but having checked her this morning, she seems as bright as a button. “Nominations don’t close until tomorrow morning, so I will make a decision about dinner time.” Driven by master reinsman Gavin Lang, Sudden Change was given time to settle into her stride from barrier six as local favourite, Fiscienne, led from five. Angled three-wide during the middle stages, the daughter of Changeover dashed to the lead, with the remainder of the classic a formality. Never seriously challenged, Sudden Change completed a two-metre win from Grand Anse, with Macfire 19 metres away third. “She only did what she had to, but that’s also the way Gavin drives them,” Braun said. “He never pushes them around and gets them home the easiest possible way. “I’m very happy with her progress since she got her and think she can compete against the better ones of her age.” Rating 2:03.6 for the 2579-metre journey, Sudden Change extended her record to two wins and a second from five starts since crossing the Tasman. The three-year-old’s win also provided Braun with his second Oaks triumph, having captured the 2013 edition with Itz Nosurprisesthere. PAUL COURTS

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