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THE reshaping of Queensland’s Winter Carnival gave the unique Redcliffe track it’s biggest night ever. And the triangle-shaped track – unique because it has three straights – delivered with stellar racing across a string of feature races. First out was the state’s glamour filly Smart As Camm Be, who looked a class above her rivals and delivered with the softest of wins in the Redcliffe Oaks. Life will get much harder when she meets Princess Tiffany in coming weeks. The Sonya Smith and Anthony Butt team produced former Kiwi pacer Make Way to powerhouse Redcliffe Derby win after sitting parked and beating favourite Dazzle Me, trained by Barry Lew of Karloo Mick fame. The biggest race of the night, the $50,700 Group 2 Redcliffe Cup, was the most popular result of the night with hard-working Lola Weidemann driving Clintal Do to win for trainer Richard March. “That’s my first Redcliffe Cup win, it means the world,” Weidemann said. Clintal Do came from behind the leader to nab former Kiwi Group 1 star Ohoka Punter and win by a nose with the emerging Franco Toten third. Ohoka Punter’s trainer-driver Grant Dixon only had wait for the next race, the $100,760 Garrards Redcliffe Yearling Sales final, for compensation when he landed a one-two blow with hot favourite Governor Art beating Signor Jujon.. _____________________________________________________________________________ CHARIOTS Of Fire winner Poster Boy is recovering from a bout of pneumonia which sent a huge scare through his camp. Owner-breeder Bill Anderson spoke of the relief when being told it was no longer life threatening by late Friday. “His temperature 42C when he arrived (at the Ballarat clinic) and it’s now back down to 37.5C … it’s past being life threatening now and his racing career looks pretty stable,” he said. Trainer Emma Stewart said she knew something wasn’t right with Poster Boy during the week. “He didn’t pull-up right after his fast work this week, so we had a couple of vet checks and he ended-up getting really sick. He’s out at Ballarat Veterinary Clinic and has pneumonia,” she said,. “Fingers crossed he recovers well.” Poster Boy was prepost favourite for his Vicbred 4YO entires and geldings final, but fans knew something was amiss when he was scratched from his qualifying heat at Ballarat last Friday night. The regally-bred entire is one of Australia’s most exciting pacers with 19 wins from just 27 starts and almost $800,000 in earnings. ____________________________________________________________________________ EMMA Stewart’s training dominance of the rich Vicbred series has been long established. But she’s raised the bar again this year Stewart won all seven Vicbred qualifying heats for juvenile pacers at Bendigo last Tuesday night. The star performers were colts or geldings Miragon, Pandering and Beale Street, while the standout fillies were Treasure and Maajida. Then, at Kilmore last Thursday, Stewart won five of eight of the three-year-old pacing heats. The highlight of a stellar night was when Stewart’s emerging Demon Delight sat parked and beat glamour stablemates Centenario (who led) and Hurricane Harley (who had the one-one trail) in a stunning display. Demon Delight ripped home in 54.3 and 27.4sec to win by 1.6m over Hurricane Harley with another 3.3m away in third spot to Centenario, who Stewart said needed the run. By far the most impressive filly was Stewart’s Kualoa, who toyed with her rivals by 20.6m in a 1min56.8sec mile rate for 2180m. The theme continued at Ballarat last Friday night where Stewart won four of seven heats run for four-year-old pacers, including pint-sized mare Pistol Abbey. Mick Stanley’s Soho Burning Love brilliantly won her heat and looks hardest for Pistol Abbey to beat in the final. Another of Stanley’s stars, Rackemup Tigerpie, was narrowly beaten in his heat, but the run was monstrous after sitting parked in blazing times when main danger Higherthananeagle overraced badly in front and dropped out to run last. A superb Kerryn Manning drive gave Three Summas the right trip to snatch a half-head win over Rackemup Tigerpie in a slick 1min55.8sec mile rate for the 2200m. _____________________________________________________________________________ EMMA Stewart’s dominance extended beyond her amazing Vicbred series deeds last week. Stewart stole the show at Victoria’s headquarters, Melton, last night (Saturday) with three wins, including the mare’s feature, the Group 3 Richmond Lass with the outstanding Tell Me Tales in a blistering 1min51.9sec mile rate for 1720m. She also won the fast-class race with recent stable addition Code Black, while another of her team, the lightly-raced Phoenix Prince, was one of the best wins of the night in a 1min52.1sec mile rate for 1720m. Throw into the mix Stewart’s three year-old Hardhitter winning a Breeders Challenge semi at Menangle and it’s surely the best week the stable has had for quantity of wins that matter. _____________________________________________________________________________ VETERAN WA horseman Colin Brown has been best known for his driving success, but he had a night to treasure as trainer at Gloucester Park last Friday. Brown’s two young stable stars – Patrickthepiranha and Typhoon Tiff – won their respective $100,000 Group 1 Westbred finals. Patrickthepiranha was first-out and he used gate three to lead for driver Dylan Egerton-Green and toy with his rivals for a nine-metre win in a 1min55.4sec mile rate for 2130m. Bettors Delight filly Typhoon Tiff also drew well and led, but Brown took the reins himself for a soft 5.1m win in a 1min56.8sec mile rate for 2130m.   Adam Hamilton

Cobbity Trainer, Craig Cross, believes the Kylie Rasmussen trained and driven Smart As Camm Be has Saturday’s $21,000 Redcliffe Oaks for 3yo pacing fillies at her mercy. “She’s a very smart horse, and not the current Queensland 2yo Pacing Filly-of-the-Year for nothing. She has almost colt-like features. In fact I’d rate her the second best pacer in Queensland behind Colt Thirty One. It’s hard to see her losing. “Of course I’d like to win and anything can happen in horse racing, but someone has got to run second and I don’t mind being runner-up to a good one,” Cross said. Those comments were made in spite of Cross’s pacer, Senora Rapido, having won four of his five New South Wales starts since relocating from New Zealand in March. The Art Major filly has also drawn one inside Smart As Camm Be (5). “Kylie knows how to win Oaks races and also knows Redcliffe very well. Smart As Camm Be has also won 11 races. We will know we’ve been in a race. Chris (Geary) is driving my filly for the first time,” Cross said. “She is very capable and can get some of this, if not the Queensland Derby as well,” the 56-year-old added. Cross is no stranger coming to Queensland and taking home the spoils, but is yet to win a Redcliffe Oaks. The last two years he’s nailed the QBRED Triad 2&3-year-old Group events with First String. “Luke McCarthy drove First String to win his latest TRIAD at Albion Park in April. He’s driving him again at Menangle on Saturday in the NSW Breeders Challenge semi Final. “He (First String) might join some of my team here later in the Winter. Queenslander, Joe Taaffe is bringing Senora Rapido to Stephen Cini and Cristina Monte’s Alberton barn today (Thursday),” said Cross, who works a team of 35 in NSW. He said Senora Rapido had the breeding to make a nice pacer. “She is out of a Presidential Ball mare (Eyre To The Throne) who won three of her five starts and left a good Mach Three filly, who won a lot of races.” That filly was Senora Rapido’s older half-sister, Kate’s First, who was a Group Two winner, who won 21 of her 60 starts ($341,723), and also paced a 1:50.3 mile. Senora Rapido’s quickest mile rate to date came when wining at Penrith on May 2 in 1:56.5. That’s 0.9 of a second slower that what Smart As Camm Be recorded in her 2yo TRIAD final last July. That was Smart As Camm Be’s last race as a 2-year-old. Since then she has won five of her eight starts this season. Up until her last start seventh n the Victoria Oaks Smart As Camm Be had won her last six races in a row. And the gifted daughter of Cammibest signaled a big warning to her 10 Redcliffe Oaks opponents at the Albion Park Trials on Tuesday when recording her fastest ever mile rate. Rasmussen drove her to a head victory over Lincolns Girl, pacing the 1,660m mobile in 1:58.3 with a 1:54.7 mile rate. Her sectionals were 28.5, and 29.8, 28.7, and 27.8. Australia’s top trainer, Grant Dixon, must also be taken seriously in Saturday’s 2,040m mobile. The Tamborine horseman has three in the Oaks. They are the Dixon drive last start winner, For All We Know (1), the ultra-consistent Adam Sanderson drive Eternal Promise (2); and the Paul Diebert driven Ark Me (8), who follows out Eternal Promise.   Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

During the first three weeks in July all roads in harness racing will lead to Albion Park or as it is affectionately known ‘the Creek’ for the renowned TAB Winter Carnival and the conduct of Queensland’s major feature races that will be spearheaded by the $250,000 TAB Blacks A Fake (G1) a leg of the Australasian Grand Circuit on Saturday evening 20 July 2019. The local star in Colt Thirty One trained and driven by leading horseman Grant Dixon has fired the first shot with a resounding win in a lead-up feature the Egmont Park Stud sponsored Mr Feelgood last Saturday night at Albion Park when he paced the mile and a quarter journey in a slick MR of 1:53.4. New Zealand’s top harness barn All Stars conducted by Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen will head a list of prominent stables from New Zealand, Victoria and New South Wales that will be campaigning in Brisbane during this time with a list of ‘possible and probable’s that will include leading stables the likes of former NZ’ers Tim and Anthony Butt and Sonya Leigh Smith as well as the satellite stable of Mark Jones and Aaron Goadsby. New South Wales will have strong representation through campaigners Chris Frisby, Kevin Pizzuto, Scott Hewitt, John Boserio, Rickie Alchin, Robbie and KerryAnn Morris, Barry Lew, Shane and Lauren Tritton, Grant Jones, Craig Cross and Luke McCarthy whilst the Victorians will be headed by Dean Braun, Zac Steenhuis, Emma Stewart and last year’s TAB trainers bonus winner Mattie Craven to name but a few. On opening night 6 July the feature races are the $30,000 Egmont Park Stud Southeast Oaks (G3) for the three year old fillies, the inaugural running of the ‘J C McMullen’ (G3) for C2 to C5 pacers only taking a career penalty for winning this $30,000 event, the $20,000 Wayne Wilson Paleface Adios Classic for the two year olds and the Badcock Group Of Companies Lucky Creed (Listed) for the open class pacers of $25,000. The middle night 13 July sees the running of the time honoured sprint in the $100,000 Garrard’s Sunshine Sprint (G1) for the open class, the $100,000 TAB Queensland Oaks for the three year old fillies, the Egmont Park Stud Southeast Derby (G3) for the three year olds, the Fleur de Lil Ladyship (Listed) of $25,000 for the mares and the $50,000 Pryde’s EasiFeed Queensland Trotters Cup (G1) and a penalty exempt Female Driver’s Invitation of $20,000. There is every indication with the caliber of the field available for the Garrard’s Sunshine Sprint (G1) that West Australian Im Themightyquinn’s Albion Park track record for the metric mile of 1:50.4 set in this race in 2014 may be in some jeopardy!   As earlier stated the closing night on Saturday 20 July sees the running of the ‘jewel in the crown’ the prestigious TAB Blacks A Fake (G1) for the open class, the $100,000 TAB Queensland Derby for the three year olds, the $100,000 Egmont Park Stud QBred Triad Finals for the eligible two year olds, the $30,000 Ted & Edna Badcock Memorial 4YO Championship (G3), the $20,000 Haras Des Trotteurs Trotter’s Marathon and a penalty exempt Driver’s Invitation of $20,000. The record book shows that it’s a who’s who of winners of the TAB Blacks A Fake (G1) spearheaded by the races namesake who saluted on three occasions with Natalie Rasmussen in the bilke and in more recent times smart campaigners in Let It Ride, Hectorjayjay and Im Themightyquinn were successful. Silks Trackside Marquee and the famous seafood buffet will be open during the course of the TAB Winter Carnival on Saturdays 6, 13, & 20 July with bookings available by phoning the Club on 07 3262 2577.   Albion Park Harness Racing Club Media

With multiple feature races in both North America and Australia, a reputable stud career and more than 3 million dollars prizemoney to his name, it’s more than merited that this Saturday night’s feature race is named after the great Mr Feelgood. Albion Park has been honoured to host the feature race in recent years leading up to the Winter Carnival held in July. Bred in the United States, Mr Feelgood raced in North America for many years with victories including the Little Brown Jug, the Presidential and the Graduate FFA. His stud career began while he was still racing. The best of his Northern Hemisphere progeny are Im Feeling Good 1:49.6 winner of over $500k– (The Big Dog), Feels Good 1:53.2 – winner of over $200k (Camluck) and Nathan Feels good 1:53.2 winner also of over $200k (Keystone Raidar). In 2008, the talented pacer was purchased by distinguished owners Kevin and Kay Seymour and Peter and Zilla O’Shea, and relocated to Australia under the care of trainer Tim Butt. He went on to win the 2009 Hunter Cup and Inter Dominion Pacing Championship, which led to him being crowned Australian Harness Horse of the Year. Taken over by trainer Luke McCarthy, the pacer continued his great form and gained further Group One wins including the Queensland Pacing Championship in 2010 and 2011  and the 2010 Victoria Cup. In May 2012 Mr Feelgood was retired and has since stood at Queensland’s Egmont Park Stud. He has been listed in the top 20 Australian 2YO Sires for three consecutive seasons and he currently sits 13th in this season’s National Sires Premiership for all ages. This Saturday night’s feature race is the first of many listed and group races to be held this winter at Albion Park. The three main nights are 6th, 13th and 20th July with the final night highlighting a Grand Circuit Event the TAB Blacks A Fake. Wagering service provider TAB has a number of attractive exotic betting propositions for this Saturday night’s meeting spearheaded by a $25,000 First 4 Jackpot on race 1 scheduled for 4:47pm EST. This is complimented by a $5,000 Quadrella Jackpot on races 2 to 5 and $2,000 Trifecta Jackpots on races 3, 4 and 5. To view the fields and form analysis refer to http://www.harness.org.au/racing/fields/race-fields/?mc=AP150619#APC15061901 The opening race gets underway at 4.47pm EST while The Egmont Park Stud Mr Feelgood Open Pace is race 6 at 7.11pm. For further information contact the Club on 07 3262 2577 or info@aphrc.com.au Visit the Club website at www.aphrc.com.au   Albion Park Harness Racing

In a funding package delivered by Racing Queensland to the three racing codes earlier this week came the announcement under the harness racing section that the Garrard’s Sunshine Sprint will have a prize money increase to $100,000 and rightfully be returned to Group 1 status. The 2019 running of the Group 1 $100,000 Garrard’s Sunshine Sprint will be conducted at Albion Park on Saturday evening July 13 on the second night of the TAB Winter Carnival. Chris Garrard (OAM), the long term sponsor of the Sunshine Sprint said ‘the announcement was great news not only for participants in Queensland but the entire harness racing industry. This is the Sunshine State and it is a race that Queenslanders can claim as their own’. He then joked ‘I only wish that I could get one good enough to race in it’. Albion Park Harness Racing Club Chairman David Fowler thanked the Garrard family on behalf of the Club for their continuous long term sponsorship of this time honored and prestigious feature event. The Garrard’s Sunshine Sprint is certainly worthy of its Group 1 status, since the races inception in 1969 when the bonny mare Teeny Reena partnered by Brian Hancock took out the inaugural edition of this sought after feature there has been a cavalcade of champions over the years that have also added their name to the honour board. Koala King won it in 1976, four years before going on to win the 1980 Inter Dominion and the legendary Paleface Adios became the first horse to win the race twice, backing up his 1973 win with another success in 1978. On the opening night of the new Albion Park 5/8th mile track in 1983, Joe Ilsley drove Amazing Trick to victory in a time of 1.59.4 to break the two minute barrier with Queenslander Wondai’s Mate successful in 1986 while another Inter Dominion winner in Thorate won it in the bi-centennial year of 1988. Into the new millennium and more big names of harness racing were etched onto the trophy including ‘Hall Of Famer’ Blacks A Fake with victories in 2007 and 2011, Mr Feelgood in 2010, Avonnova in 2015 and Hectorjayjay going back to back in 2016 and 2017. West Australian, Im Themightyquinn set the Albion Park track record for the mile journey of 1.50.4 when saluting for the father and son Hall stable in 2014.  Silks Trackside Marquee and the famous seafood buffet will be open during the course of the TAB Winter Carnival on Saturdays 6, 13, & 20 July with bookings available by phoning the Club on 07 3262 2577.   Albion Park Harness Racing

Racing Queensland will launch the inaugural $30,000 Stallions Australasia Springboard Series for 2YO trotters at Albion Park this month. Following a number of recent initiatives to support breeding and racing opportunities, the introduction of the Springboard Series – complemented by a new $10,000 2YO QBRED feature on August 16 – has been strategically developed to enhance the trotting gait in the Sunshine State. In addition to three $5000 heats at Albion Park on June 25, July 9 and July 23, a $15,000 final will be staged on August 2. Stallions Australasia will also provide a complimentary service to one of their leading sires, Wishing Stone, to the winning connections of the Springboard Series final. The sponsorship follows RQ’s announcement to expand the definition of a QBRED trotting stallion to include those registered within Queensland for whom only frozen semen is available in Australia. In addition to Wishing Stone, Stallions Australasia’s other stallions who will fall under QBRED for the 2019/20 breeding season include Trixton, Muscle Hill, Southwind Frank and Royalty For Life. “The Springboard Series forms part of RQ’s strategy to grow the trotting gait in Queensland,” RQ COO Adam Wallish said. “We’re grateful for Stallions Australasia’s support and for their willingness to stimulate breeding and racing opportunities in the Sunshine State “Following the success of QBRED for life – the nation’s premier state-based incentive scheme – there’s never been a better time to race trotters in Queensland.” While there are no eligibility restrictions other than age for the Springboard Series, a minimum of three starters are required for each heat, with those qualifying for the final required to have contested at least two heats. The 2YO series will be complemented by a 3YO series in 2020 to provide further development and racing opportunities for juvenile trotters. In recent years, RQ has launched a number of new initiatives for trotters including: A $2000 first-win bonus (paid upon any trotters first win in Queensland, providing the horse is trained by a Qld trainer); Removing the age restrictions under the ‘QBRED for life’ bonus structure that provides a $10,000 first win bonus and $7500 second win bonus for any QBRED trotters that win a race with a stake value higher than $4500; The introduction of a monthly Trotters Cup thanks to Ultimate Tools; and The ‘Breed-a-trotter’ promotion in conjunction with Haras De Trotteurs at the 2018 Winter Racing Carnival.    Click here to see further information on the RQ’s QBRED for life initiative.   RQ Media

Ace Brisbane harness racing driver John Cremin usually tends to keep it all low key...but at the moment he's, understandably, quite upbeat. Cremin, a former Albion Park metropolitan premiership-winning reinsman, has formed an awesome partnership with boom two-year-old filly Pelosi (American Ideal USA-For Dear Life (Life Sign USA). Pelosi continued on her winning way at Newcastle on Saturday night with a sparkling victory in the Rock N Roll Heaven Alabar NSW Breeders Challenge 2yo fillies heat. Starting a short priced $1.04 favorite, the Wayne Honan-bred and owned youngster, took control soon after the start and made it five wins (the last four in a row) from six starts. Cruising through the first few quarters in 29.4 and 31 seconds, Cremin slipped the pacer into another gear over the final half, which was run in a brisk 56.1. "She was entitled to dash home in good time as she did the first part of the event well within herself," Cremin said. "I only let her quicken up at the 400-metre mark but didn't fully extend her and she just felt super. Credit must go to the runner up Shezlikeroyalty who popped off my back and was brave, although she was eight metres back." Race Replay Cremin was full of praise for trainer Anna Woodmansey, who is enjoying the ride of her life in the sport. "Anna is doing a terrific job and the filly has been in peak condition ever since I first sat behind her in a few trials back in February," he said. "I've been friends with her for a long time - probably since our teenage years. "Over the years I've driven for Anna on and off, although I was pretty much her number one driver for about 12 months at one stage." Pelosi will now head to the $25,000 semi-finals at Menangle next month with the big $125,000 final at that track on June 30. Cremin, who flew down from Brisbane with his wife Tanya to drive at the Newcastle meeting, had two reasons to celebrate. Their pacer Psychedelic (Rock N Roll Heaven-Pretty Inpink (Statute) won the Qualifying Pace at Albion Park - the 18th win of the six-year-old's career. "We pulled over and watched it on our phone. The horse is owned by Tanya, so she was pretty excited. He's now won nearly $140,000," Cremin said. The win saw what could perhaps be described as "musical chairs" between Cremin and well-known trainer, albeit sometimes-driver, Graham Dwyer. Cremin is number one driver for Dwyer who prepares a big team. "Graham decided to concentrate mainly on the training side of things and sort of only drives when he has to," Cremin said. "When we were heading to Newcastle and looking for a driver for Psychedelic he got the first call, and jumped at it. "I told him after the race that the drive didn't rate all that highly! But it was actually very good - we do have that sort of working-friendship relationship." Cremin, who has been the senior farrier at the strong Grant Dixon stable for the past 15 years, said his success was due to help he was getting around him. "My wife Tanya has been the mainstay for a long time, and just recently we had some Victorian friends in Nigel and Kim Ingram lending a hand. You always need that help going on in the background and it appreciatively lightens the load," he said. After flying back home from Sydney on Sunday, Cremin managed to put his "backside on a chair for an hour or two" before heading off to a Redcliffe meeting where he had a big book of drives - including snagging a winner in the first in Gotta Moment (Gotta Go Cullect NZ-Fleeting Moment(Falcon Seelster) for, you guessed it, his mate Graham Dwyer   Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

Electrifying two-year-old harness racing filly Pelosi, who has set tongues wagging with some astonishing performances in recent weeks, has pulled up as bright as a button from her first Group One success. Owner-breeder Wayne Honan said the horse would now be aimed at the New South Wales Breeders' Challenge series, which culminates with a $125,000 final at Menangle on June 30. "There's heats at Newcastle and then semi-finals leading into the big one. So, all going well, there's exciting times ahead. After that she will head for a spell," Honan said. "We always thought she would be something special because she looked the goods from day one, being well-gaited and unlike a few others in that breeding, didn't brush her knee. "Anna (Woodmansey) has done an exceptional job in training Pelosi. She only has two in work (the other being Photozen), but she is so thorough and spends every spare minute with them. And I have to say that both horses can be a bit 'different' at times." Owner-breeder of Pelosi Wayne Honan with trainer Anna Woodmansey --Dan Costello photo The impeccably bred Pelosi (American Ideal USA-For Dear Life (Life Sign USA) is now the fastest filly Queensland has ever produced. She scored the biggest win of her short career when successful in last Saturday night's $150,000 APG 2YO final at Albion Park. Prepared at Chambers Flat by hobby trainer Anna Woodmansey, who works in a high school administration office, Pelosi has now won four of her five lifetime starts. While the win provided Woodmansey and popular reinsman John Cremin with their first ever Group One victories, Honan has been one of Australia's most successful trainer-drivers over the years. In the heady days of the 1970s and 80s, Honan and his late legendary father Jack, of Killarney Stud, Canowindra, were a formidable team, preparing big teams of up to 35 horses. "One of our first decent horses I can recall was a mare named Fine Jade. She won the Queensland Oaks and then went onto be the dam of Prince Jade ($114,921), Genesee ($58,211), Glens Fine Jade ($25,110) as well as some others," Honan said. "As well as the Canowindra stables, we also had a property near the late and great Ron Peace at Donnybrook, near Melbourne. "The recent Brisbane wins brought back some fond memories because we made many trips north with our horses to the annual Winter Carnival over the years. We'd be based at Albion Park, but would also compete at Redcliffe and even down to Tweed Heads on the Queensland/New South Wales border. "We made a lot of friends and won some nice races during those campaigns." Pelosi comes from a successful family line boasting outstanding Group race victories, but gets her name from American congresswoman, the energetic and determined Nancy Pelosi. The 79-year-old was first elected in 2007 and is now in her third term as the speaker of the United States House of Representatives. Honan said the name seemed a fitting one for the feisty daughter of American Ideal. "From what I can see, Nancy gives President Trump heaps - she goes hard and wants to be the best. So there's a bit of meaning there," he said. For Dear Life, dam of Pelosi, was a brilliant racehorse, winning 14 races from 28 starts for over $322,000. And grand dam, the Stature mare Express Post, was exceptionally fast. "When I won the Pink Bonnet with her at Harold Park, she lowered the previous race record by three seconds. She was awesome and ended up with 11 wins from 18 starts," Honan said. In the breeding barn, Express Post was a sensation. Petousa (by Western Hanover) won $180,000 in stakes, stallion Flightpath (Artsplace) won nearly $290,000 before retiring to stand at stud and For Dear Life (Life Sign) won $322,000. Honan retains Petousa, while Moama horseman Tony Peacock has For Dear Life at his St Fort property. For Dear Life has an Always B Miki weanling colt and will be served by American Ideal this coming season. Pelosi, driver John Cremin, Anna Woodmansey and Wayne Honan --Dan Costello photo  For John Cremin, recognized as one of the Sunshine State's favorite sons, the APG Group One win was much deserved. "Cremmo", as he's known, who turns 56 next Sunday (coincidentally the same day wife Tanya celebrates her birthday) got an early present he won't forget for a long time. "I've probably been driving for nearly 40 years, so I was overdue for a win in a Group One. I guess Pelosi is proof that you're never too old as far as a driver goes!" he said. "Perhaps some might say that my years of experience are now paying off. But as a young fella I wouldn't have handled horses with little idiosyncrasies like her. With a little bit of age and experience it's finally come to me!" Cremin was quick to label Pelosi as the best of her age that's he's ever driven. "She's definitely by far the best - the complete package. She relaxes beautifully and is so versatile. My only worry is to keep her out of trouble," he said. Cremin, who trains a team of six as well as being a respected farrier, is looking forward to the coming NSW campaign for Pelosi with the memory of a Newcastle win under his belt with Home of Jack in the Cup in December 2005. Watch the Pelosi win video replay here!   Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

YET to return home from his current one, Jilliby Nitro is already on target for another interstate trip. Speaking after Jilliby Nitro’s Australian Pacing Gold triumph at Albion Park just moments ago, trainer Marg Lee outlined her plans for the boom freshman. Set to embark on a long float trip to Victoria, Jilliby Nitro will be given a light week before being prepared for the New South Wales Breeders’ Challenge. The futurity culminates in a $125,000 Final at Tabcorp Park Menangle on June 30. Menangle’s Training Centre is also part of Lee’s itinerary on the way home. “The long float home won’t seem so bad now after that win,” Lee said. “We will stop Menangle to use the Aquagait on the way home as we have had a few little issues with him like a bit of a sore back and couple little things. “We’ll see how he pulls up from tonight, but all going well, he will be back in Menangle next month for the Breeders’ Challenge.” Driven by Lee’s son Jason during his latest Group One success, Jilliby Nitro began quickly to lead from barrier two as Be Happy Mach worked overtime on his outside. Fending off the initial challenge at the top of the home straight, Jilliby Nitro sprinted to a three-and-a-half metre win from Yejele Hammer, with Be Happy Mach battling on bravely to be a half-head away third. Rating 1:53.6 over 1660 metres, the son of Bettors Delight stretched his record to four wins and a second from five starts for earnings of $210,095. “It was a super win,” Lee said. “He did it so well. “He has done a terrific job to win the Bathurst Crown and now this. “He’s got a good nature and settles anywhere he goes which is great and is just a lovely horse.” Lee’s trek home was made even more pleasant in the following race when Jilliby Bandit - also an APG purchase - scored from Saloon Passage and Colt Thirty One. “Bandit and Nitro are friends at home, plus this was a suitable race for him, so he made the trip as a companion,” Lee said. “He might also go to Menangle with Nitro too.”   APG Media

Anyone who changed their mind about going to harness racing at Marburg last Sunday certainly pulled the wrong rein. Happily, the weather was on side and approximately 800 folk ventured to the showground. The Marburg Pacing Association was able to demonstrate that, contrary to some opinions, it is possible to promote harness racing and do so in a profitable fashion. Yes, it took a lot of hard work, required a large advertising budget and needed good weather but isn't that the same for any outdoor sports venture? The MPA, on this occasion, managed to cover all the bases. With a few new faces to assist the regular corps of over-worked volounteers, and added attractions such as the Bremer Ford Suzuki Swift raffle and the "WINX" memorabilia, the fans went home happy. We will be back again on Monday, May 6 (Labour Day), to do it all again. Don't miss out. It's a value for money day watching a great sport. It's "the trots in a country setting" with feature races sponsored by well known Rosewood identities John and Chrissie Turner and Queensland Taxi Bowls Club. Interstate concerns IN Queensland, those of us with genuine concerns for the future of our sport often think that we are hard done by. Maybe we are but stop for a moment and consider the immediate future of licencees and owners in South Australia. The following is taken from the Harness Racing South Australia website and is crystal clear in its intent. "The HRSA Board wishes to reaffirm that it remains resolute in its drive to seek the resignations of the SAHRC committee. "Unfortunately, over time, the board has lost confidence in the ability of the SAHRC committee to properly oversee and administer the affairs of the club and harness racing at the state's premier track. "The HRSA Board reiterates its determination that for harness racing to prosper in South Australia the principal club must be vibrant, however the SAHRC committee has failed to demonstrate that it has any viable or feasible plans to arrest the escalating financial losses being incurred. "The realities being that club's fortunes under the current committee have continued to decline and its financial performance significantly deteriorate.'' Furthermore, HRSA states the following: "The HRSA Board is committed to ensuring Globe Derby Park remains the principal harness racing venue in South Australia and at no stage does HRSA want racing to cease on a permanent basis. "The HRSA Board believes that Globe Derby Park is an important facility for Adelaide's northern area and that it must be maintained for its intended purpose - harness racing. "The HRSA Board is not supportive of decisions made by the SAHRC to enter into conditional contracts to sell the majority of club property to a developer for the purposes of establishing mid-high-density residential housing. "The HRSA Board believes that as a consequence of the SAHRC committee's performance, the club's health and on-going viability has been put at serious risk. "In summary, the HRSA Board believes that unless the current issues being faced by the industry are satisfactorily resolved, this being the removal of the SAHRC committee, then harness racing in the state cannot progress but rather it will continue to struggle to remain relevant". From my perspective, it seems that HRSA is behaving responsibly. It begs the question here in Queensland, where the rumour mill spits out the same message every week, that the sale of Albion Park is crucial to any forward progress in the matter of infrastructure and in any other facet of Racing Queensland's operation. One rumour is that former Lord Mayor Graham Quirk is headed for a seat on the three-man thoroughbred component on the over-arching Board of Racing Queensland. Is former Lord Mayor Quirk being proposed on the basis of his expertise in gallops decision making, or is it for any expertise he may have in the processing of rezoning applications for high value properties? Handy tips SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight. R1:  First four 1-3-10-11: Jumping Jolt (J Elkins)-Tom Me Gun (N McMullen)-A Good Chance (P McMullen)-Mark Dennis (K Dawson). R2: Box trifecta 2-5-6: Only In Rome (T Dawson)-Gottago Jazzy Jet (C Hart)-Skyfella Cam (C Geary). R3: E/w 1: Riverleigh Rocket (Mark Dux). R4: Quinella 1-8: Lincoln Road (H Barnes) and Casino Grin (C Geary). R5: Quinella 1-2: Just Rokin (P Greig) and Opononis Bliss (C Turpin). R6: E/w 2: Oceans Predator (N McMullen). R7: First four 6-7-8-11: Spud (A Sanderson)-Maybe To The Max (H Barnes)-Justabitnoisy (Doug Lee)-Needle (D Graham). R8: Box trifecta 1-2-5: Watch Pulp fiction (C Turpin)-Alleluia (G Dixon)-Glenferrie Hood (P McMullen). R9: Box trifecta 1-4-9: Broken Ark (C Hart)-Albion Ark (A Sanderson)-Guy Looks Good (P McMullen). R10: No 2: Colt Thirty One (G Dixon). Honour board A bit of shuffling on the leader board this week as newcomers make their presence felt. In drivers' results, Adam Richardson was up there level-pegging with Pete McMullen on five wins and rates of 250 apiece. On the trainers' side, regular Chantal Turpin was forced to make room for Jay Edmunds. Both trainers prepared three winners for the term. Most pleasing was Mitchell Dawson beginning to post higher numbers in the training department. Ipswich factor: 27/46. Albion Park, April 20: Twitter Bromac (Adam Richardson for Jay Edmunds); Our Chittybangbang (Trent Dawson); Newmerella Sharkie (Trent Dawson for Max Towns); Good Time Stride (Rob Gorman); Spud (Adam Sanderson for Jay Edmunds); Glenferrie Hood (Pete McMullen for Wayne Graham). Marburg, April 21: Bambole Nere (Adam Richardson for David Rodger Jnr); Northern Muscle (Denis Smith); Under The Kilt (Matt Elkins for Warren Hinze); Mach Torque (Chantal Turpin); Itsadanceoff (Matt Elkins for Trevor Lambourn); Argyle Beach (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin); Escalera (Darrell Graham); My Wingman (Paul Diebert for Ricky Gordon). Albion Park, April 23: Mister Ribbely (Adam Richardson for Chris Monte); Majestic Simon (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin); Trojan Banner (Hayden Barnes for Alistair Barnes); Patsdelight (Adam Sanderson for Jay Edmunds); The Shady One (Justin Elkins for Trevor Lambourn). Redcliffe, April 24: No Confession (Adam Richardson for Tayla Gillespie); Burning Ambition (Narissa McMullen for Mitchell Dawson); Karloo Mac (Adam Sanderson for Brett Cargill); Riverleigh William (Danny Gatt- Bouquet for Charlie Chiang). Redcliffe, April 25: Unassuming Champ (Adam Richardson for Mitchell Dawson); On That Day (Pete McMullen for Donny Smith); Cotothemoon (Pete McMullen for Donny Smith); Itsadanceoff (Justin Elkins for Trevor Lambourn). by Denis Smith Reprinted with permission of The Queensland Times

The McMullen sisters have pulled off what is believed to be an Australian, if not a world, harness racing first. At 5.30pm last Friday (April 12) the trio nailed their first ‘sister-trifecta’, when finishing one, two, three in the eighth event at Albion Park. Oldest sister, Narissa (25) trained and drove the winner,  Tom Me Gun. She had 3.6m to spare over second placed Danni-elle (23) and Speedie McArdle. Youngest sister and the cheekiest one of the McMullen four, Taleah (17) finished a head back in third behind the brown gelding trained by her father John, Weedons Express. “I’m very proud of what we achieved, but I would’ve preferred to beat my sisters,” said, Taleah, who is based with her parents at Glamorgan Vale. “All of us siblings are very competitive and definitely like to win. We’ve all had the same teacher (Dad) and that’s why we all drive a bit aggressive and love coming out of the gate,” she added. Oldest sister, Narissa, the current Australian Female Drivers champion, and winner of the 2017 Australasian Young Drivers’ title, said she was proud to have led the ‘eldest to youngest sister trifecta’. “It was good to beat my two younger sisters home, but Taleah was quick to tell Danni-elle and me that she would have won if we didn’t get in her way. “The family have had a few trifectas before with Peter, Danni-elle, and myself, but last week was the first sister trifecta with Taleah,” she said. Danni-elle was also proud, but did give her big bro a cheeky serve. “I think it’s great that it was the three of us girls, without the older brother getting in the middle. However, it would have been good if he ran fourth,” she said. All three said their next family goal was to run the ‘First Four’ with older brother Peter. Mind you the 27-year-old Glamorgan Vale horseman and his wife Chantal (nee Turpin) had weekend to remember themselves. They won three races on QBRED night at Albion Park on Saturday, including two Listed events. Chantal trained and drove Will The Wizard to win race three - the Listed $25,000 QBRED Breeders Classic Final for the 2yo pacing colts and geldings. A race later Peter drove the Turpin trained Amaya Becomes to nail the Listed $25,000 Breeders Classic Final for the 2yo pacing fillies. Then the husband and wife duo then combined to win the last event, the $13,000 QBRED Breeders Classic 2yo Fillies Consolation. Mother of the ‘McMullen four’, Jennette, said she was ‘oh so proud’ of her children, daughter-in-law and wider family. “It was so exciting to see their first sister trifecta. We just need a first four now. They are all good mates and were pretty wrapped with their feat. “I’m sure Taleah would love to repeat it with her having bragging rights, through being the youngest sibling.  Their grandma, my Mum - Beryl Dawson, 85, gets a great thrill out of their achievements. “No doubt that will be her story at the next CWA (Country Women’s Association) meeting. Eight of her 10 grandchildren all drive in races and another one is a trainer. Her life revolves around the Sky Channel following the Dawson-McMullen clan,” Mum said.   Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

“Pressure? What pressure? I’m too old for pressure. I’m even too old to get excited these days,” joked Australia’s number one trainer, Grant Dixon. The Tamborine horseman was referring to his champion four-year-old pacer, Colt Thirty One, when asked how he felt when the TAB opened him $1.05 to win Saturday night’s Listed $25,000 QBRED 4YO Triad Final at Albion Park. "I don't take any notice of what the TAB says. If it I did I'd be a wreck. All I worry about is having my horses spot on come race-night, and so-far Colt Thirty One has done everything we have asked of him this preparation," 46-year-old Dixon said. Colt Thirty One, who is Queensland’s best pacer and the state’s current Horse-of-the-Year, has drawn three on the second line (10) in Saturday’s 2,138m mobile. However, the way he won his trial at Albion Park on April 2, he’d still be at minuscule odds, even if he drew 20. "That was his first hit-out since late January and Trista (Dixon) drove him confidently. It was what we needed going into Saturday night,” Dixon said. Dixon initially sat parked with the son of Mach Three before letting him loose down the back straight the last time. The pair then strolled up the home straight to win by an increasing 7.9m, under a hold. The winning time was 1:58.8 with a 1:55.1 mile rate. His sectionals were 28.6, 30.8, 28.7, and 27.1. “That was a nice run. He’s fit and ready to race. I’ll see how he progresses throughout autumn and winter and then take it from there. I’m not one to look too far ahead,” Dixon said. “Potentially this fella is up there with Majestic Mach as the best I’ve had.” That’s a big call considering Majestic Mach won 35 of his 94 starts, including four Group One events, between March 2012 and September 2017. He also placed 20 times, paced a 1:53.9 mile and banked $796,397. Colt Thirty One has so far won 23 of his 35 starts, placed in seven others, sprinted a 1:53.2 mile, and has banked $453,345. Both pacers were bred and owned by Kevin and Kay Seymour. "He's a bit of a dud isn't he. Not much at all really," joked Seymour. Then he switched to serious mode. "The reason he's done so well is because Grant has managed him perfectly. He's only four and he’s looked after him and not over-raced him. He once told me that to get a good long-term open grade horse you have to take your time with them. "For that reason I think Colt Thirty One will make a nice grand circuit horse one day and Grant should have a top Free-For-Aller for several years to come. “Mr Feelgood is the best horse Kay and I have raced and Colt Thirty One is the best that we have bred.” Colt Thirty One is seventh of nine foals of out of the 2000 maiden Vanston Hanover mare, Charm personified. His older sister, Charming Allie (by Mr Feelgood) recorded a 1:53.9 mile and won 18 races and $266,329. She also nailed four Group Two races and ran second in the Group One $75,000 Queensland Oaks in 2014. Colt Thirty One won his first Group One at Albion Park on July 15, 2017 when he was too smart in the $100,000 QBRED 2YO Triad Pace. He also won the QBRED 3yo Triad a year later under Group Two conditions. Colt Thirty One also cleaned up a quality Victoria Derby three-year-old field at Melton's Tabcorp Park on January 27 last year. That race was worth $200,000 pocketing his owners a cool $114,000 for that win. He also placed in the Breeders Crown 2 and 3yo Finals in 2017 and 2018. Dixon has won Queensland Horse-of-the-Year previously with Majestic Mach and the 1990 Jeremy Laurence black colt, Jeremy Lee (22 wins and $216,971). "I was working for Dad (Bill) when he trained Speed Ace (1991 Speed King gelding). He was Queensland Horse-of-the-Year as well. He won 15 races ($130,274)," Dixon said. Dixon is currently Australia's top trainer with 187 victories - 31 clear of second-placed Emma Stewart. He also sits fourth on the national driving premiership with 118 wins behind Chris Alford (228), Greg Sugars (138), Ryan Warwick (123).   Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Jake Davis not only drove his first winner at Albion Park on Saturday night (April 6) but he also kept up a family tradition dating back a couple of decades. Davis and his father Leigh made the 970km journey from their Browns Creek stable near Bathurst, to campaign six horses in Queensland. They were rewarded for their efforts when Studleigh Kristen, despite facing the breeze for much of the 2138m Pace (Race 11), careered away for a dominant victory over Call Me Yours and Caesars Astrum.  Travelling to Albion Park is something the Davis family have done since Jake’s grandfather, Ray, started racing standardbreds in Queensland a couple of decades ago. “Dad drove the 13 hours to get here with the team the week before last and I arrived here on Thursday night after the races. I will head home again next Sunday to do my main job on our dairy farm,” Jake said. The 26-year said he had been driving for almost a decade. “That was about the time when Dad last campaigned horses up here. He drove them back then. I’m over the moon. Tonight was my first drive at Albion Park and I loved it." Jake said. “I won’t forget the night in a hurry. It’s something I wanted to achieve when I knew we were coming up here. The team will stay for about four or five weeks, depending on how they go." Davis had two drives at Albion Park on Saturday. He finished a close-up second behind Rays Choice in the third event, and then thanks to a very confident drive he steered Studleigh Kristen to victory in the final event. “I don’t mind sitting parked with her. About 70 per cent of the time I’ve sat in the ‘death seat’ and she's gone on to win races. She’s as tough as old boots and can stay all day. I was delighted with that performance. She felt the winner a long way from home,” Davis Jr said. Studleigh Kristin drew six of seven and settled last early before Davis sent her to sit parked at on ‘Alan Border Field corner’ the first time. That's where they remained until the home straight. Davis then gave the mare some rein and she left them to it winning by an increasing 9.7m. She paced the 2,138m mobile in 2:37.2 with a 1:58.3 mile rate. Her sectionals were: 32.1, 30.5, 28.2, and 28.1. It was the Kenneth J 6-year-old mare's 11th win in 83 starts. She's also placed 22 times and banked $69,666 in purses. "She's a lovely, tough mare, who always gives her best. We paid $3,000 for her at the Sydney Yearling Sales. As a 2-year-old she wouldn't steer straight and Dad wanted to get rid of her, but there was no way Pop (grandfather) was going to let him do that," Davis said. "She started her career as a 3-year-old and has consistently been in the money since. She is always well backed. I think she will do well up here," he added. Davis Senior and Studleigh Sonny won at Redcliffe Paceway on Thursday, three days after Studleigh Stride and the same driver ran second at Albion Park (Monday). The Davis’ originally housed their horses at John McCarthy’s property, but these days they park up at Peter McMullen and Chantal Turpin’s barn at Patrick Estate. “We love it up here and our horses have already performed well with two firsts and two seconds from four starts. We also have another 12 horses at home, mostly yearlings and 2-year-olds, I have to get back and tend to,” Davis said. One of the other highlights on Saturday was the running of the Jack Waltisbuhl Memorial. His family on-course to watch the Darrel Graham trained and Kylie Rasmussen driven $38.50 outsider, Platinum Roulette, get up and win. Mr Waltisbuhl raced horses in the 1970s and 1980s and  enjoyed multiple successes with Penny Express, Bulltossa, and Fiery Tan. He raced and won at tracks all over Queensland including Amberley, Redland Bay, Lawnton, Capalaba, Cleveland Showgrounds, Redcliffe Showgrounds, Kedron Park, Rocklea and of course Albion Park.    Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Gold Coast businessman, Greg Mitchell, loves his current Queensland-Trotter-of-the-Year, Our Overanova so much, he’s now gone and bought her little half-sister. “I’ve been keeping close eyes on the family, and this horse, for a while now. Her name is Smokey Nova and she is a grey 5-year-old Monkey Bones mare. Like Our Overanova, she will be trained by Grant Dixon at Tamborine. She will have her first Queensland start next week," Mitchell said. “I also tried to buy her older (Pegasus Spur) half-brother Flyanova from New Zealand a while back, but he failed the vet test. It will be nice to have another grey trotter going around, but we bought her primarily for breeding purposes. Anything else she does is a bonus." In June 2013, Mitchell (G.M.S. Racing) paid $14,000 for the then named one-win Monarchy gelding, Overanova. He has since gone on to so far win 53 of his 140 starts and $406,509. The son of Monarchy is a Listed Classic and Group winner, and he also holds two track records at Albion Park. The 140-race veteran went a 1:59 mile rate when trotting 2:41.8 for the 2,138m stand on September 19, 2015. Then just over two years later (December 16, 2017) he went a 2:00.3 mile rate when setting a new mark of 3:20.8 for the 2,647m standing start. The bay gelding started from 40m behind that night and just got up by half-a-head. The 9-year-old's fastest mile is 1:56.2. "He's still toughing it out off long marks. He's a quality trotter who has put plenty of smiles on our faces. Hopefully 'Smokey' can win a few for us as well, but don't think she will be ever as good as him. However, if she leaves us some nice foals one day then Sharon and I will be happy," Mitchell said. “Our Overanova has been so good to us and we absolutely love him. That’s why I have bought this mare, so I can always have a part of his family with us. He’s special,” said Mitchell who has also imported other top-liners like Devil Dodger and Alleluia." Our Overanova is the third foal (of eight) out of the five-win 21-year-old brown Sundon - Kayla Novander mare, Kayla Nova. Smokey Nova is foal six. She was exported to Australia from New Zealand as an unraced 2-year-old in November 2015. The striking grey had her first race in Australia at Ballarat on Boxing Day 2016. She has now had 30 starts for one win one (Ballarat, October 2017) and four placings. She finished ninth at Tabcorp Park Menangle in her last start on March 5. "I've been watching her race in New South Wales and Luke drove her last start. I spoke to him and then Shannon (Hoffman) put her on the market," Mitchell said. "I gave him $6,000 for her." It’s not the first time Mitchell has imported a grey mare from New Zealand. “My wife Sharon loves grey horses and now lightening has struck twice. In 2015 (June) we bought Millicent from New Zealand. She's not from the same family as 'the Novas', but she is also by Monkey Bones and out of a (three-win) Gee Whizz II mare, Black Onyx," Mitchell said. When he bought her, Millicent had won five races in the South Island. When she retired in September 2016, the newly named Sharon’s Millicent had won 16 of her 87 starts, placed 18 times, and banked $99,675. "I named her after Sharon because of her love of greys. We are now breeding from that mare and we have a rising 2-year-old Brylin Boyz bay colt and a Majestic Son weanling bay colt," Mitchell said. “She missed to Majestic Son this year," said Mitchell who has owned and bred standardbreds for 12 years. Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Warwick horseman, Richard March, has waited half a century for a horse like Clintal Do to come along. “He certainly makes the job worth getting up for. He doesn’t take much work. I just keep him fit and then race him. I’ve been training horses since I was 17 and I’m now 70. He’s by far the best horse I have had anything to do with,” March said. The former ‘3YO Horse-of-the-Year’ was in blistering form at Albion Park on Saturday night. He picked them up and put them away at the 400m mark in the $13,000 Changeover At Burwood Stud Pace. Driver, Nathan Dawson, had the now 5-year-old Dawn Ofa New day gelding in the one-one soon after the start and they then were then three back on outside before Dawson launched him. "He's got a very good turn of foot - easily the fastest pacer that I've ever trained. Nathan drove him perfectly. He set him alight at just the right time," March said. Clintal Do started from the outside of the second row (9) and paced the 2138m mobile in 2:33.1 with a 1:55.3 mile rate. His sectionals were 31.4, 29 even, 28 even, and 37.2. He won under a hold by 7.3m. The Space Invader (Narissa McMullen) was second, with 15.3m back to Sir Julian and John Cremin, in third. It was the talented bay's 23rd win in 56 starts. He’s also placed 15 times for just on $167,000 in purses. Clintal Do is also a Group Two winner having nailed the $50,000 QBRED Triad for 3yo colts and geldings in May 2017. Twelve months later he then nailed the $25,000 Listed equivalent for the 4yo entires and geldings. “I want to line him up next in the Armidale Cup in a couple of weeks. We won that race last year and I’d like to do it again. After that he will have a brief spell before being set for the Winter Carnival at Albion Park,” March said. “As for this week, I’m still weighing up whether to start him or not. He’s come through Saturday’s race real well." He said swimming was one way of keeping Clintal Do’s fitness up. “He doesn’t take much work. He’s just got so much natural ability. His speed around corners is one of his greatest assets. He seems to make up a lot of ground on the turns,” March said. Clintal Do is owned and bred by Trevor and Louise O’Reilly of Palmwoods (Sunshine Coast). He is the third of four foals out of the 2003 Perfect Art - Terry Lyn three-win mare, Shesgotemgood. “Shesgotemgood’s second foal named Hereiam (by Jeremes Jet – 1:56.1) earned over $50,000 and has a Racing Hill colt who was born last September. She didn’t meet our meet her reserve of $11,000k at the Brisbane APG Sale,” O’Reilly said. March said he enjoyed training for the O’Reillys. “They are good owners and leave me to make the decisions. We do communicate quite a bit. They know I’d like to start this horse at Menangle one day. I’m sure the big track down there would suit him,” said March. He said Clintal Do was now a much stronger and quicker horse than when he won his Queensland age group title. “He’s got better and better with age. We had a bit of a scare with him last season though. We had to cut half of his hoof away after it became infected," he said. “It’s now grown back and he’s recovered well and he is now back to where I want him. I thought he would be hard to beat after winning untouched at Inverell the week before. He’s my pride and joy."   Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Albion Park record holder, Quietly Spoken, can go three-straight at Queensland Harness Racing Headquarters on Saturday night. That’s the opinion of her Alberton trainer, Stephen Cini. “She’s as bright as a button and has come through her last race very well. This mare likes to race and she is no slouch. Chris Alford told the previous trainers he liked her. That was good enough for me," Cini said. “She raced in Group races at Menangle (five - placed in one) before I got her and you have to be pretty good to hold a track record at Albion Park. “Yes she can get the hatrick but the (Grant) Dixon trained and driven Our Overanova will be the toughest for her to beat. He's a very good race horse – even from 50m behind. He's had a lot of starts (139) and won 53 races. My girl has won just 12 (96 starts). "In saying that I’m expecting Brian’s mare to be right in it again," he added. Brian is Brian Dorans, the owner and breeder of Quietly Spoken. A fortnight ago (March 9) he watched his 7yo Pegasus Spur mare set a new 1660m track record for trotters at Albion Park. Starting from the ace draw she sat in behind a torrid speed and then Narissa McMullen whipped her along the passing lane to win in 1:59.4 - mile rate, a slashing 1:55.7. Her sectionals were 27.3, 30.4, 28.7, and 29.6. And even though Saturday’s $13,000 Pryde-sponsored ninth race is a 2,138m stand, Cini still needs a slick pace. "If there's speed in the race it will suit the mare. She's started from one in both of her last two starts and now starts from 10m behind, so the race is going to pan out differently for her," he said. "I won't say anything to Narissa. She knows the horse. We just have to see where the horse ends up soon after the start. "If there's a slow pace and they dawdle, then that won't suit us. Hopefully they go hard and she can get into it at the right time. If she does then she's got the stamina and speed to get past them." He said Quietly Spoken was the type of mare who liked to race week in and week out. "She's very fit and enjoys racing. Brian doesn’t enjoy spelling them for too long. He likes to race his horses,” Cini said. Quietly Spoken had her last race for Joe and Mary Rando when 13th at Menangle 2017. Cini then won first-up with her at Albion Park on December 12 of that year. Seven of her 12 wins have now been with Cini. Her siblings have also performed well. Quietly Spoken is the last of five foals out of the one race (fifth) Sundon - Champagne Girl (by Plat Du Jour) mare, Kindava Hush. Her oldest sister, the 2003 Classic Adam mare, Une De Mai won 14 races and $85,805, while foal two, the 2003 Continentalman mare, Mystic Hush won 11 races and $94,943. But none of them have gone as quick as their little sister - Cini's first track record holder. “A lot of trotters don’t possess speed. This mare has speed. She’s proven that. She will continue to race on through the Winter Carnival," he said. “She will hold her own until then but when the visitors get here she won’t be up to them. I’m working 12 at the moment and she would be in my top three or four. She’s the best trotter of the three I’ve got." Quietly Spoken beat Our Overanova by 1.3m when they both started off the front on May 9. This time Our Overanova will give the mare a 40m head-start - but write the Dixon trainee off at your own peril. Our Overanova knows all about tracks records. The 9yo Monarchy gelding holds two at Albion Park himself - including one over tonight's distance three-and-a-half years ago. The 140-race veteran went a 1:59 mile rate when trotting 2:41.8 on September 19, 2015. Then just over two years later (December 16, 2017) he went a 2:00.3 mile rate when setting a new mark of 3:20.8 for the 2,647m standing start. The bay gelding started from 40m behind that night and just got up by half-a-head. Our Overanova has won $406,404 in career stakes - Quietly Spoken: $109,132.   Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

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