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The festive and well-attended harness racing evening was made even better for Thomas Dillon, when his horse, Rock Me Baby, won the $120,000 Courageous Lady at Northfield Park. The Courageous Lady was a series of firsts for Rock Me Baby. It was the first time she had raced for Dillon. He purchased her just two weeks ago for $82,000 at the Harrisburg Sale. It was also Rock Me Baby's first start for trainer Heidi Rohr and the first time that Tim Tetrick has driven the filly. Rock Me Baby left off the gate. She initially sat in third, but was sent to the outside approaching the quarter. Once she made the lead about the quarter-pole, Rock Me Baby never experienced an anxious moment the remainder of the mile. She posted fractions of: 26.4, 54.4, 1:23 and 1:52. "We had to go a pretty big first half," explained Tetrick,"but I was able to give her a breather around the turn and she was really strong to the finish." The clocking was a stakes record for the Courageous Lady and equaled Northfield Park's track record for sophomore filly pacers. "I was happy to get to drive her," said Tetrick. "When they called me to ask if I would come here (Northfield), I was like absolutely!" "I love traveling around to these big races offered at places like Northfield and being able to compete with nice horses. I'm just glad to be a part of all this." Completing the field were Mother Of Art, LA Delight, Yankee Moonshine, Dime A Dance, Bellatricks, Free Show and Time On My Hands. Rock Me Baby (Rock N Roll Heaven-Lover Of Art-Artsplace) now has four wins in 21 lifetime starts. Saturday's victory increased her career bankroll to $164,228. She returned $5.40 to win. Ayers Ratliff

Dual Group One winner and Australia’s top three-year-old filly Rocknroll Magic has been named Harness Racing South Australia’s Horse Of The Year for the 2015-2016 season. Although trained in Victoria by Emma Stewart, Rocknroll Magic is majority owned in South Australia. The announcement was made at a well-attended Horse Of The Year function at the Grange Golf Club Function Room on Sunday. Rocknroll Magic raced five times in South Australia during the season for five wins highlighted by successes in the Southern Cross Three-Year-Old Fillies and SA BOTRA Three-Year-Old Fillies finals. In Victoria, the filly scored Group One wins in Empire Vicbred Three-Year-Old Fillies final, then the Breeders Crown Three-Year-Old Fillies final at Tabcorp Park, Melton. From a win when resuming from a break at Globe Derby Park on May 13, Rocknroll Magic won 12 races in a row before being going for a spell after her Breeders Crown win on August 28. Rocknroll Magic’s South Australian connection is through syndicate manager Bruce Cameron, his wife Alison, son Henry together with Jock and Nathan Woods. John Penny and The Magic Sons Group which contains Nigel Rowe, Brenton Thompson and their families and friends. The rest of the ownership group is Cameron’s brother Craig, cousin Peter and the Fab Four Group which includes Craig’s wife and members from Queensland and overseas. The mare is also soon to become a mother with a surrogate mare due to foal to Art Major within the next few weeks. Rocknroll Magic was also named South Australia’s Three-Year-Old Filly Of The Year. Her SA awards come on top of being named Victoria’s Three-Year-Old Filly Of The Year, and a finalist in that state’s Horse Of The Year award. Rocknroll Magic has also been named Australia’s Three-Year-Old Filly Of The Year. Now a four-year-old mare, the daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven, is back in work but will have a light campaign which may include one SA run during the middle of 2017. In a good season for Cameron-syndicated horses Our Celebrity, also trained by Emma Stewart, was also named South Australia’s Two-Year-Old Filly of The Year. Our Celebrity won the SA BOTRA Golden Nursery and the Southern Cross for two-year-old fillies. Owner John Penny, a part-owner of Rocknroll Magic, also had dual award success as Emain Macha, in which he is also a part-owner, took out the South Australian Two-Year-Old Of The Year for colts and geldings. Emain Macha, trained in Naracoorte by Greg Scholefield, won seven of his nine starts with his best victories being the SA BOTRA Golden Nursery for colts and geldings and the Kindergarten Stakes. Jumping Jolt, bred and owned by Peter and Lesley Medhurst from Glencoe in the South-East, and trained by their son-in-law Barry Finnis, was crowned South Australia’s Horse Of The Year for three-year-old colts and geldings. The gelding won nine of his 14 starts during the season. Glamour mare Whats Emma Got, trained by Glenda Fuller in partnership with her daughter Sharon Newman, was voted South Australia’s Horse Of The Year for four-year-old and over mares. Whats Emma Got, also bred by Mrs Newman, won 12 of her 20 starts during the season including a victory at Tabcorp Park Melton. South Australia’s Horse Of The Year for four-year-old and over entires and gelding pacers went to Some Kinda Tactics. The announcement came on the day owner Lyn Proud was attending a memorial function for her late husband Rod, instrumental in buying the horse to race in South Australia under the care of trainer Jon Kingston-Mayne. Some Kinda Tactics won 13 races during the season with a victory in the Kadina Cup among his successes with a best winning mile rate of 1:53.3. The gelding also took out South Australia’s Leading State Horse. The Paul Fidge-trained Pocketfullofcash was awarded South Australia’s Horse Of The Year for four-year-old and older entires and geldings. Pocketfullofcash won eight races with strong efforts including the Victor Harbor Trotters Cup, Gawler Hambeltonian and Gramel Trot. Im Princess Sophie, trained by Ryan Hryhorec, was the South Australian Horse Of The Year for four-year-old and older mares won 10 races from 18 starts during the season. Outback Madge, bred and owned by Geoff Easom and trained by Jill Neilson, was crowned South Australia’s Three-Year-Old Trotter Of The Year. The filly won seven of her 16 starts, including five of her last six, including victories against older trotters. Soh Twisted, winner of the Trotters Classic for trainer Angela Chapman, was named South Australia’s Horse Of The Year for two-year-old trotters. To complete a big night for the Cameron family, Celebrity Ball was named South Australia’s Broodmare Of The Year. Her foals include Celebrity Guest, Celebrity Lass, Starburst Girl, and Two-Year-Old Filly Horse Of The Year Our Celebrity. The recently retired Paleface Jasper was named South Australia’s Claimer of The Year. by Graham Fischer

Vernon, N.Y. - The W. Springtime Racing Stable and Shannon Brott's Skip Jive ($9.70) made every yard a winning one in a sparkling 6-1/4 length victory in Friday (October 28) evening's harness racing featured $7,900 Miracle Mile Pace at Vernon Downs. The 3-year-old Rock N Roll Heaven gelding achieved the early lead from his midpack draw, sprinting off from Cheyenne Raider (Truman Gale) and controlling the pace through splits of :26.4, :55.1, and 1:22.3. Skip Jive edged away upon turning for home, leaving Cheyenne Reider well in his wake at the completion of his 1:51.3 mile. Modern Gesture (Chris Lems) emerged late to take the runner-up spot off a clear stalking trip, defeating the tiring Cheyenne Reider by 1-1/2 lengths. Odds-on favorite Super Soph (Brett Derue) only managed fourth place off an even effort. Fern Paquet, Jr. drove Skip Jive for trainer Dave Spagnola. Leading driver John MacDonald proved victorious in half of the evening's 12 races, teaming up with Azucar ($5.30, 1:57.3), Triple Charm ($5.30, 1:55.4), Jinxy's Delight ($3.60, 1:53.3), Some Major Beach ($3.60, 1:53.4), Well Excuuuse Me ($3.10, 1:54.2), and Ittakestwobaby ($7.80, 1:56). A 12-race card is on tap for Saturday (October 29) evening at Vernon Downs; post time is 6:45 p.m. Eastern. by James Witherite, Vernon Downs

The future of Park Life remains unclear. Following a short but glittering rookie campaign which netted her a Group 1 harness racing victory in the $322,000 Australian Pacing Gold Fillies Final at Menangle in Sydney, the Wayne Graham trainee was shut down after developing stress fractures. The Sydney success was her final start of the season when she proved successful defeating Perfect Sense and Pectacular, the latter being crowned the Australian Pacing Filly of the Year at seasons end. Ultimately, Park Life was forced to miss her home state features including both the Breeders Classic and the QBRED Triad during the winter carnival. Park Life has been out of action for the past five months and a visit to the Gatton University Equine Clinic yesterday failed to reveal any change. “It looks like she needs another two or three months out, the experts aren’t completely satisfied she has healed properly so they recommended more time off. As it stands, Nellie (stable name) won’t return to work until the New Year which is a little disappointing but it’s just the way it is.” Regular driver Shane Graham said. Given a January return and a clear run with training, the timetable to be ready for several interstate features looks remote but connections are hopeful she will be right for local features in the latter half of the season. But there are no guarantees. The Rock N Roll Heaven – Strawbs Interact filly won 3 of her 6 starts while being placed in the other starts. Her victory in the APG Final was the clear highlight but her eye-catching debut against the colts in the Gr.3 Wayne Wilson Paleface Adios Classic when third behind Maestro Bellini and Clintal Do was also impressive. But connections are hopeful she may still be a winner this weekend with the filly amongst finalists for the Queensland Horse of the Year, the awards ceremony taking place on Sunday night. Park Life is vying for the title against the likes of Avonnova, Ultimate Art, Maestro Bellini, Catcha Lefty and star trotter Our Overanova. by Chris Barsby

HARRINGTON, Del. - Thomas Lazzaro, Robert Cooper and Abraham Basen's Arque Hanover ($2.80, Jon Roberts) was a 1:52.3 harness racing winner in the $17,700 Open Pace Monday at Harrington Raceway. The 4-year-old Rock N Roll Heaven stallion set all the fractions in a strong front end win over Remember Me Vk and Little Ben. Trained by Dylan Davis. "Arque" registered his fifth win of the year. The winner returned home after a start at Batavia Downs (Ny), where he finished second on October 8. On the undercard, Ken Wood, Bill Dittmar and Stephen Iaquinta's Soto ($5.80, Art Stafford Jr.) was a 1:52.3 winner in an $11,000 pace. It was the eighth win of the year for the Eric Ell-trainee. Ross Wolfenden had four wins on the program. Live racing continues through Thursday. Post time is 5 p.m. Matthew Sparacino

It’s a girl. Former star harness racing mare Forever Gold is now a proud mum after safely delivering her first foal this week, a filly by star sire and Alabar based Rock N Roll Heaven. The foaling took place at the famed Egmont Park Stud on the Darling Downs of Toowoomba. “It’s very exciting and according to early reports, both mare and foal are doing very well. Studmaster Peter Bell said the filly is a lovely type with plenty of size about her which sounds positive, I’m looking forward to seeing both mare and foal.” Co-owner and breeder Murray Cole said. Forever Gold was retired on the eve of the Queensland Pacing Championship last year owing to an injury to her nearside fetlock. The mare affectionately known as ‘Tammy’ was prepared throughout her glittering career by Kylie Rasmussen and Darren Weeks. Forever Gold retires with 42 victories from 92 starts while amassing more than $700,000 in stakes. Some of her biggest victories include the Queensland Oaks, Inter Dominion heat, Governors Cup, Robin Dundee Stakes, Make Mine Cullen, 4/5yo Championship, Qld Ladyship Stakes (x 4) and the 2yo & 3yo QBRED Breeders Classic and Triads Finals. Feature race placings include Nursery Pace Final, Gold Coast Oaks, Ladyship Mile, Teeny Teeny, Ranji Bill, Angelique Club Cup, Northern Breeders Stakes, Queen of Hearts, Redcliffe Gold Cup, Lord Mayors Cup, Christmas Cup, Sunshine Sprint and Blacks A Fake. Connections are now looking at Captaintreacherous 2, 1:49.2; 3, 1:47.1 ($3,148,657), both the richest and fastest son of champion sire Somebeachsomewhere, as the next consort for their Gr.1 winning mare. Captaintreacherous may have been a $250,000 yearling purchase, but the price turned out to be a bargain as he earned $3.14 million winning 23 races during his sensational race career. A magnificent individual standing 16.1 hands, World Champion Captaintreacherous is without question one of the best-bred, best-performed sires ever to be available in the Southern Hemisphere. Captaintreacherous will be available to ‘Down Under’ breeders via frozen semen from Empire Stallions in Victoria. Chris Barsby

WILKES-BARRE PA - A pair of nicely-pedigreed harness racing distaffs paced back to their distinguished bloodlines in taking the co-featured pacing events at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on Tuesday. Encore Deo, a sophomore daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven whose second dam is the $3.7 million-winning Eternal Camnation, rallied from the pocket to catch I Said Please by a half-length in taking the $16,000 "F/M nw 5 races" pace in 1:52.3, lowering her mark by 2 3/5 seconds. Despite showing a 1:51.4 time at Vernon in a NYSS consolation last time, the rail, and the talented backing of driver Matt Kakaley and trainer Ron Burke, Encore Deo was dismissed at 10-1 - the 20-race losing streak, dating back 53 weeks, may have had something to do with the odds - but she was able to rally for the tally for the ownership of Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Jason Mellilo, and Lawrence Karr. Gweneeee J, a full sister to millionaires Heston Blue Chip and Sunfire Blue Chip, made evereeee pole a winning one in taking a $14,000 conditioned mares co-feature in 1:51.3. The daughter of American Ideal won by a length over pocketsitting Mystical Nectar while scoring for driver Jim Marohn Jr., trainer Linda Toscano, and the KJ Stables LLC, who saw their mare raise her career earnings to $155,817. PHHA / Pocono

Nichols, N.Y. - Just over a month removed from her 5-1/2 length win in the Geers Stakes, harness racing owner Kenneth Jacobs's Planet Rock ($13.80) proved victorious again at Tioga Downs, sustaining first-over progress and parrying two late-charging 2-year-old pacing fillies in a $110,200 New York Sire Stakes event on Friday (September 16) evening. The daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven and Villa Hanover was forced to abort a leave attempt as Artrageous (Jim Morrill, Jr.) led a :26.2 stampede through the first quarter. John Campbell would put Planet Rock in play with a circuit to go, advancing first-over to the clubhouse turn while 3-10 favorite Tequila Monday (David Miller) slipstreamed live cover through middle splits of :57 and 1:24.3. Planet Rock would succeed in dueling down Artrageous off the far turn, but she wasn't home free upon cornering. Tequila Monday--who drifted to the four-path after fanning off cover--quickly righted the ship and charged boldly, as did Robin J (Mike Simons) after finding room to vacate the pocket. Still, Planet Rock ultimately prevailed, driven out to hold sway by a neck in 1:52.3. Tequila Monday and Robin J finished second and third respectively, while Roaring To Go (Brett Miller) stayed on for fourth. Linda Toscano trains Planet Rock, who earned her seventh career win in just eight starts. In the sub-featured $13,500 Open 1 Trot, Dragin the Wagon ($8.10) made every yard a winning one en route to a 1:53.3 triumph. The 6-year-old Angus Hall gelding sprinted to the fore to evade a host of leavers to the first turn, and held clear of a belated rally from Prairie Fortune (Jim Meittinis), who emerged off third-over cover to take second. Aaron Byron drove the 31-time winner for owner James Cantelon and trainer Jeff Byron. An 11-race Closing Night card awaits on Saturday (September 17); first post is slated for 6:30 p.m., with full coverage on the Tioga Downs Racing Network to commence at 6:05 p.m. by James Witherite, Tioga Downs

Owner Ken Jacobs and harness racing trainer Linda Toscano came to Monticello Raceway on Monday afternoon with a full quiver. On the programs first race of the day, the regular Sires Stake for 2 year Old Pacing Fillies, racing for a purse of $52,500 showcased Planet Rock. The daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven - Villa Hanover filly wasted no time leaving from post position 4, in the 5 horse field to show the field thru fractions of 28.2, 58:0, 1:27:1 to win well in hand in 1:55, pacing her last ¼ in 27.4, setting a new track record for 2 Year Old Pacing Fillies. Breaking the previous record of 1:55.2 set by Freetime in 2012, Planet Rock remain flawless, with 6 wins in as many starts with lifetime earnings of $123,000. The combination of Toscano/ Trick swept both ends of the early daily double, the second race was first 1st split of the Excelsior A's Tim Tetrick went down the road with Yourlipstogodsears (Art Major-Role Reversal) score in 1:57.3 for owners South Street Farm & George & Theresa Rath. The Jacobs/Toscano/ Tetrick combo struck again with yet another impressive filly, Robin J, the daughter of Roll With Joe - Mommy Robin Q, was stellar as she scored wire to wire in 1:56.2 by 3 lengths. The filly now sports a bank roll of $158,000 thus far in her brilliant freshman career. The win gave Tim Tetrick a hat trick for the day. By Shawn Wiles

HARRINGTON, Del. - Howard Taylor, Robert Cooper, Abraham Basen and Thomas Lazzaro's Arque Hanover ($3, Jon Roberts) was a repeat harness racing winner Monday in the $17,500 Open Pace at Harrington Raceway in 1:52.4. The 4-year-old Rock N Roll Heaven stallion overcame post eight in achieving his fourth win of the year for trainer Dylan Davis. Arque Hanover pulled first over and cleared pacesetter Teresa's Beach near the three-quarters and drew away from his closest pursuers. Special T Rocks was second and Power of a Cruiser finished third. Owner Howard Taylor had another victory with Handsome Henry K ($10, George Dennis), who won the sub-featured $10,000 conditioned pace with a 1:53 triumph for trainer Mike Hall. Joining Taylor in the double department was owner/trainer Ben Stafford, who won races with Cloud Speed ($2.80) and Good Bet ($5.40). Matthew Sparacino  

Clayton Tonkin’s declaration that he doesn’t like comparing his two top-gun harness racing fillies Rocknroll Magic and Heavens Trend is completely understandable. They’re both lovable. The Emma Stewart and Tonkin prepared three-year-olds won their respective Woodlands Stud Breeders Crown 3YO semi-finals last night at Bendigo and then drew gates one (Heavens Trend) and eight (Rocknroll Magic) for the $185,000 final. “I don’t like comparing them too much. They’re lovely horses in their own right,” Tonkin said. The barrier draw result is intriguing. Heavens Trend clearly has the advantage from the pole and TAB has reacted by installing her $1.65 favourite for next Sunday’s final at Tabcorp Park Melton. Rocknroll Magic will trail her more fancied stablemate and is currently $3 to win the final. “She’s been unbelievable. It’s been a long, long season for her and for her to run the way she ran tonight is just unbelievable,” said Craig Cameron, who bred Rocknroll Magic (by Rock N Roll Heaven out of All The Magic) and now races the filly with a big ownership group. “She’s only a tiny little horse but she’s all champ.” VIDEO: EXCITED OWNERS OF ROCKNROLL MAGIC Heavens Trend went around $1.50 favourite last night in the First Semi-Final and after punching the breeze for the first 500m Gavin Lang took her to the front at the mile, Chris Alford happy to take cover on initial leader Dancingwithsierra. After coasting through a 61.3secs first half, Lang and Heavens Trend only really quickened considerably from the quarter pole, the filly covering the last split in 26.6secs for a 1:55.9 mile rate. At the wire Heavens Trend had 7.3m to spare over Mark Purdon’s My Mackenzie, who came from three-pegs, with Rockstar Angel in third for Michael Bellman after weaving a passage from well back on the inside. Dancingwithsierra dead-heated for fourth with Whirily School, the latter, also from the Stewart yard, fighting on gamely after sitting parked for the final mile. “I thought (she) did a good job, too,” Tonkin said of Whirily School. VIDEO: CLAYTON TONKIN TALKS ABOUT HIS FILLIES Queenslander Get In The Groove, who last year won a Breeders Crown Semi, qualified for the final by finishing sixth for driver Luke McCarthy. Rocknroll Magic came from behind in the run to win her Semi-Final, Lang extricating her off the pegs from barrier eight early before settling sixth in the running line. At the 500m Lang made his move, easing wide to get within striking distance of race leader Luisanabelle Midfrew and the breezing Nikkibadwagon. In the stretch once Lang shook up the $3.20 favourite, Rocknroll Magic rounded up the leaders and scored by 1.6m in a rate of 1:56.4. The last half-mile was trekked in 56.3. MARKETS: TAB BREEDERS CROWN FIXED ODDS Nikkibadwagon was brave in second after facing the breeze throughout, while Just Rockon Bye finished third after showing blistering gate speed to lead from five before handing up to Luisanabelle Midfrew, who ran fourth. Gina Grace appreciated the pole position draw and qualified in fifth, while Ilikemillie scraped into the final by closing late for sixth. Lang revealed late last night he would drive Heavens Trend in the Crown final. "Her heat run was very good and she was good again tonight so it all augers well for next week," he said. Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

Tasmanian harness racing owner-trainer Wayne Campbell would have been bitterly disappointed had his two-year-old gelding Buster William not furnished into the horse he is today given his breeding. While last Sunday night's win in Launceston was his first he showed enough at his first eight starts to suggest that winning would be a formality. In Launceston on Sunday night the gelded son of Rocknroll Heaven delivered the goods, scoring by over a metre from race leader Dromana Beach with Sweptunderdacarpet a game third. Campbell bred Buster William from his former classy filly Maggie Kennedy, a winner of 10 races including the Bandbox Stakes and she also was a Tasmanian Oaks placegetter. "Maggie Kennedy was a pretty good mare and this is her first foal,"Campbell said. "He (Buster William) is an honest little fella who deserved the win because he's been racing against the really good ones and been very competitive.'' Campbell makes a point of only breeding every second year, a process that has proven successful. "If I didn't do it (breed every other years) I'd end up with too many horses. "I just do it for a hobby - if I bred every year I couldn't feed them all." Buster William had to do a bit of work early from his wide front-row draw (6) but driver Mark Yole eventually worked his charge to the death, outside of Dromana Beach. The $1.20 favourite looked set to win easily half-way up the home straight but when he hit the front he switched off and only- scored by just over a ,metre from Dromana Beach. Yole said he didn't pull Buster William's ear plugs until he had to but when he switched off he quickly reached down the sulky shaft and pulled the cord to release the deafeners and that sparked him up again. Peter Staples

Nichols, N.Y. -- First-time starter Rock the Boat ($4.30) dropped jaws in his career debut on Friday (July 29) evening at Tioga Downs, dominating eight other harness racing 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings in his $37,966 New York Sire Stakes event in going-away fashion.   Jim Marohn, Jr. was patient early with the royally-bred son of Rock N Roll Heaven and Tug River Princess, stalking comfortably behind an early charge led by 100-1 outsider This Is My Song (Aaron Byron), who pushed clear from post 9 through a :26.4 initial quarter. With a circuit to go, Rock the Boat powered clear from fourth, making up nearly five lengths to overtake This Is My Song on approach to the clubhouse turn.   After pulling the pace back through a :56.3 half, Rock the Boat braced for a first-over bid from Pointomygranson (Jim Morrill, Jr.), but accelerated in kind through a :27.4 third quarter. Once Pointomygranson's bid concluded, the main danger for Rock the Boat was Very Special Agent (Jason Bartlett), who switched off cover to keep the pressure on just above the eighth pole. Rock the Boat accelerated away while kept to task, mounting a 3-1/4 length margin en route to a 1:52.4 victory. Very Special Agent maintained runner-up honors, while Octane Blue Chip (Phil Fluet) emerged off third-over cover to claim third.   Ross Croghan trains Rock the Boat for the Let It Ride Stables, Inc. and Mr. Dana Parham.   Sons of Roll With Joe captured the other two Sire Stakes splits on the 13-race card for trainer Ron Burke, with Miso Fast ($2.50, part of entry) and Rock It Scott ($5.80) prevailing in their respective events.   Miso Fast, a son of Roll With Joe and Sakura Hanover, used a second-over trip behind Thrdthrsdaynsptmbr (Ken Holliday) to work closer to pacesetter Windsong Napoleon (Scott Coulter) on the far turn before vaulting to the fore off the corner. Jim Morrill, Jr. drove Miso Fast to a 1:53.1 victory over stablemate Offdahook Bluechip (Joe Bongiorno), while Windsong Napoleon checked in a worn-down third.   Rock It Scott had a more eventful journey, yielding to an aggressive Music Is Art (Morrill) on approach to the clubhouse turn before retaking and sprinting off by 4-1/2 lengths in the final quarter of a 1:54.1 mile under Joe Bongiorno. The son of Roll With Joe and Vanite Semalu held clear of a late bid from runner-up Willie Joe Hill (Patrick Lachance), while Americanfirewater (Marohn) saved third from a tracking trip   Jason Bartlett led all drivers with four wins on the 13-race card, while Morrill tallied three.   Live racing returns to Tioga Downs on Saturday (July 30) evening, with a 12-race card due to commence at 6:30 p.m. Eastern.   by James Witherite

One of Australia’s top three-year-old fillies Rocknroll Magic looks to have a stranglehold on the Sky Racing Southern Cross harness racing three-year-old fillies final (2230m) this Saturday night at Globe Derby Park. The Emma Stewart-trained filly won the two-year-old Southern Cross final at Port Pirie last year and will be at a prohibitive quote to repeat the victory in this season’s three-year-old version at Globe Derby Park. A money-back $1 favourite, Rocknroll Magic, driven by Mark Billinger, had no trouble leading from gate one and set a pedestrian 33.0 first quarter before stepping it up with 31.3, 29.1 then a sizzling 27.9 to dash away and scored by 9-1/2 metres from Swaffham Water ($41.10) and Queen of Sharkz ($12) a metre away third. Managing part-owner Bruce Cameron said he was pleased the daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven had an easy run recording a mile rate of 2.01.9. “She has had a big campaign and still has the Breeders Crown to come,” Cameron said. “Mark drove her beautifully and all is on track for this week’s final.” Billinger said Rocknroll Magic was a wonderful filly to drive. “She is running good sectionals, then you hardly breathe and she peels off a 27 quarter,” Billinger said. “There is no doubting her quality.” While Rocknroll Magic appears to have a mortgage on the final, the second semi-final on Saturday night produced a great story. Trainer-driver Ryan Hryhorec purchased the filly Lily Thesinger for just $2500 and in three starts for the stable the filly has already picked up nearly $10,000. “When I bought her I was thinking we would try to pick up a Vicbred bonus to cover the cost,” Hryhorec said. “I didn’t really plan to run her in the Southern Cross but one of the new owners said why not so I threw her in.” Lily Thesinger won her heat the previous Saturday night, then on Saturday, was a $5.50 chance from gate four but began quickly and Hryhorec took her to the front. Just Wantano ($3 into $1.80 favourite), driven by Dani Hill, came across strongly from gate five and really kept the pressure on and after as 31.8 first quarter stepped up for a 29.9 and 28.1 second and third quarters before coming home in 29.2. Lily Thesinger answered the challenge and drew away in the home straight to score by 1-/2 metres from Morning Stories ($18.40) and Just Wantano fading to be 5-1.2 metres away third. “She really has surprised me,” Hryhorec said. “I never expected her to be doing this, she has just kept improving.” by Graham Fischer Race programme for Globe Derby Park, Saturday 30 July 2016

The Queensland Oaks has been robbed of interest following the scratching of harness racing favourite Rockmemama. Sawyers Gully trainer Darryl Thomas reluctantly made the call to withdraw his star pupil from Saturday’s Albion Park feature today (Thursday) owing to the filly having a high temperature. A last start winner of the Gr.1 NSW Breeders Challenge at Menangle on June 26, the Rock N Roll Heaven filly was installed as the favourite with UBET bookies after landing gate three. “We were all set to travel up today but after we did all our cross checks, she had spiked with a temperature and therefore we couldn’t take any chances with her so we scratched. It’s disappointing but she always come first, we’re grateful with what she’s already done this season with two feature race victories.” Thomas said. It remains unclear at this stage whether Rockmemama will be retired or race on next season with a decision to be made following her immediate spell. Rockmemama has won 6 of her 10 career starts, all six victories have come this season while banking more than $136,000 in prizemoney. “This filly has battled injuries and setback throughout her career and was considered that we would retire her after the Queensland Oaks but she will have a really good break and then we will reassess when her break is over. “If she spells well and looks ready for another campaign, then we will give her another opportunity with the four-year-old mares races the primary target but that will depend on her, if it happens then it will happen.”Rockmemama is raced by her breeder, Max Deckert. Star New Zealand filly Nek Time is now a clear favourite to claim her maiden Group One victory with UBET bookies pricing her as a$1.90 elect.A dominant winner last week of the Gold Coast Oaks, the Terry and Glenys Chmiel prepared filly has drawn nicely in gate three following the scratching of Rockmemama. Champion reinsman Dexter Dunn will again take the drive on Nek Time in the 2138m feature. The scratching of the horse paves the way for first emergency Vinland to gain a start in the race. Chris Barsby

Harness racing connections of the Group 1 three-year-old fillies winner at Tabcorp Park Melton tonight have every reason to rock’n’roll all night long after adding the Empire Stallions Vicbred Super Series Group 1 title to their talented charge’s list of achievements. Favourite Rocknroll Magic delivered Emma Stewart’s Smythes Creek stable the first of three Group 1 wins for the night, when in Gavin Lang’s hands the filly strode four-wide and gobbled them up in the straight. “She’s been going gangbusters this preparation, great effort to get over a good quality line-up tonight,” Lang said. Connections admitted concern when Barry and Aaron Dunn’s in-form flyer, Nikkibadwagon, found her way to the front, with Rocknroll Magic some way adrift and with plenty of work to do. But Lang found a good sit on stablemate Celebrity Guest to round the field and, come the straight, blazed past Nikkibadwagon to win by 4.5m in a 1:56.9 mile rate. “Nikkibadwagon, once she found the lead, I didn’t know if we would be able to round her up,” Lang said. “Full credit to this little girl, she has got a great motor. “Great breed this one that Bruce Cameron has put together. He introduces a lot of owners, they really enjoy it.” Cameron, breeder and part-owner, heads a huge ownership group who delighted in their filly by Rock N Roll Heaven out of All The Magic’s success. “It’s been great tonight. We have people who have come from Tasmania, Victoria, New South Wales, Adelaide – and they are all here to have a great time to see this little filly get her well-deserved Group 1 win,” Cameron said. “This filly’s ability has shone through tonight to be able to nail a Group 1.”  Michael Howard Harness Racing Victoria

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