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Star reinsman Ryan Warwick chalked up his 100th winner for the season when he drove Hasani to a hard-fought victory in a 2536m event at Gloucester Park on Tuesday night and he is quietly confident of keeping up the good work by steering Bettor Aim to victory in the Better Your Industry With TABtouch Pace on Friday night. Hasani, a promising Courage Under Fire five-year-old prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, was Warwick’s only drive on Tuesday night and came after he and the Bonds landed a treble with Ana Afreet, Our Alfie Romeo and Mighty Conqueror at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon. The Bond camp and Warwick will have a comparatively quiet night on Friday night with three runners Courage Tells, Bettor Aim and Mitch Maguire and Warwick declared that Bettor Aim would prove hard to beat, saying with typical conservatism: “He’ll be thereabouts.” Bettor Aim, a New Zealand-bred four-year, has raced exclusively in Western Australia and, with Warwick in the sulky in all of his 18 starts for eight wins, three seconds and two thirds, has a bright future. Bettor Aim, who is handily drawn at No. 3 on the front line, finished last in a field of nine at his latest appearance, last Friday fortnight when he began from barrier nine, raced four wide early and then raced roughly when he contacted his own sulky. He then was hampered by a flat tyre, which was punctured 600m from home. Therefore there were many valid excuses for the failure. A week earlier he led and won very easily from Better Be Lively over 1730m and at his previous outing he finished stoutly to be second to Handsandwheels over 2130m. 40-year-old Warwick holds a commanding lead in the WA drivers’ premiership table, with 100 wins from 259 drives a winning percentage of 38.5 which is, by far, the best in Australia this season. He has now topped the century five seasons in a row 124 wins in 2014-15 (a winning percentage of 52), 124 (53.9%) in 2015-16, 176 (55.7%) in 2016-17 and 135 (59.3%) in 2017-18. Warwick’s 100 wins gives him a big lead on the WA premiership table over Chris Lewis (71 wins) and Gary Hall Jnr (63). Asked if he dreamt of heading the WA list for the first time this year, Warwick replied: “I’m not too worried about it. I never thought I was good enough to win a premiership, to be honest. But Greg (Bond) is pushing hard for it. It’s an ambition of Greg’s for me to be leading driver. “I work more on strike rates. If my strike rate is good, I’m happy. If I drove 50 winners and was running at 30 per cent I’d be stoked. As long as I’m fit and healthy I’ll keep driving, but I don’t see myself still driving at 65.” Warwick drove his first winner at 16 or 17 years of age when he was successful behind Neurology (trained by his father Colin) at Northam. He named Lookslikelightning as the best horse he has driven and the Glenn Pellew-trained Three Half Whites as the fastest he has sat behind. “When you start comparing them with all the outstanding Bond-trained horses, it gets too hard,” Warwick said. “Mitch Maguire is quick and so is El Jacko. Ana Malak is good and so is Dodolicious, Galactic Star and many, many others.” Warwick drove Ana Malak to victory in the Group 1 Four-Year-Old Classic and the Group 1 Golden Nugget late last year and he was excited at driving that horse’s full-brother Ana Afreet, a three-year-old colt, at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon.           Ana Afreet made a splendid debut in the 2185m event, winning a helter-skelter affair in which a couple of horses galloped in the first lap and another ran off the pegs. Ana Afreet settled in sixth position and after avoiding interference he took the sit behind the pacemaker and then moved off the pegs 500m from home, dashed to the front at the 420m mark and raced away to win by five lengths from Tuakana, with a final quarter in 28.8sec. “There was a lot of traffic and a lot of scenarios that were thrown at him,” Warwick said. “It was his first start in a race and he didn’t seem fazed by any of them. The ability is there and I was pleased with his effort. He and Ana Malak look identical and their attitudes are laid back. You don’t even know that they are stallions; they’re very similar, very chilled out. They save their energy and don’t do anything stupid.” Warwick also said that he was delighted at the progress being shown by Mighty Conqueror, who showed commendable adaptability and composure to overcome difficulties before winning at Pinjarra on Monday. He started off 20m in a 2631m stand and settled in sixth position in the breeze, six lengths from the leader Rocknroll Beachboy before he broke gear, became unbalanced and galloped after a lap. He lost a couple of lengths before returning to a pace and then continued in the breeze before getting to the front 470m from home and holding on to win from Tactile Sensation. That was Mighty Conqueror’s eighth win from 12 starts. While Warwick has posted his century, Greg and Skye Bond are poised to reach this milestone. They have had 278 starters this season for 99 wins in WA and lead the trainers’ premiership table from Gary Hall Snr and Ross Olivieri, who have each prepared 45 winners this season.   Ken Casellas

Smart pacers El Jacko and Vultan Tin have developed a keen rivalry this season and their clash in the $25,000 Westral Outdoor Patio Blinds Pace over 2130m will be a highlight of the ten-event program at Gloucester Park on Friday night. El Jacko, prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, produced an eye-catching performance when a fast-finishing second to Vultan Tin in the Group 2 City of Perth Cup last Friday night and he has excellent prospects of turning the tables on his arch rival this week. Leading reinsman Ryan Warwick resumes as El Jacko’s driver this week after handling stablemates in El Jacko’s past five starts. Warwick and El Jacko have formed as powerful combination, with Warwick in the sulky at 14 of the New Zealand-bred six-year-old’s 17 wins in Western Australia. El Jacko is the only runner on the back line in Friday night’s race and Warwick will have many tactical options. Vultan Tin, to be driven by Chris Voak for Coolup part-owner and trainer Phil Costello, will start from the No. 4 barrier and Voak looks set to take advantage of the seven-year-old’s good gate speed. Vultan Tin set the pace from barrier two in last week’s Cup. He had an easy time and was not challenged in front. After leisurely opening quarters of the final mile in 31.1sec. and 29.3sec. Vultan Tin sprinted over the final 400m sections in 28.2sec. and 27.8sec. as he strolled to a two-length victory over El Jacko. El Jacko, driven by Dylan Egerton-Green, started from the back line and raced in seventh position in the one-wide line. He was six wide on the home turn, ninth at the 100m mark and eighth with 60m to travel as he flew home into second place. He made up three lengths on Vultan Tin in the straight. Vultan Tin and El Jacko should again fight out the finish this week as their trainers prepare them for an assault on Group 2 $50,000 features in the next few weeks the RWWA Cup, Governor’s Cup and Pinjarra Cup.  Apart from El Jacko, the Bond stable will be represented in this week’s Free-For-All by Mitch Maguire (Nathan Turvey) and Our Jimmy Johnstone (Egerton-Green). Byford trainer Ross Olivieri has three runners, Mr Mojito (Shannon Suvaljko), Im Full of Excuses (Chris Lewis) and Itz Bettor To Win (Stuart McDonald), who have drawn barriers one, two and three, respectively.  Capel trainer Andrew de Campo is hoping for a strong forward showing from Handsandwheels (Aiden de Campo) and Blythewood trainer Michael Brennan will be represented by veteran The Bucket List (Michael Grantham).     Handsandwheels ran home determinedly from sixth at the bell to finish third in the City of Perth Cup, and The Bucket List was tenth at the bell before surging home, out wide, into fifth place. Ken Casellas

New Zealand-bred pacers Hasani and Caviar Star were two of the most impressive winners last Friday night and their clash in the $30,000 Cowden The Insurance Brokers Im Themightyquinn Pace should provide one of the highlights on Friday night’s ten-event program at Gloucester Park. Neither pacer was extended in winning over 2130m, with Caviar Star giving a brilliant performance to race three wide for the first 600m and then in the breeze before careering away to win by two lengths from Touch of Success. His time of 2min. 34.5sec. was superior than the 2min. 35.1sec. recorded by Hasani.  However, Hasani makes strong appeal as the winner this week, given the fact that he has drawn perfectly at barrier one on the front line, with Caviar Star drawn at the No. 2 barrier on the back line. Ryan Warwick, who drives Hasani for the powerful Greg and Skye Bond stable, is sure to take full advantage of the superior barrier by giving the lightly-raced Courage Under Fire gelding the task of leading all the way. Hasani possesses excellent gate speed and should be capable of holding out  Roman Aviator (barrier three) after the mobile barrier releases the field. Hasani is a five-year-old who has raced only 13 times for seven wins, four seconds and a third and he looks set for a bright career. Caviar Star, trained by Gary Hall Snr, is a four-year-old who has won at seven of his 19 starts and reinsman Gary Hall jnr was full of praise after his victory last week, saying: “He’s still a bity of a baby in the head, but he’s got speed and toughness and that will get him a long way.” Four-year-old Roman Aviator, trained and driven by Aldo Cortopassi, boasts a splendid record of 30 starts for nine wins, seven seconds and a third and he should be prominent. Eight-year-old Machrie is racing enthusiastically for Pinjarra trainer Chris King, and though he has a losing sequence of 38, he has sound place prospects from the inside of the back line. He ran home strongly from last at the bell when third behind Hasani and Anime last Friday night. Ken Casellas

Champion trainers Greg and Skye Bond are poised to set a record by preparing the first horse to win the $50,000 The West Australian Nights of Thunder at Gloucester Park on Friday night from the outside barrier. They are pinning their hopes on classy four-year-old Bettor Aim, the least experienced runner in the Group 2 feature event whose prospects diminished slightly when he drew the outside (No. 9) barrier. No pacer has been successful from either barrier eight or nine in the 12-year history of the 1730m event but Bettor Aim was so dominant in winning one of the three qualifying heats last Friday night that he should be able to overcome the significant disadvantage of the wide draw. Bettor Aim started from the No. 2 barrier, dashed to the front after 200m and gave his rivals little chance when he set a scorching pace in his heat in which he won by just over three lengths from Bettor Be Lively, rating 1.52.4, a time faster than that recorded by the winner of the 12 finals. The 400m sections of the heat whizzed by in 27.6sec., 27.8sec., 27.9sec. and 29.3sec. The race record rate of 1.53 was set by Mohegan Sun when he enjoyed the one-out, one-back trail and finished strongly to beat the pacemaker Ti Amo Franco three years ago. The Bonds have an excellent record in the Nights of Thunder, winning the race from awkward draws with Quick Draw McCaw from barrier five in 2008 and with Ohokas Bondy from barrier seven in 2012. Both those winners started at 13/2 and were driven by Colin Brown.   Quick Draw McCaw, trained by Greg Bond, began speedily and set the pace before winning by a neck from Glitzy Miss. Four years later, Ohokas Bondy, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, was restrained at the start, was seventh with 600m to travel and fifth on the home turn before finishing powerfully to win by a half-length from stablemate Dundee Three, with other stablemates Seel N Print (barrier four) and Nimrod (barrier three) finishing eighth and ninth, respectively. Bettor Aim, to be driven by leading reinsman Ryan Warwick, raced four times in New Zealand for one win. That victory was as a three-year-old in his final appearance in New Zealand when he revealed his undoubted ability as a sprinter when he led early from barrier one, then raced three back on the pegs and moved to the breeze with 900m to travel before bursting to the front at the 150m mark and easily beating the favourite Ohanzee, rating 1.56.7 over 1950m at Addington in April of last year, with a final quarter in 27.9sec. He boasts an outstanding record in Western Australia seven wins, one second and one fifth (behind stablemate Ana Malak in the Golden Nugget championship last month). A wide barrier in the Nights of Thunder in 2015 contributed to the disappointment for the Bond camp when Our Jimmy Johnstone started favourite at 6/4 from barrier No. 6 and finished sixth behind Soho Lennon after racing four wide early and then in the breeze. In the final the following year, the Bond-trained Phoenix Warrior was a 2/1 favourite from the No. 1 barrier. But he broke in the early stages and finished last. The stable also has had two third placegetters in the Nights of Thunder final --- Pablito in 2009 and Bettor Offer in 2017. One of Bettor Aim’s toughest opponents on Friday night is likely to be Benhope Rulz, the only other four-year-old in the race. Benhope Rulz, prepared by Hall of Fame trainer Gary Hall Snr, has won at nine of his 24 starts and impressed in a qualifying heat last week when he began out wide at barrier seven, raced wide early and then in the one-out, one-back position before finishing strongly to be second to Mattjestic Star. Benhope Rulz will be handled by Gary Hall Jnr who is in dazzling form and has driven ten winners in the past week. Hall Snr will also be represented by Bettor Vision (Stuart McDonald) who led early and then trailed the pacemaker when a fighting third to Bettor Aim last Friday night. The five-year-old boasts a fine record of 30 starts for nine wins, seven seconds and five thirds.           The master trainer has a wonderful record in the Nights of Thunder with four winners (Tealsby Karita, Hokonui Ben, Soho Lennon and Mohegan Sun) as well as two second and three third placegetters. The oldest and most experienced runner in Friday night’s final is the Julie O’Neill-trained eight-year-old Mattjestic Star, who notched his 17th victory from 127 starts when he charged home from fifth at the 100m mark to win convincingly from Benhope Rulz and As Happy As Larry in the opening qualifying heat, rating 1.53.4. Mattjestic Star will begin from the No. 6 barrier and Darren Kerr will employ similar sit-sprint tactics on Friday night. Kerr has happy memories of driving Scan Air to a thrilling victory over hot favourite Scruncher in the 2010 Nights of Thunder final. Scan Air was eighth at the bell and flew home to overhaul the pacemaking Scruncher in the final 25 metres. Henley Brook trainer-reinsman Robbie Williams has high hopes of winning with As Happy As Larry, who has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier. As Happy As Larry revealed great gate speed from barrier three last week before setting a scorching pace and wilting only over the final stages. Williams is sure to take full advantage of the inside draw and As Happy As Larry will take plenty of catching.   Ken Casellas

Rising talent Saying Grace has come up with the ace draw in the JP's Sportsbar 3YO + Pace, the third event on a stellar card of harness racing this Friday night at Gloucester Park. He has won at his previous three runs, showing an astonishing turn of foot on each occasion to secure victory. The American Ideal five-year-old gelding will look to repeat his last-start performance where he was able to lead all the way over the 2130m trip. This is the stiffest opposition he has met since crossing the Tasman, but he looks up to the task - and the clock backs that up. He recorded a 1:56.7 mile rate last Friday, getting home in a blistering 27.7 final quarter. He was eased up approaching the winning post and the deafeners were still firmly fixed. Regular reinsman Ryan Warwick retains the drive and this looks a perfect opportunity for Saying Grace to shore up his stocks for next month’s Fremantle Pacing Cup and the WA Pacing Cup. His seven opponents all possess well-credentialled records and must be respected. Itz Bettor To Win, a sound fourth behind Our Max Phactor last week, will have the option to drop in behind Saying Grace at the start. Rock Diamonds, stablemate to the polemarker, had an unfortunate trip last outing and will be a likely improver this week. The same can be said of Kiwi Legend to his immediate outside, who suffered from gear problems first-up off a 20-month layoff. El Jacko  was gathered in late last time when leading and would need to lift to win. Maczaffair, with champion reinsman Gary Hall Jr in the bike for the first time, and Waylade were both comfortably defeated by Rocknroll Lincoln last start. They, along with Costa Del Magnifico, who was unable to run home last start in a lesser race, have the job ahead to defeat favourite and likely leader Saying Grace.   Hayden King

The Warwick family, famous in harness racing, has a strong affinity with the Christmas Gift and at Gloucester Park on Friday night Ryan Warwick will be all out to join his late grandfather, his father, uncle and cousin on the honour board of the Group 2 feature event. The 40-year-old Warwick will drive Saying Grace, an up-and-coming star who is prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond and is sure to start a short-priced favourite after drawing favourably at barrier No. 2 on the front line in the 2130m $50,000 Christmas Gift. Saying Grace arrived in Western Australia from New Zealand just three months ago and has established an enviable reputation, with his first eight starts in the State producing five wins and two seconds after a first-up failure when he was finishing powerfully to move into second place and was looking the winner before he broke into a fierce gallop 220m from home. He has won eight of his past 11 starts, including victories at his final three appearances in New Zealand in August this year. Warwick is in dazzling form in the sulky with 83 wins from 176 drives in WA this season to hold a lead of 30 over his nearest rival Chris Lewis in the Statewide drivers’ premiership table. His grandfather Bill Warwick trained Swanky Lobell, who was driven by his (Ryan’s) father Colin when he won the 1986 Christmas Gift from Prince Feisal and Maxwell Hook. Colin also was in the sulky when Trunkey Limousine, trained by his brother Trevor (Ryan’s uncle), won the Christmas Gift from The Prospectus and Simeon Bay in 1989. Trevor Warwick also won the Christmas Gift as a trainer and driver with Innocent Mac (1995) and Hy Falutin (1999). Justin Warwick, Trevor’s son and Ryan’s cousin, trained and drove Ted Barry when he won the 1998 Christmas Gift from Michael Leslie and Plenty of Cash. Justin then drove Lord Miles to victory over The Die Is Cast and Chivalrous Fella in the 2001 Gift. Saying Grace warmed up for Friday night’s race in superb style last Friday night when he started out wide at barrier eight in a heat of the Gift. He raced three wide for the first 300m and then in the breeze outside the pacemaker and 5/2 on favourite Kimani before slipping into overdrive and forging to the front 380m from home. He sprinted over the final quarters in 27.7sec. and 27.8sec. and was not extended in winning by 4m from Kimani. The powerful Bond stable will also be represented in this year’s Christmas Gift by evergreen 11-year-old Courage Tells, who will start from the inside of the back line with Dylan Egerton-Green in the sulky. A veteran of 201 starts, Courage Tells is racing enthusiastically and should enjoy a perfect passage throughout. The Bonds have won the Christmas Gift with Motu Treasure in 2010 and Russley Rascal in 2011. Russley Rascal, a 7/2 chance driven by Colin Brown, beat stablemates Dundee Three (13/4) and Talk It Up (a $95 tote outsider). The Christmas Gift, first run in 1963, is one of very few feature events that has eluded champion reinsman Chris Lewis. He will drive smart mare Madame Meilland, who is prepared by Ross Olivieri, who has won the race with Savette in 1992 and Im A Peregrine in 2015.  Madame Meilland, an excellent third to Saying Grace and Kimani last week, is awkwardly drawn at barrier six. Hall of Fame trainer Gary Hall Snr has won the event a record six times with Nixons Creed (1993), Allioop (2004), McRaes Mate (2007), Livingontheinterest (2012), Toretto (2013) and Herrick Roosevelt (2017). His only runner this year, Kimani, has had seven starts in his current campaign for one win and five seconds. He faces a stern test from out wide at barrier eight. Walkinshaw, trained at Mt Helena by Ray Williams, was an unlucky short half-head second to Herrick Roosevelt in last year’s Gift and he is sure to prove one of Saying Grace’s toughest rivals on Friday night. A winner of six races from 37 starts in New Zealand and nine from 20 starts in WA, Walkinshaw is sure to be prominent from barrier five. He sustained a powerful three-wide burst over the final 1000m to snatch victory from Debt Free Charlie last Friday night. The Mike Reed-trained The Art Form and the Annie Belton-trained Gotta Go Gabbana are racing keenly, but will need plenty of luck from awkward draws.   Ken Casellas

Star four-year-old Ana Malak has delivered trainers Greg and Skye Bond their first win in the Group 1 Retravision-Golden Nugget (2536m) and led home a first five for the in-form trainers. Following his tough win in the 4YO Classic a fortnight ago, Ana Malak was again the one to beat for last night’s feature after he drew barrier one earlier in the week. With six runners in the race, the Bond stable were able to dictate how the race was run and had the first four in running for much of the event. Ana Malak had a comfortable time in front, while Mighty Conqueror sat outside of him in the breeze, with Bettor Aim and Bright Diamond the next pair in running. The son of Bettors Delight held off a game Mighty Conqueror in the run to the finish, winning by a short half-head and rated 1.57.5. The outsider of the six Bond runners Fizzing ran home strongly for third, ahead of Bright Diamond and Bettor Aim. Golden State was the first of the non-Bond runners across the line in sixth position. Winning reinsman Ryan Warwick, who brought up his second success in the Group 1 feature last night, paid tribute to Ana Malak’s toughness. “Around the corner I was going really well and I thought I had the other horse off the bit,” he said. “I probably tried to kick away too early. “Because he hasn’t done a lot of racing, he probably gets caught looking around…the other horse (Mighty Conqueror) was really game. “If you flip the draws around, you flip the result around.” WATCH: Ana Malak's Nugget Win Here Ana Malak is now expected to progress towards next month’s Fremantle and WA Pacing Cups, where he may be joined by Galactic Star, who is engaged in tonight’s Inter Dominion Final. Warwick takes the drive on the six-year-old from barrier one and said he’s yet to make his mind up on whether he would try and hold the front or hand up to one of his rivals. Saying Grace was the Bond’s other winner on the evening, taking out the third heat of the Christmas Gift. Meanwhile, Rocknroll Lincoln showed why he would be a force to be reckoned with in the upcoming Pacing Cups, taking out the Retravision Free-For-All Pace (2130m). Fresh from his win in the Bunbury Cup a fortnight ago, Rocknroll Lincoln was able to find the front comfortably from barrier two. Vultan Tin ensured the Justin Prentice-trained pacer wouldn’t get it his own way in front, putting pressure on his outside. Rocknroll Lincoln showed his class in the closing stages though, pulling away to win by 5m to Vultan Tin. Reinsman Gary Hall Jnr said he was confident the five-year-old would measure up in the feature events next month and gave a strong indication he would stick with him, given Chicago Bull would be absent from those races. “He’s got a great characteristic where can do what I tell him to do and drop the bit,” he said. “When you really ask him, the speed is there and the toughness is there. “They say everything happens for a reason, so I’m hoping that this guy is the reason behind Bull’s demise. “As unfortunate as that was, I’m pretty happy to team up with this guy.” Tim Walker

Ryan Warwick is driving with wonderful aggression and skill and punters who believe in omens will support him to win the opening event, the Retravision Christmas Gift first heat, at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He will handle evergreen veteran Courage Tells, who is favourably drawn at the No. 2 barrier in the field of nine in the 2130m event. Warwick was also in the sulky behind Courage Tells in the corresponding meeting 12 months ago when the gelding, a rank outsider at $114.50, finished boldly from four back on the pegs at the bell to win from Johnny Disco and Three Blind Mice. The 11-year-old Courage Tells, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, has been a consistent performer throughout his 200-start career which has produced 33 wins (two in New Zealand, eight in Victoria, seven in New South Wales and 16 in Western Australia) as well as 50 placings for earnings of $339,093. Courage Tells was far from disgraced in a 2631m stand at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon when he raced five back on the pegs and finished strongly to be third behind Tanaka Eagle and Importer Exporter. At Pinjarra the previous Monday Courage Tells took the lead in the middle stages and won by almost three lengths from Sweet N Fast, with a final 800m in 56.7sec. Warwick is enjoying an outstanding season and has already chalked up 81 wins from 171 drives to be the State’s leading driver, 34 wins ahead of Chris Lewis. The Bonds also are setting a cracking pace on the trainers’ premiership table, with 78 winners from 168 starters a lead of 51 over their nearest rival, Gary Hall Snr. Courage Tells cannot be disregarded on Friday night, despite the presence of several in-form pacers, including The Art Form, Gotta Go Gabbana, Carter Micheal and Livura. The Mike Reed-trained The Art Form deserves favouritism and should prove hard to beat from barrier six. The six-year-old has been gallant in defeat at his past two starts when second to Fizzing and second to Tisadream, two excellent efforts following a sequence of six successive victories. The Art Form started from barrier nine last week and settled down in eighth position before he commenced a three-wide run after a lap. He quickly moved into the breeze and fought on determinedly to finish a neck second to the pacemaking Tisadream. Gotta Go Gabbana, the only mare in the field, is racing with tremendous heart for trainer Annie Belton and reinsman Chris Voak and looks set to fight out the finish. The Nathan Turvey-trained pair of Carter Micheal and Livura are racing keenly and are sure to be prominent. Turvey will handle Livura and Jocelyn Young will drive Carter Micheal, who is overdue for a change of fortune after several recent excellent performances. Ken Casellas

Star reinsman Ryan Warwick has fond memories of his first Group 1 driving success when he brought 8/1 chance Gee Whiz Fizz home with a sizzling late burst to snatch a thrilling last-stride, half-head victory over the 2/1 favourite Precious Dylan in the Golden Nugget championship on December 16, 2005. Gee Whiz Fizz, trained in Bunbury by Steve Burton, started from the No. 1 barrier, but was outgunned in the early stages by Precious Dylan and Warwick had to be content to take the trail behind the pacemaker before Gee Whiz Fizz, veering out wide on the track, stormed to the front in a dramatic finish. Warwick, now 40 and at the peak of his powers as a top-flight reinsman, is quite understandably thrilled that Ana Malak has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier for the $200,000 Retravision Golden Nugget for four-year-olds at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The lightly-raced and comparatively inexperienced New Zealand-bred horse, prepared by the State’s leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, is in superb form and Warwick will be looking for an all-the-way success over the 2536m trip and hoping for a less traumatic and spine-tingling finish than he experienced with Gee Whiz Fizz. Ana Malak, who has been successful at six of his eight starts, revealed excellent gate speed from barrier one when he comfortably resisted an early challenge from the speedy Golden State in the $125,000 Yes Loans Four-Year-Old Classic over 2130m last Friday week. Ana Malak dashed over the first quarter of the final mile in 28.8sec. before an easy 30.1sec. second section, followed by two final quarters of 28.4sec. He defied a strong late burst from the fast-finishing Ideal Liner to beat that gelding by a half-neck, with the classy Mighty Conqueror, a stablemate of the winner, surging home with a powerful three-wide burst from second-last in the middle stages to be an eye-catching third. Warwick, the Bonds and part-owner Rob Gartrell will be hoping for an Ana Malak victory before Warwick drives Galactic Star, from the coveted No. 1 barrier in the $500,000 Inter Dominion championship final at Melton on Saturday night. Galactic Star has excellent winning prospects. The Bonds hold a powerful hand in the Golden Nugget. Apart from Ana Malak, they will be represented by Bettor Aim, Mighty Conqueror, Fizzing, Thisbeachrighthere and Bright Diamond. The only previous time a trainer had six runners in a Golden Nugget championship was in 2014 when Gary Hall Snr was represented by Waylade, Majorly Foxy Styx, Classic American, Soho Lennon, A Boy Named Rosie and VC Manoeuvre. Waylade, the 11/8 favourite, raced in 11th position and met with interference in the final circuit before finishing with great determination to be a 2m second to Libertybelle Midfrew. Mighty Conqueror, to be driven by Dylan Egerton-Green from barrier three, has won at seven of his nine starts and is certainly capable of testing Ana Malak. Colin Brown will drive Bettor Aim, a winner at six of his nine starts, from the No. 2 barrier. He possesses great gate speed and is a brilliant frontrunner, but he is unlikely to muster enough early speed to get past Ana Malak and take up the running. Aiden de Campo has been engaged to handle the consistent and improving Fizzing from barrier four, Nathan Turvey will drive Thisbeachrighthere from the outside (No. 9) on the front line and Chris Lewis will be in the sulky behind Bright Diamond, who looks set to enjoy an ideal passage after starting from the inside of the back line. Lewis has been successful in the Golden Nugget with Vero Prince (1987), Flashing Star (1994), Saab (1998) and Dasher VC (2010). Hall has won the Nugget with Valley Champ (as a driver in 1993), The Gold Ace (2011) and Beaudiene Boaz (2015) and he will need plenty of luck with his three runners, Ideal Liner (Gary Hall Jnr), Think About Me (Stuart McDonald) and Benhope Rulz (Clint Hall), all of whom have drawn poorly. Ideal Liner, the least experienced runner in the race, with two wins and a close second to Ana Malak from three starts, has wonderful potential, but his prospects slumped when he drew out wide at barrier eight. Think About Me will be at long odds from the No. 6 barrier and Benhope Rulz faces a massive task from the outside of the back line. Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed has prepared three Nugget winners Tricky Vic (2002), Bonavista Bay (2009) and Libertybelle Midfrew (2014) and he refuses to concede defeat, despite his runner, Golden State, drawing barrier two on the back line, which robs the horse of his greatest asset, his dazzling gate speed. “Golden State can also produce a sparkling sprint,” Reed said. Golden State was shuffled back to ninth at the bell and was 11th at the 250m mark before being hampered for room until the final stages, when he finished full of running to be a splendid fifth behind Ana Malak in the Four-Year-Old Championship. Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri, who has won the Nugget with Saab and Dasher VC, is pinning his faith on Stefsbest, a winner at five of his 20 starts. Stefsbest will start from the No. 5 barrier and will be at liberal odds. The only mare in the race is the Kristian Hawkins trained Dontstopbelievin, who faces a monumental task from barrier seven. This week’s classic has been robbed of considerable interest by the absence of the brilliant Jack Mac, who notched his 16thvictory from 18 starts in Western Australia when he scored a stylish win in a Nugget prelude last Friday night. Jack Mac is suffering from a fractured near fore pedal bone. Ken Casellas

A little-known former New Zealand pacer has emerged as the key player in the A$500,000 Inter Dominion Pacing Final.  Because while former Southland pacer Galactic Star has had a top class career in West Australia, he would rarely have been on the radar of most New Zealand punters, even the serious harness racing players, until this Interdom series in Victoria.  Yet after drawing the ace for Saturday night’s 2760m final at Melton, the attitude of his connections could decide the race.  Galactic Star, who won four races in New Zealand two years ago when trained by Des Baynes, won his first night heat of this series using blazing gate speed and has been very good when placed in his subsequent two heats.  But his impact on the final outcome has been boosted enormously by him drawing barrier one, from where he looks certain to lead.  If driver Ryan Warwick wants to stay in front that will mean no shot at the lead for key front line runners Pat Delight (barrier three), Spankem (five) or Tiger Tara (seven).  It would almost certainly mean plenty of pressure to try and break him and potentially bring a horse like series points leader Cruz Bromac into contention after he fared poorly in the draw, copping the second line  But if Warwick and the Galactic Star’s connections decide the trail is the place to be then either of the well-favoured Kiwis, Pats Delight or Spankem, will fancy their chances of running to the front and therefore becoming the one to beat.   Spankem’s incredible rise throughout this series continued after the draw as he is now the $2.80 favourite for the classic just six weeks after punters could have got $41 for him to win it.  He has thrilled co-trainer Natalie Rasmussen with how he has bounced through his three heats but she has decided to stick with Cruz Bromac as her drive out of loyalty, having driven him five times for five wins.  That means training partner Mark Purdon takes the reins behind Spankem and gives him a shot at a unique piece of Inter Dominion history as he has won the last two pacing finals driving Smolda and Lazarus so could make it a three-peat on three different horses.  Spankem, who won only once last season as a three-year-old, is favourite over Pats Delight and Cruz Bromac still the third favourite even though his task looks enormously more difficult as he won’t be able to use his gate speed.  Gate speed and tactical decisions could also decide the A$150,000 Trotting Final on Saturday, which after the draw looks a two-horse race.  South Auckland trotter Speeding Spur has the advantage of barrier one giving co-trainer and driver Josh Dickie options of whether to stay in front or elects to trail favourite Tornado Valley.  The latter has drawn barrier six and may even have the raw speed to cross Speeding Spur but if the pair lead and trail it looks curtains for their rivals. (THESE FIELDS TO BE BROKEN OUT ON RUNNER PER LINE) The fields for the two Inter Dominion finals to be run at Melton on Saturday night are: $500,000 Inter Dominion Pacing Final, 2760m mobile, 11.45 (NZtime) 1: Galactic Star 2: Can’t Refuse 3: Im Pats Delight 4: Mach Doro 5: Spankem 6: Maximan 7: Tiger Tara 8: San Carlo (1 second line) 9: Cruz Bromac 10: Our Uncle Sam 11: Wrappers Delight 12: Audi Hare (em) 13: Cash N Flow A$150,000 Inter Dominion Trotting Final, 2760m, 11.08 NZtime 1: Speeding Spur 2: Monty Python 3: Save Our Pennys 4: Rompers Monarchy 5: Big Jack Hammer 6: Tornado Valley 7: Sky Petite 8: Illawong Armstrong (1 second line, em) 9: Tough Monarch 10: Kingdom Come 11: Kyvalley Blur 12: Wilmas Mate 13: Red Hot Tooth   Michael Guerin

Five-year-old New Zealand-bred gelding Simba Bromac boasts a winning record of 61 per cent and he has good prospects of making a successful return to racing after a spell when he starts from the No. 2 barrier in the $25,000 Westral Vertical and Panel Blinds Free-For-All at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He will be driven by Chris Lewis for Ravenswood trainer Nathan Turvey and should be prominent against stiff opposition from the three smart pacers from the Forrestdale stables of Greg and Skye Bond, Our Jimmy Johnstone, El Jacko and Rock Diamonds. Simba Bromac, whose 31 starts have produced 19 wins, six seconds and three thirds, warmed up for his first-up assignment in fine style with a dashing win over Chiaroscuro in a 2185m trial at Pinjarra last Sunday morning when he was not asked for an effort until the final stages when he sprinted over the final 400m in 27.7sec. This will be Simba Bromac’s first appearance since he began speedily from barrier seven, set the pace and sprinted over the final quarters in 27.9sec. and 27.3sec. to win by three lengths from Mitch Maguire at a 1.57 rate over 2130m on August 31. Ten-year-old Our Jimmy Johnstone, to be handled by Dylan Egerton-Green, still possesses excellent gate speed and a strong competitive attitude. He will begin from barrier four and looks set to fight out the finish. So, too, does the enigmatic, but highly talented El Jacko, who will be driven by Ryan Warwick from the coveted No. 1 barrier. El Jacko notched his 17th victory from 42 starts last Friday week when he started from the outside of the back line and charged to the front after 550m on his way to a stylish victory over Kimani. Turvey also holds a strong hand in the Westral Timber Blinds Pace in which he will be represented by the polemarker Livura and Carter Micheal at barrier two in the 2130m event. He will handle Carter Micheal and Chris Lewis will be in the sulky behind Livura. Lewis drove Livura to an effortless victory over Bad Round and El Machine, rating 1.57.3 over 2130 at Gloucester Park on Tuesday of last week. That ended a losing sequence of 16 and was the seven-year-old’s 20th win from 87 starts. Carter Micheal is racing with refreshing enthusiasm and looks hard to beat. He raced in seventh position on the pegs and was eighth 100m from the post before he sprinted fast to finish an eye-catching third behind Our Max Phactor over 2130m last Friday night. In what appears to be a highly competitive race, the Greg and Skye Bond-trained Saying Grace will have many admirers after winning at six of his past nine starts. He began off 40m and worked forward in the middle stages to race in the breeze when a close second to Carrera Mach over 2503m at Bunbury last Saturday night. He won easily at Kellerberrin and Pinjarra at his two previous outings.     Ken Casellas

Six-year-old Our Max Phactor arrived in Western Australia completely unheralded at the end of August and has been a revelation under the care of leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, with his 11 starts in the State producing ten wins and a close second placing. And this remarkable run of success follows his modest career in New Zealand where he managed just nine wins from 70 starts. He has also shown exceptional qualities here as a standing-start specialist, with six wins from six stands, whereas he had ten runs in stands in New Zealand for one victory by a nose over the marathon trip of 3150m on the grass track at the spacious Hawera circuit. Ryan Warwick, in dazzling form in the sulky, has driven Our Max Phactor in all his races for the Bond camp and he is hoping that the Art Major gelding will maintain his winning ways when he starts off 20m (virtually 10m because there are no runners off the front) in the Mount Eden-No Dill Christmas Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. However, it is unlikely to be simply a walk in the park for Our Max Phactor, who will clash with other smart New Zealand-bred pacers in Mr Mojito and As Happy As Larry. Mr Mojito, to be driven by Chris Lewis for Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri, will start off 20m at his second appearance after a year’s absence. The six-year-old has raced only 28 times for 11 wins (seven in New Zealand, one in WA and three in Victoria). He resumed racing when he began off the 40m mark in a 2631m event at Pinjarra on Monday of last week when he moved forward in the first lap and then worked hard in the breeze before finishing an excellent first-up second to Saying Grace, with final quarters in 27.8sec. and 27.9sec. Mr Mojito was brought to Perth by ace New Zealand trainer-reinsman Mark Purdon at the end of 2016 when the gelding won the $50,000 Four-Year-Old Championship, beating Nathans Courage at a 1.56.2 rate over 2130m. A week later he was the 2/1 favourite in the Group 1 Golden Nugget, but wrecked his chances by hanging badly and he finished fifth behind Soho Tribeca, Nathans Courage, Chicago Bull and Natural Disaster. Victorian trainer-driver Kerryn Manning brought Mr Mojito to Perth late last year to contest the Inter Dominion Championship series in which he was unplaced in three heats. He has spent the past year in rehabilitation with Olivieri and he has the class to seriously test Our Max Phactor on Friday night. Seven-year-old As Happy As Larry is prepared and driven by Robbie Williams and he has been impressive in four outings since resuming from a spell. He raced wide in the early stages and then had a tough passage in the breeze when a fighting second to Mitch Maguire in a 2503m stand last Friday night. Ken Casellas

Impressive four-year-old Ana Malak has withstood a number of challenges from a star-studded field to hold on and win the Group 1 Yes Loans 4YO Classic (2130m) at Gloucester Park. Ana Malak, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, was having just his second start in Western Australia last night and was able to hold the front from barrier one for reinsman Ryan Warwick. Jack Mac eventually made his move to sit outside the leader with 1200m to go, while the unbeaten Ideal Liner was three pairs back along the inside. Ideal Liner was eventually able to get away from the inside coming to the home turn to give chase to Ana Malak, but the Gary Hall Snr-trained pacer fell short by a head. Mighty Conqueror, another runner from the Bond stable finished third, while Ideal Liner’s stablemate Benhope Rulz was fourth. Warwick said Ana Malak was still learning his craft and would continue to improve with racing. “He was very credible,” he said. “He was off the bit and on the bit. “He was probably doing a bit wrong and he nearly cost himself on the line. “I’m sure there’s more motor then what you saw tonight but he probably doesn’t know how to use it properly.” Winning owner Rob Gartrell paid tribute to the Bond team, who recorded their first success in the $125,000 feature last night. “I haven’t been so nervous for a long time,” he said. “Ryan was really confident we could lead, I was hopeful. “Skye has done a magnificent job, she does a lot of the work with him. “That’s one of the great four-year-old fields.” Of the beaten brigade, reinsman Mark Reed said he was impressed with Golden State’s sharp form turnaround to finish fifth, while Chris Lewis said Jack Mac would take plenty of benefit from his sixth placing heading towards the Golden Nugget on December 14. Ana Malak was one of five winners on the night for the Bond stable and Ryan Warwick. Earlier in the night they teamed up to win the We Say Yes To Commercial Loans Pace (2130m) with Our Max Phactor. Following Ana Malak’s win, Mitch Maguire, Fizzing and Bright Diamond all recorded impressive wins. Fizzing and Bright Diamond were emergencies for the Group 1 feature on the night, but both put forward compelling cases to be included in the field for the Golden Nugget. Mitch Maguire was driven patiently in the standing start event of the evening, before he stormed over the top late to record a win that led to Gartrell describing him as the “fastest horse he had.” The Bond, Warwick and Gartrell combination will be hoping their successful Friday night can transition to Bunbury tonight with Vampiro in the Bunbury Cup, while they also have Galactic Star in Melbourne ahead of the opening night of Inter Dominion heats. Meanwhile, Maczaffair has stamped herself as one of two key contenders for next week’s Group 1 Mares Classic, taking out the $30,000 Howard Porter Memorial for the Mike Reed stable. Mark Reed said there was nothing between Maczaffair and last week’s Norms Daughter winner Eden Franco.   Tim Walker

Ana Malak is an inexperienced and laid-back pacer who has not revealed sparkling gate speed and has not led all the way in any of his seven starts that have produced five wins and two placings. The New Zealand-bred stallion has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier in the $125,000 Yes Loans Four-Year-Old Classic over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night and leading reinsman Ryan Warwick is expected to take full advantage of the draw by attempting to hold up at the start and then set the pace in the Group 1 classic. The exciting son of Bettors Delight has been driven conservatively in his brief career in which he has created a wonderful impression with his tractability and his determination, will to win and brilliant turn of foot. Ana Malak, prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, goes into this week’s race with only one start in Australia in modest company at Pinjarra last Monday week when he was not bustled out from barrier five and settled down in sixth place before enjoying a perfect trail in the one-out, one-back position. Warwick sent him forward with a sizzling burst three wide 650m from home to take the lead 100m later. Ana Malak then careered away from his seven rivals and rated 1.56 over 2185m in winning, unextended, by more than 12 lengths from Eely Point Bomber. The final three quarters were run in 28.7sec., 28.6sec. and 28.2sec. That was his first appearance for three months when he was not driven out hard from barrier five before mustering good early pace to take the lead after 120m. He then surrendered the lead 200m later and sat behind the pacemaker Wrangler before easing off the pegs with 300m to travel and taking the lead 150m later and winning by four and a half lengths at a 1.57.4 rate over 1980m, with a final quarter of 27.8sec. At his previous outing, over 2200m at Invercargill on January 27, Ana Malak gave an outstanding performance to finish second to the brilliant Sheriff. He started from the outside of the back line in a field of 12 and settled down last, almost 15 lengths behind the leader, Sheriff. He was last with 750m to travel and eighth at the 300m before going five wide on the home turn and surging home in grand style. He was not pushed out at the start at any of his four previous starts which produced three easy victories and an excellent dead-heat for third behind Anthem over 1950m at Addington when he was restrained to the rear from barrier five on the back line. The Bonds hold a powerful hand in Friday night’s event and Warwick gave punters a strong lead by electing to drive Ana Malak in preference to Bettor Aim (six wins from nine starts) and Mighty Conqueror (seven wins from eight starts). Warwick’s only success in the Four-Year-Old Classic was behind the Steve Burton-trained Gee Whiz Fizz in 2005. Colin Brown will drive Bettor Aim from the No. 5 barrier and Dylan Egerton-Green will be in the sulky behind Mighty Conqueror from the No. 2 barrier on the back line. Mighty Conqueror has not been extended in winning at each of his four starts in Western Australia. He led and beat Bechers Brook by two and a half lengths in the $50,000 Group 2 Four-Year-Old Championship last Friday week. Gary Hall Snr, who has been successful in the Four-Year-Old Classic eight times with Love of Glory (1990), Valley Champ (1993), Slick Vance (1995), The Falcon Strike (2001), Im Themightyquinn (2008), Waylade (2014), Beaudiene Boaz (2015) and Chicago Bull (2016) has four runners in this year’s classic - Think About Me (barrier two), Benhope Rulz (three), King of Swing (eight) and Ideal Liner (inside of the back line). Gary Hall Jnr has opted to drive the inexperienced Ideal Liner, who should enjoy a perfect passage and is capable of unwinding a spirited finishing burst. Stuart McDonald will drive Think About Me, Clint Hall will handle Behope Rulz and Kim Prentice will handle the 2017 WA Derby winner King of Swing. Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed, who has won the classic with Manageable (1988) and Bonavista Bay (2010), will be represented by Golden State (barrier four) and Bechers Brook (outside of the back line). Mark Reed, son of the trainer, has chosen to drive Golden State, and Shannon Suvaljko has been engaged for Bechers Brook. Initially, Mark Reed has been in two minds about the tactics he will use with Golden State, a winner at seven of his 17 starts and disappointing with last placings at his two latest appearances. “Golden State hasn’t been himself at his past couple of starts and I’m hoping that Dad can turn him around, because if the real Golden State turns up, he would be right in it up to his eyeballs,” he said. “Golden State is very quick out of the gate and I’m not too sure about Ana Malak’s gate speed. “I’m still not sure what I’ll do, but I really wouldn’t mind driving him, sit and kick, so we might drive him for a bit of luck.” Adding to the intrigue of what should be an exciting spectacle is the appearance of Jack Mac, an enigmatic superstar who after five unplaced efforts in New Zealand has raced 16 times in Western Australia for 15 wins and one second placing. Jack Mac has been raced sparingly over the past 12 months and his part-owner and trained Barry Howlett remains reluctant to discuss the horse’s wellbeing and prospects from the outside barrier (No. 9) on the front line. Jack Mac has raced four times this season and has not been fully tested and he certainly has the raw ability to overcome the distinct disadvantage of the outside draw. Chris Lewis, who has driven the horse in all of his 16 WA starts, is a big-race specialist and he is sure to pick the right moment to issue a strong challenge. Lewis has won the Four-Year-Old Classic with Village Kid (1984), Tamai Boy (1985), Vero Prince (1986), Flashing Star (1994) and Saab (1998). He combined with trainer Ross Olivieri for Saab’s win, and Olivieri, who also trained the 2010 winner Crombie, will be hoping for a touch of luck with his talented stallion Stefsbest, who will be handled by Chris Voak from the awkward No. 7 barrier. Stefsbest has been most impressive in winning stylishly at his past three appearances.   Ken Casellas

The all-conquering Greg and Skye Bond stable is in dazzling form and punters will follow their eight runners at Gloucester Park on Friday night with keen interest. All have winning prospects, with, perhaps, Vampiro appearing to be the stable’s brightest prospect, despite drawing the outside barrier (No. 9) in the $25,000 Enrique Aldana Free-For-All over 2130m. Vampiro, a talented New Zealand-bred five-year-old, again will have the services in the sulky of leading reinsman Ryan Warwick, who will have options from the outside barrier. Warwick is likely to give Vampiro time to settle down before choosing the right moment to send him forward into the firing line. Vampiro has been freshened up since he was a stylish winner of the group 2 James Brennan Memorial three Fridays ago when he began fast from barrier three, took up the running after 120m and sped over the final quarters in 28.1sec. and 27.8sec. in beating his Our Jimmy Johnstone at a 1.57.1 rate. That followed his head victory over Maczaffair, rating 1.55.2 in the group 2 Mount Eden Sprint over 1730m two weeks earlier. From barrier six, he raced three wide for the first 350m and then had a tough run outside the pacemaker Maczaffair. Nine-year-old Devendra has drawn perfectly at barrier one and Aiden de Campo (who will be driving the gelding for the first time) is likely to make use of his good gate speed. Another veteran in Sokys Big Bullet is favourably drawn at barrier three and Lindsay Harper appears certain to issue a strong challenge for the early lead. Vampiro’s main dangers appear to be Rocknroll Lincoln (barrier seven), Runrunjimmydunn (eight) and Rock Diamonds (the solitary runner off the back line). Greg and Skye Bond have struck a purple patch and when Warwick drove Thisbeachrighthere to victory at Gloucester Park on Tuesday evening it gave the outstanding trainers nine winners from ten starters, with Warwick driving all those runners. The winning run began at Gloucester Park last Friday night when Galactic Star won race five and Mighty Conqueror race six before Lincs Tiger had no luck when blocked for a clear passage until late when third behind Sunrose Village in race eight. Then the Bonds and Warwick had three starters Bitcoin, The Lightning Strike and Saying Grace for three wins at Kellerberrin on Sunday. Another three runners Starlight Destiny, Ana Malak and Bettor Aim were all successful at Pinjarra on Monday and the winning sequence continued with Thisbeachrighthere on Tuesday. The Bonds hold a commanding lead in the Statewide trainers’ premiership with 59 wins, 17 seconds and 16 thirds from 118 starters to lead from Gary Hall snr (25 wins, 20 seconds and eight thirds from 100 starters). Warwick leads the drivers’ premiership table with 61 winners, 24 ahead of Chris Lewis and 30 more than Dylan Egerton-Green in third place. Apart from Vampiro, the Bond camp will be represented on Friday night by El Jacko, Our Max Phactor, Dodolicious, Rock Diamonds, Fizzing, Lincs Tiger and The Lightning Strike. Ken Casellas

THE Inter Dominion rules have been addressed and top WA trainer Greg Bond has set his sights on Melbourne again. Bond was set to abort his plans with Galactic Star before the Inter Dominion Event Committee (IDEC) agreed to scrap a rule requiring all “visiting” horses to be in Melbourne five days ahead of the opening round of heats. Harness Racing Victoria, Harness Racing NSW and Harness Racing NZ successfully applied to for the rule to be deleted. “Today’s decision further highlights the willingness of our industry’s administrators to listen to participants in order to achieve industry best outcomes,” HRV chairman Dale Monteith said. Importantly, it solves what would have been an ongoing issue for the Auckland series next year and Sydney in 2020. Bond echoed the sentiments of the vast majority of trainers when he applauded the rule change. “Common sense has prevailed and we can all get on with things now,” he said. In Bond’s case, Galactic Star and, possibly Vampiro, were booked on a flight from Perth to Melbourne the Wednesday before the opening round of heats, which would’ve seen them ineligible. That’s because Bond wanted to give at least one of his possible contenders their final lead-up race at Gloucester Park this Friday night and the following Wednesday was the next available flight after that. The rule would also have significantly impacted the growing Kiwi contingent being set for the Inter Dominion trotting and pacing series. “Galactic Star is now a definite and we will decide on Vampiro in the next day or so,” Bond said. “It’s the Inter Dominion and I’m super keen to be part of it, but I wouldn’t have been if we needed to be there on the Monday.” Bond’s focus will be split between the Inter Dominion and WA’s string of major 4YO races in coming weeks. He and wife, Skye, could have as many as five runners in Group 1 races like the McInerney Ford and Golden Nugget over the next few weeks. On form, hype and potential, ex-Kiwi pacer Ana Malak is leading the way, especially after he thrashed a moderate field in slick time at Pinjarra on debut for the Bonds yesterday (Monday). “I’ve got a feeling when push comes to shove, Ryan (Warwick, stable driver) will pick Ana Malak as his drive,” Bond said. “I just wish we’d been able to get another couple of lead-up runs into him, but he missed some racing with a quarter crack. It’s fine now.” Bond’s other major players include Mighty Conqueror, who looked fantastic winning at Gloucester Park last Friday night, and Bettor Aim, who made it six wins from nine starts with an easy Pinjarra victory on Monday. But it’s Ana Malak who has most people talking. “I toyed with backing him up this Friday, but I won’t. He’ll go straight into the McInerney on Friday week,” Bond said. Adam Hamilton

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