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Harness racing Tasmanian reinsman Ricky Duggan enjoyed one of is best nights at the office in two years when he ended the 10-race harness racing program in Hobart on Sunday night with five winners. It is the second time Duggan has bagged five winners with the only other time coming at a similar Hobart meeting in August 2014. The most surprising aspect of his quintet of wins was that they were all at decent each-way odds. Master Doc won the opening event starting at $12 and he guided Something Eyre home in the following race at $6 and at the expense of the $1.20 favourite The Bettormack. Midway through the program he partnered the Juanita McKenzie-trained mare Zumba Bromac to a stirring win at $9 and Olwen Jaccka saluted in the following event at $13. His longest-priced winner was Cheshire Cat in the ninth event that went around at $14 after opening at $21. Had anybody had a $1 all-up bet on Duggan's five winners they would have collected $117,936. "It was just one of those nights where everything just panned out perfectly for all of my winners in the run," Duggan said. "At the start of the meeting I thought I had two genuine winning chances and a couple of decent each-way hopes." Duggan had nine drives at the meeting and produced five winners and two minor placegetters but his minor placegetters were $2 favourite Merlene Oh that finished third in her race (8) while Angela De Marco ($2.60 equal favourite in the last race on the card. "It could have been my best night ever had the two favourites won," Duggan said. Peter Staples

After producing four consecutive minor placings, smart harness racing  two-year-old filly El Jays Mystery finally delivered the goods by winning her first race in Launceston last Sunday. The Dick Eaves-trained youngster was well driver by Victorian reinsman Gavin Lang who allowed the filly to settle at the rear of the field and when he called on her for the big effort late she sprinted powerfully to the line to record a convincing win in the Cliff Robins Memorial over 1680 metres. El Jays Mystery hit the line almost three metres clear of race leader Joes Little Girl with Schouten Island that had faced the breeze throughout, just over a metre astern. It was an impressive win and one that impressed two of her owners in particular in thoroughbred trainers John Blacker and Leon Laskey. It is Blacker and Laskey's first venture into owning a standardbred and they were convinced to take shares by the filly's breeders Lyndon and Gail Menegon who also have shares in a couple of thoroughbreds trained by Blacker. El Jays Mystery (Live or Die-Lombo Anastasia) was bred by the Menegons at their Big Park Stud at Piper's River in the North of the state. The filly is a half-sister to former Tasmanian Oaks winner Barynya (X Blissfull Hall) that is now racing successfully in Queensland. Peter Staples

Ben Yole has had an amazing season and all the hard work that he and his team have put in makes him a worthy recipient of Tasmania’s premier harness racing trainer for season 2015-16. But what makes it such a standout season for the former Victorian who relocated to Tasmania 11 years ago, is the statistics that surround his feat of preparing over 100 winners. While Yole has trained 105 winners, with two meetings remaining he could struggle to eclipse the record of 118 set by Neville Webberley in the 1990-91 season. But one record that he will set and that might only ever be broken by himself is the number of starters he has produced this season. Yole has so far taken 1006 horses to the races and compared to the only other three trainers to snare 100 plus winners he is in a league if his own. Barrie Rattray has trained 100 or more winners four times and the most horses he has taken to the races was in the 1993-94 season when he started 495 to win the title with 101 winners. Webberley started 515 of his team in the 1990-91 season when he captured the record of 118 winners. Yole has accepted with 20 of his team for this Sunday night’s meeting in Hobart to take his season tally of starters to 1026 and no doubt at the final meeting of the season in Launceston on  Sunday week he will have at least a dozen go around which will give him more than double the number of starters Webberley had in his busiest season. To keep Yole’s training effort in perspective, he has bagged his winners from considerably less meetings than Webberley was afforded in 1990-91. Webberley prepared 118 winners from 115 meetings for a strike rate of 1.03 while Yole will have amassed his total from only 86 meetings for a strike rate of 1.21. The comparisons are: Winners Season Trainer Winners Meetings Strike Rate 1989/90 Wayne Rattray 113 110 1.03 1990/91 Neville Webberley 118 115 1.03 1993/94 Barrie Rattray 101 112 0.90 1994/95 Barrie Rattray 101 112 0.90 1995/96 Barrie Rattray 107 103 1.04 1996/97 Barrie Rattray 111 107 1.04 2015/16 Ben Yole 105 86 1.21   Starters Season Trainer Starters 1990/91 Neville Webberley 515 1991/92 Wayne Rattray 498 1993/94 Barrie Rattray 495 2009/10 Phillip Ford 515 2015/16 Ben Yole 1026* *Includes Ben Yole acceptors (20) at Hobart on 21 August 2016 Peter Staples

Talented Tasmanian pacer Scooterwillrev will head to Melbourne this week at the top of his game and ready to take on some of the best harness racing juveniles in Australasia. The Craig Hayes-trained two-year-old will tackle a semi-final of the rich Group 1 Breeders Crown series at Bendigo on Saturday night and he goes into the race undefeated from six Tasmanian starts with is latest effort producing a resounding win in Launceston on Sunday night. In a 2C0-2C1 event over 2200 metres, the well-bred youngster worked to the lead midrace and when driver Rohan Hadley asked for an effort turning for home the gelded son of Somebeachsomewhere burst clear of the undefeated Hafter and went on to defeat that gelding by 15 metres. Scooterwillrev (Somebeachsomewhere-Karamea Toastime) clocked a mile rate of 1.58.75 and sizzled home his last half (800m) in 58.68 but with something in reserve. It was a state 2YO record with the previous best by a two-year-old of 1.59.4 produced by Cody Maverick in Hobart (2090m) June 2008 and obliterated the Launceston 2YO record of 2.00.6 set by Quastor Centurion in July 2010. It was the second time Hadley had driven the gelding and he was impressed with this latest performance. "This is a serious horse. He felt enormous throughout the race and when I gave him just a bit of rein turning for home he just slipped clear and there was quite a bit left at the finish," Hadley said. It was exactly what Hayes was hoping for given his stable star is about to go up against the best juveniles in Australasia. "When you've got a horse as god as this you are always worried whether you are doing all the right things so that's why I had Rohan (Hadley) drive him in this race," Hayes said. "I have driven him in all but one of his wins (Burnie) so it was quite nerve wracking sitting in the stands watching the race. "The horse has been open to every challenge I've put in front of him and tonight he really delivered but he had to if he is going to be competitive when he tackles the Breeders Crown semi. "I'm happy that he produced his best mile rate and that he did it with a bit in reserve." Scooterwillrev is a half-brother to former star juvenile filly-mare Jadah Rose (x Totally Ruthless) that won the Group 1 Vicbred Super Series in her gender category at two and three as multiple Group placings. She also won the 2007 Mother of Pearl for four-year-old mares at Devonport before finishing third in the Group 1 George Johnson behind No More Trouble and star Tasmanian mare Deanna Troy. "When we went to the Melbourne yearling sale we were keen to get this horse and we had a budget of $40,000 but when we saw him we were committed and we had to go to $42,000 but reckon he was worth it," Hayes said. Scooterwillrev will most likely be driven on Saturday night by top Victorian driver Kerryn Manning. Peter Staples

Todd Rattray produced a training-driving treble at the harness racing meetings at Luxbet Park Hobart, Tasmania, last Sunday night that included another impressive win by his unbeaten Bettor's Delight two-year-old Hafter. His other winners were Guesstamate in a C-1 and The Bettormack. Hafter is unbeaten from four starts but Rattray is confident the well-bred two-year-old gelding will be even better next season. "He has done all we've asked of him this season but we've always been of the opinion he will be a better three and four-year-old," Rattray said. "This was probably his best win because we sat back for the first bit of the race in the small field and when I asked him to sprint and get around them he ran to them quickly and when Christian (Salter)'s horse kicked up he had to do a bit of work to the front. "But in the end he won well so we'll go to a $10,000 race in Launceston next Sunday night, if it holds up, then tip him out for a spell." Guesstamate, a three-year-old filly by Rock n Roll Heaven and owned by long-time stable client Barry Stewart, had been placed five times before this maiden win. The Betttormack had been unplaced at his two previous starts in standing start races but back to a mobile start he was untroubled to score comfortably in a C4-C5 event over 1609 metres. "I think we'll definitely concentrate on mobile starts with The Bettormack but it might not be long before he heads off to Sydney to join my brother James' stable." Ricky Duggan also drove a treble at the meeting while Todd's older brother Gareth Rattray drove a double. Peter Staples

Former Victorian Ben Yole joined elite company at Luxbet Park Hobart on Sunday night when he became only the fourth harness racing trainer in the code's history to prepare 100 winners in a season. Yole celebrated the milestone when his five-year-old Lake Eyre ($18.70) powered home to win the Ian Blackburn Pace with his younger brother Mark Yole in the sulky. Only Hall of Famers Wayne Rattray, his son Barrie Rattray and Neville Webberley are the others credited with having trained 100 winners. Yole moved permanently to Tasmania about 10 years ago with the hope of resurrecting his training career after five years in his home state had produced only modest results. "Training 100 winners is just an amazing result for us and it is certainly way more than we ever imagined we could get at the start of the season," Yole said. "Halfway through the season I was rapt because the plan we had of turning the horses over once they met their mark and taking a punt to buy horses we thought would suit Tasmania, was starting to pay off. "But achieving this has taken a team effort from a lot of dedicated people. "My brothers Tim and Mark do a hell of a lot of work and my Dad (Wayne) is a huge help and then there's Tony McHenry who is there every day to help work the horses. Yole transported 19 horses to last night's meeting and that has been a regular occurrence this season. "It's a 15-hour day for everyone when we've got so many horses at a meeting and, to be honest, if I didn't have the personnel that I have at the stable it just wouldn't happen." Lake Eyre settled in the back half of the field from his wide front-tow draw while stablemate Pushkin ($24) ensured a solid tempo when he raced to the lead 1400m from home with the odds-on favourite ($1.80) content to face the breeze. When the pace slowed just over a lap from home Lake Eyre's driver Mark Yole sent his charge three wide to try for the lead but Ricky Duggan aboard the favourite wasn't about to surrender the "death". Lake Eyre was three wide to the home straight but hit the front and then found the courage to stave off all challengers to on and defeat Followthewind by a metre with Pushkin hanging on for third. Peter Staples

Well-bred harness racing filly Nances Delight kept her unbeaten record intact when she led throughout to win a 2C0 event over 1680 metres at the Luxbet Racing Centre in Launceston last night. With ace reinsman Gareth Rattray in the sulky the two-year-old showed brilliant gate speed to lead from gate three and once settled she set a solid tempo. Somethinsweetboutme ($23) settled on the leader's back while the well-backed El Jays Mystery ($2.50) strolled along in third spot but at the half-way mark Rattray slowed the tempo so the driver of El jays Mystery, John Walters, eased off the fence to allow his filly to face the breeze to ensure the leader didn't loaf for the last 800 metres. But the move was all in vain with Nances Delight ($2.10 favourite) strolling to an effortless win over El Jays Mystery with outsider Eternal Shadow a close-up third. The Melissa Mayne-trained filly clocked a mile rate of 2.02.3 and she covered her last 800 metres in 58.9 seconds. "We've been pleased with this filly from day one and she has already developed some nice habits. She has good gate speed and she can quicken well in a race," Rattray said. "She gives me the impression she will be a better three-year-old so hopefully she can go on with it next preparation." Peter Staples

Art Of My Art made it three wins from is past four starts when he scored a narrow win in the Carlton Draught Pace for harness racing three-year-olds over 2200 metres in Launceston on Sunday night. The gelded son of Art Colony had been cleverly placed by his trainer John Castles who entered hi in non-penalty races that made up heats in a novice driver series in which he won one and placed second in another before winning a 3C0 at Devonport prior to this latest assignment. Art of My Art drew awkwardly on the inside of the second row but somehow Rohan Hillier managed to secure the one-out-one-back position after travelling about 600 metres. God Sake faced the breeze outside of Rocknroll Dancer that set a solid clip with All Style Sammy on the leader's back. When God Sake forged to the lead Hillier sent his charge three-wide to give chase and after finding the front 200 metres out he battled gamely to have just enough in hand to defeat All Style Sammy with God Sake third Peter Staples

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

In-form three-year-old pacer Little Bit of Big delivered another stellar harness racing performance to score an impressive all-the-way win at the Luxbet Racing Centre over 1680 metres in Launceston on Sunday night. Little Bit of Big made it three wins for the season when she made the most of the pole position to lead throughout in a 3C0-C0 race that boasted a quality line-up. With Rohan Hadley in the sulky, the Shelley Barnes-trained filly by Mister Big from Vanstand stepped well from the mobile and despite being attacked early she withstood the challenge to lead comfortably and then had to call on her courage to fend off rivals in the home straight. Little Bit of Big joined Barnes' stable recently and she is hoping the owners will allow her to retain the filly beyond the winter months. Listen to what trainer Shelley Barnes had to say about Little Bit of Big's latest win. Peter Staples

After producing a driving treble in Hobart last Friday experienced harness racing reinsman John Walters continued his good form in Launceston last night with another outstanding drive to secure a last-stride win aboard Karalta Boomer in the Crown Lager Pace over 2200 metres. Walters, 53, had the Kent Rattray-trained three-year-old perfectly positioned in the one-out-one-back position after travelling 400 metres with the well-backed Dasher Hiouli setting a solid pace in front. Dasher Houli (Rohan Hillier) looked to be travelling like the winner when he slipped clear turning for home but when Walters allowed his charge more rein the gelded son of Major In Art ran to the leader and they settled down to a two-horse war all the way up the home straight with Walters able to get everything from his charge to win by a half-head. It was Karalta Boomer's seventh win of the season and coupled with his six minor placings he has career earnings of almost $30,000. Karalta Boomer was bred by his owners Lyndon and Gail Menagon who own and operate Big Park Stud that is one of the largest standardbred breeding operations in the state. Peter Staples

Lightly raced four-year-old pacer Demonstrative (Rod Ashwood) broke his maiden status at Luxbet Park Hobart yesterday with a game harness racing win in the Gerald Glover Pace over 2090 metres. Despite having to face the breeze in bleak conditions the Eric Jacobson-trained gelding forged to the lead in the home straight and went on to score by over a metre from the favourite Major Jamane ($2.10) with Never Unachievable ($8) a close-up third and just in advance of Bertils Bliss. Demonstrative (Western Ideal-Luvi Duvi Lombo) was having his third run back from a spell and he was well-backed to win the race. "The horse has been working well and we thought he could lead, in fact our confidence was based on him leading but when he was left facing the breeze I had some doubts he would stick it out," Jacobson said. "But to his credit he was strong over the final 200 metres when he was probably entitled to fade a bit, so all in all it was a very pleasing run." It was an overdue win for the stable but Jacobson, who in his heyday was vying for trainer's premierships, said the wins these days are just a bonus. "I'm pretty much retired these days with only four horses to work and that suits me. "Demonstrative is no world beater but he's improved to the point where he can probably win another couple but all four of the horses I have in the stable are in the same boat and all are pretty much paying their way." Demonstrative is owned and raced by Shane Hildebrand and Mick Jones who are two of his most loyal stable clients. Peter Staples  

Experienced Tasmanian reinsman John Walters celebrated a double at Luxbet Park Hobart last Sunday night to take his harness racing season tally to 34 which is the highest he has been on the premiership table in over a decade. He partnered outsider Rockbank Dancer ($22) to an all-the-way win in the Eddie Hook Pace for C1-C2 pacers over 2090 metres and Walters capped the night when he guided the $2.60 favourite Another Derek to an all-the-way win in the CUB Pace (2090m) after taking advantage of the pole position. While Walters has always been considered a quality reinsman he hasn't always been able to get behind the better quality horses but this season he has excelled and it probably has a bit to do with him winning the $40,000 Group 3 Easter Cup aboard Riverboat Jasper. Walters's father Harry won an Easter Cup aboard Andy Cast in 1976 so when John matched that feat it boosted his confidence to an all-time high. "There's no doubt winning the Easter up to accomplish something that my Dad did was a special moment for me and the records say we are only the second father and son to have won an Easter Cup so that's quite special," Walters said. "There's probably a few reasons why I am getting more drives these days and one is that there aren't as many senior experienced drivers around like there was a few years ago. "I am enjoying my driving more than ever and it would be fair to say that driving winners makes you keener and this is probably the most winners I have ever driven in a season," he said. Walters, 53, is a great judge of pace and when aboard a horse with stamina he is hard to beat if able to lead, although his drive to emulate his late father's feat in this year's Easter Cup was arguably his best in years. With 10 meetings remaining this season Walters is in sixth place on the premiership table courtesy of him having driven 34 winners but he also has finished second 29 times and snared 37 third placings for stake earnings of $226,728. Peter Staples  

Faithful Garby spent almost a year out of the harness racing winner's circle but at Luxbet Park Hobart on Sunday night she bounced back with a vengeance. She scored an effortless win in the Mark Geeves Pace over 2579 metres scoring by almost 17 metres from Remember Joe with Sapphire Swayze a close-up third. The mare spent almost a year campaigning in Victoria and New South Wales producing a few minor placings before returning to Tasmania at the end of April. She spent just over four months in the care of James Rattray who campaigned the five-year-old at Menangle where she two minor placings and a couple of fourths from eight outings. Now back with Melissa Maine at Latrobe, Faithful Gabby has had four starts with two seconds leading up to this latest win suggesting she is on track to keep winning back in her home state. Faithful Gabby has won 10 and been placed as many times from only 30 starts for just over $90,000 in stakes with her biggest win the $30,000 Group 3 Granny Smith final in Devonport last year. Peter Staples

Harness racing owner Mick Maxfield has owned some handy two-year-olds over the years but the latest youngster to sport his colours could be his best. With Gareth Rattray in the sulky, Offthetopofmyhead scored an emphatic win in a 2C0-2C1 event over 1680 metres in Launceston on Sunday defeating recent Dandy patch Stakes winner Usain Jolt by a comfortable margin. But the most impressive part of the win was that he broke the state two-year-old mile rate record. The Paul Ashwood-trained colt rated 1:56.67 for to eclipse the previous best of 1:56.9 recorded by Williamtell earlier in the year. "He's the best horse I've trained for a while but the penny hasn't dropped yet," Ashwood said. "He still does a few things wrong like running up the track a bit but he is at least starting to think about what's going on." Offthetopofmyhead had an interstate trip to Melbourne in April but he failed to flatter. "He wasn't really ready for the trip or the opposition but I have no doubt he will get another chance. "The son of Western Ideal will run in a $10,000 race in Hobart next Sunday then in a heat of the Breeders Crown before going back to Victoria for the Breeders semi-finals." Stablemate Lynniemach, who ran third in Sunday's race, will follow a similar path. Ashwood also won with smart three-year-old El Major who isn't paid up for the coming feature races. Peter Staples

Harness racing driver Adrian Collins left it until the last minute to win his first BOTRA Novice Drivers Challenge series at the Luxbet Racing Centre in Launceston on Sunday. It was Collins' last chance to win a novice drivers series as he is only one win away from losing his claim. Collins, 39, won the fourth of the five-heat series aboard Little Bit Of Big and despite finishing last in the fifth and final heat he had done enough to score a one-point win over Matthew Howlett. "I'd like to thank all the trainers for giving me the opportunity to drive their horses," Collins said. "I've come close to winning a couple of novice driver series but fell short by a couple of points." It was a drama-packed series finale with the first of Sunday's two heats was marred by a nasty fall approaching the home turn. Series leader heading into the last two heats was Kristy Grant but she suffered facial lacerations and bruising when her charge Kamili raced roughly before crashing to the track and Heavenly Rock with Samantha Gangell aboard, was unable to avoid the fallen horse and crashed into the flaying sulky of the fallen horse. Gangell had a very heavy fall and was knocked unconscious. She lay motionless on the track for a long time before being taken to hospital with concussion and remained in hospital for x-rays on her shoulder. Grant was lucky to escape with only cuts and abrasions but she was more concerned about not winning the series because she was adamant her charge would have won the race. "I really thought my horse was going to win but I just couldn't steer her," Grant said. Two replacements were required for the fifth and final heat but only one claiming driver, Ken Hall, was on course and, after a ballot, it was determined that he would drive Olivers Mate while Christian Jaz had to be withdrawn.. Jack Laugher won the final heat on Frankie Falzoni who came from last at the bell to beat Fortino and Sign No More. The top six points scorers for the series were: 43 Adrian Collins, 42 Matthew Howlett, 38 Adam Woods, 33 Nicholas Brockman, 29 Kristy Grant, 28 Wade Rattray. Peter Staples

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