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The $50,000 Globe Derby Harness Racing Stakes final looks like going to the Rattray family for the fifth time in nine years at Mowbray on Sunday night. But, barring bad luck, it should be a different member of Tasmania's most successful harness racing dynasty lining up to collect the trophy. The Kent Rattray-trained Sunny Sanz will be at almost unbackable odds after his dominant win over a similar field in last week's prelude. Rattray's brother Barrie won the race in 2011 with Beautide and again in 2013 with Pachacuti while Barrie's son Todd has won the past two with Harjeet and Izaha. Todd's brothers Gareth (Beautide) and James (Pachacuti) also appear on the honour roll as winning drivers. Rattray family patriarch Wayne won the third running of the race back in 1985 with Napoleon Stone when it was open to fillies and also scored in 1991 with Karalta Jet. Sunny Sanz won his only three starts as a two-year-old before being sidelined by injury. He has won two of his three starts since returning, suffering his only defeat behind smart filly Spoilt Sport in Hobart when Rattray said he "got fired up." His prelude win was outstanding as he lost ground after locking wheels with a tiring runner in the back straight. He appears to be clearly the best horse in the final and it would be hard to begrudge him a win. "I feel like we left a lot of money on the table last season when he got injured and this is a good opportunity to make up for some of that," Rattray said. By Greg Mansfield Reprinted with permission from The Examiner

It's Tasmanian harness racing's biggest day and no-one faces a bigger task than Todd Rattray and his star pacer Harjeet. But the Longford trainer-driver says his backmarker can win the Group 11, $75,000 Tasmania Cup in Hobart on Saturday night "if he gets the right run." Harjeet will start off 30m, alongside former winner Star Chamber, and will be giving a start to some quality rivals headed by Victorian-trained Sicario and Tasmanian arch-rival Scooterwillrev. "Obviously he's got to get through the field but if he gets the right run I can't see him being out of it," Rattray said. The trainer was well satisfied with Harjeet's second behind Scooterwillrev in his heat because early interference cost him valuable ground. He wasn't knocked around when it became obvious he couldn't catch the leader and Rattray said the horse "had a fair bit left at the finish." He had a fair bit left at the finish (of his heat) Trainer Todd Rattray The standing-start holds no fears for Harjeet who has won four of his six starts from behind the tapes and never missed a place. "He always begins safely, sometimes quicker than others, and he's getting better with every run so I reckon he'll be right," Rattray said. The trainer rates Sicario as his biggest danger. "I think he's just a real good horse but there are plenty of others that also have a chance," he said. The race will determine future plans for Harjeet. "If he wins, he becomes an M4 horse so that would probably make the Easter Cup too hard," Rattray said. "He'd probably have to go to NSW or somewhere like that." Harjeet was quoted at $10 for the final before the heats but is now $6.50 in Sportsbet's latest market. Victorian-trained horses hold favouritism for the three main support races. Max Delight, owned in Tasmania, is an unbackable $1.04 for the $30,000 Tasmanian Derby and Enchanted Stride has firmed from $2.40 to $2.25 for the $30,000 Tasmanian Oaks. Western Debt ($3.50 to $3.80) holds favouritism for the $20,000 George Johnson but local Resurgent Dream ($7 to $4.80) has been heavily backed to beat her. Although the Hobart meeting takes centre stage, there is also plenty of interest at Mowbray on Sunday night with the return of Rohan Hillier-trained stars Ryley Major and Dufrense. Ryley Major won his last nine starts in Tasmania before a long layoff. By Greg Mansfield' Reprinted with permission of The Examiner

Victorian trainer Emma Stewart continued her dominance on the stated feature races this season when Maraetai was an easy winner of the Group 3 Sky Racing Tasmanian Derby at the Elwick Racing Complex in Hobart on Sunday evening, one of many highlights on the Tasmanian harness racing scene in the past seven days. With the upcoming sires' stakes race series just around the corner, we are seeing many of the states best-bred pacers warming up for there respective $50,000 Group 2 Finals that will be staged in coming months. This week there will be two meetings held across the state with the Tasmanian Pacing Club staging seven races on Friday night before the action heads North up the Midlands Highway where the Launceston Pacing Club conducts an eight-race card. The Stars Maraetai - brilliant winner of the Tasmanian Derby to win untroubled by 33.9-metres in a mile rate of 1:58.8 which was only 1.2 seconds outside of the track record held by Blacks A Fake and Flashing Red during the 2006 Inter Dominion series. Ricky Duggan - proved once again why he is in the hall of fame with a driving treble on Sunday night. Paul Hill - the “King of the Kids” produced another smart youngster in Enterprising Milly to win on debut. Rohan Hadley - moved into fifth position onto the states driver’s premiership table after his treble in Devonport on Friday night. Multiple Winners Devonport- Friday Rohan Hadley- driving treble; Sophias Angel, Midair Meltdown and Jeans Mattjesty. John Walters - driving double; Mi Ju Dan and Berty Mack. Todd Rattray - driving double; Campaign Drive and Bettor Pay Me. Ben Yole - training double; Midair Meltdown and Jeans Mattjesty Hobart - Sunday Ricky Duggan - driving treble; Enterprising Milly, Resurgent Dream, Vouvray Beach. Calculated Sectional Standouts Quickest last halves (800m) from last week’s action in Devonport on Friday. Ektoras 58.35, Regal Idea 58.50, Lord Stark 58.53, Dayraid 59.02 and Blisstar 59.03. View the sectionals across the ten-races here. And from Tasmanian Derby night in Hobart on Sunday. Maraetai 56.80, Followthewind 57.15, Rockin An Runnin 57.28, Enterprising Milly 57.58 and Blackjackhanover 57.65. Click here to view to view sectionals from every starter at the meeting. Tasracing Official Price Devonport Defied The Drift: Sophias Angel $3.40 out to $4.20, Regal Idea $5.00 out to $6.00 and Bettor Pay Me $3.20 out to $4.40. Missed: Albayzin $1.90 into $1.75 and Sheer Strength $7.50 into $5.00. Hobart Defied The Drift: Origin Cronk $2.15 out to $2.70 and Resurgent Dream $3.70 out to $4.20. Missed: Manganello $2.60 into $2.25. Black Booker Still Hungover Put up a terrific display on debut in the two-year-old in Hobart on Sunday. The Rodney Ashwood trained pacer showed terrific gate speed to lead in a 28.7 seconds opening quarter before driver Alex Ashwood backed off the tempo. The short price favourite Enterprising Milly worked around the field before the half mile and sat outside Still Hungover. The Tasracing Calculated Sectionals recorded Still Hungover’s last two quarters in 28.49 and 29.40 and didn’t go down without a fight to be defeated only 1.3-metres with 10-metres back to Juniper who was a winner at her start prior. Watch the replay here. Trial File Carrick Park - Saturday The Craig Hayes trained and driven Scooterwillrev continued his preparation when he recorded the quickest winning mile rate of the morning of 2:03.4 for the 2150 metre trip. Racing outside the leader Scooterwillrev recorded at 12-metre victory over the leader Dodgermemate. Other winners on Saturday morning included smart two-year-old Sunny Sanz 2:11.1, Harshali 2:09.2, Ideal Karalta 2:03.6, North Star Lad 2:06.7, Sea Sky 2:16.7 and Smilin Geoff 2:07.2. Hobart - Monday Former Hobart Pacing Cup winner Remember Joe recorded the quickest mile rate of the night of 2:04.1 in the opening trial which was understanding start conditions. The Juanita McKenzie trained gelding defeated his stablemate Isaac by a neck in the three-horse field. All runners in the trial started off the front mark and not the 40-metre handicap as listed in the official results which subsequently effects the official mile rate listed on the trial. Other winners on the night included; Resurgent Storm (2:04.2), Feelin Dusty (2:07.3), Falcon Harry (2:05.8) and Witch Master (2:06.2). Week Ahead Harness racing in Tasmania this weekend kicks off with a seven-event fixture in Hobart on Friday evening. In the third event of the night the Paul Hill trained, Feelin Dusty will be chasing his seventh career win when he lines up in race three. The winner of over $50,000 in prize money has not missed a place in nine starts on the Hobart track where he has recorded five wins and four placings. The tier one meeting of the week will be at Launceston Sunday, where the Kate MacLeod trained and driven pacer Beam Me Up Chopper will be looking for back-to-back wins after producing a terrific performance to win at his most recent start on Easter Cup night. Warhorse Destreos will have another chance to register his 100th career win when he lines up in the third race of the night. Duncan Dornauf

It's already been a huge week for Women in Racing with the successful staging of the Inaugural Australian Female Jockey's Championship at the Sky Racing Centre on Wednesday night in Launceston and it's about to become even bigger. The Australian Female Drivers Championship will be conducted by the Launceston Pacing Club tonight with the Nation's best in action over the nine-event Series. The big guns of the sport, Kerryn Manning,  Kate Gath, Amanda Turnbull and Danielle Hill are on the way for the Championship as are the new breed of young drivers such as Queensland sisters Dannielle and Narissa McMullen and Western Australian representatives Deni Roberts and Jocelyn Young. Tasmania will rely on the experience and brilliance of Team Teal ambassador Natalee Emery (pictured) and her young compatriot Kristy Grant to stand firm against the mainland invasion. Natalee is a highly respected driver on the National scene while Kristy is giving away years of experience to the major players in the Series. Both drivers have a great chance to pick up valuable points in race two with Kristy handling the ribbons on the Wayne Campbell-trained Buster William while Nat will steer Koolaz Elvis. Buster William is in search of its fifth win of the season and the seventh of his career and has come up with a perfect draw in two. In early markets, Buster William is an equal favourite with the Rohan Hillier-trained last start winner Im Compliant, to be handled by Danielle Hill. Koolaz Elvis is a last-start Latrobe Cup winner over Buster William and Natalee will more than likely try to lead on the Todd Rattray prepared four-year-old. Kristy has another tremendous chance to be amongst the action in race four with the NWTLHA winner Dapper Dana. The Bettors Delight - Ok Deb gelding is awkwardly drawn in five on the second line, but has won 11 races in a 35 start career and is more than capable of making it 12. Natalee's hopes of claiming the title received a boost when the Lynniemach marble fell her way. The Paul Ashwood prepared four-year-old is in the top three in the market in race six over a mile. The Mach Three-Boldandbeautiful mare is in quest of her third win of the season and the 10th of her career. Kent Rattray's El Jay's Monza will provide Natalee with another top hope in race eight, the four-year-old gelding has been placed at her last three runs and has drawn the coveted pole position over 2200-metres. The eyes of the nation will be focused on Launceston with live coverage, hosted by Duncan Dornauf, commencing at 17.00 via the live stream service at tasracing.com.au Shane Yates

Noel Salter has long been regarded as one of Tasmania's most successful owner-breeder-trainers and last Saturday night at the annual harness racing awards dinner at Luxbet Park he was acknowledged for his involvement in the industry that spans almost 40 years. Salter was awarded the Edgar Tatlow Medal for his service to the industry not only as a trainer-owner and breeder of standardbreds but for his devoted service as a club and code administrator for over 20 years. He was a committeeman with the Tasmanian Pacing Club in Hobart for 20 years during which time he stood 12 years as president and in 2005 he was made a life member of the club. That led to him becoming a board member with the now defunct Tasmanian Harness Racing Board of which he was president for three years and he also played a dominant role with Harness Racing Australia as a delegate for 14 years and for one year he served as vice-president. Before Salter entered harness racing he was a champion cyclist. He was Tasmanian champion numerous times and he represented Australia at the 1979 World Road Cycling Championships in Sweden. A year later he went close to national selection for the Moscow Olympics but when Olympic selection avoided him he retired from competitive cycling a year later. In 1981 he stumbled into harness racing. "My late Mum and Dad (Doris and Joe) owned and raced pacers and when my parents separated mum was left with the horses so I ended up training them. "It was a big challenge and I had to rely on a few people to help me through and there were none more helpful than Neville Webberley. "I still class Neville as the best horseman I've ever known and we remain very good friends." "I've also has some very good owners including Denis and Ruth Mahoney and Elliott Booth and they have become lifetime friends which is another wonderful part of being involved in this industry - you meet so many good people." Salter has owned and raced many good horses over the years and probably none better performed than On Parade that won 20 races and amassed almost $180,000 in stakes. Some of On Parade's wins include the 1992 Raider Stakes, 199i Tasmanian St Leger and 1992 Golden Mile before the horse was sent to Western Australia in 1994 where he won a Mount Eden Sprint and Bunbury Cup. Other good horses bred by Salter and his wife include Foxfighter (18 wins), Vinokourov that won 17 including the 2007 Raider Stakes, Galdeano (19 wins) and Chippolini that won the 1997 Dandy Patch Stakes before being sold to WA where he ended his career with 32 wins. In more recent years the Salters bred and raced Boasson Hagen that won the 2014 Dandy Patch and he also won the Breeders Crown Consolation in Victoria. Salter has retired from training and that part of the family business is in the care of his son Christian who has long been regarded as one of the state's best horsemen. When Salter was making his acceptance speech on Saturday night he said none of his achievements would have been possible had it not been for his wife Marlene, or "Tiny" as she is affectionately known in the industry. "When I was away interstate dealing with harness administration business Tiny was at home looking after our transport business as well as looking after the horses and keeping those businesses running smoothly. "She has been by my side through thick and thin so if they say I deserve this award then so does my wife because she has put in just as may hard yards as me." Peter Staples

Office of Racing Integrity Stewards today inquired into a report from the analyst that d amphetamine and d Methamphetamine had been detected in a urine sample provided by licenced harness racing driver James Austin at the Tasmanian Pacing Club race meeting on 21 July 2017. Evidence was tendered today from Mr James Austin who explained the circumstances leading up to the positive finding. Evidence was also taken from Mr Paul Zahra (Racing Analytical Services Ltd), who explained the method and results of analysis. After consideration, Stewards charged Mr Austin pursuant to AHRR 250(1)(a) which states; ‘A driver commits an offence if a sample taken from him is found upon analysis to contain a substance banned by AHRR 251’. Mr Austin pleaded not guilty to the charge, however, after consideration of all the available evidence, Stewards found Mr Austin guilty of the charge. In assessing the matter of penalty, Stewards took into account Mr Austin’s current circumstances, both personal and financial, the nature of the substances detected, the fact this was Mr Austin’s second offence for this substance within a short timeframe. Stewards were also mindful of the importance for participants to be free of prohibited substances to ensure the safety and welfare of drivers and horses and the need for any penalty to act as an appropriate deterrent both specific and general. Mr Austin was disqualified for a period of 12 months backdated to commence from 3 August 2017, the day on which he was stood down from driving. Mr Austin was advised of his rights to appeal. Adrian Crowther CHAIRMAN OF STEWARDS

Former harness racing champion Tasmanian pacer Halyer passed away of old age last month but his memory will live on through his owners' decision to provide a recognition award each year at the annual meeting at St Marys. Ana and Eric Hayes owned Halyer for the last 14 of his retirement years and before he died the family provided finding for a trophy to be presented to a novice driver at the St Marys annual meeting and this was the fifth time the award has been presented. Halyer was owned and raced by the father and son combination of Don and Dean Cooper who had the pleasure of watching their star win his way into the hearts of harness racing fans around Australia and in particular Tasmania. On Easter Saturday Dean Cooper, who is the chairman of the board of Tasracing, the state's governing body of all racing, travelled to St Marys to present the 2017 award to novice driver Brady Woods Tasracing. "It is an honour to receive the Halyer Award because from what I've been told he was a fantastic horse." "This is the third time I've been given this award and it is great that the connections of the great horse wanted to establish the award in is honour," Woods said. "Halyer was a great horse to my father and I and we thank the Hayes family for initiating this award," Cooper said. Halyer was a great racehorse who greeted the starter 70 times for 32 wins and 22 minor placings for over $340,000 in stakes. He broke two minutes every season he raced, notching a 1.59.7 rate as a two-year-old and at three he clocked 1.58.3 in an open class race over 1609 metres Launceston in February 1990. Peter Staples

One of Tasmania’s most popular harness racing protagonists Chester Bullock was this week honoured for his service to the industry. A long term active participant in many aspects of Tasmanian harness racing including ownership, breeding, training, and administration and sponsorship has been honoured with a Distinguished Service Award from Harness Racing Australia (HRA). Bullock was born at St Marys in 1948. His father, Keith (Cardinal), was the St Marys Trotting Club Treasurer and his mother, Doris, loved to have a small wager on horse racing. With that background, Bullock quickly developed a passion for racehorses. He spent much of his youth at St Marys at the harness stables of Linton Bullock and Eric Bean. Bullock moved to Launceston when he was 16 years of age. His first purchase was a harness yearling, Thunder Fame, which eventually won two races in 1984 when trained by Eric Bean. Bullock acquired more mares, yearlings and racehorses and in 1986 decided to buy some land at Riverside to accommodate his rapidly expanding harness operation. A 1,100 metre track was constructed on the flats adjoining the Tamar River, where Jack Stamford previously trained, and the first of many prominent trainers took up residence at the Bullock training establishment. David Angus was the initial trainer and Mark Stanley, Rohan Hadley, James Rattray, Todd Rattray, Sam Freeman and Tim Yole all had stints training from the Bullock property. Bullock acquired his training license in 1990 and has prepared many winners from the complex. They include Cardinal Nelson (10 wins) and Cardinal Tucker (7 wins). Another, Cardinal Phoenix, showed enormous potential at his only race start as a two year old defeating Prodigious (2001 Tasmanian Pacing) Championship  and Mountain Glory (Dual Tasmanian Horse Of The Year). Bullock is training approximately 15 horses at present with assistance from Duncan Dornauf, Wade Rattray and his daughter Julia Bullock and son-in-law Ryan Wilkinson. In 1998, Bullock and his daughter Julia established an AI Breeding Station at the Riverside property. Since then, Fred and Pauline Barker, Trevor Leis, Doug McKillop, Lloyd Whish-Wilson, Rick and Naomi Hinds and Dennis Mahoney have been some of the many prominent Tasmanian breeders who have used the facility. Bullock has also had a significant role in racing administration. It commenced at the Launceston Pacing Club (LPC) at Elphin in 1984. Three years later he resigned from the committee while he filled the position of Project Manager for the new Mowbray Racing Complex including the 1,000 metre harness track.  He returned to the LPC committee in 2000 until the present day and has recently been appointed President. He is also the current Patron of the LPC as well as Patron of the Carrick Park Pacing Club. He joined the Northern Tasmanian Light Harness Association in 1995 where he has served 21 years as President. In 2006, he joined a group of participants to establish the Tasmanian division of the Breeders, Owners, Trainers and Reinspersons Association (BOTRA) and he was immediately elected President and served seven years in the role. Since 2009, Bullock has represented the LPC and/or NTLHA at the quarterly Tasracing Harness Industry Forum meetings and he is also a member of the Tasracing Harness Yearling Sale Working Group. Bullock, through his company Bullock Consulting (now 6tyo), has been one of the major harness sponsors in Tasmania over the last 16 years. His sponsorship has extended to all clubs in North and North West Tasmania with some of his more prominent exposure being through the Bullock Consulting Youngbloods series (16 years), the Bullock Consulting Bandbox at Launceston (21 years), the Bullock Consulting Devonport Cup, the Bullock Consulting Burnie Cup, the Bullock Consulting Country Guineas (St Marys) and many other races and the Fashions of the Field (Scottsdale and Burnie).  Tas Racing

Harness racing stalwart Peter Cooley has been recognised for his lifetime service to the industry in Tasmanian in the 2016 Queen's Birthday Honours list. Cooley, 79, was awarded the Order Of Australia Medal. Born in Hobart, Peter's father Ken was a leading owner and his grandfather Charles was an owner, trainer, driver, starter and handicapper. He quickly developed a knowledge and understanding of breeding and the history of trotting (harness racing) in Tasmania. He is now regarded as an expert in both areas. From 1973 - 2002, less a period of six years, he served on the various controlling bodies, which included the Tasmanian Trotting Association, Trotting Control Board, Tasmanian Harness Racing Council and Harness Racing Tasmania. During this time he was instrumental in establishing the Tasmanian Sires Stakes Series, the first in Australia, Tasbred Bonuses and mares concessions. Cooley worked diligently for many years to help establish the guidelines for the highly successful Semen Transport Scheme. His club involvement commenced with the Hobart Metropolitan Trotting Club (1960-1976) and his longest period of service has been with the New Norfolk Pacing Club (1969-1995 and 2001-2002). He was a committeeman with the Tasmanian Pacing Club in 1980 and from 1990-1992. Cooley has also had a long-term involvement in Harness Racing journalism. His first article was published in the Australian Trotting Record in 1955 and he contributed items on a weekly basis until 1977. For three years in the 1960's he wrote for the Tasmanian Trotting Review - a monthly published by the Tasmanian Trotting Association. From 1977-1985 he contributed to another monthly - the Australian Trotting Register. He supplied a column for almost every issue of the monthly Tasmanian Harness Racing Gazette from 1981 to 2004. He assisted Ken Dyer with the Stallion Index Book and his work has been published overseas in the New Zealand Trotting Calendar and the United States Harness Horse. In 1990 he published a book that contained the breeding of all horses registered for racing in Tasmania from 1906-1950. In 2008 he compiled the book 'Back To The Trots', which is a history of harness racing in Tasmania. In 2011 he finished compiling a list of all Tasmanian winners from 1900 to 1986. The complete list is available at http://www.harness.org.au/hra/feature/rc.htm Cooley won the Australian Harness Racing Council (AHRC) Coulter Award for the Best Historical Article in 1979 and 2001 and Best Book in 2008. He has also received a Meritorious Service Award and a Distinguished Service Award (2002) from the AHRC. He is a Life Member of the New Norfolk Pacing Club and the Tasmanian Pacing Club and was awarded the prestigious Edgar Tatlow Medal in 2002 for his outstanding contribution to Tasmanian harness racing. He bred and raced many horses with Regal Gail being his best. Cooley was the driving force behind the establishment of the Tasracing Harness Hall Of Fame and was an inaugural inductee in 2014. Peter Staples

L eading Tasmanian harness racing trainer Ben Yole remains on target to prepare 100 winners or more this season. Yole prepared four winners from the past two meetings to give him 76 wins for the season which puts him almost 50 wins clear of his nearest rival Paul Ashwood (27). In Hobart last Sunday night he prepared his Sign No More to win the Shirley Hills Pace over 2579 metres and in the following race  Suter Man (Sutter Hanover-Grace Anatomy) powered home to take out a C1-C2 over 2090 metres. Yole then prepared a recent stable arrival Lake Eyre to win a C1-C2 over 2090 metres to make it back-to-back wins for the five-year-old that came from the David and Lisa Miles stable in Victoria. Coccinella delivered the goods for Yole in Devonport on Monday night in the Maxfield Drilling pace (C0-C1) over 1930m courtesy of a brilliant drive from the trainer’s younger brother Mark Yole who took his season tally to 63 wins to lead in the race for the driver’s premiership to hold an eight-win advantage over Ricky Duggan. “It’s been a good season irrespective of whether or not we get 100 winners but being so close it would cap the season of we reached the milestone,” Yole said. “We made a decision to keep turning the stock over and that’s proven to be a great move. “We moved three on last week and brought in another four to take their place and that’s been a formula that has kept on working for so there’s obviously no plans to change it.” With 21 meetings remaining on the 2015-16 calendar that ends on August 28 Yole needs only to average just over one win per meeting to reach the century. Peter Staples

ONE of Tasmania's leading harness racing trainer-drivers Nathan Ford was last week disqualified for four years on two charges of allegedly providing urine samples which DNA analysis has allegedly proved not to be his. Ford provided the two urine samples at a Tasmanian Pacing Club meeting in Hobart on May 24. Ford was charged and found guilty under AHRR 243 which stages that a person employed, engaged or participating in the harness racing industry shall not behave in a way that is prejudicial or detrimental to the industry. During the inquiry evidence was taken from representatives of Racing Analytical Services Ltd, the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory, the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine and the defendant. Ford was assisted in the inquiry by barrister Carolyn Graves and Dr Michael Robertson. Tasmanian Harness Racing chairman of stewards Adrian Crowther, who chaired yesterday's inquiry, confirmed Ford had been charged with substituting someone else's urine sample for his own on two occasions after he had been instructed by stewards to provide a urine sample as a part of routine swab sampling of drivers at that meeting. In determining penalty stewards took into consideration Ford's not guilty plea and his personal circumstances. Crowther said the extremity of the penalty also was as a result of the serious nature of the offences which pose a threat to the integrity and the public confidence in harness race and that Ford's actions undermine the importance of drug testing as a means of ensuring the safety and welfare of participants. Ford was disqualified for 18 months on the first offence and 2-1/2 years on the second offence. Ford has successfully lodged an appeal against both the charge and penalty and has been given a stay of proceedings. Peter Staples

The Office of Racing Integrity stewards have concluded an inquiry which began on 26 August 2015 into the results of analysis on human urine samples provided by harness racing driver Nathan Ford at the Tasmanian Pacing Club meeting on 24 May 2015. During the inquiry evidence was taken from representatives of Racing Analytical Services Ltd, the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory, the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine and Nathan Ford.  Mr Ford was assisted in the inquiry by Barrister Carolyn Graves and Dr Michael Robertson. Mr Ford was found guilty on two (2) charges under AHRR 243, which states: “A person employed, engaged or participating in the harness racing industry shall not behave in a way which is prejudicial or detrimental to the industry.” In determining penalty, stewards took into consideration: Mr Ford’s not guilty plea; his personal circumstances; the serious nature of the offences, which pose a threat to the integrity and public confidence in harness racing; and that Mr Ford’s actions undermine the importance of drug testing as a means of ensuring the safety and welfare of participants. Stewards issued Mr Ford with the following penalties: On the first charge Mr Ford was disqualified for a period of 18 months, which was discounted by two months to allow for the time he had been stood down from driving pending the inquiry. On the second charge Mr Ford was disqualified for a period of two and a half years. The disqualifications are to be served cumulatively and will expire at midnight on 8 August 2019. Adrian Crowther Chairman of Stewards - Harness

TALENTED Tasmanian harness racing trainer Shelley Barnes celebrated a first at the meeting at Carrick in the North of the state on Friday. Barnes has trained hundreds of winners and driven probably twice as many but when Angel or Demon (Safari-Ima Merry Jasper) led throughout to win the Island Block & Paving pace on debut it gave Barnes her first winner that she bred herself. The four-year-old mare showed great gate speed to easily find the front and when driver Gareth Rattray called on her to extend in the home straight she powered clear and went on to score comfortably from Helenshall and Really Thirsty that flashed home from well back. "She's always shown a bit but has had problems and I was starting to worry that I'd never get her to the races," Barnes said. "They've only been minor injuries but they have meant that she has been in and out of work many times," she said. Barnes was confident the mare could win following an impressive trial win a week earlier and punters also were keen to get on, backing her in to start the $2.20 favourite. While Angel or Demon was impressive the minor placegetters also showed ability and it might not be long before Helenshall and Really Thirsty find their way into the winner's circle. Peter Staples

THE Tasmanian Pacing Club has always looked for unique ways to lure sponsors into the industry with its latest project likely to result in a package that could be a boon for the club on its biggest race day. TPC chief executive officer John Devereux and his committee were looking for ways to get people back to the races and at the same time find potential race sponsors. The result is a package offered to businesses that costs a minimum of $400 for which the club offers 100 tickets to a TPC meeting and race names for that company at the sponsor's discretion. None of the sponsorship money goes to the club but instead it all is channeled into prizes that will be won at a major prize draw that is expected to grow to a value beyond $10,000 by the time the draw takes place at the club's Tasmania Cup meeting on December 21. Deveraux said seven businesses have already committed to the project comprising Red Shed restoration Barn, Office national, The Crown Inn Hotel Pontville, and Hotel Lachlan at Ouse, Brighton Football Club, Cripps Waratah Netball Club, Elderslie Horse Care and Noel Salter. Each business is committed to providing a prize valued at $400 in goods or cash except for the prize offered by Sue Street (Elderslie Horse Care) and Noel Salter who have combined their resources to provide an incredible prize that could net the winner thousands. Street stands standardbred stallion Sutter Hanover at her property and Salter owns successful broodmare Cloudy Road and they have offered to mate the two with the offspring to be offered as the major prize. The resultant foal, which should be born between September and November 2015, will be weaned, broken to lead and tie up and be capable of being loaded into a float before the winner takes possession. Cloudy Road produced Cloudy Delight (x Bettors Delight) that was Tasmania's best two-year-old filly of her time and accrued just over $75,000 in prize money before injury forced her into early retirement. Tickets into the prize draw will be via an entry that will appear in the race book at the Tasmania Cup meeting on December 21 and members of the TPC and Light Harness Tasmania also will be entitled to a ticket simply by being members of those registered bodies. The TPC and Light Harness Tasmania will provide $2000 ($1000 each) that will serve as one of the two major prizes. "The owner of the first entry drawn will be offered the choice of either the $2000 cash or the foal," Devereux said. "This is a whole new approach to sponsorship," Deveraux said. "The package is designed to bring people back to the races again as well as introducing new people to harness racing as well as providing great value to sponsors." "The club takes nothing from the sponsorship money as it all goes into the major prize draw," he said. Each sponsor receives 100 tickets to a race meeting and at that meeting the sponsor is provided with an area in the main grandstand in which it can entertain its guests and the package also includes free rides in the mobile barrier for up to five of the sponsor's guests as well as race names allocated to the sponsor on the night. "Also 10 of the sponsor's guests get the ultimate racing experience of visiting the race caller and the judge in an area of the course that is traditionally barred from the public," Devereux said. The Tasmania Cup meeting on December 21 also will include a lunchtime concert featuring internationally acclaimed Tasmanian country band The Wolfe Brothers with the concert to start at 11 am. By Peter Staples

Duncan Dornauf and Dylan Ford share the lead after the first two rounds of the Tasmanian Youngbloods Challenge that began at the Tasmanian Pacing Club meeting at Tattersall's Park in Hobart on Sunday night. The Youngbloods series is for drivers under the age of 23 at the start of the 2013-14 racing season and it has been sponsored by Bullock Consulting for the past 14 years. Dornauf won the opening heat aboard long odds-on favourite Ramplestiltskin for Beauty Point trainer Rohan Hillier with the remaining heat taken out by Ford aboard Ektoras for the Barrie Rattray stable. They both finished fourth in their other heats. Dornauf sent Ramplestiltskin straight to the lead in the opening heat and ensured a solid tempo. The daring tactics paid off with the gelding holding on to score by a narrow margin from I Am Mister Red (Alex Ashwood) with The Matthew Howlett-driver Elsudoku over six metres away third but well in advance of Ford's charge Karoola Town. But Ford made the most of partnering the odds-on favourite in the remaining heat that had only six starters. Ektoras worked hard early from his wide front row draw but eventually found the lead and from there on the end result was never in doubt. Ektoras scored by almost two metres from Helen Wheels (Nicholas Brockman) with Samantha Freeman's charge Cardinal Art only a metre astern. In the case of a race having less than 10 starters in a heat, the drivers who miss a drive will be awarded six points which is in accordance with the rules of the series. The winner is will be determined on a points-score basis with 16 points awarded for first, 12 for second, nine for third, seven for fourth and then a reduction of one point for each subsequent placegetter down to one point for tenth. The Youngbloods series comprises six heats with the next round of heats to be run at Devonport tonight (Monday) and the final two heats will be run in Launceston next Sunday night. Points tally after two heats: 23 - Duncan Dornauf and Dylan Ford. 18 - Alex Ashwood. 16 - Nicholas Brockman. 15 - Matthew Howlett and Samantha Freeman. 10 - Justin Howlett. 9 - Lyarna Graham. 8 - Braden Howlett. 7 - Brady Woods. By Peter Staples

Popular Tasmanian harness racing reinsman Adrian Collins has had his licence suspended for four months over a positive swab. Racing Services Tasmania stewards convened an inquiry last Friday into a report received from Racing Analytical Services Ltd, which indicated that a urine sample taken from Collins at the Launceston Pacing Club meeting on 3 November 2013 disclosed the presence of d-amphetamine and d-Methamphetamine. Collins was found guilty of a charge under Australian Harness Racing Rule 252(1). Stewards suspended Collins' licence to drive in races for a period of four (4) months. As he was stood down from driving pending this inquiry the commencement of his suspension has been backdated to midnight 27 November 2013 and will expire at midnight 26 March 2014. Meanwhile veteran trainer-driver Campbell Waytt also had his driver's licence suspsnded for five weeks over a positive swab that resulted from prescription medication he had been taking. Racing Services Tasmania Stewards acted on a report received from Racing Analytical Services Ltd, which indicated that a urine sample taken from Watt at the Tasmanian Pacing Club trials on 7 October 2013 which disclosed the presence of Oxazepam, Temazepam and Nordiazepam at levels exceeding the permitted threshold. Watt pleaded guilty to a charge under Australian Harness Racing Rule 252(1). Stewards suspended Watt's licence to drive in races for a period of five (5) weeks backdated to commence from when he was initially stood down on 10 November 2013 and expiring at midnight on 15 December 2013. Watt will also be required to provide a clear sample prior to his resumption of driving. In determining penalty stewards took into consideration Mr Watts' guilty plea, forthright evidence during the inquiry and that the substance is a prescription medication By Peter Staples

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