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Last week was possibly the best ever for the ring-around with a stunning 9 out of eighteen drivers tipping out winners. Those to tip out winners were: Anthony Butt, Craig Thornley, Jonny Cox, John Dunn, Ken Barron, Mark Jones, Nathan Williamson, Ricky May, and Terry Chmiel. The best result was Craig Thornley’s tip – Supreme Gem, who proved too strong at odds of $10.10 A hard act to follow, but let’s see what we can do: Andrew Armour: Isn’t driving Awesum Teddy this week, but he does expect him to win – Wairio – race eight. Anthony Butt: Thinks the consistent Astral Traveller is a good each-way chance in race five at Addington on Friday. Blair Orange: Has opted for the smart Vice Consul in race eight at Addington on Friday. Gavin Smith & Steve Richardson: Both think that Sleepy Tripp will return to winning form in race seven at Addington on Friday. John Dunn: Is bullish about the chances of Sheemon in race five at Addington on Friday. Jonny Cox: Likes the chances of stable newcomer Idle Eyre. He competes in the ninth race at Forbury tonight. Josh Dickie: Likes the chances of Voluntad, who was big in defeat on debut. She goes around in the fourth race at Alexandra Park on Friday. Ken Barron: Has once again opted for the smart Pacquiao, who competes in race six at Addington on Friday. Mark Jones: Thinks Astrapi can repeat the dose in race three at Forbury Park. Mark Purdon: Thinks Whisper Jet is one to follow over the upcoming Auckland carnival - Alexandra Park. race four. Matthew Williamson: Rates the chances of The Shakey Mistress in race six at Forbury Park tonight. Nathan Williamson: Thinks Music will prove too strong in the last race at Forbury Park tonight. Ricky May: Thinks Vega Sicilia will be tough to roll in race four at Rangiora on Sunday. Sam Ottley: Has opted for Kid Galahad as her bet of the week – Addington, race nine. Scott Phelan: Thinks Cyamach can win the sixth race at Alexandra Park on Friday. Simon Lawson: Thinks Valencey is one to pencil down for the Christmas Eve meeting at Cambridge. Stephen McNally: Rates Ares as a good upset chance in race two at Addington on Friday. Todd Mitchell: Likes the chances of Harry Johnson in race ten at Alexandra Park. Tim Williams: Expects Bettor Buy It, an extremely impressive trialist, to be winning race eleven at Winton on Saturday. By Mitchell Robertson

Last week was a terrific one for ring-around followers with Andrew Armour, Blair Orange, John Dunn, Jonny Cox, Ricky May, Matthew Williamson, and Todd Mitchell all tipping out winners. The best result was Jonny Cox’s tip Provocative Prince who got home at odds of $8.60. So, who is winning this week? Andrew Armour: Likes the chances of Sock It To Me in race nine at Forbury Park on Friday. Anthony Butt: Thinks Ultimate Major can keep his unbeaten record intact in the fourth race at Alexandra Park on Friday. Blair Orange: Rates the chances of capable three-year-old Someardensomewhere. He will compete in the fourth race at Alexandra Park on Friday. Craig Thornley: Thinks Supreme Gem has a great chance in the fourth race at Addington tonight. Gavin Smith: Rates the chances of Vice Chairman in the last race at Alexandra Park on Friday. After all, he is going all the way to Auckland to drive him. Jonny Cox: Thinks that Strathtara, who is now in the Graeme Anderson, will take some beating from her ace alley in nine at Forbury. John Dunn: Has opted for superstar filly Venus Serena as his bet of the week. She will compete in race seven at Alexandra Park on Friday. Ken Barron: Thinks the capable Pacquiao will take some beating from his ace alley in race five at Addington tonight. Mark Jones: Is bullish about the chances of stable newcomer Sunoflindenny. He looks a bold chance in race seven at Waimate on Sunday. Matthew Williamson: Thinks Libertybelle Midfrew can knock Venus Serena off her perch in race seven at Alexandra Park on Friday. Nathan Williamson: Is very bullish about the chances of the talented Quick As A Trick - Forbury Park, race two. Ricky May: Can’t see anything beating Mossdale Connor in race five at Forbury Park. Sam Ottley: Who is new to ring-around, has opted for Clarissa in race three at Addington on Saturday. Sean McCaffrey: Is keen on the chances of Madisonz Luck in race six at Alexandra Park on Friday. Simon Lawson: Has opted for Charge Forward as his best of the week – Alexandra Park, race ten. Stephen McNally: Thinks Ares is a good each-way chance in the last race at Addington tonight. Steve Richardson (T.A.B): Likes the chances of Donaldson in race seven at Addington tonight Terry Chmiel: Has opted for Happy Heidi as his bet of the week. She competes in the first race at Addington on Saturday. Tim Williams: Thinks Mystery Boy can get the cash in the 1200m Dash For Cash – Forbury, race six. Mitchell Robertson (Harnesslink) Best Bet: The Peace Train – Addington (Saturday), race six Each-way: The Wraith Of Robyn – Forbury Park, race eight. Value: Lewy Risk – Alexandra Park, race four.

Throughout Elsu’s siring career, Alabar NZ’s Graeme Henley has been his staunchest supporter.   It is very fitting that he, along with his wife Suzanne, is the breeder of Elsu’s first Group One winner – Chilli Palmer, the ultra impressive winner of the McInerney Ford 4yo Classic at Gloucester Park on Friday night.   That Chilli Palmer was bred at all is something of a miracle.   Fake Spirit was an outstanding filly winning the 2003 Great Northern and NSW Oaks double. Her owner, Robert Famularo discussed with Alan Galloway the possibility of doing an embryo transfer on Fake Spirit. They agreed to do it in partnership with Pacific Rocket the chosen stallion.   Make It Hot was the resulting foal and in due course she was entered for the 2006 Australasian Classic Yearling Sale.   She was however diagnosed as a wobbler and withdrawn from the sale. The decision was made that it was best that she should be put down.   Graeme Henley takes up the story …   “I didn’t have the heart to put her down – she was after all doing well and coping fine when not hassled.   “A couple of years later, I confided to Alan and Robert that Make It Hot hadn’t been put down and that she was doing that well that she would be worth trying to breed from.   “They both said I could have her if I wanted to try. She lost her first foal by Grin and Chilli Palmer was the second attempt. She’s had a foal every year since.    “It’s a great thrill to breed a Group One winner – especially one by Elsu – and out of a mare that really should’ve have been alive.”   Chilli Palmer was pin-hooked as a weanling for $4,000 by Ken and Anne-Marie Spicer who sold him at the NZ Premier Yearling Sale to Terry Chmiel for $13,000. Terry qualified him as an early 3yo and sold him to the Dean Braun stable after impressively winning a maiden trial at Addington. A Video of Chilli Palmer winning the $125,000 4yo Classic at Perth is attached. Courtesy of Alabar website

Congratulations to Anthony Butt, Blair Orange, Ken Barron, Mark Jones, Mark McNamara, Justin Le Lievre, and last but not last, myself, who all tipped out winners during our Cup Week special. Let’s see what ‘specials’ are on the menu this week. Andrew Armour: Has opted for Sharpenuff as his bet of the week. He looks a strong chance in race eight at Forbury Park tonight. Anthony Butt: Thinks Strawbs Ideal Act will keep his unbeaten record intact in the race seven at Timaru on Saturday. Blair Orange: Has found some value in the form of Mystery Boy. He competes in the fourth race at Forbury tonight. Craig Thornley: Thinks Lavros Cash is an each-way chance in race seven at Motukarara on Sunday. John Dunn: Is extremely bullish about the chances of Crackaheiny in race two at Timaru on Saturday. Jonny Cox: Has opted for Canardly Lover, who looks very well placed in race seven at Invercargill on Sunday. Ken Barron: Likes the chances of Change Time, who should improve off the back of her fresh-up second. She goes around in the fourth race at Motukarara on Sunday. Mark Jones: Who will be driving in Australia on Friday and Saturday, has picked up the drive on Smoken Roman on Sunday, and rates him as his best of the week. Matthew Williamson: Has two good drives in the Inter-Provincial Challenge in Free Dreams and Deano Robyn, however he slightly favours the latter. Ricky May: Rates Main Divide as his best of the week. He competes in the first race at Timaru on Saturday. Steve Richardson (T.A.B): Thinks Bert Powell is a very good bet in race eight at Motukarara on Sunday. Terry Chmiel: Is big on the chances of Betabcool in race eight at Forbury Park tonight. Tim Williams: Thinks that handy mare Here We Go Again is a strong chance in race six at Timaru on Saturday. Mitchell Robertson (Harnesslink): Best Bet – Ultimate Major – Motukarara, race eleven. Each-way – The Empires Sister – Invercargill, race seven. Value – Betabcool – Forbury, race eight. By Mitchell Robertson

Former Kiwi gelding Max Richter faces a baptism of fire in his Australian debut this weekend. The high priced Badlands Hanover three-year-old will make his debut for his new connections in a heat of the Chokin Championship at TABCORP Park, Menangle this Saturday night. Purchased recently by Queensland Harness Racing Board Director Greg Mitchell, the former Terry Chmiel trained pacer has been placed in the stables of Grant Dixon, a two- time Australian trainer of the year. Max Richter flew directly to Sydney where he teamed up with Dixon almost two weeks ago. “At this point, everything appears on target because he has settled in nicely and he’s eating and drinking without any concern and Grant seems happy with his condition.” Mitchell said. The passionate owner has enjoyed good success with his New Zealand purchases in recent times including Devil Dodger who has contested a majority of Grand Circuit events while Only The Brave secured Mitchell the Gr.3 Redcliffe Cup earlier this year. And he’s hoping his latest acquisition has what it takes to measure up to the classic events later this season. “My main targets with him this season include the Queensland and New South Wales Derby’s while there are a few other nice races we’re starting to look at also. He was set to trial yesterday (Tuesday) but unfortunately they were called off, Grant was hoping to give him a good hit-out and just fine tune his gear a little more. Whatever he does this weekend, there will be plenty of improvement for the future. I think it’s fair to say this is the best 3yo race for depth in Australia this season so we’ll find out where we’re at; horses like Yayas Hot Spot, Yankee Rockstar, Eliseos Falcon and a few others there are very exciting prospects.” Miracle Mile winning reinsman Mat Rue has been booked for the drive with Dixon sticking with Raring To Go. Mitchell is also represented by Only The Brave on Saturday night and the talented pacer will contest another heat of the Smoken Up Championship for M1 pacers. Last week, Only The Brave finished a respectable second behind Amajorjo in the opening round heat at Newcastle. “I was pleased with effort last week and the horse that beat us is a quality animal and we were hitting the line well in a strong breeze. He’ll be even fitter this week as he had a good blow after the race at Newcastle; typically, he takes four to five runs to be at peak fitness so I’m expecting another good performance.” The $50,000 Smoken Up Championship Final will be staged on November 30, Miracle Mile night. by Chris Barsby

*This week’s ring-around was delayed in order to include the New Zealand Cup meeting Last week was a good one for the ring-around with David Butt, John Dunn, Jonny Cox, Mark Jones, Nathan Williamson, and Scott Phelan all tipping out winners – So hopefully we can carry that sort of form into this week. All trainers-drivers were told that it was preferred that they tip a horse that is racing on Cup Day, but were given the option to tip at any other meeting.  So, let’s see what they came up with: Andrew Armour: Likes the chances of Sharpenuff in race two at Wyndham on Sunday. Anthony Butt: Thinks Peak has continued to go forward since his Ashburton Trotters’ Mile win, and expects him to be hard to beat in the New Zealand Trotting Free-For-All on Cup Day. Blair Orange & Mark Jones: Think the impressive Saveapatrol will prove very hard to beat in race eight on Cup Day. Craig Thornley: Has opted away from Cup Day, tipping out Givenchy Franco in race ten at Wyndham on Sunday. David Butt: Thinks last start winner Lothario is at least an each-way chance in race three on Cup Day. John Dunn: Rates the chance of Kotare Mahal who has been in brilliant form of late. He will compete in the Show Day Futurity on Show Day Ken Barron: Said that Pacquiao was his best chance on Cup Day, but that he rates Change Time at Ashburton on Thursday as his best of the week.  Matthew Williamson:  Believes Yankee One will take some beating in race eleven on Cup Day. Nathan Williamson: Has opted for talented trotter Springbank Sam. He competes in the New Zealand Trotting Free-For-All on Cup Day. Ricky May: Thinks Mossdale Connor will take improvement out of his fresh-up second, and therefore expects him to be very hard to beat in the last on Cup Day. Terry Chmiel: Rates the just of Hi Jinx, who was ultra impressive when winning two starts back. He competes in the last race on Cup Day Todd Mitchell: Believes the ace alley gives Cyclone Prince a great chance of claiming Group One glory in the Sires Stakes Final on Cup Day. Tim Williams: Is not driving on Cup Day – but he does like the chances of The Lutts in race two at Wyndham on Sunday. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Mark McNamara (Cup Day commentator): Thinks classy pacer Didjamakem Bolt will have four straight wins next to his name after the ninth race on Cup Day. Matt Markham ( The Press): Has opted for Harry Johnstone as his best bet of the day on Cup Day. The Northern raider looks well placed in race eleven on the card. Justin Le Lievre (The Informant): Like trainer Mark Jones and driver Blair Orange, thinks Saveapatrol will be very hard to roll in race eight on Cup Day. Mitchell Robertson (Harnesslink) Best bet: Arden Rooney – race five. Each-way: Elios – race twelve. Value: Sundown In Paris – race three. By Mitchell Robertson

Congratulations to David Butt, John Dunn, Jonny Cox, Matthew Williamson and Tim Williams who tipped out winners last week.

Congratulations to David Butt, John Dunn and Tim Williams who tipped out winners last week.

Congratulations to Andrew Armour, Blair Orange, Jim Curtin and Terry Chmiel who picked out winners last week. The best result was a $13.10 winner tipped out by Andrew Armour- Bedtime. Can anyone top that this week?

Congratulations to David Butt, Nathan Williamson & Ricky May who tipped out winners last week.

With The Box Seat no longer doing the highly popular weekly ring around, I thought it was only right that Harnesslink got it back up and running. We will start with just the South Island guys this week before we get the North Island boys on board.

Talented junior harness racing driver Mitchell Kerr might just be 19-years old but the way he continues to impress in the sulky you couldn't be blamed for thinking he was at least twice his age. The Otago-born reinsman again produced a drive of absolute quality at the Manawatu Harness Racing Club's meeting held at Manawatu Raceway in Palmerston North tonight (Thursday March 17).

It was close to a domestic dispute at the finish of a race today (Tuesday) at the New Zealand Metropolitan Trotting Club's meeting held at Addington Raceway. Husband and wife harness racing trainers Terry and Glenys Chmiel fought out the finish of race five running the quinella in a rarely seen or registered phenomenon.

A three year old Pacific Rocket filly by the name of Aziza dented some reputations in last night's (Friday) Nevele R Fillies Heat (1950mobile) at the New Zealand Metropolitan Trotting Club's meeting held at Addington Raceway. The lightly raced filly is trained at Leeston by harness racing husband and wife partnership Terry and Glenys Chmiel.

Forbury Park has a second to none chance of being named the favourite track of the three-year-old Steph's Caesar who has scored three of his four career wins on the Dunedin circuit and - in only four starts there - has the record of three wins and a second.

Terry and Glenys Chmiel's stable mates Roadnight Charlie and Steph's Caesar served notice of their readiness for approaching engagements when they disputed the finish of the Special Handicap Pace 1-6 wins (2600 metres) at the Addington trials today.

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