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Longford harness racing trainer Todd Rattray is sweating on a run for star Tasmanian pacer Ignatius in the $500,000 A G Hunter Cup at Melton on Saturday week. Rattray said he had been given no indication on whether Ignatius would get a start so he had a couple of back-up plans in mind. "There's another race on the same program that he could run in but if he misses out on the Hunter Cup he may go straight to Sydney," the trainer said. He's shown at his past two starts that he's nearly back to his best. Trainer Todd Rattray on Ignatius There are 21 entries for the Hunter Cup, which is restricted to 12 runners, and the final field will be selected on Sunday just before the barrier draw. If price assessors are on the ball, Ignatius should sneak in. He is equal ninth in the order of betting at $34. Lochinvar Art ($1.70) and King Of Swing ($3) dominate the market. "It might be against him that he's been racing in Tasmania but he's shown at his past two starts that he's nearly back to his best," Rattray said. "I think he can improve a bit more but he'll need to because it (Hunter Cup) will be a hot field - if he gets in, I just hope he can keep up." Ignatius came down with a cold after finishing fourth in the Golden Apple at Mowbray in mid-December and had a week off. He returned to score a dominant win over Ryley Major in the Toreace Mile in Hobart on Monday night going 1:54.7. "That was a good win - he felt really good and I never had to pull the plugs or blinds," Rattray said. KADAR 'IMPROVED' FOR HOLGATE FINAL Todd Rattray will have only two runners this weekend but one of them could win the $12,000 Harry Holgate Memorial at Mowbray on Friday night. Kadar was narrowly beaten by outsider Postal Run in his heat at his first run for a month. "I didn't think he was quite right the other night," Rattray said. "He had missed a couple of runs leading up to the race but he should be right now hopefully." Kadar drew outside the front row last Sunday night and Rattray went back at the start to settle last. He circled the field to hit the front at the 150m but Postal Run, who had tracked him into the race, grabbed him in the last few strides. The final looks a very competitive race so he will need a little luck from the second row but he should go close if he gets it. Rockandahardplace and Kivik are likely to battle him for favouritism while Roosevelt, El Jays Blu, Rock The Casbolt and Machbev look each-way chances. NEW DRIVER FOR BURNIE CUP HOPE Trainer Mark Yole has been forced to find a new driver for the in-form Tisu Spirit in Sunday's $12,000 Burnie Cup. Yole was suspended for six meetings at Mowbray last Sunday night for causing interference that led to a two-horse fall. He has booked Natalee Emery to drive Tisu Spirit who is coming off a win in the North Eastern Pacing Cup at Carrick and a game third to Ryley Major and Lip Reader in the Devonport Cup. The gelding has drawn inside the 10m line but is a quick beginner and, if the gaps open, may be able to take up a forward position. Mister Gently and Bettabrown Tiger hold the key to the race. Both boast 50 per cent winning strike-rates but are returning from spells. Greg Mansfield Reprinted with permission of The Examiner

Longford reinsman Todd Rattray notched up a milestone win in the sulky in Hobart last night, when he scored in the Carlton Draught Pace aboard Delightful Junie who he also trains. It was win number 650 for Rattray who had his first race drive on September 24, 2006, in Launceston. Delightful Junie, a seven-year-old mare by Jr Mint had only won three of 36 starts before last night’s win, but she was second-up in the care of Rattray after her former trainer and owner Shaun Kennedy transferred the horse to Rattray’s Longford stables. “Shaun was having trouble juggling his few horses and Uni and wanted some help, at the time we had a few horses in work and knocked him back but a few weeks after there was room for her and he was delighted with the win,” said Rattray. From barrier three Rattray positioned the mare one-out and one-back in the 2090 metre event before peeling three-wide at the 700-metre mark. “She slid in alright at the start and had a good run, I probably went a bit hard down the back, but she wanted to run, so I let her, she still had the earplugs in at the finish,” said Rattray. It is rare to see a two-year-old defeat the older and more experienced horses, but with the new national rating system that seems to be slightly changing nationally. The latest winner to add to that list is the Heath Woods trained and driven filly Stepping Stones who scored in the Rexel North Hobart Pace for horses with a national rating of 30 to 49 over 1609 metres. Instead of heading to a two-year-old maiden event in Launceston worth just under double the prize-money on Sunday, Woods elected to stay a bit closer to home. “We knew we would draw well in the first two or three over the mile, plus she isn’t a good traveller so we thought we would keep her down here with the same routine,” said the Broadmarsh based trainer. From barrier one, Woods positioned the filly behind the leader before using the sprint lane in the home straight to record the filly’s first win in a time of 1m 59.8s. “It worked out really good, she travelled well all the way, down the back and around the turn I thought she was in with a strong show as long as we got to the sprint lane,” Woods said. “She has always had a bit of ability but has always done a few little things wrong and she is still learning to race,” he added. The filly was a $4,500 purchase from last years Carrick Park Yearling Sale, and being Tasbred, connections were able to take home there $10,000 first win Tasbred bonus. Stepping Stones wasn’t the only pacer to break their maiden on the card with the Ivan Belbin trained Telmax Nikita scoring in the opening race.   Duncan Dornauf for Tasracing

The Devonport Harness Racing Club hosts its richest meeting of the season on Sunday night with prizemoney totalling almost $150,000. For the second year in a row, trainer-driver Todd Rattray will have a short-priced favourite for the $50,000 Raider Stakes. However the $50,000 Granny Smith will be more open after last week's prelude produced an upset winner in Brystabella. The 2018 Raider Stakes saw the Rattray-trained Harjeet justify his $1.10 price when he led throughout to score by 26m. His stablemate Izaha was almost as dominant winning his heat last Friday night by 16m as 1.30 favourite. The Kate MacLeod-trained Shadow Ross was brave running down Tisu Spirit to win the other heat but his time was slower and, despite having won three of his past four starts, he won't be challenging Izaha for favouritism in the final. Brystabella won the Granny Smith prelude as a $29 outsider after a very aggressive drive by her trainer Ray Pullen and, on face value, she would seem to have the other prelude runners covered if the brings the same form to the final. Greg Mansfield Reprinted with permission of The Advocate  

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

Tasmania's dynamic pacer Harjeet is set to add the Metropolitan Cup to his long list of major race successes at tonight's Tasmanian Trotting Club meeting at TAB Park Hobart. The local champion (pictured) has won 15 of his 22 career starts including the Easter Cup, Tassie Golden Apple, Raider Stakes and Hobart Pacing Cup and is shooting for straight wins in tonight's 2579-metre staying test. he Todd Rattray-trained Rocknroll Hanover-Our Zellweger five-year-old gelding will start solo on the second line and has been served up as a $1.04 favourite for the feature event. The first heat of the inaugural Aldebaran Park Tasmanian Trotting Cup will be conducted tonight as part of the Club's commitment to reinvigorate trotting in the state. Trumps Golden Boy broke through for its first win in the state after ten starts but has now strung together four on the trot for trainer Bianca Heenan. The six-year-old gelding will start off the 10-metre handicap and has been installed the $1.75 favourite ahead of the Eric Jacobson prepared Majestic Ess Jay at $3.90. The former Victorian eight-year-old trotter will make its debut in the state with a record of 94 career starts for 16 wins and 30 placings. The TAB is offering an 'Any 2' Jackpot of $11,849.50 on the opening race on the card. All you need to do is pick out two runners you think can finish in the first three placings to be a part of the action or box up any number of runners for a full dividend declared return or at a cheaper cost a percentage of the dividend. Race one is the Rexel North Hobart Pace and Tasracing's harness racing experts Jamie Cockshutt and Duncan Dornauf are selecting the in-form runners Swap Me (No.2), Real Diamond (No.1) and Shadow Control (No.8) to fight out the finish with Duncan tipping Forever Ours as his outside chance at odds.   Shane Yates

Todd and James Rattray have enjoyed a glorious run with their star pacer Ignatius, tonight at Menangle they plan another step in the successful journey with a tilt at victory in the Group 1 Chariots Of Fire. Ignatius earned his place in the $200,000 4YO feature with a sensational win in last week’s Group 2 Paleface Adios Stakes. “He couldn’t be better than he is right now, Todd has prepared him perfectly for this campaign, he has eased him through a slight setback in January and got him right for the trip,” said James. “His run last week to win the Paleface Adios Stakes was certainly one of his best ever performances and has him primed for an all-out assault on the Group 1 tonight against the best in the land.” Ignatius drew wide in the Paleface Adios and did some early work out three-wide through the first turn before James found the death-seat outside the favourite Chase Auckland. “Chase Auckland and Ignatius have drawn almost identical gates to last week, Chase Auckland is in one again we are again out wide in eight but Ignatius returned his career best mile-rate of 1:50.2 to beat him last time and he has felt even better at home during the week,” said James. “Chase Auckland, Poster Boy, Picard and Ashley Locaz are all topliners but they will know Ignatius is there when the pressure is on turning for home over 1609-metres, the winner receives an invitation to the Miracle Mile so there’s a lot on the line.” Todd made the trip to Sydney during the week and was there to keep a close eye on Ignatius as he was taken into the Retention Barn at Menangle Park on Thursday. “He’s looking and feeling great, he put up a great performance last week and that will have just topped him off perfectly for the Chariots,” said Todd. “Ignatius couldn’t be in better hands than James, we have a great relationship, racing to us has always been a family affair, we all share the ups and downs together and that’s the way it should be, let’s hope we all have something to celebrate tonight.”   Shane Yates

Tasmanian champion Harjeet stamped his authority over the state’s top pacers in the $25,000 Triple M Hobart Pacing Cup on Sunday. The five-year-old Rocknroll Hanover-Our Zellweger gelding, trained and driven by Todd Rattray, showed his class over the staying trip of 2579-metres to win by 5.2-metres over a gallant Isaac. “We got a nice run through from outside the second line and settled just worse than midfield and when the pace slackened I thought it was time to wander up toward the lead and test the waters a little,” said Todd. “Harjeet (pictured) travelled up to the leaders smoothly so we just rolled past and he travelled sweetly from there, when we lifted the tempo inside the last half it was really only Isaac that could go with him.”. Isaac, the Juanita McKenzie-trained Devonport Cup winner, switched to the Roberts Sprint lane at the top of the home straight and closed within two metres but the champ had other ideas. “To his credit Isaac got a little close for comfort at one stage,we thought Harjeet would run on a little better than he did but he had switched off and was drifting up the track, the motor kicked in again when he knew he was being challenged and he got the job done (5.2-metres) so hopefully he’ll be better next start.” Harjeet is now an M3 so if heading the way of the Tasmania Cup and Easter Cup he will be looking at a 30-metre handicap or there may be a trip to the mainland on the cards. “I will have to talk to the owners, we would like to take him over at some stage, we’d have to make sure he’s right in himself but it might be time now,” said Todd. “He gets away well from the stand now and puts himself in it but obviously you still have to make up that ground too, Scooterwillrev is still an MO and he’s a pretty good horse and there are few others around.” Todd capped of a successful day with Joogle breaking her maiden status in the $10,000  TTC Members Pace. Bianca Heenan kept her sensational season rolling by training a winning double with Trumps Golden Boy taking out the Aldebaran Park Hobart Trotting Cup and Alta Surreal, with Hannah Van dongen in the cart, capturing its fourth win of the season. Hannah went on to extend her lead in the Leading Female Drivers award steering the Mark Reggett prepared Dasher Houli to back-to-back victories by taking out the Tab Park Elwick Pace. The heavily backed Beam Me Up Chopper ($3.50) put up a herculean performance to win in the Crown Lager Pace for Kate MacLeod after being never closer than three off the peg line while Ektoras overcame an outside draw to salute at odds of $31.00 in the Olympus Feeds P ace. Four-year-old mare Ideal Bliss, guided by Rohan Hillier, returned victorious from an eight-month spell for Paul Hill while Tilly Max made a successful debut for trainer-driver Paul Ashwood in the two-year-old. Shane Yates for

The Country Cup’s Carnival rolls on today at Scottsdale with the running of the Bridport Hotel North Eastern Pacing Cup over 2692 metres. Reigning champion Full Speed Ahead (pictured), trained by Todd Rattray, will defend his title against last season’s Steve Davis prepared runner-up and this year’s St Marys Cup winner Black Centurian. “Black Centurian could almost drive himself to Scottsdale, he’s been there so many times and run off some stiff handicaps and been beaten narrow margins to some smart horses,” said Steve. “The track is only small but he just loves it, he can’t go a yard at Burnie but grows a leg when he spots the Scottsdale sign post.” The Ben Yole-prepared Perfect Mach is in search of its second Cup success in the space of a week after streaking away with the 7BU Burnie Cup for Hannah van Dongen last Friday to record its first Tasmanian victory. “We bought him as a Country Cups circuit horse but he hadn’t shown us a lot until last week, but on the strength of that run he has to be a chance today,” said Ben. The 2016 North Eastern Cup winner Major Callum is back for another tilt at the feature, the eight-year-old Art Major gelding was in the care of Juanita McKenzie when defeating Black Centurian by a head but is now trained by Brooke Hammond and will gain the services of Rod Ashwood for today’s assignment. The Todd Rattray-trained Meander Valley Cup winner Goggo Gee Gee has drawn the pole while Buster William, for Wayne Campbell, will be out to keep its North Eastern Cup Day record intact having won in 2017 as a three-year-old and again last year by 17 metres. Today’s Bridport Hotel North Eastern Cup programme, will be streamed live from Scottsdale at with a preview of the meeting with host Duncan Dornauf before the first, set down for decision at 16.37.   Shane Yates  

Star Tasmanian pacer Ignatius is an early scratching from Friday night's Launceston Pacing Club meeting. Trainer Todd Rattray made the decision tonight after he examined the results of blood tests showing the young champion had not fully recovered from a slight infection. "He's not far off being ready to start him but we wouldn't knowingly start any horse that wasn't 100% right so there will be no risks taken," said a disappointed trainer. "We were looking forward to seeing him race here in Tasmania in preparation for another mainland campaign but time is against now for that to happen." Ignatius (pictured), the reigning Tasmanian Horse of the Year and New South Wales Three-Year-Old of the Year, is being set for next month's $200,000 Chariots Of Fire at Menangle Park in Sydney. "Tonight's issue is a set back for sure, not a major one but a set back all the same, when you are coming up against the best horses in Australia everything needs to be going well, not mishaps here and there along the way," said Todd. "We are planning on a direct trip to Sydney with him and that just doesn't happen by clicking your fingers, we were hoping to give him one run here at home but that may be tricky now, he'll have to have a run prior to the heats of the Chariots so we will just have to play it by ear and see how it pans out."   Shane Yates

Classy six-year-old Taurisi proved he’s one of the best pacers in the state with his outstanding win in heat one of the Tassie Golden Applie Series  in Launceston on Sunday night. Punters who had backed the Todd Rattray trained and driven pacer into $1.70 had their hearts in their mouths until Todd extricated the Always’s A Virgin – Exclusif gelding away from the peg line at the 800-metre mark. With runs coming on his outside Todd sat quietly and although shuffled back to third last down the back the popular pick was now seeing daylight. Todd eased Taurisi (pictured) to the outside inside the 400-metre pole and he powered home down the stretch out five wide to gain the day in the last few strides over Mister Lennox, Offthetopofmyhead and Another Swinger. “Getting him away from the stand is always tricky, we didn’t lose a lot of ground at the start and we got a soft run which is what he needs in his races and I knew once we got into the clear he could run them down,” said Todd. Taurisi recorded a mile rate of 2.02.7 with the last half of 57.7 sec, but it wasn’t a race that was won on times, it was won by a cool-headed driver and a horse that showed his courage and tenacity to be never beaten. With the first heat run and won attention quickly turned to heat two and the eagerly awaited clash of Scooterwillrev and reigning Easter Cup winner Harjeet. The rock hard race fitness of the Craig Hayes prepared Scooterwillrev, the winner of five of his last six starts, up against Harjeet first up from a six-month spell. “Scooterwillrev was very impressive, finding the lead at the mile and running sensational sectionals coming home the last half in 55.6 seconds, but I was very happy with Harjeet’s effort to sit outside the leader and stick on so gamely in the stretch to finish third running those times,” said Todd. “He appears to have pulled up well, we don’t work him hard at home as he gets his fitness from racing so with the run under his belt he will strip much fitter for Friday night’s Gold Apple Final Todd was also aboard Harjeet’s half-brother Izaha in the second race of the night, the Roll With Joe – Our Zellweger four-year-old made it seven wins from a 12 start career with a herculean effort to defeat Secluded Beach by a head. “He was first up since May, started from outside the front line and to then race in the death and run the time they did of 1:56.1 for the mile was a super performance,” said a delighted trainer-driver. “Given he begins well from the tapes I might run him in the Country Cups but his main mission is the Raider Stakes at Devonport in May.”   Shane Yates

It has been another big week in Tasmanian harness racing circles. The most successful Tasmanian driver of all time, Ricky Duggan rewrote the record books when he scored on Laredo Torpedo on Friday night. Star pacer Ignatius, who is back in the state and is in work for trainer Todd Rattray was still winning in New South Wales on Saturday picking up two awards at the annual Harness Racing New South Wales awards night. This weekend we have two meetings in the state kicking off in the twilight zone in Launceston on Friday evening before a rare Sunday afternoon meeting at the Devonport Showgrounds. The Stars Ricky Duggan - the New Norfolk based reinsman rewrote the record books on Friday night when he became the first Tasmanian driver to record 1600-wins win he steered Laredo Torpedo to victory. Duggan's resume includes a staggering 24 Tasmanian Sires Stakes Finals, five Devonport Pacing Cups and the Launceston Pacing Clubs premier race the Easter Cup on three occasions. Ignatius - In New South Wales on Saturday night the star three-year-old was crowned New South Wales three-year-old of the year and the New South Wales three-year-old Colt and Gelding of the year. Earlier this month Ignatius was crowned Tasmanian three-year-old of the year and Tasmanian Horse of the year. James Austin - returned to the sulky after an enforced lay off and certainly became the punter's pal for those who backed Long Ago in from $41 into $26 in the opening race. Brystabella - this four-year-old showed ability in her first two starts but in her third race track appearance the headaches began for trainer Sandra Hills, after three trials Brystabella was back to the race track and put her best foot forward to win her first race at only her third racetrack appearance. Taylor Ford - after recently outdriving her concession claim the Brighton reinswoman continued on her winning way with a driving double on Friday night aboard Jacks Command and Bounty Eyre for trainer Bianca Heenan. Multiple Winners Hobart - Friday Ben Yole - training double; Long Ago and Lake Eyre. Bianca Heenan - training double; Jacks Command and Bounty Eyre. Taylor Ford - driving double; Jacks Command and Bounty Eyre. Calculated Sectional Standouts Quickest last halves (800m) from last week’s action. Hobart - Friday Taurisi 56.10s, Mister Lennox 56.62s, Drayton 57.04s, Max Richter 57.11s and Laredo Torpedo 57.25s. You can view sectionals from every runner from the meeting and more Tasmanian Sectional Data by clicking here. Tasracing Official Price Hobart - Friday Hit's: Long Ago $41 into $26 and Secluded Beach $3.50 into $3.30, Defied The Drift: Jacks Command $5.50 out to $8.00 and Bounty Eyre $3.70 out to $4.20. Missed: Jakes A Joy (11th) $17 into $6.00, Frankie Falconio (8th) $41 into $26, Witch Master (4th) $18 into $13, Medal Of Honour (3rd) $4.20 into $3.90 and Rusty Red Comet (8th) $51 into $31. Trial File Hobart - Monday Three trials were staged at the Elwick Racing Complex on Monday evening where. The Chris Howlett trained pacer Rockin An Runnin recorded the quickest winning mile rate of the night of 2m 5.4s. Driven by Matthew Howlett Rockin An Runnin sat behind the leader in the free horse field and was able to win by two metres over Elect To Go and Grinable. Rockin An Runnin is part-owned by successful thoroughbred owner-breeders, Paul and Elizabeth Geard, has had three trails back since his last start second in Launceston on April 15. The other two trials were won by Feelin Dusty (2m 10.4s) and Diago Rules (2m 6.1s). Devonport - Monday The Geoff Smith trained Regal Major recording the quickest winning mile rate of the night at the Devonport Showgrounds on Monday evening when he recorded 2m 2.3s in a C1 to C4 trial over 2297-metres. Driver Charlie Castles took the pacer to the lead and was able to defeat his former stablemate Moto Kenny by two meters with a further two metres back to the third placed Bettor Go Go. The remaining trials were won by; Red Shed Robbie (2:07.7), Lead Singer (2:06.5), Jaminas Joy (2:05.2) and Mister Last (2:05.1) Week Ahead The first of two meetings this week is in Launceston on Friday night where the Nichols Sound & Communications Stakes is the main race of the night. A field of 11 will face the starter under Standing Start conditions, including the Heath Szczypka trained Reign Of Pain will step out for the second time since arriving in the state. The Armbro Operative gelding was doing his best work late when finishing 3.7-metres behind Full Speed Ahead when fourth in the Show Cup in Launceston on October 19, he will start off a 10-metre handicap but comes back from a free-for-race to a C5 and better standing start. The Launceston meeting features a $1,000 Ubet Quaddie Jackpot gets underway at 17:31 with races one to three and race seven to be shown on Sky Racing 2 with races four to six to be telecast on Sky Racing 1. All races will be live streamed at The action then turned to Devonport on Sunday afternoon where the first two heats of the 6ty Youngbloods and the $12,000 NWTLHA Cup are the highlights on the seven-event programme. Conor Crook will be hoping to secure maximum points in heat one where he drives the Kate MacLeod trained Rattlenhum. Drawn the pole position where it is expected Conor will use the Riverboat Kings geldings gate speed like he showed last start in late September where he was able to lead from the pole position in Launceston in late September where he was grabbed late to be defeated 4.5-metres by Our Percius. The 6ty Youngbloods has moved from its traditional July time slot to give trainers and owners more options with there horses throughout the year with the six penalty-free races that clashed with the Botra Claiming Novice Drives series that was run under similar conditions in July. The fast class race of the day is the NTLHA Cup where the Shelley Barnes trained Chief Destroyer returns to the track since his second placing on at the Showgrounds on July 1. The race also sees the return of this year's Devonport Cup winner Riverboat Jasper who has a 20-metre handicap to overcome. The first race on Sunday commences at 13:28 and will be telecast on Sky Racing 1 and live streamed at Races four through to seven will be the legs of the Ubet Quaddie to fall into Ubet policy of having the last four races as the Quaddie legs for afternoon harness racing meetings. Ubet also have a $1,945 on the Extra Double which is held on races two and three. Interstate this week we see: Gloucester Park - Friday Race 5 Horse 4 Devendra, Melton - Saturday Race 3 Horse 5 The Bettormack. Menangle - Saturday Race 2 Horse 3 Rykov Leis and Horse 4 Pachacuti, Redcliffe - Saturday Race 2 Horse 6 Fioki and Race 6, Horse 2 Jerrys Jet.   Globe Derby - Saturday Australian Drivers Championship night, where Todd Rattray and Ricky Duggan will represent Tasmania:   Todd Rattray Ricky Duggan R1 11. TORQUE OF COURAGE 9. THE HIGH ACHIEVER R2 12. WAYNESFIRST 8. VANDANTA NZ R3 10. CLARENDEN VALOUR 8. GLIDER R4 3. BIEN HOA  5. KOTARE MAHDI  R5 2. OUR EL NINO NZ 11. HARRYS DAY OUT R6 4. I WANNA ROCKNROLL 11. MISSY MURDOCK R7 10. DRINKTOUS WROXTON 1. MAGICAL RIDE R8 3. POWER OF ATTORNEY  10. SKIPPY RASCAL    Duncan Dornauf

The Todd Rattray trained and driven eight-year-old gelding Full Speed Ahead last night claimed the first major Cup of the season in Launceston. The Tasmanian Horse Transport Launceston Show Cup drew a quality field with the Craig Hayes prepared Scooterwillrev the backmarker off 30-metres but it was to be Full Speed Ahead (pictured) that pulled of a courageous victory over the 200-metre trip. “We are rapt with his effort tonight in the Cup, he’s a good beginner from the stand, Todd had the confidence in him to sit up in the death seat and the move paid off,” said part owner Brett Collins. “He ran to the front at the 500-metre mark and was strong enough to hold off the challenges from Another Swinger and Scooterwillrev, he just keeps on finding and was going as well if not better than any other runner on the line. ” Full Speed Ahead enjoyed a highly successful first season of racing in Tasmania winning six races prior to a spell including victory in the St.Marys Cup, deadheating with Solid As A Rock, followed by a win in the the North Eastern Pacing Cup. “My father Ian and a good mate Peter Jones and I bought him after his St. Marys effort and almost recouped our investment a few days later at Scottsdale, Full Speed Ahead won a couple more for us during the year and then Barrie (Rattray) suggested it may be time for a spell so he’s been off the scene for five months,” said Brett. “He ran a fast-finishing first-up third to Jacks Command a few weeks back in Hobart followed by his super effort on Friday night so it looks as if he’s come back stronger than ever and may well pick up another few wins for us this season, our long term hope is for him to gain a start and perform well in our hometown Devonport next year.”   Shane Yates

The curtain has fallen on another harness racing season. Ben Yole claimed another trainers title (124 wins) defeating Todd Rattray (71) and Juanita McKenzie (33). Todd Rattray claimed back-to-back driving titles recording 87 victories in the sulky over Ricky Duggan (80) and Rohan Hillier (79). The second spot on the driver’s title was keenly contested over the past few weeks with the driver who finished second on the table joining Todd Rattray at the Australian Drivers Championship this season. Going into the last race Duggan and Hillier sat equal on 79 wins but Duggan was able to guide Rocknroll Dancer to victory at odds of $18 on the TasRacing Official Price. Conor Crook won the state’s junior driver title by one win, Juanita McKenzie claimed another female trainer’s title while Hannah Van Dongden held onto a narrow win in the female driver’s premiership. This week’s Harness Racing heads to Launceston on Friday evening where long-serving clerk of the course, David Mace will retire for the position that he has served in since the late 1970’s. The Stars Ben Yole – finished off the season on a high note training seven winners in the final two meetings of the season in Hobart last week. Yole finished the season on 124 Tasmanian wins which equalled the state record that he set the year prior. Yole had a staggering 2134 starters in the state during the 2017-2018 season which is a state record for either racing code in Tasmania. Bianca Heenan – the Brighton-based trainer was another to finish off the season in good fashion training three winners from her five starters across last week’s meetings which included a training double on Wednesday night. Inner Light – the Christian Cullen gelding had a tremendous season and recorded his ninth win of the season with another win in Hobart on Friday. The Juanita McKenzie-trained pacer has also recorded nine placings from 23 starts during the season that has just concluded. Redason – recorded his second win since arriving in the state in the Rexel North Hobart Trot. The Rodney Ashwood trained trotter in five Tasmanian starts has earned his connections just under $9,000 in prize money. Mark Yole – demonstrated his ability in the sulky driving six winners last week to finish fifth on the state drivers table. Multiple Winners Hobart – Wednesday Ben Yole – training quartet; Thebackpagescribe, Rocknrollhighlight, Ektoras and No Apachemee. Bianca Heenan – training double; Big Bang Raj and Alta Surreal. Mark Yole – driving treble; Big Bang Raj, Alta Surreal and Rocknrollhighlight. Rohan Hillier – driving double; Thebackpagescribe and No Apachemee. Hobart – Friday Ben Yole – training treble; Mornings, Pushkin and Shadow Control. Mark Yole – driving treble; Mornings, Pushkin and Shadow Control. Ricky Duggan – driving double; Inner Light and Rocknroll Dancer Calculated Sectional Standouts Quickest last halves (800m) from last week’s action. Hobart – Wednesday Couta Rocks, 57.98s, Alta Surreal 58.04s, Mavis Merle 58.56s, Reckless Abandon 58.61s and Albayzin 58.71s. Hobart – Friday Mornings 58.26s, Wattabout Spangher 58.54s, Flashy Ruler 58.61s, Adele Said 58.87 and Mon Poppy Bronte 58.89s. You can view sectionals from every runner from both meetings and more Tasmanian Sectional Data by clicking here. Tasracing Official Price Hobart – Wednesday Hit’s: Thebackpagescribe $26 into $14 and Big Bang Raj $3.20 into $2.60. Defied The Drift: Ektoras $6.00 out to $8.00, Rocknrollhighlight $2.70 out to $3.50 and Alta Surreal $3.00 out to $3.70. Missed: Miss Superbia $19 into $5.50, Bounty Eyre $9.50 into $7.00 and Tizyalator $4.40 into $3.40. Hobart – Friday Hit’s: Pushkin $12 into $8.50, Inner Light $4.00 into $2.15 and Redason $2.60 into $2.30. Defied The Drift: Demonstrative $7.50 out to $12, Rocknroll Dancer $14 out to $18 and Shadow Control $4.40 out to $5.50. Missed: Arrived In Time $31 into $16, Sheer Strength $21 into $8.00 and Monarkmac $12 into $5.50. Trial File Carrick Park on Saturday morning. Only one trial was held with a field of three horses facing the starter. Williamlee was able to hold the lead from barrier one to lead all the way to win by just under a metre over Padabing Stride in a mile rate of 2mins 7.7sec. Hobart on Monday night. It was the Conor Crook show at the Elwick Racing Complex with the concession driver winning the two trials staged. His first win came for his boss Ben Yole in the standing start trial where Chilla Breeze scored by 10-metres in a mile rate of 2min 7.6sec for the 2090-metre trip. Olwen Jaccka came from last to win the mobile trial of the night, defeating Mon Poppy Polly by one metre in a mile rate 2min 7.1sec. Week Ahead The action this week’s returns to Launceston in the twilight time zone for an eight-race card. The main race of the night and one of the most intriguing events on the programme is the David Mace Retirement Stakes. The Troy Hillier-trained Illegal Immigrant will be looking for a hat-trick of wins when he has his first attempt at C6 or better grade, and judging by the dominance of his last to first victory in a slick 1min 57sec mile rate in Launceston on August 24 you would expect that he is ready to take the next step to open grade. His rivals on Friday night include The Aussie who was the winner of six races from 20 starts last season including his most recent racetrack appearance in Hobart in mid-August. The five-year-old entire is expected to race up on the speed from his pole draw, while Taurisi (last start winner) and Star Chamber come into the race recording the two quickest last half miles of the meeting when they clashed here on August 24. The start time of race one has been brought forward to 17:19 and the meeting can be seen on Tasracing’s Live Stream service. Sky Racing 1 will televise race one with races two through to eight to be shown on Sky Racing 2. Interstate this week at Metropolitan venues across Australia we see; Melton – Saturday night Race 6 Horse 7 The Bettormack and Horse 10 Resurgent Spirit, Race 7 Horse 8 Sultan Fella. Menangle – Saturday night Race 5 Horse 9 Pachacuti. Albion Park – Saturday night Race 1 Horse 2 Jerrys Jet, Race 3 Horse 12 Vande Velde.   Duncan Dornauf

Two meetings remain for the 2017-2018 season and they will be both held in Hobart with racing later this afternoon and again on Friday. Todd Rattray leads the state drivers’ premiership on 87 wins from Ricky Duggan on 77 and Rohan Hillier with 76 victories for the season. As for the trainers’ title, Ben Yole has 117 wins and is a clear leader from Todd Rattray on 71 and Juanita McKenzie in third sport on 32. The Stars Illegal Immigrant – top win by this Troy Hillier-trained and driven pacer in the C4 to C6 Pace in Launceston on Friday night when he came from last to notch up his sixth Australian win in a slick mile rate of 1min 57sec for 2200 metres. The gelded son of American Ideal looks set to rise through to the free-for-all ranks and be competitive in many of our feature races next season. Ima Ginger Rogers – proved she’s on track for a number of country cup races leading all the way to win a C3 and better standing start race over the 1680-metre journey. Admittedly it is uncommon to see a standing start race over the sprint trip but the Steven Davis-trained mare broke the track record that was jointly shared by star pacer Fleet Express and Scooterwillrev. Mornings – handy all the way winner of the Cliff Robins Memorial. It was the first Tasmanian start for the Dawn Ofa New Day filly who had recently joined the Ben Yole stable and raced up to her good trial win in Hobart five days prior. Art Frenzy – nothing went to plan for this Craig Van Dongden-trained and Mark Yole-driven pacer who struck the sulky wheels during the race causing the gelding to over race, making Mark Yole’s job harder was the fact that the connection strap for the off side hopples broke during the event which shows Yole’s skill to get the pacer over the line first in 1min 57.8sec, which made the win more impressive. Tisu Bombbelle – the five-year-old mare broke through for her first win of the season and kicked off a big weekend for driver Gareth Rattray and trainer Melissa Maine. The Latrobe based duo announced their engagement on Sunday via social media. Multiple Winners Launceston – Friday Ricky Duggan – driving treble; Ima Ginger Rogers, Smilin Geoff and All The Way Mae. Mark Yole – driving double; Mornings and Art Frenzy. Ben Yole – training double; Mornings and Giant Steps. Marc Butler– training double; Western Glory and Adele Said. Calculated Sectional Standouts Quickest last halves (800m) from last week’s action in Launceston on Friday night. Taurisi 55.54s, Star Chamber 55.95s, Alaphilippe 56.21s, Destreos 56.29s and Rocknrollhighlight 56.48s. A total of 26 starters broke 58.00-seconds for their last half mile and you can view sectionals from every runner at the meeting and all Tasmanian Sectional Data by clicking here. Tasracing Official Price Launceston Hit’s: Art Frenzy $11 into $4.80, El Jays Monet $10 into $4.80 and Ima Ginger Rogers $4.80 into $4.20. Defied The Drift: Mornings $2.70 out to $3.40, Tisu Bombelle $3.00 out to $3.60 and Taurisi $3.50 out to $4.00. Missed: Destreos $26 in to $16 and Karalta Kruise $26 in to $19. Trial File Carrick Park on Saturday morning. The first trial was won by Timely Soveregin who showed good standing start manners to lead from out side of the front row in an overall time of 2mins 49.8sec. The first half of the last mile was recorded in 65.7secs with the last two quarters being recorded in 30.1s and 28.7s. Timely Sovereign won by four metres over Olivers Mate, who recovered quickly after galloping out in a mile rate of 2mins 7.2sec. Trial two was a combined two and three-year-old event over 2150-metres and Scottsdale trainer Grahame Hayes continued the north-eastern themer of the morning when his unraced Four Starzz Shark filly, Lille, showed a good turn of speed in the home straight to pick up the leader Selfrighteousboy by three metres. It was a slow early tempo with the first half of the last mile recorded in 70.3secs before speeding up during the final two quarters in 30.2s and 29.9. The mile rate was recorded in 2mins 13.4 sec. The final trial only seen the two starters with the Troy Hillier trained and driven Four Ex Dan rolling straight to the early lead with Ready To Fire electing to take the trail. It was Ready To Fire and driver Mark Yole having to much speed in the home straight to win by two metres with the last mile being run in quarters of 32.2s, 31.2s, 30.4s and 30.1s. Week Ahead It’s all happening in Hobart this week with racing being held both tonight and again on Friday evening. Tonight’s card is a restricted class meeting that sees all races carrying the conditions for horses that have won less than $3,000 in their last three starts prior to acceptance time which means a number of starters have been finishing at the top end of their most recent starts. Two pacers that have been placed in their last two starts are Major Callum and Rocknrollhighlight who clash in the R6 to R9 Pace. Major Callum finished second to The Aussie in a strong C4 and better standing start event in Hobart two starts ago before finishing less than two-metres behind Smilin Geoff in Launceston on Friday. The Brooke Hammond trained gelding has had 48-starts on the Hobart circuit for three wins and 20 placings. Rocknrollhighlight is one of many starters on the programme and has been placed in strong races at her most recent starts including a second to Usain Jolt in Hobart two starts ago before finishing third in a C7 and better Discretionary in Launceston at her most recent effort. The first of seven races tonight kicks off at 17:15 with all races to be shown on Sky Racing 2 and Tasracing’s Live Stream Service. The Tasmanian Pacing Club also races again on Friday night where Laredo Torpedo steps out for the first time since joining the Juanita McKenzie stable when he lines up in race three, a strong C1 or better standing start event. The only time we have seen the Bettors Delight gelding raced in the state was when he finished third behind Scooterwillrev and Harjeet in the 2017 Tasmanian Derby. Laredo Topedo’s most recent racing has been in New South Wales including being defeated a head two starts ago at a Tuesday meeting at Menangle in a slick 1min 52.9sec The action in Hobart kicks off with a competitive two-year-old event at 16:59 with all races to be telecast on Sky Racing 2 and Tasracing ‘s Live Stream. Interstate this week at Metropolitan venues across Australia we see; Gloucester Park – Friday night Race 4 Horse 7 Devendra Melton – Saturday night Race 1 Horse 7 Offthetopofmyhead, Race 5 Horse 6 Resurgent Spirit and Horse 7 The Bettormack, Race 10 Horse 4 Sultan Fella. Albion Park – Saturday night Race 1 Horse 2 El Major, Race 4 Horse 8 Jerrys Jet, Race 5 Horse 6 Fioki.   Duncan Dornauf

Redason's trotting success in Hobart on Sunday night brought together the best of what racing is all about, the opportunity to celebrate with family and friends. The five-year-old Majestic Son-Rosedorae five-year-old trotter (pictured) is the product of a Tasmanian Pacing Club Syndicate and tasted success for the first time in the state with a faultless display of trotting for trainer-driver Rodney Ashwood in the Triple M Hobart Trot over 2090-metres. "It was great to see the syndicate up and about after the win. Redason finished close up on debut in the state when trotting returned to Tasmania in July and then he galloped away at his second run and we had to back to the trials," said Rod. "Redason performed well in the trials and put it all together last night. I had some great advice from Ray Pullen who came down and gave me a few tips. Ray has extensive experience with trotters and his words of wisdom were instrumental in the win, so I'm very thankful to him" Redason's win was the second leg of a winning double for Rod, having earlier lifted Falcon Harry over the line in the Green Electrical Pace for trainer Tony Petersen. Falcon Harry took a season record of two wins from nine starts into the race and was forced to work hard to gain success. "Falcon Harry has been racing well and I thought he would step to the front and be hard to run down but we got caught in the breeze so it was a tough effort and it's testament to Tony for the way he prepares his team," said Rod. "The pressure started to come on at the bell, we rolled to the front at the 600 metre mark with the challengers lining up behind us until turning for home and then it was on in earnest, but he staved off his rivals in the closing stages and defied a late lunge from Koolaz Elvis to score a courageous win." Rohan Hadley joined Rod as a multiple winner on the card guiding the Craig Hayes-trained Scooterwillrev to yet another effortless 5.4-metre victory over Rocknroll Turbo and Star Chamber and followed up by bringing Im Barney Rubble of the 20-metre handicap to clinch the Claimer. The top three drivers on the 2017/18 Premiership table, Todd Rattray, Ricky Duggan and Rohan Hillier all nailed one winner each on the programme, much to the delight of punters as all three runners ran favourite. Ricky got punters off to a flying start with Western Glory ($2,25) leading all the way, Todd enjoyed another armchair drive on Yatsenyuk Leis ($1.25) with Rohan following up Illegal Immigrant ($2.50). It wouldn't be a Tasmanian harness racing meeting without a win from the States's leading trainer Ben Yole and he duly saluted with Kaycee ($8.00) driven by Conor Crook. Paul Williams caused the boilover of the night when his first starter Donny In Paris, starting the rank outsider in the field of four at $31.00 put up a sensational performance to topple his highly rated rivals in the Olympus Feed Pace. The Rug Rat Donny-Paris Art two-year-old lost 30-metres at dispatch, giving the unbeaten Sutter Star, the Evicus winner Karalta Moondance and the talented Jigamaroo a huge start. Williams allowed Donny In Paris to move into the race under his own steam, tacking on at the bell and sitting fourth down the back stretch. Turning for home Karalta Moondance had beaten off the challenge of Sutter Star but was facing a fast-finishing Jigamaroo down the outside but it was to be Donny in Paris on debut that stormed through along the Sprint Lane to take the prize. Shane Yates

Defending Tasmanian Premiership winning driver Todd Rattray has the firepower at tonight’s Tasmanian Pacing Club meeting in Hobart to put his lead in the 2017/18 season beyond the reach of  Rohan Hillier and Ricky Duggan and put an end to their late-season surge for the Title. Todd goes into tonight’s meeting with a handy cushion of 11 wins and with drives such as Yatsenyuk Leis (pictured), Koolaz Elvis and Karpenkova Leis in his arsenal may well blow his rivals away and secure back-to-back premierships for the first time in his career. “The Premiership title is not something I focus on from week to week but at the end of the season it’s good to look back and see that you have performed well and when  you consider the drivers we have in the state like Rohan Hillier, Ricky Duggan, Rohan Hadley and Gareth (Rattray) that you come up against every week that makes it even more rewarding,” said Todd. “I’ve got a handy book of drives tonight starting off with Trevor and Marjorie Leis’ bred and raced filly Karpenkova Leis, she took a while to overcome a cold and she is first-up from a spell tonight so she will be lacking a little fitness but I expect her ability to carry her well into the race.” Stablemate Yatensuk Leis will line-up in the Cascade Draught Pace, race two on the card over 2090-metres and is line for a winning hat-trick. “We’ve only had Yatsenyuk Leis for three starts and he’s won two of them in good style, he was able to sit outside the leader and power away from Keep Playing which has won sinceand then led all the way to beat Pezzamystic when a long odds-on favourite,” said the impressed trainer. He’s a well-bred lightly raced Shadow Play- Levenkova Leis three-year-old in his first campaign and there appears to be plenty of upside to him, he’s drawn well tonight inside the front line so if the opportunity is there to lead that’s what we will be doing.” Todd has six drives on the nine-event card with including Koolaz Elvis and Taurisi. “Koolaz Elvis is one of my better chances in the fourth which is a stand, he has only had the one stand start prior to tonight and went away well and finished second so I’m hoping he begins safely again,” said Todd “We have Taurisi taking on a class field, he comes up against Scooterwillrev, Rocknroll Turbo and Jaks Teller in race seven the Talbot Tavern Pace and I think he stills another run or two under his belt before we see his best.” Tonight’s nine-race TPC card, commencing at 17.15, may be viewed via the live stream service at Shane Yates

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