Day At The Track

Hectorjayjay explodes with a 53.1s final half

08:19 AM 16 Oct 2016 NZDT
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Hectorjayjay and Josh Aiken
Hectorjayjay and Josh Aiken speak to MC Rob Auber after posting tonight's win.

Hectorjayjay has struck first blow in the 2016-17 Trots Country Cups Championship with a barnstorming win in tonight’s harness racing 3SH Swan Hill Pacing Cup.

Despite having to overcome gate seven in the $30,000 Group 3, the star six-year-old was sent out $1.40 favourite with punters and made light work of his barrier early when he thundered by Johnny Fox after about 125 metres.

Once he grabbed the lead role Hectorjayjay was indomitable. For the remainder of the 2790-metre trip he and reinsman Josh Aiken would ensure things played out on their terms.

And when Aiken loosened his grip a half-mile out, Hectorjayjay exploded for a 53.1secs final 800m (third and fourth quarters in 26.8 and 26.3secs). It's also worth noting at the finish Hector still had the plugs in.

Guaranteed (Gavin Lang, breeze for the last 1700m and a $3.80 second-favourite), Smudge Bromac (Mark Pitt, one-one and $21.20) and Johnny Fox (Kerryn Manning, leader’s back and $15.20) were left in a race of their own when the winner whooshed off into the distance, Hectorjayjay finishing officially 24.4m clear of runner-up Guaranteed in a mile rate of 1:57.6, with Smudge Bromac third beaten 24.9m and Johnny Fox fourth and 27.6m from the winner.

Meanwhile, at Menangle in New South Wales Hectorjayjay’s stablemate, Inter Dominion winning champion Lennytheshark returned to the track with victory in the Garrards Kevin Newman Free for All over a mile in a polished 1:49.9 for reinsman Chris Alford.

Both the Aiken top-liners are bound for the almost $2million Inter Dominion series at Gloucester Park in November/December before chasing more feature riches in Victoria and New South Wales early next year.

By winning tonight Hectorjayjay (Dream Away-Sheer Finesse) has speared to the early lead on the Trots Country Cups Championship ladder, with the table topper at the end of the 25 Victorian Country Cups to receive a $25,000 bonus.

The Trots Country Cups Championship will roll into Maryborough next Sunday for the $30,000 Maryborough Gold Cup.

RELATED: DOUBLE FOR MCDERMOTT STABLE AT SWAN HILL

Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

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