Day At The Track

Price filly heads north

09:04 AM 18 Dec 2018 NZDT
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Pearl Harbour,Harness racing
Pearl Harbour
Photo Bruce Stewart

Somebeachsomewhere filly Pearl Harbour has been sent to North Island trainer Barry Purdon and will be aimed at the Young Guns Fillies Series for two year old fillies at Alexandra Park.

Trained by Katrina and John Price, Pearl Harbour qualified at Winton on Friday. She’ll likely follow a similar racing plan to what Democrat Party followed four years ago. She was also owned by the Prices.  

Democrat Party qualified at Ascot Park, was sent North where she won a qualifying heat of the Series, going on to win the Group Two Final in 2014.

“She’s (Pearl Harbour) probably more advanced than Democrat Party was when we sent her up there to Barry’s. She’s a lovely filly. Everything she does at home and on the track seems to be with ease,” said Katrina.

The second heat of the Young Guns Fillies Series will be run at Alexandra Park at the end of this month.

Pearl Harbour qualifying at Winton                      - Photo Bruce Stewart  

Katrina says the main reason behind the move is the current rating system.

“If you’re going to race as a two year old, unless you’re racing in those really rich races, you might as well not. You’re better to come back as a three year old and do the Ladyship (Series). If you win a race as a two year old it’s just too hard to come back with the ratings the way they are. We had to make the decision. She was either going to go into the paddock or we were going to race her. If she raced she was better doing it in the North Island.”

The Prices experienced the tough part of the rating system last season when Repartee which had won as a two year old, came back and found the going pretty tough as a three year old.

“It killed her last year. It was only at the end (of her three year old season) that she got properly into her correct grade. A lot of damage had been done. When she came back as a three year old filly the times she had to run and the horses she had to race were just too hard.”

As Katrina rightly points out there has only been one two year old trial this season and there don’t appear to be many juveniles around at the moment.

“We’re just missing out. At this stage (of the season) in other years there have been lots of two year olds. People are just not taking them out so we’re losing out on that whole age group of horses.”

Meanwhile Rockabilly Blues which won her first two races for the Prices has pulled up well after her brave fifth in the Equine Stakes yesterday.

“She’s tearing round here like a mad thing. I thinks she’ll be better for the run. It’s hard with the ratings system. It was preferential barrier draw. She was five wide on the first bend and five wide on the second. All she’s beaten up until now have been maiden fillies and mares. She’ll learn a lot from it and will be better for it. Her main target now is the Southern Belle and she’ll be far better off as the draw is done on winning stakes not ratings.”  


Bruce Stewart

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