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Trotting breeders are advised that Horsham HRC's stallion tender to Speeding Spur NZ  1:52.8 and $1,305,000 will close at midnight (AEST) Friday September 11th.   The nine-time Group 1 winning entire has returned from USA to join the outstanding roster at his birthplace, Woodlands Stud, proud sponsors of the 2021 Horsham Trotters Cup.   Horsham's tender gives breeders of the square-gaiter an opportunity to send their broodmare to this exciting first season stallion at a discounted price.   For a tender form and further information contact Tony Logan on 0427 857411 or email -  

Ride High will have to circle the field over the short trip at Terang on Saturday to extend his winning streak to 11, with a competitive field of eight stepping forward for the $30,000 Christians Bus Gammalite Pace. Clayton Tonkin's speed machine will start from gate eight in the second race on Saturday, which will stream on Trots Vision at 6.02pm, with on-track Trots Vision hosts Paul Campbell and Toby McKinnon to join race caller Dan Mielicki to track all runners from the Parade Ring to the Winners' Circle. Ride High's Group 1 winning stablemate Out To Play will present for his most stern test to date in the field along with Gary Lawlor's local hope Bad Billy, Leroy and Danny O'Brien's pair Im Sir Blake and Perspective, AJ and Beau Tindale's Idealsomemagic, Andy Gath's Beach Surge and Basil Dooley's Bettor Be The Bomb. We'll have to wait a little longer for the eagerly awaited Ride High-Lochinvar Art showdown, with David Moran nominating but later scratching his Shepparton superstar for Saturday night’s headline pace. An 11th straight victory would draw Ride High level with Craig Cross-trained Cash N Flow, with the latter saluting at Menangle last Saturday night to join an elite list of 49 horses who have won 11 successive races or more in Australia since the turn of the millennium. The Terang card will also feature the Volstead @ Haras Des Trotteurs Trot, with Gath’s speed freak Majestuoso to take on Kylie Sugars’ talented Sammy Showdown, local hope Gus An Maori for Matt Craven, Chris Svanosio’s pair Anywhere Hugo and Brandlo Prince, Julian Jobe’s top line My Skypocket and Brent Lilley trio Mass Destruction, Storm Cloud and Kyvalley Clichy. There will also be plenty of eyes on the $20,000 Terang Co-Op Pace, with Mick Stanley’s A Fair Ol Dance amid a talented field. The four-year-old's co-owners include AFL trio Josh Jenkins, Craig Hutchison and Liam Pickering, with A Fair Ol Dance getting regular airplay on SEN 1116’s Off The Bench on Saturday mornings, when Stanley joins Hutchison and Pickering about 11.30am for a Trots Life segment. Second up after a bold showing at Ballarat when second to Diamonds N Cash, A Fair Ol Dance will step out against Pacifico Dream, Rocknroll Eyes, Our Millionaire, Majestic Cruiser, Our Jimmie, Terryrama and stablemate Boncel Benjamin. The AFL flavor continues in the night's final race, the Jilliby Kung Fu @ Goodtime Lodge 3YO Pace. Local hope Highway To Heaven, for trainer Marg Lee, is co-owned by Brisbane Lion Darcy Gardiner and Sydney Swan Lewis Taylor and will go upagainst Damien Burns’ very smart Youaremy Sunshine, Yianni, who’s won five of seven since joining Emma Stewart’s camp, first-up Kiwi Willie Go West (Amanda Grieve), Sea Lover (Rebecca East) and Major Jodi (Peter Cole). CLICK HERE FOR FULL FIELDS   HRV - Michael Howard

Down Under horses win two thirds of Yonkers Raceway Meeting. Thursday nights harness racing at Yonkers Raceway in New York saw a 9 race card and 6 of those races were won by Down Under horses.  Highlighting the night was the Team Tritton mare Lady Dela Renta A. This 6yo Well Said mare was the winner in an $18,000 Fillies and Mares Pace in a time of 1:53.0 with Jordan Stratton doing the steering. She is a recent edition to Down Under trainer Shane Trittons North American stable and has been in fine form of late for owner Bukers Stable.  Over the whole race night there were 27 Down Under Horses racing. A huge number of New Zealand and Australian bred horses to be racing at one track on a single night in North America.   Monday 31st August   Harrington Raceway DE Extreme Machine N – Time: 1:55.4, Stake: $6,500   Plainridge Park MA Tom Me Gun N – Time: 1:50.0, Stake: $15,000   Saratoga Harness NY Lord Willoughby A – Time: 1:53.1, Stake: $4,800   The Downs At Mohegan Sun Pocono PA English Rose N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $7,600   Woodbine Mohawk Park CA Never Mind N – Time: 1:54.1, Stake: $20,000   Tuesday 1st September   Harrington Raceway DE Betabcool N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $7,500 Betterthanamisus N – Time: 1:56.2, Stake: $8,000   Running Aces Casino & Racetrack MN My Kiwi Lady N – Time: 1:53.1, Stake: $8,500   Saratoga Harness NY Eden Paige N – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $3,750 Pasultimatedelite N – Time: 1:54.1, Stake: $5,150   The Meadows PA Hedges Avenue A – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $10,400   Yonkers Raceway NY Audi Hare N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $8,500 Abraxas Blues A – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $12,500   Wednesday 2nd September Batavia Downs NY Blacknsweet Adda A – Time: 1:56.0, Stake: $5,000   Harrington Raceway DE Gotta Minute N – Time: 1:57.0, Stake: $4,500   Thursday 3rd September Plainridge Park MA Sign To Inverell A – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $5,500   Yonkers Raceway NY Milliondollargem A – Time: 1:54.4, Stake: $8,500 Lady Dela Renta A – Time: 1:53.0, Stake: $18,000 Crystal Sparkles N – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $12,500 Alta Leroy N – Time: 1:55.1, Stake: $12,500 Don Domingo N – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $12,500 Lucky Artist A – Time: 1:54.3, Stake: $12,500   Friday 4th September   Freehold Raceway NJ Sheeza Shark N – Time: 1:58.0, Stake: $4,900   Harrahs Philadelphia PA Mr Hasani N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $5,600   Scioto Downs OH Armabluechipboy N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $9,000 Cyclone Kiwi N – Time: 1:52.2, Stake: $13,000   The Meadows PA Border Control A – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $10,800   Yonkers Raceway NY Anthem N – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $12,500 Crockets Cullen N – Time: 1:53.4, Stake: $15,000 Down Under Trifecta – 2nd Soho Lennon A, 3rd Yayas Hot Spot N   Grand River Raceway CA Pembrook Legacy N – Time: 1:53.3, Stake: $8,400   Woodbine Mohawk Park CA Tuapeka Jessie N – Time: 1:52.2, Stake: $20,000 Lady Rocknrolla A – Time: 1:53.1, Stake: $12,000 Mongolian Hero N – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $5,600 Ivana Flybe N – Time: 1:50.3, Stake: $24,000   Saturday 5th September   Batavia Downs NY Sir Richie N – Time: 1:56.1, Stake: $5,000   Freehold Raceway NJ Lettuceriprita A – Time: 1:55.2, Stake: $9,000 Three Ways N – Time: 1:55.2, Stake: $7,700 Vapour N – Time: 1:54.4, Stake: $6,300   Harrah’s Hoosier Park IN Callmequeenbee A – Time: 1:51.0, Stake: $11,000 Mary Catherine A – Time: 1:52.3, Stake: $7,000   Meadowlands NJ Billy Lincoln N – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $11,000   Running Aces Casino & Racetrack MN Dependlebury A – Time: 1:54.4, Stake: $3,000   The Downs At Mohegan Sun Pocono PA Joesstar Of Mia A – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $11,200   Sunday 6th September   Bangor Raceway ME Jay Bees Grin N – Time: 1:58.2, Stake: $3,300   Harrahs Philadelphia PA Tiger Thompson N – Time: 1:50.3, Stake: $10,000 Billy Badger N – Time: 1:50.1, Stake: $11,600   Scioto Downs OH Majestic Player A – Time: 1:51.3, Stake: $40,000 The Downs At Mohegan Sun Pocono PA Madame Leza N – Time: 1:52.0, Stake: $8,800 Patanjali N – Time: 1:54.0, Stake: $6,800 Its Mesmerise N – Time: 1:50.2, Stake: $14,000 Golden Quest N – Time: 1:52.1, Stake: $12,000   Tioga Downs NY Real Lucky N – Time: 1:53.2, Stake: $6,000   Rideau Carleton Raceway CA Darcee N – Time: 1:55.0, Stake: $5,500   Click here for previous weeks articles   by Carter Dalgety

Atomic Blast, a four-year-old son of Auckland Reactor, earned a new speed badge of 1:52.6 winning at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Monday (September 7). The gelding led from the outset carving out fractions of 27.2, 28.6, 28 and 28.8. It was his second success from four starts in America and his third win from seven lifetime starts. He had earlier won in 1:52.8 at Pocono Downs. Atomic Blast is the first foal of the Christian Cullen mare Caroline’s Cullen (1:51.4), who won 10 races in NZ and Australia and a further 17 in North America and finished up with a stake tally of $450,140. She was imported back to NZ at the end of her racetrack career by well known Auckland standardbred agent and breeder John Curtin. Atomic Blast winning in 1:52.6 at Harrah’s Philadelphia Auckland Reactor was also represented by the Globe Derby winner Carter Mayson, a four-year-old and one of his second Australian crop, who won in a career-best 1:56.4. The gelding has now won five races and $25,000 in stakes. Auckland Reactor is now standing at Tony Peacock’s St Fort stud, Moama (NSW), on the Murray River.   by Peter Wharton  

I have no axe to grind with Woodlands, Nevele R, Alabar, nor for that matter their main supplier US harness racing studs in Blue Chip Farms and Diamond Creek. I love the stallion choices Woodlands have made in recent years, the majestic set up of Nevele R and the rich history of Alabar and its true two country operation. I thank Blue Chip Farms for agisting World Class Hanover on their farm and providing us with a magnificent Credit Winner Colt from her and I thank Diamond Creek for allowing their champion trotting stallion Father Patrick to be available down under. We, Australia, belong to an international trotting community that has adopted limited stallion books the world over. Examples are the US 140 stallion book limit (no free returns), France 100 limit (and that’s for the best stallions its less for many others) and Sweden 150 limit etc. Limited stallion books have helped improve numerous areas of their industry. I hear no talk of dispensing with limited stallion books internationally. Why, because it works. I commend HRA for its courageous decision to limit stallion books in Australia. I am disappointed that our (Australasia’s) three biggest and in many areas, best studs have chosen to fight this decision. I am also disappointed that these two beautiful studs in the US are happy to adhere to limited stallion books in the US, but do not appear to be encouraging their Southern counterparts to do the same. Let’s get back on stride, let’s get back in step and join the international harness community in limiting stallion books down under. Pat Driscoll  Haras Des Trotteurs  

Expat Aussie Team Tritton has had plenty to smile about in the first six-months of their USA move, but they are looking forward to the next few weeks with a great deal of excitement. Former Sydneysiders Shane and Lauren Tritton are based at Pine Bush, one-and-a-half hours from New York City, and are set to unleash some "fresh faces" in the form of a handful of ex-Australian horses. "We are really upbeat about it because there are some quality animals among them," Tritton said. "There are some who've only recently come out to here, while a couple of others have joined our barn from other US stables," he said. The husband-and-wife team recently chalked up their 20th winner since making the USA their home earlier this year. "We've learnt heaps in our first season over here and hopefully we can keep getting better as we go along," Tritton said. "We've found out the horses just don't need all the work that we used to give them back home, so we've made that adjustment and the horses are getting up in grade, but they're now racing with consistent form. "When we first of all arrived, we set a goal-and that was to try and make a living out of the sport in the first six months. We're doing okay and we're excited that there are plans now for the Casinos to open back up (from COVID-19 shutdowns) and hopefully the purses will start to improve. "So we hope that the next step can be now to keep things ticking over and to set ourselves up for the future." Tritton said the family had settled in well to new ways - both the racing aspects and the practicalities of life in the Northern Hemisphere. "On average, we're racing three and four times a week at three tracks that are all about one-and-a-half hours from Pine Bush," he said. "We've got the hang of life here. Things like driving the US way (left-hand drive) on the 'wrong' side of the road, we don't even really think about now. It might probably sound a bit funny, but we kind of feel like we've been here forever." The stable has been ticking over nicely with old-timer Flaming Flutter posting another victory at Yonkers recently, and the former West Australian-trained mare Lady De La Renta (Well Said-Flylika Byrd Lombo (Jet Laag) in brilliant form. "She has won her last three starts for us and we really expect that she will step up and be among the better mares here down the track. We're so lucky to have her because she's a real nice horse," Tritton said. Lady De La Renta won 14 races and was placed 12 times from 41 starts in Australia. Her biggest victory was in the 2018 3YO Diamond Classic of $50,000, run at Perth's Gloucester Park. She was driven by gun freelance reinsman Chris Voak. Jordan Stratton and Lady De La Renta made it three in a row recently There are also some exciting prospects among the ex-Aussies to recently join the stable, and due to step out in coming weeks. "We have sent a few home in recent weeks, so it's good to have some new horses coming in. We qualified Sweet n Fast (a winner of 12 races in Australia) at Yonkers a few days ago and Pat Stanley will be next," Tritton said. Talented gelding Pat Stanley (Western Ideal-Jaz Tanner (Artiscape) is a winner of 14 races and $147,000 in earnings. He had two trials in NZ before being transferred to Australia under the care of Blake Fitzpatrick and got the money at his race debut at Newcastle. He continued to race at NSW tracks before being sent to Great Western world champion reinswoman Kerryn Manning for eight starts, ahead of shipping to the US. One of his biggest scalps was in February of this year when Manning piloted him to victory in the $60,000 G2 South Australian Pacing Cup. The pair also later won the Markovina FFA at Melton. Another to come under the care of the Trittons is Maczaffair (Mach Three-Presidential Affair (Presidential Ball). The mare won 21 races and $500,000 when racing in West Australia, capturing the 2017 $150,000 WA Oaks and then the following year taking out the $50,000 WASBA Breeders Stakes Pace. Others about to start racing in the Team Tritton colors will include Muscle Mach (15 wins), War Dan (11 wins) and Islandspecialmajor (21 wins). "We keep an eye on what's happening back in Australia though, in particular at the stables of Roy Roots who is our brother-in-law. Prior to leaving we bought some shares in six two-year-olds Roy is training, and three of them have already won so that's been nice too!" Tritton said.   Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

A terrific drive at her home track was the fitting showcase for an extraordinary milestone, with Kerryn Manning recording her 1000th victory as a trainer at Stawell yesterday. Valiente’s victory in the Father’s Day Pace was Manning’s 998th Australian win, which coupled with Arden Rooney’s 2015 New Zealand Trotting Cup and Kakoura Cup wins clinched the four-figure achievement. “I hadn’t realized they added up quite so high,” Manning said when advised of her milestone. “That’s made my day feel much better. “I love racing at Stawell and I had also had a little mini-pony born as well, so it’s all very happy.” While Manning’s zeroing in on 4000 driving wins, with 3971 Australian victories to her credit, she said the training milestone was particularly pleasing. “It’s more rewarding to do all the work with the horses and get a victory, especially one that is a bit tricky and also for the owners as well,” she said. “I still remember my first win, which was a grey horse called Special Game.” Manning may have had the $2.40 favourite in the Father’s Day Pace, but it certainly took a class steer to get Valiente to victory by a head, finding an escape route leading into the final turn to sweep wide and salute. It made it four from four for the Mach Three gelding since he joined Manning’s camp. “He has been quite good since he came down,” she said. “It was a bit of a step up for him. “I didn’t think he could win that, but he did a bit of work early and has a good sprint on him and we were able to use that.”   HRV - Michael Howard

Catch up on the weekend’s harness racing action in our weekly review, thanks to Darren Clayton. THE GOOD Fresh off claiming his most successful season as a trainer, Graham Dwyer was again in the winner’s circle at the weekend with victories at Albion Park and Marburg. It was the trainer’s favourite horse in Maywyns Best again proving why he is the stable star. Maywyns Best was successful in Saturday evening’s sixth event, when sent forward from gate seven over 1660 metres to lead throughout in scoring a three-and-a-half metre victory in a slick 1.52.0 mile rate. In super form, the rising eleven-year-old has scored five wins and placed on a further six occasions from his past fifteen starts. Included in the wins is a new career benchmark of 1.51.1, with Pete McMullen in the sulky at each start through this streak. Happy to be referred to as the Aussie Battler, Dwyer has set new personal benchmarks for training wins in the past two seasons. It is a real family affair at Dwyer’s Kingslodge Pacing Stables, with Graham joined by wife Marty and son Layne, as well as Matthew Greentree and Marty’s mother Sandra also involved. Maywyns Best might be the current star, but a filly by the name of Shes Miss Devine could well develop into a shining light for the stable. “She is spelling up at Lunchbox Lodge presently, we really like this filly and think she will be in for a good three-year-old season,” Dwyer said. Understandably so, with the daughter of Heston Blue Chip claiming a win as well as a runner-up in two Group 1 races. Grabbed late in the Redcliffe Yearling Sales Series Final when second to Manila Playboy, she was again the bridesmaid in the QBRED Triad Final behind Jasper. Meanwhile, the trotter Greg The Great tempers the joy that Maywyns Best offers by being a continuing source of frustration. A winner of 15 races for the Kingslodge team and holder of the Albion Park track record for the mobile 1660 metres, the square gaiter could also be responsible for some extra grey in Graham’s mane. His high speed and ability have been equally matched over time by gait and confidence issues, however as the recent track record demonstrates, the rising eight-year-old may have turned the corner.   THE BAD Maywyns Best - or Bestie as he is affectionately known - has been the stable flagbearer over the past 18 months, ably assisted throughout this period by the enigmatic Greg The Great and the ever- consistent Sir Julian. At one stage being the private trainer for prominent owner Rob Essex, the Kingslodge Team went from enjoying success with a well-bred stable to having just two horses in the barn after Essex opted to move in a different direction. “We had a winner on the Saturday night and by the Tuesday all of Rob’s horses were gone,” Dwyer said. “It wasn’t the best time for us, and we were left with just two horses - Sir Julian and Hipstar - and we have been able to rebuild the stable from that to our best ever season in under two years.” Those career high figures have seen Dwyer prepare 70 winners for the 2019/20 season, eclipsing a previous best of 49 the season prior. Further testament to the trainer’s ability at both placing and conditioning the team, there has not been any real turnover in stock for the past two years, with the results coming from the same horses in the barn. Having trained Maywns Best when owned by Essex, the opportunity to purchase the gelding out of a claiming race was too good to knock back. Despite an injury enforced five months on the sidelines immediately after being claimed, Dwyer and his team have rejuvenated the son of Blissful Hall to see him in career-best form. “When I claimed him, I set myself a goal in what I wanted him to achieve, and he has been able to do exactly that and a whole lot more,” Dwyer laughs. Another that Dwyer was hopeful would boost the current statistics was Hipstar, who had shown ability as a two-year-old that included victory in the Consolation of the QBRED Breeders Classic. Returning in June after close to twelve months on the sidelines, the four-year-old was successful in three of his first six starts back. Unfortunately, the gelding has suffered a hairline fracture in a rear leg that has curtailed any immediate plans for the son of Auckland Reactor. While Hipstar may be temporarily derailed, like many other occasions, there is a feelgood story in the next chapter for the Aussie Battler. All Good Wally, a horse that Dwyer took on as an untried seven-year-old was successful in a heat of the ever-popular Marburg to Albion Park Series on Sunday afternoon. The gelding was successful for the 11th time in the space of 17 months for owner Alan Boyd. “Alan had three horses and was trying to sort a few things out,” Dwyer said. “They were all in the paddock and had never been tried and they have all won races.” The three horses are All Good Wally, Peggy Stardust and Half Moon Beach. Sixpenny Red will join her stable-mate in the Marburg to Albion Final, having finished second in her heat, and the four-year-old mare is another interesting chapter in the Kingslodge Pacing Stables story. Formerly owned and trained by John Cremin, the mare was gifted to Matthew Greentree - one of the Kingslodge team - as a learning horse as he furthers his career in harness racing. “It was a great deed by ‘Cremmo’ to give this mare to Matty and not only that, it is the first horse he has owned,” Dwyer said. It didn’t take long to score victory with the mare either, with Sixpenny Red successful on August 23 at Redcliffe when driven by Pete McMullen. With success continuing to flow, Dwyer knows that he needs a turnover of stock to continue his upward spiral. Square-gaiter Doug has recently joined the team and Little Change, a pacer formerly prepared by Rickie Alchin is ‘on-trial’ to hopefully continue his career in Queensland. The four-year-old Doug has already secured the $2,000 first win bonus for trotters after securing their first Queensland victory, and Dwyer believes he will more than pay his way, recovering from a hoof abscess to line up on Tuesday at Albion Park. He may be the Aussie Battler, but the foundations of a successful story are being cemented by Graham Dwyer.   THE MILESTONE Trainer Jack Butler chalked up his 1,000th career winner on Friday night at Albion Park courtesy of a dominant performance by Handsome Hero. In a real family affair, the gelding was driven by Butler’s daughter Chloe, who was content to sit outside the leader before putting the power on down the back stretch and pulling clear for a tough win. Formerly hailing from Bathurst, Butler has been a regular on the Queensland Premiership boards since relocating with his family at the start of 2015. Proving how good the move has been for the Butler family, over half of those 1,000 wins have been achieved in the five-and-a-half years they have been located at Logan Village, south-west of Brisbane. In each full season that Jack has been based in the Sunshine State, he has been able to reach 100 wins for the term. The high came with 119 winners in the 2016/17 season, while the 117 winners prepared from his stables in the 2018/19 campaign saw Butler finish second on the State Premiership to Grant Dixon. Steadily building the quality of his team in recent years, the addition of Hectorjayjay has been a huge boost in 2020, with the star pacer not far away from a return from his most recent setback.   THE WILDCARD He may have been sporting a hair-cut that is better suited to an NRL player, but that has not stopped Ashley Locaz posting his first Albion Park victory. Crossing the Tasman to join the stables of Vicki Rasmussen, the Bettors Delight gelding showed the benefit of his first-up placing when scoring a dominant victory over the 2,138-metre trip on Saturday night. Arriving freshly shaven with what could best be described as a questionable choice of trims, the 2019 Inter Dominion Finalist has shown good improvement through a pair of trials into two race starts. On Saturday night, the five-year-old was too strong when facing the breeze before putting the field to the sword in claiming a strong win, rating 1.54.1 for the middle-distance trip. The talented gelding should take further improvement from the victory, the 11th of his career. Passing $300,000 in stake-earnings following the victory, Ashley Locaz is bred on the most potent cross of current times, being by Bettors Delight out of a Christian Cullen mare. This same cross has now produced 19 winners of $300,000 or more and includes the likes of Lazarus, Chicago Bull, Thefixer, Self Assured, Belle Of Montana and recent Albion Park winner Amazing Dream.   THIS WEEK Track resurfacing works have commenced this week at both Redcliffe and Marburg, meaning this week’s racing schedule will be centred on Albion Park. Race meetings will be held at ‘The Creek’ throughout the week, taking place on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. As a result of the changes, there will be no Wednesday night meeting conducted in Queensland this week. The Thursday programme for Albion Park will be replicate Redcliffe’s, while trials will be held Tuesday, Thursday and Friday in conjunction with the race meetings. Saturday night’s meet will host the final of the latest Marburg to Albion Park Series, with the first two placings in the five heats held at Marburg on Sunday progressing to the $10,900 Final. Allstar Sea for trainer/driver Ben Battle was the fastest heat winner, with trainers Richard Hutchinson and Graham Dwyer to be dually represented in the Final after both claimed a win and a second placing.   by Darren Clayton for Racing Queensland

Flawless Country, a two-year-old filly and one of the first crop of former USA and Canadian 2YO Trotter of the Year Southwind Frank, notched her second major Stakes success when she won the $253,000 final of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes Championship at Pocono Downs on Saturday (September 5). After enjoying a pocket trip, the filly kicked into top gear in the home straight to win in 1:54.6. It was her fourth straight win and her season’s earnings of $263,496 is the benchmark for her age, sex and gait. A $100,000 yearling, Flawless Country is out of a Donato Hanover mare. The win vaulted Southwind Frank into second position on the USA first season sires’ list from a crop of only 49 foals. Southwind Frank is part of the select Stallions Australasia frozen semen sire roster.   By Peter Wharton

Galactic Star on the way up “He’ll play a part in the two big Cups, for sure,” declared champion reinsman Ryan Warwick after driving seven-year-old Galactic Star to a stylish victory in the $30,000 TABtouch York Cup at Gloucester Park on Friday night. “He is definitely not over the hill, in terms of age. He was pretty good tonight, but he’s still not fully fit. He was really strong around the corner, but in the straight he bottomed out a bit. So, there’s improvement in him. Before tonight, he had two easy runs after a four-month break.” Galactic Star, second favourite at $3.80 from the outside of the back line, settled down in seventh position while the $1.55 favourite Wildwest led for the first 200 metres before Son Of A Tiger ($23) persisted with a spirited challenge and took the lead, with a fast lead time of 35.8sec. Gary Hall jnr immediately eased Wildwest off the pegs to race in the breeze and after 400m Wildwest got a length in front of Son Of A Tiger but was unable to cross to the front. Warwick, seeing what was happening at the front of the field, urged Galactic Star forward with a fast move 700m after the start to quickly move alongside the pacemaker Son Of A Tiger, thus giving Wildwest an ideal passage, one-out and one-back. Bettor Party dashed forward, three wide, at the bell to put Wildwest in a pocket. Wildwest was hampered for room throughout the final circuit and he was still blocked for clear running as he fought on grandly to finish second, with Bettor Party a close third behind Galactic Star, who had surged to the front 250m from home. The final 800m was covered in 56.8sec. and Galactic Star rated 1.56 over the 2130m. The win gave Warwick and outstanding leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond the second of four winners on the night. The Bonds had seven runners in the WA Pacing Cup last January, with Galactic Star finishing fifth, and stablemates Mighty Conqueror, Vampiro and Our Jimmy Johnstone filling the first three placings. Once again, the Bond stable will have a strong representation in the Fremantle Cup and WA Pacing Cup in the coming summer, with Warwick expecting Galactic Star to be at the forefront. The Bettors Delight gelding is sound and enjoys racing --- and is sure to improve on his splendid record of 28 wins, 26 placings and stakes of $561,262 from 80 starts.   Justasec sparkles, first-up Inexperienced New Zealand-bred four-year-old Justasec appears destined for big things in harness racing after a brilliant first-up victory in the 2130m GPHR Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. After a win and a second from two New Zealand starts, the son of American stallion Big Jim has impressed with nine wins and three placings from 13 starts in Western Australia. Prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond and driven by star reinsman Ryan Warwick, Justasec was a warm $1.80 favourite from the No. 1 barrier at his first appearance after an absence of just over five months. He won the start easily and relished his pacemaking role as he sped over the final 400m sections in 27.9sec. and 27.7sec. to win by almost two lengths from the $3.90 second fancy My Carbon Copy, who enjoyed the one-out, one-back trail before finishing determinedly. “We expected a run like that after he had beaten our fast-class horses on the track,” said Warwick. “I don’t really know where he is going to get to, but his improvement is quite good. His ability is not an issue. He’s always had good ability, and his tractability is now getting a lot better. “He might go to the next level; we’ll see.”   Our Alfie Romeo concentrates better A change of gear helped brilliant mare Our Alfie Romeo to regain her best form at Gloucester Park on Friday night when she scored a runaway victory in the 2130m Thank You Members Of York Racing Pace. Leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond decided to fit hood type blinkers on the five-year-old --- and they certainly boosted her confidence as she stormed to victory to end a losing sequence of nine. Our Alfie Romeo, the well-supported $1.90 favourite from the outside barrier in a field of eight, was not extended in winning by three and a half lengths from Burning Rubber and rating 1.56.8. Leading reinsman Ryan Warwick did not bustle Our Alfie Romeo early and she settled down in seventh position while Thereugo ($21) was setting the pace after denying the polemarker and $2.50 chance Space Junk the opportunity to lead. Warwick urged Our Alfie Romeo forward, three wide, approaching the bell and the mare dashed to the front 390m from home and coasted to the line. “I didn’t think she was genuine at her previous two or three runs, so we put the hood on her and she was very good tonight,” Warwick explained. “She travelled like she normally would. It was just a concentration thing. “She’s never worn anything; she’s always been so genuine. But now that she’s getting older that was the run she needed, just to smarten her up. Tonight, she was sharp and travelled very well. Lately, she had been a little bit sloppy, but has been able to get the job done.” Our Alfie Romeo, by Washington V C, won at two of her eight starts in New Zealand and now boasts a fine record of 48 starts for 20 wins, 11 placings and stakes of $299,789. She will be set for the $125,000 Mares Classic at the summer carnival and is likely to contest the Fremantle Cup and WA Pacing Cup. She finished sixth behind Mighty Conqueror in the WA Pacing Cup last January.   Leap Of Faith causes an upset Young Gnangara trainer-reinsman Luke Edwards predicted a bright future for inexperienced New Zealand-bred mare Leap Of Faith after driving her to a fast-finishing upset victory over Blissfullabbey in the 2130m Better Your Bet With TABtouch Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. A $21.90 chance at her second appearance after a spell, Leap Of Faith raced four back on the pegs in seventh position before charging home, three wide, from sixth on the home turn. It wasn’t all plain sailing as Leap Of Faith was still badly hampered for room 250m from home after Edwards had eased her off the pegs. “I thought I was going to win at the 350m,” said Edwards. “I was just trying to get out from behind Deni Roberts (Tiffany Twirl). I got off the pegs and then had to get back behind Deni’s wheel to get into the clear. I had a lap full, but I thought I had left it too late. But over the last 50m she gobbled up the opposition. “Last preparation really was the prep from hell. It was in the middle of winter and everything went wrong; we had trouble with her feet and then with her knee. We couldn’t quite get her right, so we bit the bullet and gave her a month off. “Her first-up run at Northam (when second to Ohoka Damo) wasn’t quite right, but tonight she was a lot better and I think she’s on the improve. I think that is her go, driving her sit-sprint.” Purchased from New Zealand for $40,000 (landed in WA), Leap Of Faith is the first pacer owned by Melvin King, who races the four-year-old in partnership with Dave Simmonds jnr. Leap Of Faith recorded two seconds from her four starts in New Zealand and now has raced 11 times for Edwards in WA for six wins. There was a happy omen before Friday night’s event. Edwards had to borrow the helmet of his brother Isaac after leaving his gear at the Pinjarra course the previous Monday. The previous time he had to use his brother’s helmet was at Northam on June 13, 2015 when he was successful behind Myouri. Edwards has high hopes of success with his New Zealand-bred three-year-old colt Henrik Larsson, who made an impressive debut when he scored a seven-length victory at Northam last Saturday week when he dashed over the final quarters in 28.7sec. and 27.8sec. Henrik Larsson will have his second start when he begins from the No. 1 barrier in a race at Gloucester Park on Tuesday evening. “He is still very green, and I keep telling the owners that he’s a Lamborghini with trainer wheels,” Edwards said.   Howard Hughes set for classics Talented New Zealand-bred gelding Howard Hughes remains unbeaten at his four starts after a spell and is developing into a leading candidate for the rich classics for four-year-olds next January. The son of Bettors Delight, Howard Hughes, a winner at one of his two New Zealand starts, notched his ninth victory from 11 starts in Western Australia when he scored a dashing victory in the 1730m Thank You From The York Racing Committee Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Favourite at $1.70 from out wide at barrier No. 7, the Greg and Sky Bond-trained pacer began speedily, and reinsman Ryan Warwick was content to race in the breeze with Diamond Life setting a fast pace. Howard Hughes burst to the front 400m from home and won in fine style at a 1.53 rate over the 1730m, beating Undercover Mac by two metres. Undercover Mac also performed strongly, running home powerfully from ninth at the bell. “That was a pretty good run,” said Warwick. “He’s aiming for the four-year-old races in the New Year. We always knew that he had speed and stamina.”   Brown lauds Arma Einstein Ace trainer-reinsman Colin Brown heaped praise on Arma Einstein after driving the smart two-year-old him to victory in the 2130m Off The Track Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Arma Einstein, the $3.60 second favourite, was not bustled early from the outside barrier in the field of seven before he sustained a strong burst from sixth at the bell to hit the front at the 50m mark and win by 2m from the $1.40 favourite Newsy, who had been unbeaten at her first three starts. Newsy enjoyed the one-out, one-back trail with Captains Beachbabe setting a solid pace. Warwick switched Newsy three wide with 620m to travel, and Brown followed her run with Arma Einstein. Newsy took the lead 350m from home but was unable to hold out the fast-finishing Arma Einstein, who rated 1.58.4. “He is the sort of little horse who will keep improving,” said Brown. “When they’ve got the mentality he’s got and the high speed he has, he’s going to develop. He’s also got a bit of toughness, and his heart rate suggests to me that we’ve got a little way to go in that regard. He’s almost the complete package. “Arma Einstein will now have a spell for a fortnight and then he’ll come back and we will just keep picking off some two-year-old races, hopefully. “Getting the sit behind Newsy worked out super for us and I wasn’t concerned that we were behind her because we had won in 1.57 and she had won in 1.59. So, two seconds is a pretty big margin.”   Ferguson’s delight There is an unusual mixture of pacers and square gaiters in the breeding of Wonnerup horseman Terry Ferguson’s seven-year-old Lifes Delight, who is proving a successful and profitable trotter. Lifes Delight boosted his earnings to $70,617 from seven wins and 19 placings from 53 starts when Chris Voak drove him to an all-the-way victory in the Community TAB Trot, a stand over 2019m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. A $14.60 chance, Lifes Delight held on doggedly to beat $34 outsider One Bid Buys, who was seventh at the bell before finishing strongly with an inside run. Lifes Delight is by champion pacing stallion Bettors Delight out of Life On The Line, a mare by American stallion Life Sign, who has produced about 1600 foals, including only about four trotters. One of those trotters is the Ferguson-owned Life On The Line, who raced 19 times for three wins and three placings, and then her first foal was Paint The Wind, who has raced as a pacer 109 times for 12 wins, 23 placings and $70,505. Life On The Line is out of the American-bred mare Walkin The Line, who produced two excellent pacers for Ferguson in Backina Falcon (73 starts for 19 wins, 15 placings and $149,385, with his most notable performance being his second to Baltic Eagle in the 2003 WA Pacing Cup) and Backin A Jiffy (50 starts for ten wins, 17 placings and $107,333). “I had no idea I was going to breed trotters from Life On The Line,” said Ferguson. “Lifes Delight is that mare’s second foal, and her fourth foal is also a good trotter, Line The Starzzz, who has won at five of her first 15 starts. She is eligible for the Vicbred Four-Year-Old classic for mares on December 31, and, all things going well, she will travel to Victoria for the race.”   Double for de Campo Capel horseman Aiden de Campo maintained his outstanding form in the sulky when he landed a double with Delightfulreaction and Baylan Jett at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He trains Delightfulreaction, who was a $17.30 chance from out wide at barrier No. 8 in the 2536m Treasury Wine Estate Pace. After the $1.95 favourite Mister Bushido galloped at the start and lost ten lengths, de Campo was able to angle Delightfulreaction into sixth position, one-out and two-back, with Bracken Sky setting the pace. Delightfulreaction finished strongly to win by almost a length from Mister Bushido, who did a grand job to run home from the rear. Delighfulreaction is a hardy four-year-old mare who has raced 65 times for 11 wins, 23 placings and stakes of $158,283. “She is a horse who loves racing,” said de Campo. “Every time she goes to the paddock, she drops away a little bit. She does well when she’s in work, and every time she goes a little bit off, I give her a two-week freshen-up. She is an opportunist kind of horse. “She will keep racing nearly every week. She is not going to measure up to the better mares in the big races towards the end of the year. But she might get a start in them, and you never know.” Baylan Jett, prepared by David Young, was favourite at $1.70 in The West Australian Pace over 2536m and he gave de Campo an armchair drive as he set the pace and dashed over the final quarters in 28.8sec. and 28.1sec. to win from McArdles Gem and Art Tutor. This was Baylan Jett’s one hundredth start and he took his record to 15 wins and 32 placings for earnings of $155,756. “He’s a class horse and he won easily,” de Campo said. “I didn’t even pull the plugs.”   Extreme Prince makes a flying start Eight-year-old gelding Extreme Prince is a noted frontrunner --- and when champion reinsman Gary Hall jnr got him away with a brilliant burst from out wide at barrier seven in the 2536m Better Your Industry With TABtouch Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night the die was cast. Extreme Prince ($4.90) charged straight to the front and the Gary Hall senior-trained pacer relished his pacemaking role and won by a half-length from stablemate Tuas Delight ($5). This ended a losing sequence of ten for Extreme Prince, who had led and won four times in New South Wales and five times at Gloucester Park.    Ken Casellas

Leading trainer Ben Yole extended his lead for the state’s trainers title in Devonport on Sunday night winning four of the seven races, three of those victories coming with reinsman Troy McDonald in the sulky. Weerrook Harry was the first winner for the combination in the Jamie Costello Appreciation Pace. The gelded son of Artesian sat one-out one-back before finding the spot outside the leader at the 1200-metre mark and proved too strong for his rivals late by 19.6 metres in 2m 3.0s to give the pacer his eighth career victory, with four of those wins coming this season. Weerrook Harry lead home a training trifecta for Yole with My Ultimate Romeo and Coveffe Hustler filling the placings. Four-year-old mare Amazing Daisy (pictured) kept her unbeaten record in standing start races intact when the daughter of Roll With Joe scoring at her second outing behind the tapes in the Hardings Hotmix Pace. Stepping away safely from outside of the front row, the mare settled one-out and one-back in the 2286-metre event before sweeping to the lead at the top of the home straight to score by a half-neck over Lake Eyre in a slow last section of 32.4s. In the John McKenna Race Night Vet Pace, eight-year-old Stonebridge Regal gelding Tarleton Riley recorded his sixth win of the season at his 50th start for the term. McDonald settled the pacer one-out and four-back from barrier three on the second row, before racing three-wide for the final 1000 metres. It was all Tarleton Riley late, running away from his rivals to score by 29.9 metres with Yole putting the polish on the first six place getters in the race. Punters would have been happy with the performance with it backed in from $9.50 into $4.80 on the Tasracing Official Price. Yole also prepared the first five placings across the line in the Jeremy Rockliff MP Mobile which was taken out Bettors Delight gelding Proficient, who won his first race at his fourth start since arriving in the state. Concession driver Taylor Ford drove the pacer to the 7.6-metre victory. The locals won the remaining three races with Geoff Smith preparing a double with Aitutaki and Laid Back Kenny, while Agouda Ruler won his fifth two-year-old race of the season, the John Castles prepared pacer should figure prominently in many aged classic races still to come in this extended season.   Duncan Dornauf for Tasracing

Talented Renaissance Man two-year-old Arma Einstein proved himself the cream of the crop when he notched his third win from his last five starts at Gloucester Park on Friday night (September 4). Starting from the outside gate, the gelding settled down second last before unleashing a 57.5 final 800 metres to gain the thick end of the prize. The mile rate for the 2130 metres was 1:58.4. World champion Warrawee Needy enjoyed another successful week in North America. He was represented by the two-year-old filly Need To Know, winner of the Lady Slipper in 1:59.8 at Summerside Raceway, Canada, and a trio of three-year-old winners Needless To Say (1:54), Lil Memories and Jim Who. American Colt, a New Zealand-bred three-year-old by Tintin In America, came from near last his register his third success for the season and fourth lifetime at Narrogin (WA). Meanwhile, Million Dollar Gem, the Group winning daughter of Million Dollar Cam who was bred at Yirribee Pacing Stud, recorded her third success this year at Yonkers, New York, winning in 1:54.8. Renaissance Man, Warrawee Needy, Tintin In America and Million Dollar Cam are members of the select Yirribee Pacing Stud sire roster which also includes the colonial bred champions Lazarus and Lennytheshark and the North America Cup winner Fear The Dragon.     By Peter Wharton

The New South Wales based stallion He’s Watching sired winners in four different countries in the past fortnight! Heading the vanguard was the brilliant three-year-old colt Tattoo Artist, who led from end to end in 1:49.4 in an $84,506 division of the Simcoe Stakes at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Saturday (September 5). Runner-up in the $1 million North America Cup, Tattoo Artist boasts a lifetime scorecard of 11 wins from 17 starts for $694,478 in stakes. Retour Au Jeu, another from He’s Watching first Canadian crop, captured a division of the Breeders Trophy Series in a career-best 1:54.4 at Hippodrome Trois -Rivieres, Quebec on Sunday (September 6). Other recent North American winners sired by He’s Watching included the three-year-olds Wyoming Wind, a winner in 1:56.2 at Pocono Downs, Pennsylvania, Illbewatchingu (1:57, Grand River Raceway) and Lady To Watch (Hanover Raceway). On the home front, Experia, He’s Watching led in two ‘new’ two-year-old winners in He’s Dan, a winner in 1:59.1 at Kilmore with a final half in 56.1 and quarter in 27, and Ulaanbaatar (1:59.7, Bathurst), while Experia, a New Zealand-bred three-year-old by He’s Watching won for the second time at Menangle, rating 1:57.1 over 2300 metres with the closing 800 in 56.7. To complete a big fortnight, Im Watching You, a four-year-old gelding, came from third last on the home turn to snatch a thrilling last-stride win at Invercargill. He’s Watching can boast the enviable record of having sired 18 individual winners from 57 foals in his first Australian crop – a 32 percent strike rate. A dual world champion and million dollar winner, He’s Watching is now standing at the Tipperary Equine stud, Young (NSW), of Luke Primmer.     by Peter Wharton

Former Kiwi horsewoman Kelly Stuart-Mitchell has been associated with many harness racing winners over the years-but she says nothing beats getting your very own! "I can't believe how pumped I was. It was really exciting and such a great feeling to train my first winner," she said. The win came at just start number four for the new trainer, who has held a trainer's licence for only two months. Kelly, now based at Melton, near Melbourne, said she had built up a bit of confidence on her way to the Cranbourne meeting with square-gaiter Claudy An Gus last Thursday. "He performed nicely at two trials beforehand and I like him a lot," she said. Having his first start for his new stable, Claudy An Gus (Angus Hall-All Finesse (Wind Cries Maori) didn't miss a beat for reinsman Joe Pace, scoring by nearly three metres over Abitofadreamer (John Justice) with daylight to the rest of the runners. Watch the race replay click here! "Joe thought that John's horse would be the hardest to beat so we were keen to be in front of it from the start. Thankfully that's the way it turned out and it was probably a winning move," Kelly said. "It was great for Joe to get the win because he hasn't driven many trotters over the years. He was rapt." Pace had a night to remember as he also posted victories with two horses from his own stable. He was successful with talented three-year-old Wheres Seggy (Hurrikane Kingcole-Spirit Of Fun (McArdle) and later got the money with well-bred filly Diamond Party (Art Major-Isabella Anvil (Christian Cullen). It was a driving treble for the Harkness horseman for the second time of his career. "We're based at Joe's stables and we travelled to Cranbourne in the same vehicle, so there was plenty of fun and laughs on the way home," Kelly said. "My parents back in New Zealand watched the win and they were over the moon. Mum must have been yelling because she asked me whether I could hear her!" she said. "My partner Darren Aitken is involved as an owner so that's pretty special and there's also a few others so I can guarantee there will be a belated party in honor of my first training win when the coronavirus restrictions are lifted. But on Thursday I think I managed two drinks when we got home, and that was it for me." Claudy An Gus was bred by well-known Shepparton breeder and media personality Gus Underwood. "The dam All Finesse has produced two other smart performers in Claudys Princess and Claudys Prince. They won something like 34 races between them for over $500K in stakemoney," Kelly said. Kelly has had an impressive grounding over the years. Her father Robert was a highly renowned and successful trainer, while brother Todd has also built a great reputation as a trainer-driver. She also worked for such industry leaders as Barry Purdon, Andy and Kate Gath and WA's Greg and Skye Bond. Kelly Stuart-Mitchell with Claudy An Gus Kelly currently has a team of three in work. "I love doing the horses and you keep learning all the time. There's another couple in the paddock that are due to come back in. I didn't plan it, but they are all square-gaiters," she said. "Perhaps it's a bit of my dad's influence, because he loved them when he was a trainer." Kelly recently took over the training of trotting mare Galleons Glory, who had been prepared by Andy Gath after he purchased the horse from New Zealand. "We were part of the ownership group and she was an Addington winner back home before we got her. Andy did a super job because she's got a few issues," Kelly said. "He just decided that a change in scenery might turn her around a little. I'm really happy because I know I can just pick up the phone and call Andy if I need to speak to him. "We had no luck at all with her at her first start, but we're hoping she can regain her form." Kelly said while she was thoroughly enjoying her stable of trotters, she would always welcome the opportunity of training a pacer. "It's just sort of worked out this way. I'd love to have some pacers in the stable, though...I just might have to learn again how to harness one up!" she joked.   Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

NOW the thinking really begins for the Cash N Flow team. Dubbed the “Menangle Mile Marvel”, Cash N Flow made it a staggering 11 successive Menangle mile free-for-all wins on end last night. It was also a record seventh time Cash N Flow has broken 1min50sec for the mile, doing it by a whisker in 1min49.9sec. But the ex-All Stars gelding did something special again, by breaking 27sec in three of his four splits, including the closers of 26.9 and 26.7sec as he cruised home by seven metres. So do Craig Cross and Luke McCarthy stretch him beyond his beloved mile to chase the $300,000 Group 1 Victoria Cup on October 10? Or do they keep him closer to his “zone” and target the $50,000 Group 2 Smoken Up over 1720m at Melton a week before the Victoria Cup. “He won’t run in both. It’s one or the other. We’ll talk it through. I do think he’ll stretch out to the 2240m OK if we want him too,” McCarthy said. The last time Cash N Flow raced beyond a mile was his 10th in the Hunter Cup back on February 1. His last win over further than a sprint trip was at Menangle over 2300m way back on March 15, last year. On the same card, Anthony Butt’s emerging star Wolf Stride won narrowly but impressively first-up. The rising five-year-old, first-up since winning the Group 1 NSW Regional Metro Championship final on May 23, sat parked throughout, hit the front early and held-on bravely for his eighth win from just 14 starts. It will be interesting whether Butt chases a Victoria Cup start or waits to dip into the big league later early next year. __________________________________________________________________________________________________ STINGRAY Tara did his older brother proud with a very impressive win at his first Aussie run for new trainer-driver Geoff Webster at Bendigo last Thursday night. The rising five-year-old, who raced 23 times in NZ for just three wins and seven placings, suggested he would quickly race through the grades in Victoria after sitting parked and winning easily in quick time  Despite doing all the work, Stingray Tara cruised to the front on the home bend and seemed to win with plenty in reserve by 7.8m in a 1min56sec flat mile rate for the longer 2150m trip. Tiger Tara’s former trainer Kevin Pizzuto watched with interest and excitement. “It’s great to see and we’re really excited at the moment, too, because this is Tiger’s first full season at stud,” he said. “He’s already got three yearlings and five weanlings.” __________________________________________________________________________________________________ A RUN under his belt and a stretch in distance say the All Stars’ Ashley Locaz return to winning form at just his second run for trainer Vicki Rasmussen at Albion Park on Saturday night. The rising six-year-old did all the work outside the leader, Northview Hustler, but broke him on the final bend and held the rest at bay easily to win by 3.8m in a brisk 1min54.1sec mile for 2138m. It was a marked improvement on his sound third to Northview Hustler the previous week, but no doubt the stretch from 1660m to 2138m really suited Ashley Locaz. And, of course, it was only his second run since contesting the Auckland Inter Dominion last December. __________________________________________________________________________________________________ STABLE favourite Galactic Star headlined a stellar night for Team Bond at Gloucester Park on Friday. The barn won a four of the 10 races. The rising eight-year-old, a dual Inter Dominion finalist, showed he could still be a Fremantle and WA Cup player with an impressive win courtesy of a tactically brilliant Ryan Warwick drive. Buzz but still raw former Kiwi pacer Wildwest was favourite from the pole, but headed-off early and never looked really comfortable after that. Warwick summed-up the race superbly when he made an early move to sit parked and control the race, then ping for home at the top of the straight. Galactic Star cruised to a three metre win in a 1min56sec mile rate for 2130m, including closing splits of 56.8 and 28.3sec. It was his 28th win from 80 starts and took his earnings close to $560,000.  Wildwest was trapped behind the leader, didn’t have much racing room late and certainly lost no admirers in second spot. Earlier in the night, the Bonds and Warwick combined with the emerging Justasec for an effortless all-the-way back from a spell. It was the pint-sized gelding’s 10th win from just 15 starts and he looks to be learning with every outing. The Bond’s buzz Kiwi import Howard Hughes made it nine wins from just 11 WA runs when he showed extraordinary depth and courage after a tough run in fast time. Despite doing all the work in a scorching 1min53sec mile rate for 1720m, he kept finding to easily stave-off a big late challenge from Undercover Mac and score by two metres. Howard Hughes firmly joins Patronus Star as equal top seed in Team Bond for WA’s major four-year-old features in January. It was great to see their star mare Our Alfie Romeo return to something like her best form with a runaway win in race seven. It was her 20th win from just 48 starts and took her to within a round of drinks of $300,000 in earnings. __________________________________________________________________________________________________ NO wonder David Aiken has such high hopes for Auckland Reactor’s son Reactor Now. The lightly-raced gelding stepped-up big time in grade, but won again, making it 11 wins from just 15 starts with his scorching Shepparton victory last night (Saturday)  Reactor Now was headed-off early from the pole, but quickly re-took the front then started to pull very hard for driver Josh Aiken. Despite overracing to noticeably and carving out some super splits, Reactor Now kept finding in a 1min52.8sec mile rate for 1690m. That’s just 0.3sec outside the track record set by former stablemate Ideal Star back on June 19. Auckland Inter Dominion finalist My Kiwi Mate scooted home strongly late along the marker pegs for second. Earlier in the night, classy mare Red Hot Tooth beat buzz trotter Wobelee on his merits when she sat parked and dug deep in the fast-class trot. Wobelee started his campaign in stunning style, but hasn’t looked as sharp in recent runs and the jury is out on whether he’s going to be a major player in the biggest races on current form. Red Hot Tooth, trained by Kari Males and driven by Kerryn Manning, now boasts 22 wins and 27 placings from 76 starts and earnings of almost $460,000. __________________________________________________________________________________________________ THE delayed NSW Breeders Challenge is underway and already has a bit of a headline act. There were a couple of two-year-old heats at Penrith last Thursday night and the raw Captaintreacherous filly Arma Renegade looked fantastic. Trained and driven by Brad Hewitt, Arma Renegade has won all three starts by an aggregate margin of over 52 metres. That was her biggest test so far and, although she worked to the front and dictated terms, she still posted a very sharp 1min55.3sec mile rate for 1720m.  The time was certainly impressive when you consider Ignatius holds the Penrith 1720m track record at 1min53.6sec. The colts and geldings went ripper time as well, with Tasty Delight producing a huge performance to snatch a nose win over Captain Crusader in a 1min54.4sec mile rate for the same 1720m trip. Another juvenile filly to impress was Im Presi Belle (Mach Three-White Thunder), who won her heat by a big space at Leeton last Friday.   Adam Hamilton

FANS will have to wait a bit longer again for the first clash between Australia’s two most exciting pacers Ride High and Lochinvar Art. Ride High heads to Terang for next Saturday night’s $30,000 Gammalite, but it’s now very unlikely Lochinvar Art will join him. “I’ll nominate him and make a final decision first thing Tuesday, but my gut feel is that it’s not the right thing to do with him,” Lochinvar Art’s trainer driver David Moran said. “I feel bad for the great people at the Terang club, who have boosted the prizemoney and done everything right, but the Victoria Cup is the goal and everything I do has to be around peaking him for that in five weeks or so. “Giving him a 9-10 hour road trip for a mile race against Ride High right now … it’s a risk. And it could be a gut-buster. “He’s not quite ready to go to war yet, but give him a couple more runs and he will be.” It sounds clear Lochinvar Art will stay home this week and go to a free-for-all at Bendigo a week later (September 19). “If we wait for Bendigo, it’ll probably be the first of four runs in as many weeks for him,” Moran said. “That’d be ideal. He thrives on the hard racing close together.” Moran kept Lochinvar Art up the mark with a slick workout between races at Shepparton last night. Chasing a galloping pacemaker, Lochinvar Art dawdled the first part of the 2190m workout, but Moran really stepped it up with a his last mile in a tick over 1min52sec, the last half in 53.2 and closing quarter in 26.4sec. “He felt terrific, but racing will bring him on even more. It’s about mapping out the best way towards the Victoria Cup with him now,” Moran said.   By Adam Hamilton

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