Day At The Track
Search Results
1 to 16 of 26

Talented young Queensland harness racing driver Hayden Barnes is hot property at the moment, with recent victories in two States.   A last-stride win at Armidale, NSW, on Sunday afternoon with My Secret Torque (Auckland Reactor- Ella Palms (Speed King) gave the likeable 23-year-old five wins in just four days.   “Yes, it’s certainly been an awesome week. Three of the wins were for the boss (dad/trainer Alastair, of Marburg) so everything is going along nicely,” Barnes said.   “We were happy to get the win at Armidale because it was a 12-hour return trip. Fortunately, My Secret Torque put in a dive at the finish line to score by the narrowest of margins,” he said.   The winning roll started at Redcliffe on Thursday afternoon when Barnes combined with trainer Brett Cargill to score with Grizzly Montana (Lanercost-Pearl Of Montana (Art Major).   On the following day at Albion Park, he posted a winning double for his father Alastair with former Kiwi pair Trojan Banner (Bettors Delight-Caitlin Banner (Washington VC) and Lincolns Girl (Lincoln Royal-Tania Tandias (Falcon Seelster).   And then on Saturday night at Brisbane headquarters again, Barnes was back into it, keeping a smile on his dad’s face, steering four-year-old Lincoln Road (a full brother to Lincoln’s Girl) to victory in the opening event.   The trip to Armidale, with a pair of Chantal Turpin-trained stablemates, saw Barnes making his driving debut on the 770-metre circuit, in a meeting that was another of the NSW harness racing showcase, Carnival of Cups.   “It’s a good set-up and I’ll remember my first visit with the win, that’s for sure,” he said.   “I copped a check in the early bit and found myself last, probably 30 metres off the leaders. But the horse felt enormous and I wasn’t concerned in taking off three wide to make a run because I had to get into it.”   My Secret Torque scooted around the field fairly quickly to join the leaders. Just when it looked like the mare was about to take control, the leader Roll With Tricky (Sam Ison) got a second wind and fought back doggedly.   The pair went head and head down the home straight, with the Queensland visitor grabbing a slim victory.   “We hit the line together, but I thought I’d just won. I think My Secret Torque had one last kick when it counted,” Barnes said.   “The race was worth $7650 and came with a free stallion service donated by the Seymours, which was just perfect because the owner Ian Carazzol is a keen breeder as well.”   Hayden Barnes   Barnes said trainer Chantal Turpin and her partner Pete McMullen were unable to make the 500 km trip to Armidale.   “They had a christening ceremony for their daughter Olivia, but I was happy to take the horses for them,” he said.   “It was a bit disappointing that I had to retire their other runner Bells Beach House in the Armidale Cup, but that’s racing.”   Barnes was forced to pull the horse out of the feature event after getting a flat tyre in the backwash of a scrimmage on the first corner, when driver Andrew Millard was tipped out.   The $10,200 Cup was taken out by a roughie in $31 chance Our Major Day (Major In Art-Diligent Miss (D M Dillinger) for Richard (trainer) and Dayl (driver) March. Stablemate Clintal Do was runner up.     Terry Gange NewsAlert PR Mildura

Fake Left’s ghost was well and truly hovering around Albion Park last week. The 1992 Little Brown Jug winner has been dead since 2001, but that didn’t stop two of his progeny winning races three and six on Thursday’s seven-race card. The Grant Dixon trained and driven Saint Kilda Beach and the Chantal Turpin trained and Peter McMullen driven Timeless Appeal won by 2.8m and 5.2m respectively. It was their fifth and second career wins. However, Fake Left’s co-owner and prominent Queensland businessman, Kevin Seymour said the two pacers came about simply because he suddenly remembered he had the straws several years after freezing them. “We forgot we had a couple of straws tucked away and when we realised that we still had them we decided to make the most of them and impregnate Kelly Major (by Art Major) and Talented Tess (by Grinfromeartoear). That's how both Saint Kilda Beach and Timeless Appeal came about in 2015,” Mr Seymour said. "I'm just glad that we remembered the straws because it's quite remarkable to think that his frozen semen is still producing winners some 18 years after his death.” Seymour described Fake Left as a super sire and an even better broodmare sire. The Canadian bay, who stood in Australia for the first time in 1993, was also a quality racehorse, who recorded a 1:51.4 mile. All-up he had 51 starts for 17 wins,14 placings and $314,417 in prize money. By the end of the 2010-2011 season he was the only Australian-based stallion to have sired three millionaire pacers. They were three-times Interdominion champion and multiple Group One winner, Blacks A Fake (72 wins and $4.75m); dual Miracle Mile winner, Be Good Johnny ($48 wins and 1,656,489) and Miss Galvinator (60 wins and $1,148,446). Be Good Johnny had 16 classic wins, plus multiple Cup winners while Robin Hood recorded 11, and Safari 10. “I think he will be the leading broodmare sire here for many years to come. He has already proven that. There are no more straws out there that I know of, and sadly these two fillies are the last we will see by Fake Left,” Mr Seymour said. “He was an awesome stallion. He was very good to us and thankfully his memory will live on for many years to come yet.” Saint Kilda Beach is the first of three foals out of the two-win Art Major mare, Kelly Major. Timeless Appeal is the eldest (of four foals) out of the one-win Grinfromeartoear mare, Talented Tess. As for Fake Left, he was the 1989 son of the super sire Cam Fella (by Most Happy Fella) and was the second of five foals out of the 15-win ($164,845) 1977 Albatross mare, Madam Madusa. He sired 20-plus sub-1:50 milers. As a 2-year-old the colt won five times and placed in four races. It was as a three-year-old that in the words of his owners - "he's finally developed into the kind of horse we expected him to be" - after winning six races in the Midwest just prior to competing in the prestigious 1992 Little Brown Jug.   Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Glamorganvale trainer, John McMullen, admits his four children have now achieved something he hasn’t. “All four of my kids have now driven Weedons Express to win. I did drive him to win a trial late last year, but I guess that doesn't count does it?” the Lockyer horseman joked. “I’m very proud of them and what the horse has achieved,” he added. Twenty two-year-old Danielle drove Weedons Express inch perfect at Albion Park on Saturday to win the eighth event – the $8,390 Changeover At Burwood Stud  C4+ Pace, by a neck. The 8-year-old brown gelding was a $25.90 outsider. Peter (27) tasted success first behind Weedons Express when steering the brown gelding to victory at Albion Park on April 7, 2017, and then Taleah (17) got him home at Redcliffe on July 19 that same year. Narissa (24) then chimed in with a nice triumph at Redcliffe on October 17 last year. For the record Peter and Taleah have won three times each behind Weedons Express. Trainer, McMullen had a good night at 'The Park’ winning two races. The other came via Narissa, who won the fourth event with six-year-old Quick Approval  gelding, With Authority. He was the $3.60 second favourite. Narissa also landed two winners on Saturday. She also drove the Ron Wells trained outsider, Smiling Armada to score in race six. Sister-in-law, Chantal Turpin, who is marred to Peter, trained and drove Watch Pulp Fiction to win race seven. Weedons Express has now won 14 of his 149 starts and placed in 14 others and netted just over $90,000 In purses. He is owned by Mike and Karen Sparkes, who also co-owned the 2018 VRC Derby winner, Extra Brut. Weedons Express was named after a small rural town just South of Christchurch. The son of Elsu and My Barbie Doll ( By In The Pocket) was bred by Kiwi horseman, Lou Driver. He was exported from New Zealand on October 2, 2015, after winning three of his 41 starts. “I couldn’t believe he paid more than $25 to win. He’s been going really well and the race was a B grade one for his class," McMullen, who works a team of 25 said. “He’s been going 54 in most of his races and I thought that might be enough to win this race. Sure enough he went 55 this time and still won. Unbelievable money. “I’m also rapt for the owners who backed him." Also very proud of her family's achievements last night was wife and Mum, Jennette. “I’m delighted for them all. I’m also very proud of Des Dewar, who owns With Authority. He’s 81 and only got into ownership a couple of years ago," she said. “He idolises our girls and he loves going to Redcliffe because it’s not so far for him to travel. He is a wonderful person. Des was bestowed a Volunteer-of-the-Year award on Australia Day for 40-plus years of voluntary service. “We all get such a thrill winning for our owners, especially a truly brilliant man like Des." Meanwhile, the feature pace last night was won by the Donny Smith trained and Nathan Dawson driven Slice Of Heaven. His 15th career win ($90,861), has now virtually sealed Slice Of Heaven a trip to Tabcorp Park Menangle for a supporting race on Miracle Mile night in early March. “I’ll give him a trial first, but I’d better wait to see if we make the field. He should but I’m taking nothing for granted,” the Redcliffe horseman said. The night also featured four winning drivers from Team Teal participants, with Narissa McMullen (2), Danni-elle McMullen (1) and Chantal Turpin (1) collectively raising $800 for the important cause.  Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Cancer researchers would have been delighted after watching the state’s best female drivers display their prowess at Albion Park on Saturday.  Female reinswomen won half the card (five races) and in doing so raised $200 per win for the annual ‘Team Teal’ campaign which runs throughout February and early March. It’s the third year in a row the female drivers in Queensland have donned the teal strides. And it was the women who dominated early on Saturday evening nailing a $794.60 quaddie in races two, three, four and five. Chantal Turpin trained and drove Argyle Beach to win the second event; and then 33 minutes later Narissa McMullen steered the Peter Greig trained Parisian Rockstar to a 1.1 metre victory. Trista Dixon drove the Grant Dixon trained Aqua Miss to win race four; and then at 8.08pm Kylie Rasmussen trained and drove Lilac Flash to win race five – the feature open class pacing event. The first three home all paid $5 to win, while the latter returned $6.50. It was a good night for Dixon. She also won the eighth event behind the Grant Dixon trained $13 shot, Southern Alps. Asked to comment on ‘Team Teal’, Kylie Rasmussen said should would do everything she could to raise money for cancer sufferers. “We are all affected in some way or another. I’ve had no relations or close friends die from ovarian cancer, but my Aunt did have breast cancer. It’s so sad and I personally am so pleased to be doing this," she said. “It was a nice feeling when the horse won, and then knowing $200 would be going to such a worthy cause. It’s a great idea." Patrick Estate trainer, Chantal Turpin, also said she was proud to be wearing the teal colours. “It’s a good cause because it affects a lot of women, and I’m only too pleased to help out. It’s also great motivation to do even better,” Turpin said. Turpin’s only win last night came in the second event behind the five-year-old Somebeachsomewhere mare, Argyle Beach. The Somerset horsewoman was so happy with that 4.1 metre victory she will now take her to New South Wales this week alongside her 16-time winner ($136,666), Mattgregor. "She's earned her trip to go south and have a go at the Ladyship Mile (March 2). Mattgregor will race in the Newcastle Mile on Friday night. More will come down later, including Watch Pulp Fiction," Turpin said. Turpin was rapt with Argyle Beach saying “she’s really flying at the moment,” but she will be retired from racing in May. “She’s been a great little horse and won real well this time. She will be let down in May so she can prepare for the next breeding season when she will be served by Betting Line,” Turpin said. Argyle Beach and Turpin sat second last early before joining the three-wide train down the back the last time. They then loomed up at the 300m and ran away to an easy victory over Sir Julian and claimer, Stacey Weidemann. The mare paced the 1660m mobile in 1:56.7 (mile rate 1:53.2). Her sectionals were 26.2, 29.9, 28.5 and 28.9. It was the Ross Patrick owned mare's 14th win in 40 starts. She has also placed 14 times and banked $81,404. "That was her quickest mile rate yet and she did it pretty easy. I'm going to miss who when she retires," said Turpin who works a team of 36. Meanwhile Racing Queensland, Albion Park and the Redcliffe Harness Racing Clubs will continue donate the $200 to the Women's Cancer Foundation every time a female driver salutes the judge. The reinswomen are wearing teal coloured pants, while leading drivers Kylie Rasmussen and Narissa McMullen are donning specially-made ‘Team Teal Silks’ as ‘Queensland’s Ambassadors’. The Queensland Teal Campaign ends on March 9 when the Albion Park HRC hosts the 2019 Australian Female Drivers Championship. It will feature the best female drivers from across the country. The Team Teal concept was created by Duncan McPherson OAM, who lost his wife Lyn to ovarian cancer in 2010. Racing Queensland has raised more than $60,000 since 2017. The Women’s Cancer Foundation target is $250,000. Extensive results and race videos from last night’s meeting can be viewed here.   Duane Ranger  for Racing Queensland

Well, for Tony and Karen Turpin, that dream is set to become a reality this weekend when their two children Chantal and Jake step onto the big stage in their respective codes. Chantal is chasing a victory with her richly talented pacer Mattgregor in the Listed $25,540 Egmont Park Stud Mr Feelgood Open at Albion Park on Saturday night, the opening night of the 2018 Racing Queensland winter carnival. The following day, Jake will make his NRL debut at hooker when he steps out for the Brisbane Broncos against the Gold Coast Titans at Cbus Stadium. The 21-year-old is in his maiden season with the Broncos after spending the early part of his career with the Melbourne Storm learning under the watchful eye of champion rake Cameron Smith. “It’s going to be big weekend, exciting and stressful all rolled into one I guess. Bear (Mattgregor) is the stable favourite and the kids have done a great job with him since we bought him unraced from New Zealand a few years ago while Jake has been working towards this moment for a very long time, we’re so excited for him because he’s sacrificed a heck of a lot.” Tony Turpin said proudly. Mattgregor possesses all the skills and speed to be a future topliner and this campaign has been geared to see him springboard to the next level which see him compete regularly against the best pacers in the country. He has shown glimpses of brilliance throughout his career to date including some terrific efforts in features at TABCORP Park, Menangle and Melton. The hulking five-year-old was unplaced last week when resuming from a freshen-up in the Wondais Mate when finishing seventh behind Glenferrie Hood in 1:52.2. If successful, he will be exempt from ballot for the main event during the winter carnival, the Gr.1 $200,540 UBET Blacks A Fake Queensland Championship on July 21. Mattgregor will start from gate nine, two off the second-line in the 2138m mobile start feature and takes on the likes of millionaire pacer Ohoka Punter, Frankie Rocks, Our Triple Play, Anychance and Hughie Green among others. “He will be better this week but he probably needs to be against this opposition, there looks like there will be solid pressure in this race and that will suit him. “We know he’s got the ability to go with the good ones but we just need some luck, if he gets it he’ll be right there with them.” While a strong support crowd will be trackside on Saturday night, an even bigger support crew will heading to Robina on Sunday afternoon for the rugby league. Following some strong form in the Intrust Super Cup competition for the Redcliffe Dolphins, young Jake has been granted a huge opportunity while Queensland State of Origin representative players sit out. “I suppose it’s been a long time coming but opportunities at this level can’t be taken for granted, he’s worked his butt off and we’re super proud for him and this moment. “He’s had some setbacks with injuries along the way but that’s all part of the journey and I’m sure he’ll relish the moment. We’ll have a number of family members and friends at the game cheering him on. “Hopefully, we’ll be there cheering on another winner, imagine if the big horse can get the job done on Saturday. Wouldn’t that be something?” Mattgregor is raced by Jake and Karen Turpin along with Denis Golinski.   Chris Barsby

Having given last season's most successful harness racing drivers an airing two weeks ago, it is fitting that we should tell how local trainers fared at the elite level. Not surprisingly, the four trainers who finished in the state's top 10 are not spread throughout the greater Ipswich footprint. Rather, they are clumped together at the epicentre of "Ipswich Trot", the lower Brisbane Valley. Third placed was Chantal Turpin (Patrick Estate) with stats of 935 starters for 125 winners, 93 seconds, 96 thirds and 93 fourths. In the bank, an impressive $771,892. Fifth overall was Darrell Graham (Fernvale) with 782 runners for 106-96-97-83. Bank: $602,558. Sixth was John McMullen (Glamorganvale). He was sent round 922 times for 68 wins, 89 seconds, 79 thirds and 101 fourths. Bank: $313,247. Eighth was Ron Sallis (Wanora). He presented on 474 occasions, resulting in stats of 52-50-63-57. Bank: $257,400. The total prize earnings for the four stables was a hefty $1,945,097. That's a very impressive performance by all concerned, rendered even more so by my vivid memories of a time when Ipswich regulars thought that a winner at Rocklea was about as good as it was likely to get. Clear explanation needed QUESTION of the week. When is a mile rate not a mile rate? Answer: When it is published as an extrapolation of a gross time recorded over a distance less than a mile. Such times find their way into sales catalogues via the listing of broodmare's progeny. This published statement of performance could perhaps be viewed in law as at best misleading. Harness Racing Australia should attach a clear note of explanation to form lines, or ban the use of the term mile rate, in regards to such performances. Beers to enjoy THE "Octoberfest" theme of the Harriott Memorial trot meeting at Marburg on Sunday, October 22, gained more traction this week with the news that yet another "boutique" brewery has come on board for the big day. Newstead Brewing, based at Newstead and Milton, joins Brews Brothers of Woollongabba and Four Brothers Brewery from Toowoomba. For those who like a cold refreshing beer on a warm/hot spring day, this is a golden opportunity to widen your taste experience. Beers, ales, lagers and varied grain brews are the order of the day. Handy tips SELECTIONS for Albion Park tonight. R1: E/w 8: Watch Pulp Fiction (C. Turpin). R2: Quinella 1-8: Timmo Time (M. Neilson) and Franco Totem (A. Richardson). R3: Quinella 1-8: Hereiam (S. Graham ) and Lancelot Bromac (H. Barnes). R4: Quinella 1-4: Written In Red (H. Barnes) and Philanderer (M. Neilson). R5: Box trifecta 1-3-8: Make a Statement (T. Dixon)-Pompidou (I Ross)-Macgoogan (M. Neilson). R6: E/w 4: Nolonga Your Choice (T. Lambourn). R7: Quinella 2-4: Ashleys Angel (G. Whitaker) and Onyajans (M. Neilson). R8: Box trifecta 1-7-10: Reds Jet Star (G. Dixon)- Midnight Prowler (M Neilson)-Annika Magic (M. Elkins). R9: Box trifecta 6-7-8: Monorail (R. Jenkins)- Releven Dream (S Graham)- Our Overannova (G. Dixon). Honour board A fresh face on the driver's side of the leader board this week as Brittany Graham shared honours with Pete McMullen on four wins apiece. Darrell Graham stood out as top trainer, also on four wins. Most pleasing was I'm Angus Mattgregor for Mitchell Dawson and Fui Fui for Peter Jones. There is no joy in being "cannon fodder" for the big guys. Albion Park, September 22: With Authority (Pete McMullen for John McMullen); My Ultimate Fella Brittany Graham for Darrell Graham); Master Montana (Brittany Graham for Darrell Graham); Shareapassion (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin). Albion Park, September 23: Threo (Pete McMullen for Chantal Turpin); The Shady One (Trevor Lambourn); Alta Surreal (Narissa McMullen for Steve Cini); Secret Smile (Danielle McMullen for Ryan Veivers); Releven Dream (Pete McMullen for Shane Graham). Albion Park, September 26: Gangster Boy (Danielle McMullen for Ryan Veivers); Good Time Stride (Rob Gorman); American Highlights (Trent Dawson). Redcliffe, September 27: Win Or Die (Nathan Dawson for Gary Vernon); Fui Fui (Gary Whitaker for Peter Jones); Circle Line (Anthony Gorman for Ron Wells); Oscars Glory (Narissa McMullen for John McMullen); Arbit Major (Gary Whitaker for Brad Connelly); Matt Belford (Rob Gorman for Murray Thomas). Redcliffe, September 28: I'm Angus Mattgregor (Nathan Dawson for Mitchell Dawson); Rocky Carrington (Brittany Graham for Darrell Graham); I'm Johnny Jet (Brittany Graham for Darrell Graham). by TROT TACTICS with Denis Smith Reprinted with permission of The Queensland Times

New season, new hope. That’s the approach harness racing connections will adopt for former New Zealand pacer Watch Pulp Fiction following his dominant victory in the UBET Pace at Albion Park on Saturday night. The Art Major entire recorded a mile rate of 1:55.2 for the 2138m event. But it was only his third victory from 19 starts on Australian soil following his purchase last season for a hefty price. It was his second victory at Albion Park while he scored at Tabcorp Park Menangle back in February earlier this year. There have been glimpses along the way but the frustration continues to build. “Obviously he hasn’t been easy to sort out and we haven’t seen the best of him since he’s been in our care but we keep working with him and trying different things. He felt great the other night and was suited by a genuine speed; he was really strong through the line.” Trainer/driver Chantal Turpin said. Upon his arrival in November last year, expectations were there to match his price tag and his campaign started well following his eye-catching effort in the Gr.2 $50,000 Gold Coast Cup when fourth behind Avonnova in a time of 1:53.3 for 2138m. An easy victory at his next start at Albion Park indicated he would be a great companion for his stablemate Mattgregor who was being readied for a Chariots of Fire campaign in Sydney. It was anything but. Watch Pulp Fiction managed one victory from six starts before returning to Brisbane where his inconsistent form continued leading into and during the winter carnival. “We couldn’t get two good runs out of him and it proved very frustrating, the efforts weren’t bad but we expected more from him. His work at home was good and he looked in terrific order but he just couldn’t get any consistency going. “Before his start on Saturday, Pete (McMullen – husband) and I went back to square one and changed things around with him and that appears to have worked because he was very genuine, probably the best he’s felt. “We’ll just keep ticking him over in the coming weeks and then we might look at a Victorian campaign in November when Mattgregor heads south. That’s the plan at this stage but that will depend on his form and performances.” Meanwhile, Mattgregor is back in work and building towards his next campaign which will take in the Gr.2 $75,000 4 & 5yo Championship at TABCORP Park, Melton on November 11. by Chris Barsby

The harness racing season is over for Opononis Bliss. A debut winner at Albion Park in 1:57.9 on April 4 has since undergone an operation owing to sequestrum. The Mr Feelgood – Opononi Sunset filly has battled soundness issues ever since but a series of x-rays recently has revealed the problem rests in the near side front leg. Sequestrum is a piece of dead bone tissue formed within a diseased or injured bone, typically in chronic osteomyelitis. Prepared by leading trainer Chantal Turpin, the filly was being readied for the Gr.1 $100,000 QBRED Triad Fillies Final at Albion Park on July 15. But now the filly will be recuperating following surgery this week. “She came through the race in good style and we just backed off but we noticed she was a little ginger when we brought her back in, it didn’t improve and we had her checked over at the Queensland University at Gatton and this is the end result which is disappointing.” Turpin said. The operation has been hailed a success but connections will give her plenty of recovery time meaning she won’t race again this term. The two-year-old fillies division boasts strong depth with the likes of Fame Assured, Aqua Miss, Ark Teamo, Red Charmer, Well Disguised, Datsgood and the Sydney trained Arts Treasure all displaying strong ability. Meanwhile, stable star Mattgregor is ready for his challenge this weekend when he tackles the Gr.2 $75,000 4 & 5yo Championship this Saturday night at TABCORP Park, Melton. The Rob Roy Mattgregor gelding was beaten but far from disgraced last Sunday at Albion Park when finishing second behind in-form mare Summertime Lizzie in a time of 1:51.9. Mattgregor sat without cover. “He’s come through the race really well and he’s trained at a good level this week so he’s ready to go, he’s booked to fly south on Thursday night,” Turpin said. “We know he’s good enough and he’s got a handy draw so hopefully he won’t be too far from the action, we’re looking at coming home via Sydney with a possible race or two at Menangle before the winter carnival.” Mattgregor will start from gate four in the 2240m feature event and Pete McMullen will take the drive. Chris Barsby

Exciting harness racing four-year-old Mattgregor will have his connections thinking across the weekend. The speedy pacer will start favourite in Sunday’s $15,540 Kevin & Kay Seymour Rising Stars Championship Final after drawing gate three but there’s plenty more at stake than just the prizemoney. Prepared by husband and wife team of Chantal Turpin and Pete McMullen, Mattgregor will again be handled by concession reinsman Hayden Barnes this weekend. But connections are toying with the idea of heading to Melbourne next weekend to contest the Gr.2 $75,000 4 & 5yo Championship at Tabcorp Park Melton. “It’s something we’re strongly considering but we have to get through his race this weekend in good order firstly, this race fits his schedule nicely and it’s quite doable given we can fly him down a few days before the event.” McMullen said. Back in February, Mattgregor qualified for the Gr.1 $200,000 Chariots of Fire at TABCORP Park, Menangle in Sydney and finished a creditable 5th behind champion New Zealand pacer Lazarus in a time of 1:49.0. Mattgregor started from gate 10, the extreme outside and was beaten less than 10m but managed to record the best closing splits of the event. The rangy gelding resumed with an easy victory on Tuesday afternoon when leading throughout in his heat while recording a time of 1:58.6. In-form mare Summertime Lizzie won the other heat in a time of 1:55.0 and will start to the immediate inside of Mattgregor on Sunday. “We were very pleased with his hit-out on Tuesday; he had a very easy time of it in front and just sprinted from the top of the straight. It wasn’t a taxing run and he’ll be ready for a big effort this weekend. “It was also Hayden’s first race drive behind him and he’ll know a lot more about him following that race so they will both be better for the run. Obviously Summertime Lizzie commands respect, she’s won her past four starts and recorded very good time so we won’t take her lightly. “The Melbourne race is a good option because there isn’t a great deal coming up for him during the winter carnival, we’ve got a 4yo race and then basically he’s in the deep end with the open class performers if we want to chase the decent prizemoney. I’m happy to race against the best.” No decision will be made until after the weekend. But connections have made contact regarding the availability of flights. Chris Barsby

Exciting Queensland pacer Mattgregor is ready for another big test this weekend. Fresh from his excellent effort in the Gr.1 $200,000 Chariots of Fire two weeks ago when fifth behind champion pacer Lazarus in 1:49.0 after drawing the ten hole, he gets another chance at cracking it in a feature harness racing event. On Saturday night, the fresh faced four-year-old takes on seasoned rivals in the Gr.1 $100,000 Bohemia Crystal Free-For-All at TABCORP Park Menangle. His rivals include last year’s Miracle Mile winner Have Faith In Me, Tiger Tara, Hug The Wind, Aztec Bromac, Major Crocker and Tact Tate among others. Amazingly, Mattgregor is still assessed as a C5 MO, meaning he is eligible for much easier races. Mattgregor is the veteran of 14 career starts to date but has won 8 of those starts. But connections don’t feel out of place in the open class feature. “He deserves his chance and he’s drawn much better this week compared to his past couple of starts so we’re optimistic about his chances. His latest run in the Chariots was the best run of his short career to date; we were absolutely delighted with the effort.” Co-owner Karen Turpin said. The Rob Roy Mattgregor gelding will immediately return to Brisbane after the weekend for a deserving break before being set for the winter carnival at Albion Park. During his Sydney campaign, Mattgregor scored an easy first-up victory in a career best time of 1:51.6 before a slashing second behind Dashofluck in the Paleface Adios Stakes while finishing fifth in the Chariots of Fire at his most recent start. Prepared by Karen’s daughter Chantal Turpin and her husband Pete McMullen, Mattgregor continues to develop and looms as a serious future prospect which has his connections excited. “The main aim for this southern campaign was to give him his chance to contest the Chariots and he did himself well in that series, this is obviously a very strong race this weekend but we’re in with a chance. We think he’ll be mixing at this level in time to come. “The kids have done a great job in Sydney and it’s been a great learning experience for them, it would be nice to end the stint with a big race victory this weekend. “All the family will be there on Saturday night, Jake has the weekend off before the footy season starts next week and he’ll be trackside to cheer on his horse. I’m really looking forward to the night in so many different ways.” Mattgregor is raced by Denis Golinski, Karen Turpin and her son Jake. Jake Turpin is a contracted NRL player with the Melbourne Storm. Chris Barsby

The Turpin/McMullen harness racing stables are hoping to finish the week better than it started. The young Queensland couple of Chantal Turpin and Pete McMullen are preparing a large team in Sydney at Menangle headlined by their classy four-year-old pacer Mattgregor who starts in Saturday night’s Gr.1 $200,000 Cordina Chicken Farms Chariots of Fire. This was the main focus of their maiden southern campaign. But it could’ve been over before it started. On Monday, McMullen was working recent New Zealand purchase Fire One when the three-year-old filly became erratic and uncontrollable before crashing heavily. The filly was sent to the nearby Camden Veterinary University while McMullen was left to dust himself off and hobble along nursing a sore ankle. “The filly put on a bucking display and crashed into the fence and dumped Pete quite heavily, the filly ended up with a number of cuts and abrasions while Pete hurt his ankle. I was worried Pete might have done some serious damage but he said it was ok, he took drives on Tuesday and he’s not going to miss driving Bear (Mattgregor) this weekend.” Turpin said. Mattgregor is the stable star, the New Zealand bred gelding has won 8 of his 13 starts to date and qualified for the feature after coming from last to run a half neck second to Dashofluck in the Paleface Adios Stakes in a time of 1:50 two weeks ago. This weekend, Mattgregor will start at big odds after being slammed with the worst draw, gate 10, the outside draw in the 1609m sprint feature. Most experts are predicting a sub 1:50 mile rate. “Our mission was to qualify for this race, that’s been the target since he started in the Queensland Derby last July and we’ve made it so that’s an effort in itself. After being made an emergency in the Hondo Grattan we were left wondering if we would even get a chance to prove ourselves but we got there in the end. “His last start second in the Paleface Adios was his best run to date, he had no right to get as close as he did that night and his sectionals were just unbelievable.  He’s trained on well since and now we’re just relying on luck from the draw. “It’s a great field headed by Lazarus who looks freakish, the Purdon/Rasmussen have three excellent chances while all other runners boast excellent credentials. Bear has only had 13 career starts and we’re super proud of what he’s achieved to date and he’ll be better for this campaign going forward.” Mattgregor is raced by Denis Golinski along with Karen & Jake Turpin after being purchased from the leading Christchurch stables of Mark Jones. Queensland trained winners of the Chariots of Fire include Slipnslide (2005) and Lanercost (2011). Other Queenslanders to contest the great race include Majestic Mach & Brigadier Bronski (2014 - Guaranteed), Sign To Inverell (2012 – Caribbean Blaster), Matai Zinga (2011 - Lanercost), Fleur De Lil & Be Diligent (2008 – Ebony Gem), Secretagent Cullen & Sir Galvinator (2006 – Innocent Eyes), Mister Martini (2005 - Slipnslide), Rollon Bigred (2004 - Elsu), Sparkling Melody (2003 – Oaxaca Lass), Five Star Comfort (2002 – Manifold Bay) plus Aquagold and Sailors Corner (2001 – Smooth Satin). Chris Barsby

McMullen duo Peter and Chantal will be looking for two sought-after pacing victories in Sydney next month. The Patrick Estate harness racing team are currently in Sydney, aiming to qualify New Zealand imports Mattgregor in the $200,000 invitational Chariots of Fire and Watch Pulp Fiction in the Miracle Mile. Although the races aren't until February, driver and co-trainer Peter said despite Mattgregor's lack of race starts, the gelding was showing plenty of potential to race in the biggest four-year-old race in Australasia. He raced last week at Menangle as favourite, winning by a solid three metres, taking his tally to eight wins from 12 starts. "It was nothing special, but hopefully that gives him enough to get into the lead up to the qualifying races,” Peter said. "He hasn't had a lot of race in him yet and we haven't seen the best of him yet.” Both Mattgregor and Watch Pulp Fiction will both need to qualify for the invitational feature races which will test the best horses in their category. If Watch Pulp Fiction doesn't make the qualifiers for the Miracle Mile, Peter said they would aim to enter him in the Bohemia Crystal, held during the same meet. "We've only had him about a month... it's a bit out of reach but we're hoping he can make the Miracle Mile,” he said. The duo have trained some 54 winners this season, putting them squarely in second place on the trainers board behind the black and white army of Grant Dixon. And in the driver's seat, Peter holds a solid third place on the state drivers table with 55 wins, 46 seconds and 40 third from 363 starts. If the two lead horses don't finish in the top two for their qualifying races, Peter said the experience and connections from New South Wales which will add to their southern venture. "We're looking to expand a little, broaden the horizons and the other horses we took with us,” Peter said. "They're all nice horses, they're the best of our bunch in Queensland, but its stronger racing in Menangle. "But if we can make new connections from the horses and broaden our stable at home that would be great.” The McMullens have spent the last couple weeks in Menangle, based at the track in the lead up to the Chariots of Fire and Miracle Mile. By Rob Williams Reprinted with permission of The Gatton Star

Young couple Chantal Turpin and Pete McMullen will call Sydney home for the next couple of months. The emerging force in the harness racing training and driving ranks are spreading their wings to Menangle with a big team this week. They will be based on course at Menangle preparing their team from the state of the art training facilities. And they will arrive this week. “We’ve been talking about making a run at Menangle for some time and now it’s time for action. We’re renting one of the barns for the next two months at this stage and depending on success, it could be longer.” Turpin said. Currently, the young couple sits second in the Queensland state trainers premiership title with perennial force Grant Dixon leading the way by a clear margin. They have prepared 52 winners for the season to date. Spearheading their Sydney assault will be a pair of talented ex-kiwi pacers in Watch Pulp Fiction and Mattgregor. Watch Pulp Fiction arrived in Australia last month and was responsible for an excellent first-up effort in the Gr.2 $50,000 Gold Coast Cup when fourth behind recently retired star Avonnova before winning easily against moderate opposition on Saturday night. The Art Major five-year-old will be set for a number of events at Menangle during the upcoming Miracle Mile carnival. Connections paid a hefty price for the richly talented entire and have even nominated him for the Victorian summer carnival features, the Victoria and Hunter Cups. Mattgregor is a speedy four-year-old that has built an imposing record of 7 wins from 11 starts to date; all victories have come at Albion Park. The Rob Roy Mattgregor gelding scored an impressive victory at the trials on Friday afternoon in a time of 1:55.3 at Albion Park while finishing off in a sub 27 final split. “They’re the two main stays of the stable right now; we’ve got high hopes for both pacers and hopefully they can step it up a gear during this campaign. Obviously it’s going to be much harder for both of them but they deserve their chance. “Their main asset is their speed, both are very fast horses. The style of racing in Sydney is vastly different compared to what we’re used to up here but we think they will fit in quite nicely given the right luck. “We have a number of M0 type horses that have raced through their grades up here and they deserve their opportunity to win their M0 down here for the better prizemoney. At this stage, we’ll have about 10 horses coming down while another bunch will come down in the coming weeks.” McMullen returns from a recent two week driving suspension. The third generation horseman currently sits third in the state driver’s premiership behind Shane Graham and Grant Dixon with 55 winners to date. Stable foreman Hayden Barnes will continue to operate their Patrick Estate stable while they campaign in Sydney. The Turpin/McMullen team head south tomorrow (Tuesday). Chris Barsby

A Brisbane harness racing syndicate has been formed to purchase exciting New Zealand pacer Pulp Fiction for a hefty six-figure sum. The syndicate, constructed by leading trainer Chantal Turpin features several of her best clients and now they’ve joined forces to race the Art Major – Joys Underworld stallion. Turpin prepares a strong team at Patrick Estate, west of Brisbane with her husband Pete McMullen, one of the state’s best drivers. Amongst the ownership group is Ross Patrick, Dave Murray, Denis Golinski, John Manzelmann and Jake and Karen Turpin. The deal was negotiated through respected south island bloodstock agent Geoff Gibson-Smith. Pulp Fiction will arrive at the end of the week and be set for the upcoming Queensland summer carnival open class features including the Gr.2 $50,000 Gold Coast Cup at Albion Park on December 17. “It’s very exciting to have a horse of this quality join our stables and we’re really looking forward to the challenge, the summer open features are the obvious early target although we haven’t confirmed what races we will hit or miss with him.” Turpin said. Previously prepared by Riversdale horseman Tony Stratford, the five-year-old raced during Cup week at Addington where he finished 6th behind brilliant mare Dream About Me before finishing 7th behind Chase The Dream in record time. Pulp Fiction has put together a very tidy ‘CV’ which includes 12 wins and 8 minor placings from 33 starts to date while amassing more than $100,000 in stakes. His biggest win to date came via the 2014 Riverton Cup. “He profiles really well and he’s proven he can compete with some very good horses, I think his speed will be his biggest asset when racing here in Australia. The opportunity to buy this horse came about quickly and we didn’t hesitate to grab him, he arrives on a very good mark for a horse of this quality. “It’s great that we got the support from the owners, that’s the most important part of setting up a stable and we’re always looking to expand. Having a horse like this in the stable and performing, well hopefully that will build our profile a little more. “Obviously we’ll be keen to have him competing in some of the better races both here and south of the border, in fact, we plan on having a good quality team of horses in Sydney at Menangle early in the New Year.” The young couple prepare exciting four-year-old Mattgregor, a winner of 7 from 11 to date. by Chris Barsby

The end is near for Run Fatboy Run. But it will be just the beginning in many ways. The New Zealand bred gelding continues to race in good form for Patrick Estate harness racing trainer Chantal Turpin but his assessment is beginning to become a little tight meaning he’s becoming hard to place so his owners can’t maximize their return. Run Fatboy Run won’t become a pacer that races in claiming events. Instead, he will return to his native country and live the life of luxury once his racing days are complete on Australian soil. Originally, Run Fatboy Run was sent to Sydney where he joined the stables of Nicole Molander and tasted immediate success at Menangle on October 26, 2014. With Molander moving to Victoria, the Julius Caesar gelding also headed south but it was only a short stint after failing in all three starts forcing a move back to Sydney where he joined the stables of Blake Fitzpatrick. But with only two victories coming from an 18 start stint with Fitzpatrick, connections decided to move him further north. The move has reignited the fire for the big striding pacer. As it stands, Run Fatboy Run has won five races for Turpin with the potential of a few more before time is called. All five victories have come at Albion Park. “Fatboy has been a handy type for the stable and we’ve enjoyed having him as a member of our team, it didn’t start off so well for him so we made some adjustments with his gear and work and he’s been much better for it.” Turpin said. “He’s quite versatile, he’s led and he’s been very good coming off the pace to win some of his races. I enjoy driving him and I know Pete (McMullen – husband) also enjoys driving him too. He’s a lovely horse to work with and I’m sure he’ll enjoy his retirement when the day arrives.” Turpin added. Run Fatboy Run has won two of his four starts to date this season and starts this Friday at Albion Park. He will start from gate six in the Noel & Chris Denning Pace, an event over the distance of 2138m. Run Fatboy Run is owned by Andrew, Ricky & Earl Gutsell along with Neil Thwaites. by Chris Barsby Fields for Albion Park, Friday 30 September 2016 Form guide for Albion Park, Friday 30 September 2016

Exciting three-year-old Mattgregor is now racing the clock to be ready for the Queensland Derby next month at Albion Park. Connections were again forced to scratch their talented pacer yesterday (Tuesday) owing to an unfortunate setback which occurred on Monday night. The New Zealand bred gelding become cast in his box and ended up with a superficial wound on his hind leg which left connections with no option but to withdraw him from yesterday’s race. “Luckily, he didn’t do any major damage but we weren’t prepared to start him although we need to get some racing under his belt quickly because the Derby classics are just around the corner. All going well, hopefully he’ll be right to go next week.” Trainer Chantal Turpin said. It’s the second time in as many weeks that the speedy pacer has been scratched. Since arriving from New Zealand late last year after being purchased from the stables of respected Canterbury horseman Mark Jones, Mattgregor has won three of his four starts to date. All three victories coming at Albion Park and all in sub 1:54 time. Mattgregor has not raced since winning at Albion Park on December 22 where he paced the mile in a scorching time of 1:53.4. The Gr.1 $75,000 Queensland Derby is scheduled for July 16. Connections are also mindful of the UBET Picket Fence bonus of $20,000 if he can win three races in a row including the Queensland Derby. Chris Barsby

1 to 16 of 26