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The Pryde's EasiFeed Victoria Oaks has been thrown wide open after pre-draw favourite Stylish Memphis drew outside the back row, which has meant opportunity knocks for her rivals in the $150,000 classic. Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen's talented raider was impressive in winning her heat but the fellow Kiwi who pushed her all the way, Dr Susan, has rocketed into favourite for Saturday night's 2760-metre Group 1 after drawing gate 5. "First money that came in was for Dr Susan," TAB's Adam Hamilton told this morning's live Sky Racing broadcast. "I expect her to lead." Dr Susan shortened from $3 into $2.50 post-draw, while Stylish Memphis eased from $2.70 to $2.80 and Victoria's leading hope Maajida, who drew gate 9, eased from $3 to $3.20. "It looks a match in two and a half," Hamilton said. "I thought Maajida was just OK winning her heat. She will be a lot fitter for the run. "There's almost no scenario in which Stylish Memphis isn't sitting outside the leader with a lap to go. I think she's faster than she is strong, it might not be down her alley. Maajida looks probably our only hope of fending off the Kiwis." Good Form analyst Blake Redden has broken down the Oaks hopes runner-by-runner: 1: Jenden Strike ($14 with Perfect draw after an excellent heat performance. She comes in as a serious winning chance now. 2: Amelia Rose ($17 with Was less than spectacular in her heat and would have to jump out of the ground to be a factor even from the nice gate. 3: Rockingwithsierra ($31 with Draws handily but probably can’t cross the polemarker and she may be a half level below the better fillies. 4: Good Faith ($51 with One of the eye catchers out of the heats and she draws to lob somewhere handy to the speed, which makes her the best roughie in the race. 5: Dr Susan ($2.50 with This draw may look OK on paper but when you consider where her major dangers have drawn, it’s bordering on spectacular. Favourite now? 6: Its Ebonynivory ($201 with She’ll be going back and look to run on late. 7: Itz Longtall Sally ($101 with Similar story to the above and she’s unlikely to feature but has a bright future. 8: Soho Gloria Jane ($41 with This girl doesn’t have many options but she can follow through early and hope to end up no worse than three pegs. If she lobs behind the leader then she’s a solid place hope. 9: Maajida ($3.20 with This filly is no one-trick pony so the draw doesn’t cruel her and from the running line Amelia Rose uses her gate speed, she may be able to get in front of her major dangers. 10: Dasha The Great (emg) ($201 with She’ll be looking for a quiet run if she gets into the field. 11: Alice Kay ($26 with Sit/sprint filly who will need luck but the draw may not be as bad as it first looks on paper. 12: Its Beaujolais ($151 with Nice filly who will look for the pegline early and hope to be running on. 13: Stylish Memphis ($2.80 with Truly horrible draw for what could have been the odds-on favourite. She comes right back to the field now and while she can clearly still win, her job has been made incredibly difficult.   HRV Trots Media - Michael Howard

Queensland will have three representatives lining up in the prestigious Group One $150,000 Lazarus Victoria Oaks for the 3YO pacing fillies at Melton on Saturday night. The Sunshine State boasts the favourite and second favourite Belle Of Montana ($1.30) and Smart As Camm Be ($6), and $151 outsider, Betamerica. Belle Of Montana is owned by former Ladbrokes chief, Dean Shannon (Montana Park Pty Ltd); Smart As Camm Be is trained and driven by Kylie Rasmussen, and owned by Pam Smart and her son Chris; while Shannon Price and Raboki Pty Ltd own Betamerica. They have drawn one, six, and 10 respectively. Rasmussen was not perturbed by Smart As Camm Be’s wide draw. “The outside of the front row isn’t the worst possible draw for her because I think she prefers to win her races from back in the field. “Obviously the one-horse is the filly to beat, but if we can get a nice trip and can get one go at them, she has the gait, will, and ability to get close to the favourite – if not beat her,” Rasmussen said. Those comments came three days after Smart As Camm Be waltzed to an easy victory as the $1.50 favourite in the second Victoria Oaks heat at Melton’s Tabcorp Park on Saturday. The Cammibest filly also drew six that night and stopped the clock in 2:43.1. Her mile rate for the 2,240m mobile was 1:57.2. The Barry Purdon trained and Zachary Butcher driven Belle Of Montana beat Miss Streisand by half a neck in her first heat. The $1.20 NZ-based ‘hot-pot’ drew nine and won in 2:39.9 with a slashing 1:54.9 mile rate. “We can only focus on what our filly can do and not what the others have done, but I do know how good Barry’s filly is. “My girl travelled and settled in very well. She will be a lot stronger this week because she has adjusted to the surroundings well. This is her first trip away and I’m very proud of her. She can win,” Rasmussen said. Smart As Camm Be has now won 11 of her 13 starts and banked $148,135. The Stanmore horsewomen also brought her stable star, Lilac Flash, to Melbourne as a travel companion last week. However, that black Bettor’s Delight gelding proved to be more than just a travel mate. The 5-year-old notched up his 19th win in 52 starts ($142,231) in a $20,000 M1 to M2 Pace on Saturday. The $3.30 second favourite drew nine and won with a blistering 1:51.6 mile rate for the 1,720m mobile. He has drawn four in the $24,000 Captain Sandy Free-For-All at 7.30pm on Saturday. But all the attention will come two races later at 8.30pm when Australia and New Zealand’s best fillies will do the business. Price, who owns the American Ideal filly, Betamerica, couldn’t believe her brown pacer was paying more than $150 to win the coveted Oaks. “I thought her run last week was a cracker and I can’t believe that she is one of the outsiders in the field. She will need luck on her side but I am very happy with Larajay Farms’ performance with her so far this season,” Woolloongabba-based Price said. Betamerica is trained by Jess Tubbs and will be driven by Greg Sugars. He will start from three on the second row this week after finishing a close-up head second in the third heat behind the $2.60 favourite, Kualoa. TAB’s opening odds for Saturday’s 2,240m mobile are: Belle Of Montana $1.30, Smart As Camm Be $6, Kualoa $7, Two Times Better $21, Miss Streisand $23, Enchanted Stride $23, Victoria Brew $34, Tangoingwithsierra $51, Wellsaidlucy $71, Vena May $81, Swimsuit Edition $126, Betamerica $151, Single Tree Road $151.   Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Paul Lewis admits it was a bit of an impulse buy when he and his two brothers snapped up a tiny Well Said filly at the 2017 Australian Pacing Gold sales in Sydney. But the $16,000 price tag has already proven a bargain for connections, who have enjoyed a great early ride with the Matthew Craven-trained pacer. Wellsaidlucy has won five of her six career starts - including a feature victory in the South Australian Oaks last month - for a tick over $28,000 in prizemoney. Now the daughter of Virtual Hanover is being aimed at the Lazarus Victoria Oaks (2240m) heats this Saturday night at Tabcorp Park Melton. "We had a bit of a day on the cans so we bought this horse," Lewis recalled. From there, Wellsaidlucy was given some time to grow and mature before beginning her racing career with a big win at Ararat in October last year. "She just does everything we ask her to," Lewis, who is based in Hamilton, said. "We think she is going to lack that little bit of top-end speed, but who knows? "She's done more than expected ... I must admit we have placed her well." This Saturday night's heat will be a major step-up for Wellsaidlucy and Lewis isn't getting too carried away about the horse's chances in the $24,000 event. "She'll be outclassed on Saturday, but at least she's there and she's having a crack," Lewis said. "She actually got a little bit of a cold last week and we nearly didn't go, but Matty (Craven) said she's pulled up a treat and we're going to race her." Lewis is hoping Wellsaidlucy can run inside the top four to earn a place in the $150,000 Group 1 Lazarus Victoria Oaks Final on April 27. "That'd be awesome - I'd be rapt," he said. "If we ran fourth, you'd probably see me jumping around a bit. "If you had have asked me a month ago if she would be even in the heat, I'd have said no. So she's actually surpassed what we expected from her, that's for sure." Wellsaidlucy has drawn barrier six in her heat and will face tough opposition from the likes of Emma Stewart-trained Kualoa, Adam Kelly's Arabella Star and Gary Hoban's Tangoingwithsierra. Craven said his horse would need to improve once again to be competitive in what looks a "very solid" heat. "So far she has been winning well when getting the ideal trip in slow times, so this week is a whole new ball game and unknown," Craven said. "If she can make it into the final we would be rapt." Two other qualifiers will be run on Saturday night, with Barry Purdon-trained Belle Of Montana a red-hot favourite in heat one and Kylie Rasmussen's Smart As Camm Be well fancied in heat two.   Tim O'Connor for HRV Trots Media

A ticket to the big dance won't come easy for the fine crop of fillies who will step out in Saturday night's third Lazarus Victoria Oaks heat. The random draw has coupled Victorian two-year-old filly of the year Kualoa with fancied Arabella Star and Tangoingwithsierra, who drew gates one and two respectively and opened $4.40 with Lob in a multitude of pacers with winning form lines, in particular Soho Nolita, Mach Jodenkrist, Wellsaidlucy and Rise Above This, and a top four finish will be a mighty achievement in itself. That prospect is front of mind for reinsman Greg Sugars, who will steer trainer Jess Tubbs' three-year-old Betamerica from gate five in the 8.30pm feature. "I'm very happy with her," Sugars told RSN 927's Gait Speed today. "She showed as a two-year-old she wasn't too far off the best of her age group. "She's progressed nicely through this preparation. We decided to leave her home from Sydney (NSW Oaks), just didn't think she was quite ready to compete in a race like that. "This was always in the background, we wanted to try and have her the best we can for the Vic Oaks and we are very happy with her leading into it." But Sugars admitted the task at hand was a tough one given the strength of the heat. "She's going to have to be on top of her game just to even qualify because it's a pretty tough heat she's drawn," he said. "The (barrier) draw is probably not a great help either, but I think she's ready to stand up and be counted against these ones for sure."   HRV Trots Media

Shez All Rock enhanced an already brilliant harness racing record with a dazzling win in tonight’s $150,000 Group 1 Always B Miki Victoria Oaks Final at Tabcorp Park Melton. The long odds-on favourite had the plum gate three draw for trainer-driver Mark Pitt, but had to earn the lead early when Kerryn Manning’s Our Bare Knuckle held out a challenge from Kima Frenning aboard Frankincense, both drawn underneath Shez All Rock. Pitt remained cool and took up the lead at the first opportunity, Shez All Rock pinching a break approaching the home bend before holding off a late challenge by an incredibly valiant Speak No Evil to score by a neck in a race record 1:55.1. Speak No Evil and Nathan Jack almost caused a boil-over from barrier 13, while Soho Burning Love was exploding home late for Mick Stanley in third place, ahead of Nostra Villa in fourth. Shez All Rock is by Rock N Roll Heaven out of Mach Three mare Just Irish Loch. She has won seven of her eight career starts to date and by winning tonight became the first filly since Bob and Vin Knight's Jane Ellen back in 1989 to claim the NSW / Victorian Oaks double. Video: Re-live Shez All Rock's incredible Oaks win Trots Media - Cody Winnell

Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin completed the Victorian three-year-old harness racing classic double last night at Tabcorp Park Melton with Miss Graceland powering home in the Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks Final. Having won the Victoria Derby in February with Our Little General, the Smythes Creek power partnership’s stake winnings for the season surpassed the million-dollar mark courtesy of last night’s success with their star filly. It is the sixth season in a row – and seventh time overall – Stewart has hit seven figures in stakes. Miss Graceland, the headline act among a Stewart winning treble last night, is by Rocknroll Hanover out of Amarillen. She cleared out for a 10.5-metre win over race favourite Petacular, with Sheza Sharpie 18m behind the winner in third place. “The filly really deserved to get a good win and we’re rapt,” Tonkin said. “She’s on the way up. She had a couple of easy kills in the country and then last week she put the score on the board and this week she’s really come on.” From barrier seven, driver Chris Alford steered Miss Graceland into the running line back in the field early and was soon trailing Petacular. With about a mile to run Alford made his move three-wide, Petacular’s Michael Stanley tagging the second-favourite to move into the action. Petacular got to the breeze for the last lap, with Miss Graceland again trailing the race favourite one-one. At the home bend Stanley and Petacular had put the leaders away and raced to the front. Shezallapples was the first horse beaten after going too hard early. Miss Graceland got to the outside and the race became almost a carbon copy of the heat a week prior but with one fairly important difference: The placings were reversed. This time Miss Graceland got the better of a typically gutsy Petacular, careering clear over the concluding stages. RE-LIVE MISS GRACELAND'S NEVELE R STUD VICTORIA OAKS TRIUMPH “The Vicbred is about six weeks away. She’ll have a quiet week then she’ll tick along going towards that,” Tonkin said when asked about plans for Miss Graceland. Stewart is now on 98 winners for the season from 280 starts. Miss Graceland's owner, Akram Younan, dedicated the win to his filly's breeders, Tasmanian stalwarts the late Rick Hinds and his wife, Naomi. “Rick passed away and this win was in honour of him and his wife, Naomi,” Younan said. Younan, who also races thoroughbreds, said he was “proud” of Miss Graceland and very thankful for the training performance of the Stewart camp and Alford’s drive. OAKS FINISHING ORDER 1st - Miss Graceland: Brilliant drive and was strong at the line. She's on the up. 2nd - Petacular: Typically brave. She's destined to draw a good barrier in a G1 soon! 3rd - Sheza Sharpie: Almost last at the furlong, went widest & charged late. Nice run! 4th - Flying Moth: Ripper filly. Very consistent & was another big run here. 5th - Angel In White: Was right in the race for 3rd at any old odds. Finished off well enough. 6th - Keyang Secret: Had to burn early & lost momentum before turn behind tiring leader. Good run. 7th - Sanna Cruza: Hit line hard and ran into some dead ends. Forgive. 8th - Our Lady Madonna: Came from last. She'll improve. 9th - Beach Garden: Didn't hit the line as hard as some thought she would.  10th - Shezallapples: Used up petrol early. Powering along in front didn't seem her go.  11th - Nomi Malone: Probably just a bit outclassed against some of these.   12th - Anybeach Anywhere: Pulled hard in the run, which didn't help.   Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

Lucky Petacular is very, very good.  Yet another horror feature draw means she’s going to have to be better than her rivals – quite a bit better – to win the $150,000 Group 1 Victoria Oaks (2240m) at Melton on Friday night. The Mick Stanley-trained star will start from outside he back row (gate 12), while major rivals Shezallapples (gate two), Keayang Secret (five) and Miss Graceland (seven) have the front row.  It continues her run of awful draws in major races. Petacular has never driven inside gate seven in a Group 1 race, including gate 12 and gate 14 when placed in both the Breeders Crown 2YO and NSW Oaks finals respectively.    “It’s not idea, but we’re sort of used to it now,” Stanley said. “Luckily she’s tough and versatile and has run some big races from bad draws in the past.”  Providing Petacular comes through Friday night's race well, Stanley looks set to take her across the Tasman for the NZ Oaks and Harness Jewels.  The other Group 1 at Melton on Friday is the Australasian Trotting Championship where classy Kiwi mare Sunny Ruby and classy NSW trotter On Thunder Road look the key runners despite being co-backmarkers from 20m handicaps.  The Melton card also features three qualifying heats for the rich Australian Gold 2YO series for colts and geldings when Fly Like An Eagle’s baby brother, Higherthananeagle, is the most interesting runner.  The David Aiken-trained youngster made a costly early gallop when second on debut, then bolted in at his only run since in quick time.  “He’s pretty smart. We’ve got a good opinion of him. He’s got plenty of speed,” Aiken said. Adam Hamilton

Suddenly the Victoria Oaks has a serious heartbeat. Going into Friday night’s heats, most had already conceded next Friday’s Group 1 final to big hulking filly Petacular. The Aussie TAB had her $1.55 to win the final. Mick Stanley’s star filly is still the one to beat, but the likes of Miss Graceland and Shezallapples showed enough in the heats to say they can win if the draws and luck go their way. Petacular won her heat in a 1min56.3sec mile rate for 2240m and went substantially quicker than NSW filly Shezallapples (1min57.7sec) in the other heat. But Shezallapples looked to do it easily and Miss Graceland’s effort for second to Petacular was the best of her career so far. Miss Graceland looms as the biggest threat. Co-trainer Clayton Tonkin thought there was very little between Miss Graceland and Petacular heading into the NSW Oaks, but Petacular easily beat her home in both a heat and the final. Since then, Miss Graceland has returned home, easily won two ho-hum races and then really pushed Petacular when a fantastic second in the Oaks heat last Friday night. On the home turn, just for a few strides, it looked like Miss Graceland was going to beat Petacular. In the end, she finished 2.3m away, but ran a bottler. The facts say just how it goes between the pair with Petacular winning all six clashes between the pair so far, but Miss Graceland’s driver Chris Alford is not so sure. “I don’t think there is a lot between them, although I know their records don’t show that,” he said. “Petacular was too good for her in NSW, but Miss Graceland wasn’t at her best up there. “She felt really good winning those two easier races when she came home then, tonight, I thought she went really, really well. “Pectacular had the easier run and Miss Graceland still really made a race of it with her. “I’m certainly not conceding the final. If he draw better, I think we can make a real race of it.” Against that, Stanley made it clear before the heat that Pecatular had room to improve for the final. Shezallapples also looks to have improved since the NSW Oaks when she ran a luckless sixth in a heat behind Petacular then fourth in the final behind Partyon and Petacular. The David Thorn-trained daughter of Sportswriter worked to the front and won as she liked by five metres in her Victoria Oaks heat from Sanna Cruza, who led then trailed, and Keayang Secret. Adam Hamilton

Petacular and Shezallapples won their Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks heats at Tabcorp Park Melton last night. Touted as the best harness racing filly of her age in Victoria, Petacular notched her 12th win at start No.17 in a mile rate of 1:56.3 to take out her heat and will start a short-priced favourite in next Friday night’s $150,000 Group 1 Final at Melton. Tonight's heats showed it will be no procession, however, for the Burrumbeet filly from Michael Stanley’s stable. Sydneysider Shezallapples looked strong winning the second heat, albeit in a slower time of 1:57.7. Trained by David Thorn, Shezallapples (Sportswriter), like Petacular (Somebeachsomewhere), was a Group 1 winner at two via the Breeders Challenge Final at Menangle. Driven by Jim Douglass, Shezallapples controlled the Oaks heat once in front. She had 5m to spare over Sanna Cruza in the finish, the latter handing up the lead to the winner early, while Keayang Secret finished third for Jason Lee. Emma Stewart-trained Miss Graceland finished second to Petacular last night, beaten 2.3m, but driver Chris Alford was pleased with the run and tweeted post-race his filly could potentially turn the tables on the favourite in the big dance. “I thought Miss Graceland went super, hopefully draw better next week and reverse result,” he wrote. If Miss Graceland does defeat Petacular it will be the first time she’s ever been able to do it, the head-to-head record between the pair reading six-zip in favour of Petacular for now. Flying Moth, Beach Garden and Our Lady Madonna rounded out the top six in heat two, while Anybeach Anywhere, Sheza Sharpie, Nomi Malone and Angel In White finished third to sixth in the first heat. Cody Winnell (HRV Media/Communications Manager)

It is no secret star Aussie filly Petacular is a prime target with Kiwi officials for the Harness Jewels. The way she pushed unbeaten Kiwi filly Partyon to the limit in the NSW Oaks, underlined Petacular’s immense potential. The thought of rematch in the NZ Oaks and/or Harness Jewels is mouth-watering. So the Harness Jewels invite looks a “lock” if Petacular comes through her Victoria Oaks campaign well. It starts when the Mick Stanley-trained filly steps out in the first and strongest of the two Victoria Oaks heats at Melton tomorrow (Friday) night. Petacular is a $1.30 favourite on the Aussie TAB despite the fact she’s drawn the back row (gate nine) and facing the second-best filly in the series, Miss Graceland (gate eight). “She’s come on really well since winning at Melton a couple of weeks back,” Stanley said. “I couldn’t be happier with how she’s come back from Sydney.” In regards the Jewels, Stanley said it’s right on the radar, but nothing will be locked away until after next week’s Victoria Oaks final. “This is one of her big goals of the season, our home state Oaks,” he said. “Once we’re through this and if she’s well, then the NZ Oaks and Jewels are on the agenda. I’d say she’s more likely to go than not. “She’s the right sort of filly for it. She’s had two trips to Sydney now and come through them well. She seems to take the travel in her stride.” Petacular’s task in the Victoria Oaks has been much easier by the fact no Kiwis have made the trip across to tackle the series. The major players in the second heat are NSW visitor Shezallapples, who ran fourth in the NSW Oaks, and talented Victorian filly Keayang Secret, who ran second to Petacular in the 3YO Classic at Melton on March 17.   Adam Hamilton

Classy harness racing mare Barynya now calls Queensland home. The proven Group One winning mare has raced at the highest level in Tasmania, Victoria and more recently in New South Wales where she had little or no luck. Her future looked destined for North America with connections fielding several offers in recent times but ultimately no deal was struck or finalised. So, owners Lloyd and Judith Whish-Wilson decided to send her further north where she has joined the stables of in-form trainer Jack Butler. The Blissfull Hall mare makes her Brisbane debut this Saturday night in the Listed $25,000 Flashing Red, a race named in honour of the dual New Zealand Cup champion. And while Butler is optimistic, he’s convinced she’ll perform well against the boys. “There’s no doubt she is a classy type, her record proves that and she’s always competed at a very high level throughout her career. I know she’s the only mare in this field but I think this is a good start point for her, she’ll improve on whatever she does this weekend.” Butler said. A winner of the 2014 Victoria Oaks, Barynya is yet to race under standing start conditions and takes on proven Grand Circuit performers like Ideal Scott, Mach Alert and Majestic Mach among others. Barynya will start from a 10m handicap. “The stand is a little unknown but she qualified safely back in Tasmania and I have spoken with her original trainer Dick Eaves and he gave me a good report about her qualifying trial. Having the class she has, she’s got brains and she’s sensible so I’m confident she’ll handle it. “She’s only been here for about two weeks and I haven’t given her a trial but she’s been racing so her fitness levels are pretty solid. I just thought this race would be a better option because it should be a steady tempo early rather than a flat-out mile race where they never back off. “There are some nice options coming up for her during the winter carnival including some mare’s only type races. I think the plan is to race till the end of the season before heading off to stud but her form will ultimately decide which path they go down.” Another classy mare in the care of Butler is Shes A Runa, a winner of the Gr.1 2014 New South Wales Oaks at Menangle. And the Jeremes Jet mare looks extremely well placed in the Burwood Stud Mares Pace over the 2138m distance despite having a second-line draw. “We discovered a little issue following her first start for me last month and I’m confident she’s ready to go this weekend, the first-up run was really good and her recent work has been really pleasing. I think she will do a very good job up here over the coming months.” Chris Barsby Fields for Albion Park, Saturday 14 May 2016 Form guide for Albion Park, Saturday 14 May 2016

Melton harness racing debutante driver Tim Williams gave A Piccadilly Princess a brisk breather and then revved her up for a scintillating win in the Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks at Tabcorp Park Melton. The dip from the breeze to the box seat was described as “the winning move” by the connections of another Mark Purdon-trained Group 1 triumph, having overrun Emma Stewart’s super three-year-old filly Heavens Trend in the straight.  “It was a great performance,” Williams, 26, said of A Piccadilly Princess, who recorded a fifth straight victory and a seventh in 13 starts. “I’m privileged to be able to sit behind these horses with these colours on. I can’t thank Mark enough.” The filly by Bettor's Delight out of Hyde Park Royal had to earn the win. Flojos Gold flew out of the gates and was then crossed by Gavin Lang on Heavens Trend when they reached the back straight. As that was happening up front, down back Dancingwithsierra led A Piccadilly Princess three-wide, with the latter settling in the breeze outside Heavens Trend. “We got a good cart into it and that made a difference,” Williams said. There they remained through a 59.7 first half-mile before Lang stretched out on Heavens Trend in a 27.2 third quarter, with A Piccadilly Princess losing touch approaching the final bend and Williams dropping her on to the tail of the leader. “I thought I was in a wee bit of trouble,” Williams said. “It was a timely breather.” Having given more than a length, A Piccadilly Princess found new life down the straight, with the filly putting her nose in front at the 100m and advancing to win by 2.2m from Heavens Trend. Stewart’s other hope, Celebrity Guest, put in an enormous last 200m to draw from the pegs to the outside and storm home into third, relegating a resilient Dancingwithsierra to a close fourth. With some having flown in from Hong Kong for the race, a proud group of owners, including Simon Bradley, Michael Ward and Thomas Patterson, were on hand to accept the coveted Oaks. Patterson said Williams decision to provide their filly brief cover at the top of the straight may have made all the difference. “Coming around the bend we were a little concerned, but Tim was obviously confident he still had a little in her,” Patterson said. “He ducked in and I thought that the other one, Heavens Trend, had got away from us. But Mark and Nat and the team believe in what they have and Tim didn’t panic and it worked out and was probably the winning move.” Patterson said A Piccadilly Princess would return to Purdon’s New Zealand stable for a likely tilt at the New Zealand Oaks and a potential collision with stunning stablemate Our Dream About Me, who won the New South Wales Oaks. Cody Winnell    

Harness racing trainer Lance Justice has high hopes for filly Hu Hu R U despite bookmakers offering huge odds in early fixed price markets for Saturday night’s Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks Final. opened the Melton-trained filly $41 to win the $150,000 Group 1 three-year-old fillies’ classic despite the daughter of Jereme's Jet breaking 55 seconds and recording the fastest last half-mile behind Mark Purdon’s highly acclaimed A Piccadilly Princess in Oaks heat three last Friday night. Hu Hu R U has been ultra-impressive since arriving in Australia, the former Kiwi pacer's overall record an impressive 11 starts for seven wins and three minor placings. In last Friday night's heat, Hu Hu R U was taken off the arm from gate seven before storming home to run second, her last half recorded at 54.89secs and her last quarter at 27.45secs. “She’s got a really good turn of foot as you saw last week. She actually ran one of the quickest last halves of the night … she’s very, very quick,” Justice told RSN’s Gait Speed this morning. “She’s a very good horse. If she takes the next step she could potentially be the best,” he added. Hu Hu R U has drawn barrier 10 for the Oaks Final, giving Justice plenty to think about. Does he sit back and allow Hu Hu R U to close hard at the end, or will the one-one be up for grabs if he makes an early move? The one thing that is clear is Justice says the filly has pulled up a treat from her super first-up hit-out. “She’s pulled up really well and should improve a little bit more for Saturday night," he said. “Brian Gath  to his credit did a great job looking after her last week. He didn’t over-punish her.  Basically he chased her just on her own urgings.” The early money for the Oaks Final has been for Emma Stewart-trained Heavens Trend, who drew gate three. She opened $2.20 with and is into a $1.80 favourite, while opening favourite A Piccadilly Princess has eased from $1.80 out to $2.20. Both impressively won their heats. That pair stifles the betting with $11 chances Im Wrongly Accused from the Matthew Craven stable, also a heat winner, and Gary Hoban-trained Dancingwithsierra, who ran second in her heat behind Heavens Trend, on the next line. The Oaks is Race 7 (9.02pm) on Saturday night's 10-event program at Tabcorp Park Melton and carries a $20,000 First 4 jackpot with Cody Winnell 

Gippsland pacing fillies Magical Delight and Courageous Call will compete in the $150,000 Harness Racing Victoria Oaks at Melton this Saturday night. The Gary Quinlan-trained pair qualified for the event after excellent performances in their heats last week. Raced by large syndicates of local trots followers, Magical Delight and Courageous Call will both start at good odds in Saturday night's race, which has drawn together an outstanding field of young horses. No doubt connections are thrilled just to be represented in such a prestigious event, regardless of the result. At the Yarra Valley meeting on Monday, Gippsland was well represented throughout the day. Gary Quinlan scored another winner, with Professor Tom scoring for owner, Warragul Harness Racing Club stalwart Grant Rathjen. Trafalgar horseman Chris Hunter produced the quinella in the trotters' race. Lazy Sunday won after an eye-catching run at Warragul on Cup day, narrowly defeating stablemate Slancio. Hunter's son Glenn drove the winner, and both horses will compete against each other again this Saturday night in the Victorian Square Trotters Association Cup Final at Melton, where Glenn will have the pick of the drives. Local horseman Matt Cormick produced Mor Laag to win the feature event on the program at odds of over $51. Cormick trains his horse at Carrum Downs but his family have been involved in trotting locally for many years. Mor Laag has a habit of winning at big odds on occasion, although his last victory at Warragul in January was less of a shock for punters, as he started an $8 chance. Meanwhile the trots return to Warragul this Monday, ahead of a further meeting on May 2. Heats of the Ken Miller Memorial event will be staged. Local trainers will be strongly represented in Monday's heats, all keen to qualify their horses for the final of the race run in honour of a great local trotting supporter. Monday's meeting kicks off just after Noon. Kyle Galley

The plans of a three-year-old filly from Terang to tip out one of Australasia’s finest were given a boost when she drew gate two for Saturday night's $150,000 Nevele R  Victoria Oaks final.Matthew Craven’s pacer Im Wrongly Accused entered the Nevele R Stud Victoria Oaks conversation with a dash down the sprint lane at Tabcorp Park Melton in Friday night’s heats, which secured the three-year-old a place in harness racing's Nevele R  Group 1 Oaks The performance has Im Wrongly Accused shaping as a threat to Mark Purdon’s all-conquering New Zealand All Stars stable, which already has the Victoria Derby in its keeping and is looking to add the Oaks via short-priced favourite A Piccadilly Princess. Purdon’s filly won the third and final heat, following on from Heavens Trend – out of Emma Stewart’s Smythes Creek stable – who won an enthralling duel with Dancingwithsierra in the first heat, while the second heat was snaffled by Im Wrongly Accused. RELIVE ALL THE RESULTS AND RACE REPLAYS The draw did few favours for Purdon, whose filly was slated for barrier 13. Heavens Trend drew barrier three and Gary Hoban's fancied runner Dancingwithsierra barrier 12. It all bodes for a ripping race on Saturday night, when Craven's pacer will hope to emulate last week's heat, when she got the perfect sit behind favourite Celebrity Guest - who has drawn barrier one - and surprised even her own trainer-driver with how sharply she finished off. “She has improved, but is still a little bit from being fit,” Craven said. “The scratching (All In Your Hands) helped and we were able to just put her out behind the favourite.” Driver Gavin Lang drove Celebrity Guest to a 47.7 lead time, 2.3 seconds slower than the other two heats, and eased through comfortable first (31.9s) and second (30.3) quarters before they started to stretch out to get home in 55 seconds. Once the sprint lane opened Craven eased off Celebrity Guest’s back and Im Wrongly Accused did the rest. “She probably finished off better than I thought she might have been able to. I was really pleased with the run,” he said. “She had a good run and got the chance to use her really nice speed. They went slow early and it was just ideal for her.” Craven said Im Wrongly Accused would have to continue her upward trend if she was to be in the finish. “She’s had to take a step up in the heats and will have to take a step up again for the final,” he said. Michael Howard  

A Piccadilly Princess took her chance in Friday's  harness racing Oaks heat at Tabcorp Park Melton and the result, an advance token to next Saturday night’s Nevele R Stud  Victoria Oaks Final. Mark Purdon’s Bettors Delight out of Hyde Park Royal filly was the fastest of the three heat winners, and her rivals might need a get out of jail free card, maybe in the shape of a poor barrier draw for the All Stars pacer, if they’re to upstage her in the big game. But despite the effortless nature of her heat win A Piccadilly Princess doesn’t have a monopoly on the final with Locals Heavens Trend and Dancingwithsierra, who ran one-two in their Oaks heat, to be major players, while Matthew Craven’s improving filly Im Wrongly Accused looms as a potential dark horse after her heat win. A Piccadilly Princess didn’t quite do it from start to finish on Friday night, crossed early by Flojos Gold before moving to the lead at the 1800m, but once in front she was unstoppable – her last 1200m divvied up by 29.5, 27.4 and 27.8 splits. Her winning time of 2:41.9 was the fastest of the three Oaks heats by .7 of a second, but the ease with which she got the job done – and her impressive Northern Oaks win recently in New Zealand – will have many punters pinning their hopes on the Purdon filly in next weekend’s $150,000 Group 1 final. Smythes Creek filly Heavens Trend won her Oaks heat in a gross time of 2:42.6 and a mile rate of 1:56.8. The Emma Stewart-trained daughter of Rock n Roll Heaven out of Trendsetter defeated another highly rated pacer in Dancingwithsierra in Friday night’s heats. Heavens Trend rolled past Dancingwithsierra early and the pair drew away in the straight with Dancingwithsierra making a late dive but Heavens Trend holding on by a half-neck. Both look live chances in the final. WATCH THE OAKS HEAT REPLAYS AND CHECK OUT THE RESULTS IN FULL DETAIL Im Wrongly Accused (Bettor's Delight out of Gross Misconduct) was the other heat winner, her winning time the slowest of the three qualifiers – 2:44.9 gross and 1:58.5 mile rate – but she sprinted sharply along the sprint lane and looked professional to topple Celebrity Guest. This heat actually produced the fastest final 800m (55secs) and trainer/driver Craven will be pleased with how his filly is progressing since joining his stable from New Zealand. Cody Winnell

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