ENJOYING TASTE OF GROUP ONE GLORY
THACKERAYS AND DISTRICT BREEDERS REJOICE AS SMART TROTTERS ADD GROUP ONE GLORY TO RESUMES
There were strong local links with the winners of the Group One finals in the TAB Australasian Premier Trotting Sale for thee-year-old trotters on Saturday night at Kilmore.
Aldebaran Lodge’s Danny and Melinda Thackeray cheered home Aldebaran Zeus in the colts and geldings final, while Dean and Blanche Poole bred Banglez, the winner of the fillies final.
The Thackerays are part-owners of the Aldebaran Park-bred son of Muscle Hill who claimed the $50,000 feature by a head from Whos The Man with Bullion Harry a close-up third.
The well-fancied John Nissen-trained Locksley Lover lost no admirers running fourth in the race without much luck.
Aldebaran Zeus, trained by Brent Lilley and driven by Chris Alford, displayed blistering gate speed to take up the front running in the 2180m race from barrier five and just held out Whos The Man and Bullion Harry in a three-horse battle to the wire.
It was Aldebaran Zeus’ third win in his past four starts and took his record to six wins and seven placings from 16 starts and his prizemoney to nearly $76,000.
The exciting Banglez, bred by the Pooles at their Rihanna Park Congupna standardbred property, put up the run of the meeting to win the fillies final.
The daughter of Majestic Son bungled the start badly and gave her rivals 50m start.
But she was still able to get up and beat the second favourite Aldebaran Ursula, another of the Aldebaran Park-bred trotters.
Trained by Emma Stewart and driven by Greg Sugars, Banglez has had 10 outings for three wins and three minor placings.
Two of her wins have been in Group One races — she also won the Vicbred final as a two-year-old — and the reason why she has already accumulated more than $95,000 in prizemoney.
Seizing their chance
It was a good night for district breeders owners, drivers and trainers at Kilmore with Murchison mentor Shaun Kittel and Euroa’s Cameron Maggs producing winners.
Kittel continues to rack up the winners with the talented The Last Chance getting the job done at Kilmore.
Reinsman Michael Bellman took the six-year-old son of Mr Feelgood to the front early before handing up the lead with 1400m to run.
He then finished hard along the sprint lane to account for the outsider and pacemaker Belladonna Girl and the favourite Sanday.
The Last Chance has now won three of his past eight starts with two minor placings.
He has now saluted nine times from 45 starts with six of these wins coming since he joined the Kittel stable.
Trainer-driver Maggs broke a drought of 30 starts out of the winner’s circle with Ideal Suspect, who prevailed in a crowded finish in which a head separated the first three placegetters and only 6.5m the entire field of seven pacers.
A six-year-old gelding by American Ideal, Ideal Suspect had his last win at Bendigo in July last year, but has more than paid his way with his 84 starts producing 12 wins and 20 placings and more than $85,000 in prizemoney.
Tweet home about it
Bunbartha horseman John Newberry had a good time last week producing winners at Cobram and Bendigo.
The Newberry-trained and driven Tweet About It won at Cobram and Village Encounter saluted the following night at Bendigo.
Tweet About It proved too good for her rivals.
After facing the breeze early Newberry took Tweet About It to the front a lap out and she pulled well clear in the concluding stages to account for the consistent Hayjoshandco with the favourite Awesome Ollie filling the minor placing.
Tweet About It had been knocking loudly on the door for a win after consecutive close-up third placings at her past two outings at Shepparton and Bendigo.
A five-year-old mare by Always A Virgin, Tweet About It has now had 49 starts for six wins and 11 minor placings for prizemoney of $44,410.
The Dave Farrar-trained Hayjoshandco reached a monetary milestone in the race with his second placing taking his prizemoney to more than $100,000.
Village Encounter displayed blistering gate speed to lead her rivals a merry dance at Bendigo to hoist her 12th win from 111 starts.
Newberry was able to dictate the terms on the seven-year-old Village Jolt mare, who was able to hold off Calvert Hot Shot in the drive to the finishing line.
Bred and raced by the Newberrys, Village Encounter is out of the unraced Village Jasper mare Shez Madam Jasper who has left six winners including Niquero (11 wins) and On Fire Within (12 wins), who were also raced by the Newberrys.
Jack lands one, two
The Russell Jack juggernaut extended to last week’s Cobram meeting with a training double.
Jack produced Captain Dan and One Two Many to win successive races on the nine-event card.
Both were driven by David Moran.
Captain Dan claimed his second win as a three-year-old in a photofinish.
Two of his three wins from seven starts have been at Cobram, which was the scene of his first win as a two-year-old when he won on debut.
The three-year-old son of Captaintreacherous was driven a confident race by Moran, who got him into a one-one sit early from a second row draw and then to outside the leader for the last 1000m.
He had to dig deep to fend off a wall of challengers in the home straight, but was equal to the task defeating Night School and Priddy Sublime in a blanket finish with less than 4m separating the first four placegetters.
In winning over the 2170m trip Captain Dan posted a slick PB of 1:56.5.
One Two Many completed a hattrick of wins with his commanding victory.
Moran took up an early lead before handing up momentarily to Smooth Deal and then resumed the front running position and pulling away at the finish to beat Roll Along Styx and Mister Jimaringle with a scorching 54.3 last half.
Moran had a good week in the sulky, also partnering the Emma Stewart-trained Yianni to a metropolitan class win at Kilmore on Saturday night.
Legs 11 for Lagom
Echuca-trained pacer Lagom doesn’t win out of turn, but validated her status as favourite with a tough win at Cobram.
The eight-year-old Gotta Go Collect mare was caught outside the leader early, but got cover over the final lap and out-toughed Beau Bronski and Pinnacle Hope in the run to the judge.
Lagom had saluted on her home track five starts previously on June 30, but a second at her previous start, also on the Frank Ryan Raceway, on August 3 was enough for punters to send her out favourite.
The Mick McMahon-trained and James Herbertson-driven mare was having her 131st start which have now produced 11 wins and 30 minor placings and just on $70,000 in prizemoney.
Sweet as mate
Promising young trotter Sweet On You has won two races within a week, beating his older rivals on both occasions.
The three-year-old made a triumphant return to racing with a strong win over older rivals at Cobram and then buttered up on Wednesday night at Bendigo to salute again when giving away age and experience.
At Cobram the three-year-old Love You chestnut gelding, driven by Josh Aiken, worked to the front 1400m from the judge and comfortably held off his only serious challenger and the second favourite What will bee will bee with Bad As Now a distant third in slick 2:02.7 mile rate time for the 2170m trip from the standing start.
At Bendigo Sweet On You and Full Noise had a two-horse duel over the concluding stages, but the Patrick Ryan-trained trotter was too good again.
These wins were Sweet On You’s first outings since April 3, but he had already displayed his ability with two wins from five starts earlier this year.
He has now had 14 outings for five wins and a second placing and looks a trotter with a bright future.
Joy at Bendigo
District trainers had a good night at Bendigo with Shepparton’s Clive Dalton and Avenel’s Wayne Potter producing winners.
Dalton produced smart trotting mare Imperial Countess for her third win.
The five-year-old daughter of Imperial Count out of the unraced Bacardi Lindy mare Bacardi Jade was able to wear down the pacemaker, the Donna Castles-trained and driven Dances, in a two-horse duel over the concluding stages.
It was popular win with punters who supported the Chris Alford-driven Imperial Countess to an odds-on favourite.
Potter produced the consistent Roll On Styx for a career-best win time-wise.
The Rocknroll Hanover six-yearold, driven by concession reinsman Jordan Leedham, took control early and was an all-the-way winner over the 1650m trip in a PB mile rate of 1:55.2.
Considering he had run second at his previous two starts he was surprisingly ignored by most punters and paid $9 for the win.
The win was also satisfying for his trainer who owns the pacer, who is building a solid resume with six wins and 18 placings from 40 starts for prizemoney of nearly $43,000.
Set for a classic race
Promising Shepparton-trained pacer Patsbeachstorm will come from a poleline draw in tomorrow night’s Group Three $40,000 Victoria Sires Classic for three-yearolds at Bendigo.
The David Moran-trained and driven NSW Derby winner has had a freshen up and meets a strong field which includes the Russell Jack-trained pair Spring In His Step and One Two Many and the Laura Crossland-trained and driven Dessie Dee, who is shooting for a hattrick of wins.
Crossland also has Cool Rocking Daddy engaged in another feature at the meeting, the $30,000 Alabar Vicbred Championship final.
Other locals, the Shaun Kittel-trained The Last Chance and the Donna Castles-prepared and driven Sofala, are also contesting this race.
In the other feature at Bendigo, the Something about maori Group Three Trotters Free- For-All, the David Aiken-trained Aldebaran Crescent will hold the hopes for a district win after a slashing second to Im Ready Jet in the Maoris Idol Free-For-All at Kilmore on Saturday.
Today: Kilmore (d), Ballarat (n).
Tomorrow: Bendigo (n).
Sunday: Cranbourne (t).
Monday: Hamilton (d).
Tuesday: Echuca (n).
Wednesday: Bendigo (n).
Thursday: Charlton (d), Ballarat (n).