The New Zealand Herald
Butt hoping Copy That will duplicate his last brave win
Champion reinsman Anthony Butt has been involved in enough huge races to know the difference between hope and reality.
So while he hopes Auckland pacer Copy That can win the last mega race of the winter at Albion Park in Brisbane tomorrow Night, Butt knows realistically he will need something unusual to unfold for that to actually happen.
Butt will partner both Copy That in the A$250,000 Blacks A Fake and his stablemate American Dealer in the A$100,000 Queensland Derby to cap a great carnival and an interesting week on a more personal working level.
Butt parted ways with his biggest and almost sole owner Emilio Rosati this week, with the Sydney-based owner, one of the biggest in Australia, set to disperse his horses to other trainers, something he has done several times before in his time in the industry.
“There are no hard feelings, we have had a great two years and we are parting on good terms,” says Butt, the ex-pat Kiwi making a name for himself as a trainer while still enjoying a Hall of Fame career as a driver.
“Training on our own account opens up the doors for us to have new owners and we would love to get some New Zealand horses across and give them their best chance to make money.”
Making money has been what Butt and Auckland trainer Ray Green have been doing this Queensland campaign, with Copy That and American Dealer both winning two races, including Copy That’s brave victory in last Saturday’s A$100,000 Sunshine Sprint.
“I think he has really matured into a top horse,” says Butt.
“A lot of horses come on to the Grad Circuit and take a while to get used to it and toughen up but he has taken that next step.
“He is a complete racehorse now, not over-racing like he used to and pacing smoother. I think he is top class.”
As good as Copy That (barrier five) has become his problem tomorrow night is King Of Swing drawing the ace over the 2680m from where he looks certain to lead and control the race, with his driver Luke McCarthy likely to turn it into a mile dash by going as slow as he can the first lap.
“That looks the problem because while our horse is flying I can see King Of Swing leading and his stablemate Expensive Ego sitting parked and there being no pressure,” admits Butt.
“If that happens maybe we can’t beat him but I am going in as confident as I can be in the horse, it is just those draws that bother me.”
American Dealer looks to have got the best of the draws at barrier two in the Derby and the little pacer has held his form incredibly well after a very long season judging by his wins the last two Saturdays.
“He is flying too and won with a leg in the air last week. He can definitely win again and if he can cross to the lead, which I am not sure about, then he will be very hard to beat.
“But if he can’t then things get trickier because Krug is drawn on his back and if he is following us everywhere he will be very hard to hold out.”
The two Kiwi three-year-olds look set to dominate the Derby as they will be vastly better suited by the step up to 2680m than their Australian rivals trying it for the first time.
The domestic harness racing meeting tonight is at Addington.