Uptown Lady leads way at Addington – Albion Park team of four

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ADDINGTON, THURSDAY, AUGUST 22 RACE 4 KOWHAI SUNDOWN (4, fr. 2600m stand) Sam Ottley -“He would need to trot all the way this week. The return to the stand could be a query. A place chance if he does things right,” said Mark. RACE 7 UPTOWN LADY (1, fr. 1980m mob) Sam Ottley & NAIYA FRANCO (3) Ricky May – “Uptown Lady should be that bit better from last week, still perhaps the half-run short after a hiccup. Drawn to likely trail and she should go well there. Naiya Franco was disappointing last week. She can do that from time …

Mares lead the way at Addington

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ADDINGTON, FRIDAY, AUGUST 16 RACE 1 KOWHAI SUNDOWN (3, FR, 1980m mob) Sam Ottley – A while since he’s raced. I thought we may as well be here for $10,000 than be going to the trials. May need it but looks like the right sort of race,” said Mark. RACE 3 UPTOWN LADY (6, fr, 2600m mob) Olivia Thornley, & NAIYA FRANCO (8) John Morrison – Uptown Lady has been racing pretty well. Forget the stand start miss last time. She looks a solid chance in that one. Naiya Franco is well graded, finds a good race and the 2600m …

High hopes for Willison – an after-Christmas prospect

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Mark Jones will take the easier road with smart Gore-winning three-year-old Willison (3g Bettor’s Delight – Classical Art) in the early stages of the season, and will let the horse tell him when he’s ready for something a bit tougher. An expensive buy out of the APG Sales in Sydney, the regally-bred pacer showed all the ability needed in his two-year-old campaign, but was lightly raced due to a simple lack of maturity. And Jones won’t be rushed into getting him to his very top until he’s ready for it, probably come Derby time next autumn. “He’ll have a couple …

Two Albion Park wins for stable – two for Hatton

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The Bus broke back into the winners circle and completed a big day for owner Grant Hatton in winning at Albion Park on Saturday night (Aug 10). Sent forward from gate three by driver Guy Chapple, The Bus made his way to the lead inside the opening 800m and was in control from that point, rating 1:56.0 (2138m) and home in 1:57.1 his final mile. https://www.harness.org.au/racing/fields/race-fields/?mc=AP100819 After a rocky run of form wince winning at Menangle in March, The Bus looks set to kick into gear in Queensland for the Mark Jones-Aaron Goadsby stable. Hatton bagged his second winner of …

Gore to Auckland for Team Jones

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Mark Jones has runners racing at both ends of the country, and somewhere in the middle this week in a continuation of a busy little time for the stable. The winter racing team are in great heart, winning numerous races over the last few weeks, and Mark has high hopes he can add another one or two to the list. ALEXANDRA PARK (FRIDAY, AUG 9) RACE 2 – MICHELLE (12, fr U5, 2700m stand) John Morrison – “She is not far away from winning one. Probably had to tinker a little with her on the foreign track but she has …

Naiya Franco adds another

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It had been a while since regally-bred mare Naiya Franco had won. But Mark had not lost the faith in the daughter of former star pacing mare Nearea Franco. Some 14 starts had passed since her January win at Oamaru without success, but often in fields of a good quality, particularly in mares events. “She had been racing well, and though we’d had good draws at times, they were in the better fields. Then you draw poorly in the lesser ones and on any day a poor draw is still a tough draw to beat,” said Jones. Stable driver Sam …

Mark assists first-term junior driver

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KORBYN NEWMAN SCORES WITH LONG-SHOT WINNER Burnham trainer Mark Jones was more than happy to assist junior driver Korbyn Newman with his third career win at Rangiora on Sunday, July 21. Mark, a former World Champion driver, has been instrumental in developing the careers of younger drivers, Samantha Ottley, Robbie Close, Sheree Tomlinson and Laura McKay, and trainer, Regan Todd. So he had no hesitation in putting Korbyn up for a third behind Lets Hustle in the juniors race at Addington last week, and behind 21-to-one long-shot winner, His Royal Harness, at Rangiora on Sunday. “He’s not working for me …

Win No. 30 & 31 for season

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STRONG FAMILY TIES WITH LATEST WINNERS The Overport Lodge stables of Mark Jones have racked up their 30th and 31st domestic victories for the season at Forbury and Addington on July 18 and 19. My Design, a Mach Three half-sister to the capable Twice The Delight (1:52.3, Aust; 11 wins & $67,832), and three-win trotter Bet Online, won at just her second start. The win was satisfying as her path had been hindered by several issues. Sam Ottley drove a perfect race with My Design, leading early from the seven draw, then trailing Absolut Russian. The pacemaker was headed turning …

Sam returns, Sheree moves on

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QUEENOFDANCE DOUBLE FOR SAM, SHEREE MOVES ON Big-winning reinswoman Samantha Ottley has celebrated a return this month to daily employment at Burnham for Mark Jones, with a winning double behind Queenofdance. Sam repeated her Rangiora win with Queenofdance on July 7, with another victory at Ashburton on Sunday. Between Rangiora and Ashburton, the in-form Queenofdance also ran third from a wide gate at Addington last Friday behind Warloch and Jonty James. She had to overcome a second row draw in the Farmlands Ashburton Social Club Mobile Pace on Sunday, improving with cover mid-race, launching four wide from the 400m. Queenofdance …

Southern race journalist dies

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DON WRIGHT DIES, AGED 75 Don Wright, who 18 years ago penned “Win Without Boasting”, the hard book story of legendary horseman Derek Jones (grand-father of Mark Jones), has died. He was 75. Mr Wright, a racing/sports journalist for 48 years, retired after suffering health issues four years ago. He had been in care at Riverton and died on Sunday. He served for 33 years at the Southland Times newspaper until the year 2000, including the last six as Chief of Sport and Racing. Mr Wright was understudy to the late Norman Pierce for many years, writing under the non …