Delightful Memphis runs 1:51.9 Southland record

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Class filly Delightful Memphis warmed up for the autumn classics with a brilliant track record 1:51.9 mile win at the Wairio Trotting Club’s meeting at Winton on Saturday, March 25.

The Overport Lodge-trained daughter of Bettor’s Delight and Memphis Melody became NZ’s second fastest 3YO pacing filly.

Delightful Memphis, NZ’s second fastest 3YO filly miler with a 1:51.9 win at Winton on Saturday.

Her time was only the second occasion 1:52 had been bettered by a filly, with The Orange Agent holding the NZ fillies mark at 1:51.1, set in the 2015 Harness Jewels Diamond at Ashburton.

However, Delightful Memphis shattered the Southland fillies mark of 1:53.9, set by the Murray Brown-trained Erin Jaccka at Winton in March 2016, and the Southland allcomers mark of 1:53.3, previously held by Overport Lodge stablemate, Rocker Band, also set at Winton as a 4YO mare in December 2015.

(Rocker Band, incidentially, has joined the Craig Demmler and Jodi Quinlan team in Melbourne, for further mares racing in Victoria).

Delightful Memphis drew the outside barrier in the small seven-horse field for the Southland Standardbred Breeders Association Mobile Pace, but this proved a blessing in disguise.

Driver Blair Orange popped her in the one-one sit as main rivals, Seaswift Joy, worked hard over the opening quarter to lead, with Eamon Maguire left cutting the breeze in the open.

The speed was unrelenting with Gordon Lee in control with front-running Seaswift Joy until the closing 100 metres.

Blair and Delightful Memphis had the last say, slipsteaming home to win by three-quarters of a length from a gallant Seaswift Joy (race-timed in 1:52), with NZ Derby contender Eamon Maguire beaten but far from disgraced finishing a strong third three-quarters of a length back, being race-timed in 1:52.2.

The leaders ran their last 800m in 54.5s and closing 400m in 27.5s.

Delightful Memphis, winner of last year’s Group Three $25,000 Caduceus club Of Southland/Nevele R Stud Mobile Pace for 2YO fillies at Invercargill, was making her first foray in the deep south this term.

She will need another start in Southland to qualify for the $45,000 Southland Oaks at Invercargill on Sunday, April 30.

The Southland Oaks will be a good lead-in for Delightful Memphis for both the New Zealand Oaks and Nevele R Fillies Final at Addington in May.

Delightful Memphis, raced by Wayne Higgs, Simon Doull, Sir Loins Limited, Debra and Pete Smith, Kaysan Farming Limited, and B M and J H Holdings Ltd, took her earnings past $200,000 with Saturday’s win.

The well-performed filly has raced 17 times for five wins, 10 seconds, and a third, for $206,389 in stakes.


The Mark Jones stable advanced to 36 wins for the term when Aymar put a luckless run behind her in recent months with a deserved win in the R47-49 Premier Vets Mobile Pace at Motukarara on Sunday, March 26.

Also starting from the outside of the front row, driver Samantha Ottley used Aymar’s speed to cross the field before reaching the first turn.

Sam, gaining her 43rd driving win for the season, rated Aymar to a nicety over the mobile 2000m dash, relaxing her on the top end to steady the pace, then sprint home three-quarters of a length to the good of Buscemi (three back outer) and the trailing Bontz.

Aymar, raced by Geoff Deakins, held in 2:39.8 for the trip, quickening over her last 800m in 59.3s.

This was the second win in 25 starts for the daughter of Real Desire and Chloe Bromac (by Falcon Seelster an unraced Holmes Hanover half-sister to Awesome Armbro, 1:49.8).

She’s been consistent, picking up 10 minor placings, for $25,718 in earnings.