Ex-Overport Lodge pacers shine in Aust.

J Scott The Inside Word


Ex-Overport Lodge pacers, Champagne Dreams, Northern Velocity and I Get Around, furthered their Australian careers with wins at various venues last weekend.

Champagne Dreams, the 5YO older half-sister to NZ Cup favourite Lazarus (1:52.9, 16 wins from 19 starts for $924,914), is now a stablemate of top Grand Circuit pacers, Lennytheshark and Hectorjayjay in the David Aiken stable.

Champagne Dreams, the half-sister to Lazarus (p2, 1:52.9), shown formerly with Overport Lodge trainer, Mark Jones.

Champagne Dreams, the half-sister to Lazarus (p2, 1:52.9), shown formerly with Overport Lodge trainer, Mark Jones.

She settled three back on the markers from the inside of the second row at Melton last Saturday, October 8.

The Art Major-Bethany (Christian Cullen-Spirit Of Beth) mare finished best for Josh Aiken to win by a head in a 1:56.6 rate (2240m), the leaders running their last 800m in 57.4s and final 400m in 27.9s.

Fourth in the same race was another former Mark Jones-trained winner in Forty Thieves.

Champagne Dreams is unbeaten in three starts this season, while her career record is now 36 starts for nine wins and eight placings, for earnings of $50,457.

She has a fastest winning mile rate of 1:55.6.

Northern Velocity (4m Mach Three-Northern Franco), the younger half-sister to former NZ Free-For-All winner Pembrook Benny, has struck a purple patch of form in recent weeks in Victoria.

After initially leaving Overport Lodge and racing in New South Wales, she has stepped up winning in a career best 1:56.6 mile rate (1650m) in a $10,000 C1-2 mares pace at Bendigo on Friday, October 7.

She seteled three back on the outer from the six gate, moved up parked over the last lap and delivered by 1.4 metres as a $2.70 favourite.

Northern Velocity is unbeaten in her two Victorian starts.

She has either been first or second in nine Australian starts, winning six.

Her career earnings now stand at $174,574, the bulk of her earnings coming at two when she won the big 2015 PGG Wrightson NZ Yearling Sales 2YO Fillies Pace at Addington for the Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen stable.

She also won the Group Three Caduceus Club Of Southland 2YO Fillies Classic for the All Stars stable at two, and was exported in February out of the Mark Jones stable after battling in strong NZ age group company.

At Pinjarra, West Australia, on Monday, October 10, Now I Get Around (4m Bettor’s Delight-Runaround Rhonda) led throughout to win the C0-1 $7000 Skysportsradio.com.au Mares Pace.

Now I Get Around, raced in Australia by trainer Nathan Meade, and driven by Ashleigh Markham, was notching her first WA win in five starts.

She held by 1.4 metres from NZ-bred Fay Darling, a Bettor’s Delight mare from top mare Molly Darling, who moved up parked, in a 1:59 rate (2185), quickening over her last 800m in 56.5s and final 400m in 28.3s.

She was a maiden winner at Nelson last January for the Mark Jones stable in the hands of Sam Ottley, scoring in a useful 1:59.8 rate over the 2400m.