Fast Ready To Run trial

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Marble Ridge (Courage Under Fire-Seacrest Franco colt) recorded the fastest sectionals at the Ready to Run video trial day at Ashburton on Tuesday, September 14.


Trained at West Mellon by Macolm Shinn, Marble Ridge ran his 800m section in a sharp 54.9s, closing with a final 400m in in 25.8s.


Marble Ridge’s dam Seacrest Franco, an unraced daughter of Live Or Die and Seafoam Franco, who has left the useful winners Franco Sandman (12 wins, 1:55.3, Aus) and Prince Of Tides (four NZ wins, 1:54.2, US).

His grand-dam is an unraced daughter of Falcon Seelster and Seascape Franco, an unraced sister to former top filly/mare Seaswift Franco (Talk About Class-Stormy Pat).

Seaswift Franco (1:57.6) won 11 of 31 starts for Weedons trainer Jack Smolenski.

A total of 21 trialled over their last 800m in better than 57s, with 23 running their last 400m in better
than 27 seconds.

Rachel Deegan, representing PGG Wrightson, has advised all trials will be on the web next week, with DVDs available from the the end of next week.

NZ CUP STAKE $750,000

The 2010 Christchurch NZ Trotting Cup will be run for a stake of $750,000 and nominations will be called for on Wednesday 29 September.

The drop from $1,000,000 to $750,000 is understandable given the current economic climate, however, look for a positive announcement from Addington Raceway in coming days regarding minimum stakes at the Cup carnival.


This Friday’s Avon City Ford Cup looms as a beauty. This is the first time in the race’s modern history (since 1987) that it will be run as a standing start FFA. Since 1988 it had been a mobile.

This week we’ll get our first real taste of Cup build up with a ticket into the Christchurch Casino NZ Trotting Cup awaiting the winner.

On paper three horses stand out. Last season’s horse of the year Monkey King being the obvious one, Bondy, who has been flying in his trials and workouts and Stunin Cullen who has been in sparkling early season form and appears to have the fitness edge right now.

The Avon City Ford Cup will be run at Addington Raceway at 9.07pm, Race 7. Fixed Odds will re released at 10am Thursday.


Monday’s release of the Investec Super 15 Rugby draw threw a spanner into the works for 2011 Inter-Dominion Officials. Despite reports to the contrary, the Crusaders are drawn to play the defending champions, “The Bulls” at AMI Stadium on Grand Final Night, Saturday 9 April.


Colin De Filippi is currently on 1799 lifetime driving wins, while Mark Jones is on 1194. Both drivers will be at Addington on Friday night.

Tony Herlihy is on 492 lifetime training wins, and will be looking to close the gap to 500 this week with Danica Patrick in Race 8 at Manukau today and three runners at Kumeu on Thursday night.

Junior Driver Regan Todd had first training win at Gore last Tuesday with Del Sur, driven by previous trainer Brendon McLellan.