HRNZ Media Bites, May 15

J Scott Latest News


The build-up to the 2013 Trust Ashburton Harness Jewels is well and truly on. This Friday’s superb meeting at Addington and other supporting meetings will only add to the build-up.

Purdon’s Haul: It’s already been well documented the effort of the Mark Purdon team of horses last Saturday at Addington. Runners for the stable pocketed a cool $292k for their efforts in six of the 12 races. Looking forward to this Friday night the stable has 12 runners over five races and promises to dominate the features once again. Last week’s big winners, Adore Me and Isaiah, back up, while horses the quality of Fly Like An Eagle are added to the potent strike force.

Harness Jewels Movers and Shakers: Last week we saw some horses make their play for runs in the Jewels. Some clearly notable ones but some snuck under the radar too. Two-year-old trotter Majestic Time was a smart winner at Timaru last Sunday and with her win she’s bolted from nowhere to sixth on her Jewels leader Board. She’ll give trainer Mike Ward his first Jewels runner next month.

Whisper Jet looked a forlorn hope to make the Jewels last week. She was somewhere in the 30s on the table but with her second to Adore Me and $21k banked she’s now ‘right there on the list’.

Carpenter’s Daughter was another badly in need of a winning turn. Not only did she win at Addington last Saturday but she was very impressive. The four-year-old mare was at $26 and now into $3.50.

Little Miss Sunshine won the Girls’n Gigs race at Timaru last Sunday and did so with HRNZ staffer Charlotte Hunter in the sulky. That win and the $5k she earned has leapfrogged here into 11th on the 5YO Diamond standings.

NZ Records to Isaiah/Royal Aspirations: Last week two NZ Records fell. Royal Aspirations decimated the 2200m record for a three-year-old trotter. He took a second off Sovereignty’s record and he also lowered the Male Trotting mark previously held by I Can Doosit by 0.1. Royal Aspirations dazzled by running the 2200m trip in 2:43. Isaiah took half a second off the two-year-old 1950m record for colts and geldings. Rating a 1:55.5 mile rate, he ran the journey in 2:20. Tintin In America held the record previously.

Who needs Jewels cash this week? Goodness Gracious me steps out for the first time from the Steve McRae barn at Invercargill and she can make the Jewels with a win. She is currently 16th on the list after Priscilla’s Girl was withdrawn yesterday. Goodness Gracious Me proved her worth in the early season but now, after missing the triple crown in Auckland she’s the fresh player on the scene but nothing short of a win at Ascot Park on Saturday will be enough to get her a start in the 2YO Diamond on Jewels Day 1 in June.

Gold Ace back on Jewels path: Good news this week that Gold Ace has scoped clear (98%) after his lung infection that laid him low in the NZ Messenger. Gold Ace is now in Christchurch preparing for the Trust Ashburton Harness Jewels 5YO Emerald. Of course Gold Ace won the corresponding race two years ago and last year was a late scratching. It’s been a tumultuous ride for Steven Reid and connections of the crack Bettor’s Delight pacer but if all goes well in the next two and half weeks there could be a sense of timing about him leading into another clash with arch- rival Terror To Love on Sunday June 2. For more details of the Gold Ace situation check out this link.

Ohoka Punter & Franco Nelson return this week: Two of our glamour pacers are back in action this week. Ohoka Punter will resume at Cambridge on Thursday night while Franco Nelson debuts from the Robert Dunn stable at Oamaru on Sunday. Both horses have been on light duties in recent times, looking to peak for the big one on Jewels Day and it will be great to see them shining brightly on race day again.
New HRNZ web feature for media and trainspotters: A new search tool has been added to the HRNZ website. Through the Infohorse Database with a search of Trainers and Drivers you can now find a horseman’s/woman’s wins and placings for any season from 1981. You can do this by searching the various premierships or the database. The key is to click on the season (underlined) of a trainer or driver’s record. That is where the magic happens. From there you can filter and manipulate data to find out just about anything the trainer achieved that season. From wins of small to major races all the information is there for you.

Courtesy of Andrew Morris,
Marketing and Communications Manager,
Harness Racing New Zealand