News & Events

Auckland Reactor misses Kaikoura - NZ Cup remains the target

By Michael Guerin

Auckland Reactor’s chances of finally contesting a New Zealand Cup are improving even though he will miss his expected lead-up race at Kaikoura on Monday. The $1.8million earner had been earmarked to contest the Kaikoura Cup but will dodge the race to compete at Addington four days later.

That leaves champion trainer Mark Purdon with four in the Kaikoura Cup, two of them racing for there chance to compete in the NZ Cup on November 13.

Auckland Reactor’s chances of starting in the NZ Cup, which he missed last season after being hot favourite until Cup eve, seemed dimmed after his suffered a recent injury to his coronet.

“But that has improved and he was worked well the last couple of days,” said Purdon.

“I just wanted to give him as much time as possible to get over the injury and with Addington four days later I didn’t need to go to Kaikoura with him.

“At this stage I think he has a good chance of being in the Cup.”

Purdon is adamant Highview Tommy and Sushi Sushi will be NZ Cup starters but says Fly Like An Eagle’s tilt will depend on his performance, and manners, on Monday.

“And Major Mark would need to do something big there too to have any chance of starting in the Cup.”

Stablemate Sleepy Tripp will officially be pulled out of the NZ Cup this week. While he leaves his best pacer at home next Monday, Purdon will take champion trotter I Can Doosit to Kaikoura for the $25,000 feature trot.

“He was a bit jaded after his last-start win at Addington but is jumping out of his skin now so it is all go for him.”

Meanwhile, one of the few trotters to beat I Can Doosit in a Group One, Stylish Monarch, is out for the rest of the season and could be retired. The two-time group one winner has a tear in his suspensory and will be in the paddock until April, with trainer Murray Tapper saying he is less than a 50-50 chance to race again.