Court confident


While he thinks the best version might still be six months away, trainer Paul Court is confident of a strong debut from the royally-bred Stunin Love at Methven on Sunday.

The half-brother to three-time New Zealand Cup winner, Terror To Love, by a former Hunter Cup winner, Stunin Cullen, doesn’t lack for anything in the breeding department and won his last two trials.

“He’s a pretty promising type,” Court said.

“But I still think we are probably half-a-year away from seeing what he is really capable of.

“In saying that I think he will be pretty hard to beat (in race four).”

If there is one concern with the three-year-old colt on paper, it would be his first look at the grass track surface, but Court actually sees it as a bonus.

“He’s not a real come-off-the-back of something and blast-on bye type of horse.

“He needs to work his way into it like his trials, so the draw and the grass should actually suit him I think.”

An in-form Blair Orange will drive.

While Stunin Love will be one of the most hyped debutants there will be plenty of local interest in a driver making her debut.

Sarah O’Reilly, daughter of leading Mid-Canterbury driver and trainer Gerard, will join the junior ranks with four drives.

She reins Hot N Fast for her father, but also has drives for her uncles - Leo (Bank Raider) and Patrick (Sheez Good), as well as driving Silent Shadow for Rakaia horseman David Jones.

Bank Raider (R7) trialled well on the track last weekend and has won on the course.

Other strong Methven triallists were promising maiden pacers Friend (R1) and

Make Us Grin (R5).