News Briefs - 13th January

Ascot Park treble for Gray/Barclay combo

Three wins at Ascot Park on Thursday rocketed Brett Gray to 16 wins for the season, just one behind Nathan Williamson on the Southland Trainers table.

The three, Bettor B Ready, Zealand Star and The Heart Rulz, were driven by Brent Barclay, taking him to the top of the Southland drivers table on 17, one ahead of Williamson.

“Brent's my main driver,” said Gray.

“He also does a lot of pre-training for me and does a great job.”

Regards Zealand Star, Gray said it was a case of waiting for the penny to drop.

The four-year-old son of Washington VC went back to back when winning the day's $12,000 Nugget Final.

“He's been building in confidence and now he's turned the corner; that's his best race by far.

“He's got a good 300-metre sprint.”

Butterworth Racing purchased Zealand Star unraced out of the Clark Barron stable about 14 months ago on the back of good workout form under the name Lillooet.

Electricity in the air over Kilowatt Kid

Kilowatt Kid, the three-year-old half-brother to Bonnie Joan, is turning heads in the south.

His win at Ascot Park on Thursday improved his already impressive record to two wins, two seconds and two fourths from six starts.

From the draft of Tuapeka Lodge at the 2016 Premier Sale, the son of American Ideal was picked up for $24,000 by Lindsay and Ian Thomson.

Trainer Alister Black remembers seeing him on a pre-sales tour and liking him.

“Bonnie Joan hadn't stepped out at that stage.

“I liked three or four at Tuapeka but the others were out of our price range,” he said.

“He's still green, can switch on and off, but has high speed and when he matures he'll be a beautiful horse following speed.

“He'll head towards the Supremacy”

Hambletonian on cards for War Admiral

The Kenny and Jo Baynes roll continued when three-year-old trotter War Admiral clocked 2:48.00 to win the R40 to R61 mobile 2200 at Ascot Park on Thursday.

Bred by the Baynes’ and trained by Tony Stratford, the son of Skyvalley had just one juvenile outing, broke twice during the running and finished tenth.

Since resuming as a three-year-old 19 days ago, he has won twice from four starts, including beating the talented Kenny's Dream at Gore.

Thoughts turn now to giving War Admiral a chance in Canterbury.

“He's been a handful but has got scope,” Stratford said.

“If we can dodge the top trotters on Cup day he'll run there next, then go to the Hambletonian.”

War Admiral's fourth dam Nakaia, is the third dam of Take A Moment.

Roxburgh syndicate having a good run

The Central Courage Syndicate capped a successful couple of weeks when Franco Rebel, trained by Geoff and Jude Knight. was successful at Ascot Park on Thursday.

Nathan Williamson produced Idealistic Lass to score for them at Cromwell on Saturday while Seduce Me, racing as Please Seduce Me across the Tasman, won at Victor Harbour between Christmas and New Year.

Knight said he has had more than 50 wins for the syndicate which began a number of years ago when Murray Hamilton trained at Omakau.

Franco Rebel was bought privately last month, from Spreydon Lodge, after his first three starts.