A fitting finish


Harness Racing New Zealand’s teal campaign to support ovarian cancer research was wrapped in fitting circumstances at Reefton on Sunday when ambassador Samantha Ottley saluted while donning her teal silks and driving pants.

Ottley gave the campaign colours she wore in all of her races over the past six weeks every hope of being seen in the winner’s circle by giving Ford Rule a perfect run in the one-one in yesterday’s women’s invitational drivers’ race.

The Bob Butt trained pacer did not let his driver or the teal campaign down by holding out the flying finish of Cheezel to win.

Butt said he was rapt to be able support the teal campaign and notch a win at the same time.

“It was great, it is such a great cause, so it was awesome for Sam to be able to get the win in the teal colours.”

“And it was a perfect drive, Sam gave him a perfect run.”

Tom Rule is raced by West Coast harness racing identities, the Reedy family.

Butt had considered sending the pacer for a spell, but resisted that temptation knowing the two-day West Coast meeting looming.

That paid off when the Reedys got to see their pacer sprint to victory on Sunday.

The win meant Tom Rule would now sign off his current campaign among the sea of teal at Reefton.

“He is going for a spell now, he has come a long way in a short time,” Butt said

“He only qualified a week before the coast meetings before Christmas.”

“He is still a big, dumb and raw bugger and if we tip him out for a while hopefully he will come back a bit better.”

“At the moment it is still all coming to him.”

It was Ottley and Ford Rule that had to settle for second, behind The Kaik and Kimberly Butt, in the first of two female drivers races over the weekend.

Cheezel improved on his fifth placing in Friday’s race at Westport to produce an eye-catching run to finish second for driver Kerryn Tomlinson.

Swap Over held third placing for driver Mikayla Lewis.


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