Aussie News - 17th June
By Adam Hamilton
QUEENSLAND’S best pacer is set to tackle the state’s biggest race.
For the first time, top trainer Grant Dixon has strongly indicated Colt Thirty One will tackle the some of the sport’s best horses, including Inter Dominion Tiger Tara, in the $250,660 Group 1 Black A Fake at Albion Park on July 20.
He had been contemplating keeping the buzz pacer to his own age in the Group 3 4YO Championship on the same night.
“I’m leaning towards missing the Redcliffe Cup (June 22) and setting him for the Winter Cup (now called the Blacks A Fake),” he said.
For the first time, both races are on the same night, July 20 at Albion Park.
Last year, Tim Butt’s Let It Ride won the 4YO Championship and backed-up to win the Blacks A Fake.
Colt Thirty One made the biggest open-class statement of his stellar career so far when he made a one-act affair of a much-touted match-race with former Kiwi pacer Northview Hustler.
It was dubbed as the clash to decide Queensland’s best pacer which Colt Thirty One worked to the front and won easily, while Northview Hustler worked outside the leader, but dropped right out to last and 28m from the winner.
Colt Thirty One, who boasts 29 wins from just 42 starts and over $500,000 in stakemoney, paced a blistering 1min53.4sec mile rate for 2138m. It was only 1.0sec outside Bling It On’s 2015 track record.
“That was a big win tonight. He certainly didn’t get it all his own way, but he’s nearing peak fitness now,” Dixon said.
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THE huge Vicbred series hots up with a string of two-year-old pacing heats at Bendigo on Tuesday.
And, as usual, Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin look set to dominate.
Their best filly looks to be the raw, but immensely talented Treasure, who should win the second heat (race three) with Amanda Turnbull aboard.
Their other key fillies are Amelia Rose in the opening heat (race two) and Jemstone from gate three in the third heat (race six). In the last heat (race eight) they have the two key runners in Artemede (gate two) and Maajida (five).
Amazingly, their hand looks event stronger in the colts and geldings heats, headed by Pandering in race one and Mirragon in race four.
The clash of Mirragon and Youaremy Sunshine, who won their latest battle, promises to be the highlight of the night.
Stewart has a great chance of winning the third heat with the big and raw Beale Street (gate two).
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GARY Hall Jr didn’t quite know what to make of Chicago Bull’s third win from four starts in the comeback trail at Gloucester Park last Friday night.
The pint-sized superstar sat without cover and won easily, beating stablemates Herrick Roosevelt and Whozideawasthis in a 1min55.6sec for 2130m.
“When he hit the front, he looked like he was all-out, but then on the line he felt good again,” Hall Jr said. “We’d had plenty of rain and the track was sticky and small horses like him can find it hard work.
“Weighing everything up, I was happy with him.
“I’d say he’s on target. He’s won three of his four runs back and certainly isn’t wound right up.”
Hall Jr’s other key win on the night came aboard emerging star Ideal Liner for his father, Gary Sr.
Ideal Liner, a four-year-old son of American Ideal, has won si of his seven runs this campaign and looks every bit an open-class star in the making.
“We really like him. He’s got it all and he’s still learning. It’s exciting where he could end up,” Hall Sr said.
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AUSTRALIA’S top juvenile Jilliby Nitro has the draw to win yet another feature after landing the pole for the $125,000 Group 1 NSW Breeders Challenge.
Victorian pair Jilliby Nitro and Be Happy Mach were equally impressive winning their heats last night at Menangle, but just the like the Australian Gold final won by Jilliby Nitro, he’s drawn much better this time as well.
Emma Stewart’s Be Happy Mach has drawn wide in nine, but will come into seven for the June 30 final if the emergencies miss a start.
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EXPERIENCED WA journalist Ernie Manning had a surreal experience last Friday night.
Manning, harness scribe for the West Australian newspaper, got the write the story about a Group 1 winner that he not only part-owned, but is also named after him.
Raced by the big Pacing WA syndicate, Manning upstaged his Justin Prentice-trained stablemate and favourite Aristocratic Star to win WA’s biggest juvenile race, the $100,000 Group 1 Pearl Classic.
Aristocratic Star led, but Manning finished strongly from midfield to win by 2.7m in a 1min58.8sec mile rate for 2130m.
It was Prentice’s fifth Group 1 win this season and the 15th of his rapidly growing career.
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FORMER Kiwi trotter McLovin just keeps looking better.
The six-year-old posted his eighth win – and most impressive – in just 13 starts for Andy and Kate Gath in the Group 3 Wagon Apollo free-for-all (2240m) last night (Saturday).
Kate Gath took him straight to the front and dictated with a 61.3sec middle half, but there was plenty to like about the way he zoomed away from a handy field to win by 18m in a 1min58sec mile rate.
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RECENT Kiwi import Letspendanitetogetha stamped himself as a key Len Smith Mile player when he upstaged some of NSW’s best pacers at Menangle last night.
Now with Blake Fitzpatrick, the Washington VC gelding overpowered the likes of Cash N Flow (second), Joes Star Of Mia (fourth) and Our Uncle Sam (seventh) to win the Group 3 Golden Mile.