Bettorstartdreaming ready to win
By Michael Guerin
One of the fastest Pukekohe workout wins in recent years suggests Bettorstartdreaming is ready to win his comeback at Cambridge tonight.
The talented four-year-old is more genuine Alexandra Park class than the type you would expect to see turn up at Cambridge on a Thursday night, having been competitive with the likes of Ultimate Sniper in the Northern Derby last season.
But co-trainer and driver Josh Dickie says with a lack of suitable races at the moment tonight’s $12,000 Breckon Farms Te Awamutu Cup is a nice kick off point, especially since his 20m handicap is effectively only really a 10m one because there is just one long shot starting off the front.
Even allowing for that winning fresh up in this grade is never easy, especially in a capacity field for a horse having his first standing start race.
But Bettorstartdreaming put both those concerns to rest at the Pukekohe workouts last Saturday.
Not only did the compact pacer lead out from the standing start but he then overcame sitting parked to wear down key race rival Baileys Knight in a very quick 3:8.7 for the 2500m, a rare 2:1.4 mile rate around the tight Pukekohe track.
“I clocked our last mile and a half in 2:58 and that is as quick as I have ever been around Pukekohe,” said Dickie.
“Initially I was worried it might have been too quick but he was able to run down Baileys Knight and he looks one of the main ones to beat this week.
“And he has come through it well.”
Dickie and his father John are eying the Sales Series Pace at Kaikoura with Bettorstartdreaming and see him as a likely open class horse in the future, although like so many of his ability he will be able to get there and then will need to improve to be a force.
While he looks to have that class edge on most he meets tonight, the start will be crucial as if he gets back in the pack horses like Baileys Knight, Go Kiwi and Juice Brogden have enough of a race fitness edge to make life difficult for him.
Tonight’s meeting hosts a higher than usual $50,000 guaranteed Pick6, giving northern harness punters something to get their teeth into on an Alexandra Park-less weekend.
Meanwhile, the Dickie stable’s much-improved trotter Sertorius, a last-start 1:57.6 mile winner, is likely to stay in New Zealand and contest the Inter Dominions at Alexandra Park in December after offers from North America were turned down.
“His owner Ben Calder could have sold him but wanted to have an Inter Dominion runner which is great for us.”