Cambridge couple hoping for winning sendoff

By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk

Cambridge couple Kyle Marshall and Sophie Jefferies are hoping they can leave New Zealand on a high after racing this week.

The couple will move across the Tasman to Cranbourne next Wednesday, but they have a couple of goals they want to achieve prior to their departure.

On Thursday Marshall will line-up four runners at Cambridge Raceway, including Miss You Bromac in the Lauriston Park Mobile Pace (2200m).

Jefferies will be doing the steering behind the mare, who she part-owns, and she is hoping she can record her first win behind the five-year-old in her final drive in New Zealand.

“It is good to be driving my own one. She is feeling well and her last run was awesome. She was super, she was just a bit rough off the gate,” Jefferies said.

“This will be my last drive in New Zealand as we head to Australia next Wednesday.

“It would be a dream to be sent off on a winning note. I will be going for it, but we will see what happens.”

Jefferies is looking forward to the move to Cranbourne and said it opens new opportunities not only with driving, but further study as well.

“It (the move) is super exciting, but a little bit stressful,” she said.

“I want to study equine therapy, so the move is good for me as I can get into that over there. I will study it online and they have five-day practicums in Melbourne, which will be perfect for me.

“I will hopefully do a bit more driving over there as well once I get familiar.”

Jefferies will be competing against Marshall on Thursday as he will line-up two other runners in the race, Sky Rocket and Wharewhiti, and he will take the reins behind the latter, who has drawn barrier two.

“Wharewhiti should be a good chance from two. Sky Rocket did a bit too much work first-up so he should strip a bit fitter,” Marshall said.

The Cambridge horseman will also line-up last start winner Majestic Bundy in the Barrett Homes – Montiicola Show Home Trot (2200m).

“The trotter won well last start, so hopefully she can put in a similar performance on Thursday,” he said.

While looking forward to his last meeting at his home track on Thursday, Marshall’s major aim this week is the Gr.1 2023 Woodlands Stud Northern Derby (2700m) with his stable star Son Of Mac.

The American Ideal colt was given a perfect drive by Tony Herlihy last start in the Gr.2 Alabar 3YO Classic (2200m) and was just denied by Sherlock by a neck.

He will meet the Mark and Nathan Purdon-trained gelding again on Friday where Marshall is hoping he can turn the tables on his rival.

However, both horses have drawn the second line, with main danger Merlin drawn ideally in two, but Marshall isn’t fretting about the disadvantage.

“The draw is not ideal, but you can’t do much about that,” he said.

“I am really happy with his work this week, it is the best it has been. It is a good Derby, there is a lot of talent there, but we are lucky to have that talent and a good driver (Herlihy).

“He has come a long way and hopefully he goes well and keeps progressing.”

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