Cloud over Tact Maggie's starting manners

By Jonny Turner

Tact Maggie will solve a mystery when the tapes fly to start the Winton Businesses Cup on Saturday.

Trainer Trevor Proctor can not answer the question of whether the trained five-year-old will step cleanly or not with any confidence ahead of the 2400m handicap.

Tact Maggie’s standing start practice in training this week meant Proctor is ready for absolutely anything when Saturday’s race gets underway.

“The standing start is a big if,” he said.

“I gave her four stands on Tuesday and she didn’t go away in one of them.”

“Then, I put the pins in her and only pulled them up three holes and she pinged out like she meant it on Thursday.”

“It is just hit and hope.”

Though she is not adept or experienced from behind the tapes, Tact Maggie has scored once in a standing start race from five attempts.

It will be Canterbury junior driver John Morrison’s task to help step the Lis Mara pacer step cleanly from the 10m mark.

A family connection between Proctor, his partner and co-owner, Diane Dynes, and Morrison will make for a special win if Tact Maggie is able to score.

“We have got young Johnny Morrison on her, which is quite special.”

“He is family.”

“I have always been quite keen to give him a drive on this mare, but it just hadn’t worked out until now.”

Tact Maggie faces a massive drop in class from some of her recent racing in the Winton Businesses Cup.

She took on Dream About Me in the group 1 New Zealand Standardbred Breeders Stakes three starts ago.

She clashed with rising star, Henry Hubert, in her last start in the group 3 Northern Southland Cup.

Tact Maggie comes in to Saturday’s race after winning two workouts since her last start sixth.

“She just about dead heated with Franco Santino at the workouts last time.”

“Brent Barclay was on her that time and he said she hadn’t felt like that for a long time.”

“Her workouts have been quite impressive.”

“Hopefully she will turn up on Saturday feeling like that.”

Between her recent group races Tact Maggie clashed with some of the rivals she meets on Saturday, when running sixth behind Robyns Playboy.

Vintage Cheddar and Please Shuddup both beat her home that day and have both won races since.

Please Shuddup’s stablemate, Mighty Flying Art, adds interest to Saturday’s event.

The Murray Brown trained colt will have his first standing start in the 2400m handicap.

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