Dalgety poised to bring up 100th win

By Michael Guerin

The synergy between two of the emerging stars of New Zealand harness racing is unmistakable.

And tonight they could, maybe should, combine to win the $110,000 Pascoes Northern Oaks at Alexandra Park.

On one of the strongest nights of black type racing this season it could be All You Need Is Me and her junior driver Carter Dalgety who steal the show with the Canterbury filly drawn to dominate the Oaks.

She has barrier 2 and the respect to secure an uncontested lead after two crushing wins in the last fortnight.

It is appropriate Dalgety has been along for the ride as he and All You Need Is Me have much is common.

All You Need Is Me is a daughter of champion mare Adore Me, one of the all-time great female pacers in this part of the world and after a slow start to her career mum’s genes are starting to shine through.

Dalgety also has the breeding for future harness racing greatness, his father outstanding trainer Cran and his mother Chrissie not only in the partnership now but a member of the famous Butt dynasty.

In a touch of irony, Adore Me’s last start and arguably bravest performance came when second in an Auckland Cup, beaten by the Dalgety-trained Christen Me.

Now Dalgety hopes the three-year-old filly can become his springboard horse, the filly that helps launch his career as he strives for his 100th domestic winning drive tonight.

“I have been lucky enough to drive some really good horses already, like Krug who gave me a Group 1,” says the 20-year-old.

“But I hope this filly might be the horse to put me into Group 1 races regularly, whereas I only got on Krug after he has won all his Derbys.

“She is a very good filly and if she goes on to be a top mare I’d love to go on that ride with her.”

While crossing Adore Me with pacing’s most gifted stallion in Captaintreacherous sounded like a guaranteed recipe for success, Dalgety says All You Need Is Me wasn’t always a star.

“She could run as a young horse but was very immature and took some making so we gave her time and after each spell she came back better.

“But the penny has dropped now and she feels like a really good filly. Her stride is enormous and she is very fast.”

The brutality of All You Need Is Me’s last two Alexandra Park wins should guarantee her the lead tonight and with key rival Duchess Megxit likely to have to cover a lot more ground, possibly even sitting parked over the last 800m, the hot favourite may be unstoppable.

Dalgety thinks he can also win the two-year-old fillies race tonight with Justyouwait (R3, No.1), who should lead and again the danger could be a Purdon/Phelan-trained filly in Youretheonethatiwant (No.5), who has looked sharp at the trials.

Team Dalgety also have Republican Party in the City Of Auckland Free-For-All and while he was dazzling at the trials last week he faces a very tricky draw in what should be a tactical race.

Don’t Stop Dreaming, who was fifth in the Miracle Mile last start, is the hot favourite for the 2200m race which will be a crucial form guide to the $1m Race by Grins at Cambridge on April 12.

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