Demand prompts harness racing's early return

A harness racing double-header has been confirmed for Addington Raceway this week.

Initially the sport was to make its long-awaited post COVID-19 return at Addington on Friday but the sheer volumes of horses in and around Canterbury has prompted the rare move to now have meetings on both Thursday and Friday.

“Certainly it’s not something I can ever recall happening before,” says Addington Raceway’s Racing Manager Brian Rabbitt, and he’s been involved with the raceway for nearly four decades.

A total of 296 horses were nominated. Thursday’s meeting will be the lower-key of the two and will start around lunchtime, with Friday’s racing set for a 5pm start.

“The exact specifics of how the two racedays will look will be decided tomorrow,” says Harness Racing New Zealand handicapper Andrew Morris.

Many of the country’s top stables have nominated big numbers including Cran Dalgety and Nathan Purdon (15 horses) and John and Robert Dunn (12).

The fields will be completed first for the Friday meeting, followed by the Thursday one, with withdrawals for both meetings to close at 10 am tomorrow (Tuesday)

For more information, contact Brian Rabbitt 0274 077 234    

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