Harness Briefs - 3rd September


Lazarus beaten in Canadian Derby

Champion New Zealand pacer Lazarus was sensationally beaten in Saturday night’s (local time) C$600,000 Canadian Pacing Derby.

In the hands of Yannick Gingras, Lazarus was outmuscled by established North American star McWicked in a relatively sedate, for this calibre of horse, 1.49.0.

Lazarus was allowed to settle third early before moving to the lead with 1000 metres to go and at the same point McWicked moved to the parked position.

Gingras said post-race that Lazarus was perhaps short of a hard run under American conditions and would benefit from the race.

“He raced good, just a little tired finishing.”

“He needs some racing. The other horse is a good horse and went a big mile and you’ve got to give him credit, but I think my horse needs a couple of starts.”

McWicked, now a US$3 Million earner, has a New Zealand connection with his trainer, Casie Coleman, married to Mark Herlihy, son of New Zealand’s all-time winningest driver, Tony Herlihy.

Munro issued fine for misconduct

Canterbury driver Bronson Munro has been fined $500 by the Judicial Control Authority after a handful of incidents at Forbury Park late last season.

During and after the running of a junior driver race on June 15, Munro verbally abused and threatened then-fellow juniors Charlotte Purvis and Sheree Tomlinson.

The summary of facts noted Munro pled guilty at the first opportunity but Chief Steward Nick Ydgren, giving evidence for the Racing Integrity Unit, described Munro’s behavior as bullying and intimidating and well below the expected standard of conduct for licensed horsemen.

Munro’s advocate/representative, John Dunn, made a number of submissions surrounding the circumstances of the race and the subsequent contributions of Tomlinson to the incident.

After weighing up various factors, including a donation Munro made to the Ovarian Cancer charity, the JCA settled on fine amount of $500.

North Island Harness Awards

Star Galleria, Speeding Spur and Princess Tiffany took out the main equine prizes at the North Island Harness Racing Awards in Auckland on Saturday night.

Off the back of his Rowe Cup win, Speeding Spur was crowned Aged Trotter of the Year while Star Galleria took out the pacing equivalent and Princess Tiffany the Filly/Mare of the Year.

The dominance of Majestic Son (Trotting) and Bettor’s Delight (Pacing) saw them win the stallion awards while Delicata, the dam of Derby-winning three-year-old Chase Auckland, got the broodmare prize.

Kumeu couple Murray and Deneece Goldsworthy were the recipients of the award for outstanding contribution to the harness racing while John and Joshua Dickie and Amanda Kiddie received Racing Achievement Awards.

Palmerston North breeders and owners Braeden and Caroline Whitelock scooped up four awards, two solo as Breeders and Owners of the year, plus two in partnership via Princess Tiffany.

Michelle Wallis, who has been on a tear as a trainer this year in partnership with husband Bernie Hackett, was presented with the third annual Female Racing Accomplishment Award.

Other human award-winners were Steve Telfer (trainer), David Butcher (driver), Benjamin Butcher (junior driver), Dave Iremonger (owner/trainer), Sheridan Rapley (groom), Logan Darby (amateur driver) and Alicia Harrison (premier cadet).

Rounding out the equine awards were Supreme Dominator, Tickle Me Pick, Monaro Mia, Triple Eight and Ivana Flybye.

The Harness Racing New Zealand Awards are on September 29 in Auckland.

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