Harry flies Kiwi flag across the Tasman
By Adam Hamilton
Exciting young trotter Harry Stamper added the most Kiwi flavour to last night’s stellar Breeders Crown meeting.
The former Kiwi gelding was driven aggressively and confidently by former champion Kiwi driver Anthony Butt for an all-the-way win.
The key part was the first 150m when Plymouth Chubb blasted out of gate three and looked a chance of crossing Harry Stamper in two, but Butt burrowed through and that proved vital.
Once in front, Butt steadied for a 31.6sec split while heavily backed favourite and main danger Cravache Dor had to come and sit parked.
The Joe Pace-trained Happy Stamper was always travelling like a winner and dashed home in 56.2 and 28sec flat to score by 5.1m over Cravache Dor in a 1min57.8sec mile rate for 2240m.
The son of Majestic Son has been a great buy with six wins and two seconds from his nine Aussie runs, after having two wins from seven starts in this country for Phil Williamson. He headed across the Tasman in March.
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Another Kiwi-bred trotting star Queen Elida is primed going into the Inter Dominion.
Brent Lilley’s stable star whizzed to the front from gate four and thrashed her rivals in the Group 2 Breeders Crown 4YO Mares’ at Melton last Friday night.
She blasted home in 56.4 and 28.4sec to win running away by 11.4m in a 1min57.4sec mile rate for 2240m.
In a series lacking class and depth, Queen Elida looks the best of the Aussie trotters.
Another key trotting contender, Just Believe, was beaten but had no luck in his final lead-up when badly held-up at a crucial stage and second to Sundons Courage in the Group 2 Breeders Crown Open Trot.
While former Kiwi trotter Musafa Metro, also Inter Dominion-bound this week, led and survived a late scare from Locksley Lover to win the Group 2 Crown 4YO entires and geldings’ trot.
The pacing highlight last Friday came when classy five-year-old Mach Dan returned to his best by sitting outside and beating stablemate and leader Honolua Bay in the $60,000 Crown Pacing free-for-all in what was just a blistering sprint home in 53.8 and 26.8sec.
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WA’s top young pacer Lavra Joe overcame an early scare for a strong win in the first of the big 4YO features at Gloucester Park last Friday night.
The Ray Jones-trained gelding was a $1.30 favourite from pole, but surprisingly crossed at the start by Stamford before driver Chris Lewis popped out and retook the front.
Classy pair Jumingjackmac and Mighty Ronaldo came strongly at him on the final bend, but Lavra Joe found plenty to win by 3.5m in a 1min55sec mile rate for 2130m.
He’s got a busy time ahead with another two 4YO features before the big Fremantle/WA Cups double early next year.
Last year’s WA Cup winner Wildwest continues to build form back with Gary Hall Sr.
His third run back from a spell was an eye-catching second to classy leader Hampton Banner in the Pat Cranley Memorial free-for-all (1730m) at Gloucester Park.
Another former WA Cup winner Mighty Conqueror also showed good signs by sitting parked and finishing a close third for Team Bond.
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Former classy young Kiwi pacer Its All About Faith impressed winning his first run for trainer-driver Jack Trainor at Menangle last night.
The four-year-old worked to the front from gate five and powered home in a 54.6sec last half at the end of a 1min53.2sec mile to win easily.
The Kiwi connection continued at the meeting when the Graham Court-owned Total Diva narrowly won the Group 1 Ladyship Stakes for trainer Peter Hanson and driver Jimmy Douglass.
In a driving finish, the five-year-old daughter of Terror To Love won by a nose over another former Kiwi mare Fairy Tinkerbell in a 1min51.9sec mile.