King Of Swing sets track record in IDs
By Adam Hamilton
Luke McCarthy took a moment to shake his head briefly after King Of Swing completed a clean sweep of the Inter Dominion heats and smashed the track record at Newcastle last night.
His champion did a couple of things wrong last night, but still won as he liked and took – wait for it – a full two seconds of the track record going into the night.
He paced a 1min51.4sec mile rate for 2030m after balancing-up early from a middle draw and working around to take the front from Balraj.
“I didn’t mean to go that quickly, but he was just touching a wheel a bit and got a bit keen,” McCarthy said.
“He didn’t feel like he was going that fast, but that’s him. He was doing it so easily and still felt great at the finish.
“He’s such a great horse to train and he’s handling the series really well. It’s nice to have the six days to get him right where we want him for the final now.”
Balraj used the pole to lead, sat on King Of Swing and kept trying without ever threatening the winner. Did enough to make the final.
Former Kiwi pacer Triple Eight had another soft pegs run, but ran by far his best race so far, coming wide and making big late ground in a scorching 54.3sec last half. He’s right on target.
Expensive Ego also completed his clean sweep, but in more hard-fought fashion than King Of Swing.
The four-year-old had to burn a much quicker lead time and first quarter to find the lead and McCarthy clearly nursed him as much as he could to the line to beat Our Uncle Sam by 1.6m with Mach Dan third.
“He was super tonight. He had to really burn early. It was massive to fight them off like he did,” McCarthy said,
“I didn’t even pull the blinds. He was awesome.”
Our Uncle Sam’s terrific second was enough to get him into the final, while Mach Dan is first emergency after finishing third.
It’s only fitting the Turnbull clan will have a NSW Inter Dominion pacing finalist on Saturday night.
Amanda Turnbull, the third generation of the great Bathurst harness family, caused an upset in the first of last night’s heats to qualify sit-sprinter Bundoran for the big dance.
Turnbull’s grandfather, the late great Tony “AD” Turnbull won the 1974 pacing final in Perth with Hondo Grattan, aka the Bathurst Bulldog.
Then it was his son Steve’s turn when he won the home state Inter Dominion with Smooth Satin at Harold Park in 2002.
Amanda Turnbull is Steve’s daughter and one of the most decorated drivers of any sex in Australia.
Bundoran made full use of gate one to trail the leader and favourite, Max Delight, and nab him right on the line with Spirit Of St Louis flashing home late out wide from a midfield trail in the running line.
The 1min53.2sec mile rate took 0.2sec off the track record.
Max Delight and Spirit Of St Louis ensured their final spots as well with good runs for second and third.
Inter Dominion Pacing Final Field :
King Of Swing, Expensive Ego, Spirit Of St Louis, Alta Orlando, Max Delight, Triple Eight, Malcolms Rhythm, Balraj, Bundoran, Majestic Cruiser, Boncel Benjamin, Our Uncle Sam. Mach Dan (1st emerg), The Black Prince (2nd emerg)