Looking to weave some magic

NZ HARNESS NEWS

Driver John Morrison is looking to weave some magic with Stick Man, who has a tricky starting spot to contend with at Winton on Thursday.

The Paul Court trained pacer has drawn one on the second row in race 6, the $12,000 Nugget Final.

Stick Man’s two impressive recent wins and his solid last start fourth placing have him as the horse to beat in the event.

But it is up to Morrison to find a path for the three-year-old to show his talent.

“We will be having a go anyway,” Morrison quipped.

“Having only one horse on the second row should help; we will be trying to get out of there at some point.

“He is probably my best drive. The camp is pretty happy with him and his races have showed that he is a pretty nice horse.”

Morrison has been lending a helping hand with trackwork at the Court stable and pairs with several of the stable’s horses at Thursday’s meeting.

Mongolian Warrior will debut for the Court-Morrison combination in race 3, a highly competitive maiden affair.

Though the horse also has a tricky back row draw, Morrison is not writing off his chances after solid recent qualifying effort at Rangiora.

“He has trialled up really nicely and he is a nice horse to drive – his trials have been good.

“I don’t think he will be too far away.”

Elegant Jewel will also have her first start for the Court stable with Morrison in the sulky in race 2.

Morrison was not behind the filly when she won a qualifying trial by three lengths at Rangiora recently, but has driven her in trackwork.

“I have driven her at home, obviously being a first starter we don’t know too much about her but I think the camp are happy enough and I think she will be a progressive type.”

Morrison also jumps behind Mongolian Cavalry in race 10 after Court steered the three-year-old to win in good fashion at Addington earlier this month.

“He is obviously a horse whose gait has affected him in the past, but he is coming right now.

“His win at Addington was quite good and I think he will take the step up in grade pretty well.”

Morrison is also confident his father Chris’s trotter can step up in grade in race 4 after his last start maiden win at Invercargill.

“He has always had a lot of ability but his manners have let him down.

“But he seems a lot better this time in and I think if he trots away he won’t be too far away.”

Morrison also pairs with the Doug McLachlan-trained trio of Poldark in race 1, Kagee VC in race 5 and Franco Huntington in race 7 on Thursday.

“Franco Huntington has been knocking at the door so hopefully he steps away and gets a nice run.

“Kagee VC went really well at Invercargill last week, I was really happy with him.”

Morrison is hoping for more luck than in his last experience behind Poldark when he was tipped out of the sulky at Gore last month.

“He was coming in to it quite nicely that day and he was going to get a bit of money.

“He’s probably a bit sharper than last time I drove him so he should be a good chance.”

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