Maiden win for Dadndave

NZ HARNESS NEWS

There was only one place Tim Trathen wanted to go to celebrate the overdue maiden win of Dadndave at Addington on Thursday night.

“I’ve just walked in to The Yaldy to have a quiet one with the owner,” he said a few hours after tasting success.

The Yaldhurst Tavern and Dadndave do, in fact, share the same ownership – that of genial publican Dave McHugh.

Trathen has known McHugh for many years and says the naming behind the horse was very much to do with McHugh.

“I ended up paying 10 grand for her at the mixed sale, which I thought was too much of a bargain to ignore, for the mare, in foal to Sportswriter and with him at foot by Bettor’s Delight.

“The problem is I didn’t really have that sort of money on me at the time so I ended up having to ring Dad and Dave.”

Dad is John Trathen, a former horseman himself who these days, aged in his 70s, is enjoying racing a nice horse with his son and McHugh.

“Dad always had one or two in work and I learnt a lot from him when it comes to the horses.

“He’s had a few ups and downs but he keeps bouncing back, and it’s good for him to have a horse like this to race.”

The win would provide a further boost to the wider Trathen family, Tim reckoned, after a recent health scare.

“My sister’s daughter has been in a bad way in hospital with meningitis.

“They got on top of it just in time, so she’s bloody lucky, but if it had of been an hour or two later, that might not have been the case.”

Trathen says the purchase of the mare, Lady Davinci, could well turn out to be a bargain.

“The Sportswriter filly is bowling around pretty good, too.

“We’ve just put the mare back in foal, to A Rocknroll Dance.”

Dadndave has always promised to clear maidens relatively quickly after making a good impression in a few races as a juvenile last season.

But things just haven’t quite panned out until now.

Trathen and McHugh sold promising trotter Blue Coman for a good chunk of change earlier in the season, plus the former is doing a lot of pre-training for Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen, so there is less financial incentive to push the button on a sale now.

“Early on we turned down about $100,000 for him; we put a but on him as we liked him a lot.

“And there have been nibbles all the way through, including another offer just last week.

“But we aren’t going to give him away.

“That being said, you never make a dollar unless you sell them in this game and it can be hard for guys like me.

“But handling Mark and Natalie’s horses helps you get a line on your own ones.

“It’s like training with the All Blacks; it makes you lift your game.

The plan now will be for Dadndave to have a wee let up before stepping out in January.

“He seems to be thriving on the racing at present and he’s only really just turned three now, so there is plenty more in store.

“But I don’t think he can keep going like this so I’ll probably freshen him up a wee bit and give him a quiet two or three weeks.”

He’s not a big horse, but he’s pretty versatile, showing great speed to lead last night for Ricky May, and previously showing that he doesn’t mind a bit of hard work, either.

“He tries his heart out; he’s a tough little bugger.

“Ricky has always sort of liked him and said tonight was the best he’s felt.”

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