More Cup glory in Mighty Santana’s sights
NZ HARNESS NEWS
Trainer-driver John Hay has his sights on more southern Cup glory with Mighty Santana after the pacer’s Gore Cup win.
The five-year-old scored a comfortable front-running win in the 2700m feature on Thursday.
“We might look at the Invercargill Cup now and then the Northern Southland Cup,” Hay said.
“He has got very high speed, he can run a 54sec or 55sec 800m like you have to these days, and he has also got a bit of toughness.
“He has got the all round game at the moment.
“It is a big step up to the good horses though, so we will find out how good he is then.”
Hay races Mighty Santana with Peter Cates, who he describes as his good friend and neighbour at Ashburton.
Cates also enjoyed a victory with Son Of Tiger at Westport on Wednesday.
“He has been a good owner of mine, he lives around the corner from me.
“He lost his wife, Jocelyn, in the winter (July), so this will be a good tonic for him.
“He will be watching at home and the whole family will be having a wine there and they’ll be enjoying it.”
Mighty Santana signalled to Hay he was ready to run a big race in Thursday’s feature with his prior run for fourth at Winton.
The pacer powered home wide on the track after starting from barrier eight behind the mobile.
“He went super at Winton the other day - he didn’t get the best steer by me.
“He went a 55sec [800m] and he was five and six wide around them.
“I was pretty confident if he got the front today – and he made a super beginning - he would be very hard to beat.
“That was the first time ever in front for him - he sat parked in his first win.
“He is just a really nice horse.”
The first three placegetters in the Gore Cup raced along the markers.
The trailing horse, Bettor Enforce, was nosed out of second placing by Mr Kiwi, who raced three-deep.
Global Domination set off gasps amongst the crowd before he smashed the Gore 2200m track record when winning the Cardrona Distillery Three-Year-Old Stakes.
The Tony Barron-trained pacer looked far from a winning chance when jumping marks on the track 200m after the start of the event.
Driver Matthew Williamson was able to settle the pacer down quickly however and the pair went on to win the race in the sizzling time of 2.39.8.
That time took 1.1sec off the all-comers track record, previously held by Art Union.
Barron said that jumping shadows was something Global Domination’s breed had done going back four generations.
“The whole family have done it. Lively Medley, Livitup Medley, even back to Andrel’s Dream.”
Global Domination came south after being tested against New Zealand’s best three-year-olds this spring.
His victory was the perfect way for the pacer to sign off his current campaign, Barron said.
“We came down here for a confidence run, he has had a lot of tough runs, so it’s a great way for him to go to the paddock.”