Mo'unga kicking goals at Addington

By Dave Di Somma, Harness News Desk

"Too big too strong", was the call from commentator Matt Cross as Mo'unga cruised to an emphatic victory at Addington yesterday.

And the Regan Todd-trained pacer certainly deserved a decent rap. He had produced a dominant display to win the Cheviot Businesses Cheviot Cup by near five lengths.

"He won it pretty easy," driver Robbie Close told Harness Unhinged's Nigel Armstrong post race, "he is starting to mature into a real race horse and just gets better and better."

Starting off 10 metres, the five-year-old got off to a flier and went straight to the front. Dashing Major went up to apply some pressure but Mo'unga stayed in front and left the field in his wake as he went 57.6 for the last 800, 29.4 for the last 400.

"It was an even field but he's done it real nice," says Todd, "and it was a super drive."

Known as great breeders of All Blacks and champion horses, it was Braeden and Caroline Whitelock who bred Mo'unga (Bettor's Delight - O Baby). They also bred his mare O Baby (Christian Cullen - Braeside Lady) who won nine from 34 and nearly $400,000.

Named after the former Crusaders and All Blacks star, Mo'unga was bought by Kennard Bloodstock at the 2020 National Yearling Sales and initially based at the All Stars barn before Todd took over.

"He had a wind op and had a year out," says Todd.

In 14 starts Mo'unga has now won six times, with yesterday's performance arguably his best.

The plan now is for the horse to get one more start in order to qualify for the $110,000 Country Cups final at Addington in May.

The day's other feature went the way of Forever Dream for Team Dalgety in the Group 3 Cobbitty Equine Farm Leonard Memorial for the 2YO Fillies. Carter Dalgety led easily from a handy draw (3) before trailing General Jen and Blair Orange a lap out. In a competitive finish, Forever Dream then scooted up the passing lane to beat Spicey Crunch (Tim Williams) by a neck, with General Jen third.

Dalgety had a double for the day, after also winning with Piccadilly Pete, while the country's top driver Blair Orange won four races (R1 Del's Creation, R5 Millwood Goddess, R6 Peraki Seelster and R10 Fitzthebill) to take his season's tally to 54. He has a 11 win lead over John Dunn (43) with Sam Ottley third on 37.

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