Telfer set to expand
By Michael Guerin
In-form trainer Steve Telfer is bringing in some family help as he gets set to take his stable nationwide next year.
Telfer has trained seven winners in as many weeks since racing returned in late May and has Silk (R4, No.6) looking for her fourth win on end at Alexandra Park tonight.
Telfer would already have set a new personal best for the season had it not been for harness racing’s two-and-a-half month Covid-19 break, having trained 48 winners this term chasing his PB of 50 in 2018.
While he has still get to the 50 this term he should set an even more impressive record next season as he goes into a training partnership with his sister Amanda Telfer with a view to opening a Canterbury satellite stable.
“Amanda has been our traveling foreperson for a long time now and has also driven in amateur races,” says Telfer.
“But we will be in partnership next season because we will be expanding a bit.”
Telfer is the trainer for Stonewall Stud who have purchased the Canterbury property owned by late training legend Jack Smolenski.
“We won’t be taking it over until November next year but the idea will be to have a race team of maybe eight or so down there with the majority up here,” says Telfer.
That comes about as the Telfer barn and Stonewall Stud continue to grow through not only through the latter’s breeding programme and consistent sales purchases but a successful syndication side to the business which has proved hugely popular for those who want to get into racing a pacer without great expense.
“It has gone very well and we have 52 horses in work here at the moment,” says Telfer.
“But that means for the Alex Park meeting in two weeks we have seven fillies to take to the races in the same grade.
“So eventually having a South Island base will enable us to break those types of numbers up as well as race horses at their best carnivals.”
Telfer thinks Silk can win again tonight with talented Alicia Harrison an asset in the junior driver’s ranks.
“She (Silk) always had ability down south before we got her but she was a bit of a victim of circumstances and lost her form,” says Telfer.
“But back up here she is has confidence back and she likes to roll along so I think she will go close again.
“Ultimately I think she will end up in North America where the racing will suit her perfectly. She would run some great miles up there.” Telfer has nothing but love for intermediate grade trier Parker (R10, No.5) who rates as an each way chance in the last race again but his biggest hand tonight is in an admittedly strong race seven with Jack Ryan (3) and Kerri Maguire (5).
“Jack Ryan is a horse I have always liked but he has been green. But I think he will win a few races this time in though as he gains more experience.
“And Kerri Maguire is a lovely big filly. She has gate speed and a better draw tonight so she will got forward and be hard to beat.”
As has been the case since racing resumed the John and Josh Dickie team are worth following tonight with Kuyomi, Kristofferson, Tricky Ric and Callie’s Dream all winning chances while punters can expect improvement from the Ray Green stable tonight after their fresh-up runs two weeks ago.