News Briefs – 28 September
Westport award winners
Former local trainer Rodney Dickson has taken out the Trainer of the Year at the West Coast racing awards at Westport. Although now training at Bulls in the Manawatu, Dickson had accumulated enough “points” to take out the award. He made it a double for the night when his fine mare Shezsomethinspecial won Harness Horse of the Year. The five-year-old won twice on the Coast last season, at Westport in December and Reefton in March. Westport personalities Jason Yang and Richard Dellaca were named West Coast Owners of the Year thanks to the deeds of a number of horses they race in partnership, including Vinnie Rulz and Rockntommy Rulz and Dellaca, a long-time breeder and owner, was presented with the Personality of the Year award for his services to racing over many years.
McCormick hits 50
Mid Canterbury’s Lawrence McCormick notched win number 50 when he drove outsider Sungait’s Legacy to victory at Motukarara yesterday. The five-year-old Monarchy mare had not finished better than fifth in her previous five starts but got home by one and a half lengths paying $41.90 and $8.90. It’s was McCormick's 50th win, 12 years after his first at Waterlea in 2008 with Bramley Town trained by Andrew Stuart. To make his milestone even better Sungait’s Legacy is trained by his father David McCormick at Tinwald.
Operation for well-performed trotter
Six race winner Over The Love has had a splint bone removed since last racing. Part-owned and trained by Ken Barron, the seven-year-old trotter hasn’t raced since a third at Invercargill in March 2019. Harness Racing New Zealand has also been notified that Mark Dunnett and Black Edition have both been gelded, Longview Lady was due to be served on September 25, and Bettor Grunter has had a wind operation since last racing in late July.
Dexter goes past ten million dollars
Dexter Dunn’s stakes earnings this year have now topped $NZ10 million. The 10-time Kiwi champion driver has had a stellar 2020 in the US. Just in the last few days he had three winners at the Meadowlands in New Jersey and also drove This Is The Plan to back-to-back victories in the Hoosier Park Pacing Derby. According to the US Trotting Association website Dunn has won the most of any driver this year with $US6.684m (or $NZ10.21m) including 272 winners. He leads Tim Tetrick, Yannick Gingras and Andrew McCarthy.