November's breeding and ownership winners announced

In a new initiative to highlight those that help keep our sport going Harness Racing New Zealand has decided on a new monthly award for its breeders and owners.

All owners and breeders who win a race during the month will be eligible, with a random number generator selecting the two winners. Trophies will be sent to both winners each month.

October's inaugural winners were Benjamin Young, a co-owner of Sailor Boy, and Gavin Turner, who bred, trains and races Sir Monty.

And the winners for November are (owner) Matt McEwan, who's part of the Loyal Travelling Reserves syndicate that race Manhattan, and (breeder) Macca Lodge in Northern Southland for breeding Captain Starlight.

Matt McEwan was selected after Manhattan won the Bob McArdle Sires' Stakes Southern Mares Classic on Show Day at Addington (November 17).

It was her 10th career win.

"It was a dream come true for a lot of the Syndicate to win a big race," says McEwan, "sadly I wasn’t there as I live in Wellington but to see the guys really getting into it was so good to see."

"The cheese cutters were out in force which was great to see."

"Manhattan is the only horse I have now but I have had a couple of very small shares in others. Loving every minute of it and look forward to see what happens in the future."

McEwan has had a share in the mare right from the start.

"The original crew was about 40 odd people .... but over time it's come down to the now Loyal Travelling Reserves of just 14. We are all from different walks of life. The horse has brought us together and meant some new friendships and good times on track. We are in it for the long haul and really enjoying the ride."

One of Southland's premier breeding establishments, Macca Lodge was selected as Breeder of the Month after Captain Starlight (pictured above) won for trainer Allan McVicar at Invercargill on November 29.

The five-year-old gelding is by highly successful sire and 2008 New Zealand Cup winner Changeover, who won 29 races in his career and stakes of $2.4m, and out of three-race winning Falcon Seelster mare Hot Toddy.

Set on around 250 hectares near Riversdale Macca Lodge has been operating since 2008. It was set up by Brent and Sheree McIntyre and their son Caine is now also a proprietor.

It is the New Zealand base for sires such as Fear The Dragon, Tiger Tara and En Solitaire plus "local hero" Lord Forbes.

Among his progeny has been Louies Girl, a highly promising two-year-old filly who has won three from seven for Craig Ferguson. She has also been Group placed with a third in Sunday's Group 1 Ace of Diamonds on Grand Prix Day at Addington.

Macca Lodge will also be selling five Downbytheseaside and Fear The Dragon colts at next February's NZB Standardbred National Yearling Sales in Christchurch.

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