Oscar Bonavena makes early return
By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk
Group One winner Oscar Bonavena will make his raceday return at Addington Raceway on Friday, a couple of weeks earlier than planned.
Trainer Regan Todd was looking to kick-off his preparation in the Basil Dean Trotting FFA (2600m) later this month, but he has come to the aid of Addington Raceway this week to boost the field numbers in the Avon City Ford Free-For-All (1609m).
He was initially set to trial at Ashburton Raceway on Tuesday, but will instead run around for a cheque on Friday against some quality opposition, including fellow Group One winner Majestic Man.
“There were only originally four nominated for the race at Addington. Instead of going around in a one-horse trial I thought we might as well help the club out and put him in the race,” Todd said.
“Majestic Man has had a race and The Dominator has been pretty consistent.
“He will end up following them around from (barrier) six.”
Todd was pleased with Oscar Bonavena’s runner-up effort in his 2600m trial at Rangiora last week and will look to progress through to his original racing schedule after this week.
“I was pretty happy with his trial last week, he did everything I asked of him,” Todd said.
“We are two weeks ahead of when we were originally going to race, so this week will be a bit of a glorified trial for him.
“The original plan was to start in the Basil Dean and then onto the Ordeal Cup. From Friday we will head to those races.”
Todd will also have a two-pronged attack in Friday’s feature pace, the Garrards – National Handicap Pace (2600m), courtesy of last start winner Terry and Cheezel.
“I have been pretty happy with Terry, he has come back quite nice,” Todd said. “Cheezel might find it a bit hard against some of those good ones but she has earnt her shot at them.”
Rounding out Todd’s quartet of runners on Friday will be last start runner-up Bubba Scrub in the First Direct Taxis Mobile Pace (1980m).
“Bubba Scrub has had no luck with the draws, but it worked out perfectly last week,” Todd said.
“Blair (Orange) drove him a treat. They ended up getting on the favourite’s back and got a bit of place money.
“He should benefit from the run, he is just going to need a bit of luck.”