Rasmussen with perfect record at Addington
By Dave Di Somma, Harness News Desk
Two wins from two drives continued an epic April for Natalie Rasmussen at Addington last night.
The champion driver has always been a force as part of the All Stars stable and while she's not driving anywhere near as many horses as she has in the past she was to the fore with hotpots OK Boomer and Paramount Empress. They gave her sixth and seventh wins this month alone.
Her strike rate (UDR) from 13 drives is currently at .06068, meaning she's won over 60 percent of her drives so far this season.
Six of her wins have been with All Stars-trained horses, including stable stars Don't Stop Dreaming, High Energy, and Self Assured in the Waikato Flying Mile, with the one outside drive being the Sam Smolenski-trained I Dream Of Jeannie.
In contrast, the country's busiest and most successful driver Blair Orange has had 63 wins from 337 starts and is on target to win a sixth drivers' premiership this year.
The All Stars' father and son combo of Mark and Nathan Purdon have amassed the most stakes of any trainers this year with $729,163 so far. They have had 25 wins from 71 starts, which is third overall behind Robert and Jenna Dunn (47) and Michael House (35).
OK Boomer (Bettor's Delight - Onlyforyou) never looked in doubt as he dominated from the front in the Continental Event Hire Mobile Pace and in the very next race Rasmussen went back to back as Paramount Empress (Muscle Hill - Paramount Queen) had her second straight win this campaign in the night's feature, the Listed $40,000 Stallions Australasia Sires' Stakes Aged Classic Trot.
"She's very professional for such a lightly raced horse," Rasmussen told Harness Unhinged's Nigel Armstrong post-race.
It was the well-bred mare's fifth win in just eight starts - she finished a length clear of Cody Banner and Time Up The Hill.
"It was a big class rise and to lead all the way - I was very proud of her."
The victory was also a success for the race sponsor.
"On a personal note I was delighted to see a Muscle Hill win," says New Zealand Sires' Stakes Executive Martin Pierson, "Peter O'Rourke from Stallions Australasia was good enough to sponsor the race this year and to have Muscle Hills run first and third was a very pleasing result."
In the night's feature pace Happy Place and driver Blair Orange came from off the pace to run down a very game Heisenberg and The Falcon in the Fat Eddie's Mobile Pace.