She’s Tough returns to happy place

By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk

She’s Tough will be back to her pet distance and preferred racing surface when she contests the Woodlands Mount Hutt Pacing Cup (3000m) at Methven on Sunday.

The Brad Mowbray-trained mare won over 3000m on the grass in the Waikouaiti Pacers Cup and Hororata Cup before suffering a heart fibrillation and taking no part in last month’s Waimate Cup.

She subsequently finished fourth over 1980m at Addington Raceway last week, but Mowbray said the all-weather surface isn’t to her liking.

“She doesn’t seem to cop the all-weather as well as she does the grass,” he said.

“I was happy enough with the run last start, especially the last furlong. She really knuckled down and got into it.

“She had a heart fibrillation the start before at Waimate and she has come through that as well as can be expected.”

Looking ahead to Sunday, Mowbray is expecting another bold showing from his consistent mare.

“It is a pretty even field,” he said. “She is not without a chance. We have just got to hope she gets a good run, steps away well, and the rest will play out for itself.”

She’s Tough currently sits in ninth position for the Harness Jewels 4YO Diamond at Cambridge Raceway in June, but Mowbray said they have a few creases to iron out if she is to head north for the all-weather assignment.

“She is ninth in the Jewels so far, so we are still tossing up whether we go there,” he said. “We have just got to work out why she doesn’t pace as well on the all-weather.”

Mowbray will also be represented on Sunday by Gypsy in the Bayleys Ashburton Mobile Pace (1609m) and Spicy Girl Becqui in the Jonny Cox Racing Stables Mobile Pace (1609m).

“Gypsy has been running really nice races,” Mowbray said. “She has had three starts for us for three pleasing performances. She just needs a decent trip and she won’t be too far away.

“Spicy Girl Becqui, you just don’t know what is going to happen there. We have changed a bit of gear on her and changed a bit of her training, so we will have to wait to see what happens on the day.”

Cup test for galloping pacemaker

Trainer Amber Hoffman’s galloping pacemaker Dodgethebullet will have another tilt at Cup glory when he contests the Woodlands Mount Hutt Pacing Cup (3000m) at Methven on Sunday.

The seven-year-old gelding heads into the race in good form having won and placed in his last two starts, including a brave third-placing in the Waimate Cup (3000m) last start.

“He has just been used as a galloping pacemaker in front of the babies. He enjoys that job and seems to be thriving off it,” Hoffman said.

“He has surprised us a bit. He has been going quite well and it was a tough effort to run third last time because he was probably all done with 100m to go, but he kept trying the old fella.”

He won four races for previous trainer Tony Stratford and Hoffman said he is thriving working on the beach since he has joined her barn.

“Tony Stratford has done an amazing job with him and he has got a new lease on life again being on the beach. We are really happy with him,” she said.

Dodgethebullet will start from behind the 10m tape on Sunday and Hoffman is expecting him to run a positive race.

“He is such a good beginner, I think he will put himself right in the race early and he should get a good trip,” she said. “A similar run to Oamaru would be nice.”

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