Smokin Bandar opens big winter campaign at Addington tonight
By Jonny Turner
Tonight’s Addington meeting will be an important stop off for open class star Smokin Bandar.
The grey trotter returns to racing following a minor injury which curtailed what was largely a very successful spring campaign.
Trainer Craig Ferguson plans to take Smokin Bandar to the Brisbane Winter Carnival and the trotter needs to impress at Addington if he is going to make the trip across the ditch.
With the runner-up in the Canterbury Park Trotting Cup over his injury troubles and having impressed in a recent workout, all signs point toward a big return.
“He seems really sound now and I think he is forward enough to run a good race,” Ferguson said.
“He has always gone pretty good fresh and he is a horse that doesn’t take a lot of work.”
“I was quite happy with his workout the other day, so if he gets a nice run hopefully he will go pretty good.”
Ferguson has his stable junior Max Hill engaged to drive Smokin Bandar in race 5 on Thursday night.
If the pair can produce a solid return it will be onward to Auckland and then Australia.
“The plan is, provided everything goes well, that he’ll then have a few days at Regan Todd’s”
“Then he will head to Auckland via Bernie Hackett and Michelle Wallis’s.”
“He will go to Sydney next and we will tag along with Jack Trainor on his Queensland campaign.”
Smokin Bandar opened a warm $1.70 favourite for Thursday night’s feature trot.
Second favourite The Dominator ($6.50) is in a similar position to Smokin Bandar, returning fresh up with Gemma Thornley’s junior claim.
Another talented horse returns to racing at Addington in Thursday night’s feature pace in Deny Everything.
The big striding pacer returns to racing for the Mark Jones stable after getting over a series of setbacks.
The seven-year-old has had three trials to prepare for his return, winning his last two outings.
Deny Everything brings proven standing start form to race 6 while his early co-favourite will be facing the tapes for the first time.
Donmaro will be out to remain unbeaten this time in when competing in his first standing start.
The pacer has the advantage of being the only horse on the 25m back mark.
Both Donmaro and Deny Everything opened at $2.70 odds for race 6.