Sundees Son vying for Dominion hat-trick
By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk
Sundees Son will be vying to win three consecutive editions of the Group 1 Dominion Trot (3200m) when he heads to Addington Raceway on Friday.
TAB bookmakers believe the Champion trotter can achieve the rare feat, installing the seven-year-old a $1.70 favourite for the Renwick Farms-sponsored race.
There were questions surrounding the Robert and Jenna Dunn-trained square-gaiter after he broke in his first two starts this preparation, but he returned to his brilliant best when winning the Gr.3 South Bay Cup (2400m) at Kaikoura last start.
“Before Kaikoura he wanted to do a few things wrong, but he got it right at Kaikoura so that was the main thing,” Robert Dunn said.
“It would have been pretty disastrous had he galloped again, but he seems to be really good now, we are really pleased with him.”
While Sundees Son is favoured to win his third Dominion, Dunn isn’t getting too ahead of himself as he was denied achieving the feat in the Rowe Cup earlier this year.
“It would be a great feat if he were to achieve it, but we thought the same with the Rowe Cup and it wasn’t, so we are not pre-empting anything,” he said.
Take A Moment is the only horse to have won three Dominions in a row though in 2002 there was a deadheat with Martina H.
The stable will have two other chances in the race – Aardiebythehill and Mataderos.
“Aardiebythehill has come a long way in a short time. He is solid and I think he is more of a stayer than a sprinter,” Dunn said.
“We were pretty happy with his run the other day. He got held up at the top of the lane, which probably cost him a winning chance, but he trotted through and went great.
“Mataderos made a bit of a blue the other day, but we trained him on Wednesday on the beach. I drove him and I was rapt with the way he trotted.”
Dunn is also looking forward to the Gr.1 Airpark Canterbury NZ Pacing Free-For-All Mobile Pace (1980m) where his stable will be represented by Smiffy’s Terror and Henry Hubert.
“We have got the carpark draw again with Smiffy’s Terror in eight. We haven’t had many good draws over the carnival so far, so we are a bit disappointed about that,” he said.
“Henry Hubert is on the second line, which will probably suit him because I am picking they are going to go really hard.
“Smiffy will go back to near last and take the easy route home and by design of Henry Hubert’s draw, he will be on the inside somewhere, or in the running line handy to whatever the speed is going to be. I am picking it is going to be a hectic speed with some very fast horses in that race.”
The stable will have a strong hand throughout the 13-race card and Dunn has labelled Dance Till Dawn as one of their best chances in the Peninsular Beachfront Resort Mooloolaba Mobile Pace (1980m).
“Dance Till Dawn has been finding the line really strongly,” Dunn said. “She has drawn out in eight, which makes things tricky, but you can’t really go back in that field over 1980m, so she will probably be forced to go forward early.”