Take After Me to have his 200th start as a trotter
By Dave Di Somma, Harness News Desk
Dual-gaited warhorse, Take After Me will clock up his 200th start as a trotter at Addington on Friday night, and it seems he's nowhere near finished.
The Holmes Hanover 12-year-old has had a total 323 starts, since first racing as a three-year-old, with four pacing wins and 14 as a trotter.
"I knew he was close to 200 because my old mate Trevor Grant and Rachmaninov brought up 200 the other day and I knew we were next," says Take After Me's trainer Fred Scott.
Rachmaninov brought up his 200th start at Rangiora on May 21. Now Take After Me will do the same, in the KB Electrics Handicap Trot.
He started life as a pacer, finishing second on debut in January 2014, and had four wins before having his first start as a square-gaiter in 2018.
"He always wanted to trot," says Scott, "and he's always been more of stayer than a speed horse."
For the past five years he's mixed his gaits but had much more success as a trotter, with 14 wins from his 199 starts.
He has the distinction of having the most starts of any horse still racing in New Zealand, and is the second all-time behind the now retired Alexy, who had 347 starts between 2012 and his final race at Oamaru in September last year. His stakes earnings currently stand at just over $245,000.
Fred Scott took over the training of Take After Me in 2021 as son Glenn battled cancer.
The fact Take After Me won at Methven on April 26, a week after Glenn's death, remains a hugely poignant highlight for Fred and his wife Jan.
"It was so special," says Jan, "and throughout Glenn's illness we had so much support from everyone in the game."
Take After Me heads into his milestone start in good form, having won at Ashburton less than a month ago, and he looks to have plenty of racing left in him.
"He's sound and still loves to race," says Fred, "and there's no reason why he shouldn't keep going."
Race 6, The KB Electrics Handicap Trot, is set to go at Addington on Friday, June 9 at 7.36pm.