Team Telfer head south and Nairn debuts smart pair
By Jonny Turner
Team Telfer is ready to kick off what they hope proves to be a successful Canterbury raid that continues in to the spring at Addington on Sunday.
Left-handed racing has led to trainers Steve and Amanda Telfer sending Major Mac and Secret Deal south from their Papakura stable.
The pair are not suited to right-handed racing, so will be based in Canterbury for the foreseeable future and it is expected they will be joined by more of their stablemates.
“Neither of them go right-handed, so we were thinking of sending them down there,” Steve Telfer said.
“When we got locked down up here it just meant we sent them a couple of weeks earlier than we were originally going to.”
“We will have more coming with the fillies heats and the Harness Millions and races like that coming up.”
“And later on Triple Eight could be down there ahead of [the] Ashburton [Flying Stakes].”
Major Mac will have just his second start in the 2600m mobile conditions of race 3 after battling niggling injuries.
“He has shown ability all the way through, but he has had injuries that have limited his starts,” Telfer said.
“He can do a little bit wrong and he needs to get better at a few things.”
“But he has definitely got ability and 2600m should suit him.”
Major Mac has had a strong grounding ahead of his resumption on Sunday with five workouts following the national lockdown.
The 4yr-old ran fourth to The Banker, who ran second in his next start at Cambridge, in the latest of them.
John Dunn will drive both Major Mac and Secret Deal.
The Telfer team opted to start the latter out of his grade in race 4 so that Dunn was available to steer the 5yr-old.
Secret Deal has also had a strong grounding in workouts and trials recently.
The pacer went on to have one start before heading south when seventh behind Captain Nemo at Cambridge a month ago.
“Last start he went a bit rough, but we think we are well on top of the reason for that.”
“He has had quite a few trials over the last 12 months and he has always trialled quite strongly.”
Telfer took a light-hearted approach when queried about having a maiden taking on a 14 win horse in Four Starzzz Shiraz in Sunday’s 1980m mobile.
“The best thing about that is he won’t know it,” Telfer quipped.
Trotting master Paul Nairn steps out two first starters that have trialled well leading in Sunday’s meeting.
Well related 3yr-old Bitamuscle will debut in race 2 after impressively wining two trials.
Nairn confirmed that the Muscle Hill trotters has some of the family ability his brother Lotamuscle and half-brother Andoverlov have shown.
“I am pretty happy with him and I was pleased with him at the trials,” the trainer said.
“His manners will be a big part of it, we have given him a bit of practice at home behind the gate.”
“But, ringcraft – you can’t get it in five minutes.”
“In saying that his manners seem pretty good and he is trotting pretty well.”
Outamyway got within a length and a quarter of Bitamuscle in his only public appearance at the Rangiora trials.
In that heat, the pair beat Venus Tyron who has gone on run a second at Addington earlier this month.
“He has improved since his trial and he is working as good as the other horse,” Nairn said.
“At home there is not a lot between them, so it will come down to the way the race is run.”
“He seems like a nice staying horse.”