The Tart in the Ladyship

by Dave Di Somma, Harness News Desk

After an intimidating win last start the question around Better’s Tart is : can she back up just a week later in Wednesday’s Ladyship Final at Ascot Park?

In the Kubala Seeds Nugget Final the Brent White-trained three-year-old filly produced a run that left many observers gob-smacked.

After drawing wide she got posted four wide, was three wide for a time, and then parked before getting to the lead at the 800 metre mark.

Just when it seemed inevitable she’d stop she didn’t, with the $1.70 hotpot going on to win by three quarters of a length – White conceding it was “pretty impressive”, while commentator Justin Evans described it as “one heck of a run”.

Now the challenge is to do it again seven days later, and the Ashburton-based White is relying on the word of Alister Black who’s looking after the horse at his Branxholme base in Southland.

“I’m backing his judgement call and he took her for a quiet run Monday and says she’s good to go.”

After Sam Ottley drove her in her last race, regular driver Stephen McNally will be back for the final and while Better’s Tart will likely be a pronounced favourite after her latest outing White is taking nothing for granted, especially from the outside of the front row over a mile.

“I would have preferred 2400 metres but it is what it is.”

“K Barclay is inside us and she’s never shy to go forward”

The Kirstin Barclay – Tank Ellis runner he is talking about is impressive first up winner Wattlebank Star. She has drawn seven, with Better’s Tart immediately to her outside.

White is also wary of Regan Todd’s Art Major filly Seventh Heaven. She was an unlucky sixth on debut after being hampered by a breaking runner on the first bend in her debut on January 13. She’ll be driven by the country’s top reinsman Blair Orange.

If Better’s Tart wins the Ladyship Final it will be her third in a row from four career starts.

By Bettor’s Delight out of three-win mare Top Tart , Better’s Tart ran second on debut at Methven, White saying “she didn’t handle the track at all – she didn’t like it” .

She then followed that up with an impressive win after being parked at Winton on December 19, before her dominant performance last week at Ascot Park.

Not bad for a horse that was passed in at the 2019 yearling sales.

Owned and bred by Jane and David Timperley in South Canterbury they now also race the horse.

While clearly liking what he’s seeing White’s not one to get too ahead of himself.

In saying that though he is thinking of future targets for the filly, and they include the Nevele R 3YO fillies series, the Southland and New Zealand Oaks and the Harness Jewels in June.”

“She’s coming home tomorrow (Wednesday), we’ve give her a freshen up and see what happens.”


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