The Trials ‘Report Card’

What was worth noting at the trials from all over the country for the week ending 29/3/2024

Always A Porsche (3g Always B Miki – Ann Other Porsche) Tr. R & J Dunn

Rangiora qualifier (21/3/24), trailed third of five, improved last 600m with 1x1 cover, back to passing lane final bend, zipped through at the 150m to win with something in hand. MR:2:03.2, 800m in 58.2, 400m in 29.4. Dam had extensive race career in USA/Canada and ended up winning 37 races and nearly $800k. This qualifier a half to Lady Antebellum who has left the Dunns a number of good horses including Billy Badger and Need You Now.

Bettor’s Anvil (2c Bettor’s Delight – Isabella Anvil) Tr. S & A Telfer

Trailed third of five, asked for an effort at the 350m and did enough to finish best. Last 800m in 59.0, 400m in 29.9. Was a $90k purchase at the yearling sales and now held in high regard by stable, but for setback, would have been more forward at this time but still looks very capable and his breeding/pedigree support the notion that he can be above average, ultimately. Note: Qualified impressively at Addington 27/3/24

Magician (3g Captaintreacherous – Imaginary Bet) Tr. C & C Dalgety

The half brother to Merlin set alight at the start to get across to lead from wide draw, defied rivals to get past in straight MR:2:02.6, 800m in 59.4, 400m in 30.1. As his breeding suggests, he was a big money yearling purchase and to date has placed twice in just the 4 starts as a 2yo, last started September 2023. His large group of owners will be hoping that he can now live up to that breeding.

High Step (3f Father Patrick – High Gait) Tr. M & N Purdon

Settled fifth of seven in her heat, still had plenty to do 600m out, improved sharply last turn and showed a touch of class to come over the top and outfinish her rivals final stages. Last 800m in 60.2, 400m in 30.1. Good enough to be taken to Australia where she won four of five starts as a 2yo, last started here in NZ last December and no further back than fourth in a further four NZ starts. Deserves respect wherever she goes in the coming weeks. dward Hill led and had the field in trouble only to break at the 400m and lose all chance. Note: High Step given another trials run at Ashburton (26/3/24), placed third.

Neverseentherain (3g Always B Miki – Craft Beer) Tr. R & J Dunn

Settled well back in 10 horse heat, worked into 1x1 1400m, challenged in straight and did enough to get home, last 800m in 58.1, 400m in 29.0. Had one start back in September as a 2yo for group of high profile owners, has been given time to mature and definitely looks a horse to follow early in his career. Donttelltheboys (1w/1pl from just 2 starts) caught the eye making up ground strongly from well back for minor placing.

Sweethomealabama (3g Sweet Lou – Zena Mac) Tr. M Jones

Trailed mostly before popping out at the 600m to attack pacemaker, led on straightening and did best against quality opposition, last 800m in 57.5, 400m in 28.1. Has only had the one start for one win way back in July 2023 but looks very promising and astute trainer will do the right thing by his horse.
Allamericanlover and Here’s Herbie both ran on solidly over the final 400m for minor placings, both were comfortable at the line.

Sunny’s Sister (4m Majestic Son – Stardon) Tr. R & J Dunn

Gave her three rivals (3 stablmates) 30m head start and happy to race fourth of four, closer final turn, little trouble getting over the top in straight, 800m in 59.9, 400m in 29.0. Has been freshened since her three start northern campaign where she had little luck, last start mid February. No doubting her motor and sure to feature wherever she goes in the coming weeks.

Point Break (4g Bettor’s Delight – Break Dance) Tr. B Hill

Enjoyed a nice trail, challenged in straight and got the upper hand last 150m. Time honours of the day with the 800m in 56.5, 400m in 28.0. Has already established a handy record winning three from just 10 starts and can be confidently expected to embellish that record further. Alta Meteor (30m) and Ohoka Connor (40m) gave rivals a fair start and not asked for any real effort but their third and fourth placings were noted, making ground late without threatening the winner.

Two Francs (3g What The Hill – Teachers’ Pride) Tr. A & L Neal

Cambridge (21/3/24), the unqualified trotter straight to the front and always going well, too strong at the business end MR:2:05.2, 800m in 60.6, 400m in 30.3. Dam won four and has already left a good horse in Mum’s Pride (9 wins + $114k). 2yo Sharp Image (Rogerson/Ferguson) trailed throughout and gave a sight last 400m, a promising effort duly noted.

Summit Ultra (4g Stunnin Cullen – Cracka Speights) Tr. K Green

Invercargill (22/3/24), the Green trained runner away well to trail in field of five, looking for room final turn, used passing lane to clearly outfinish rivals. MR:2:04.2, 800m in 58.5, 400m in 28.7. Freshened since finishing down the track in February, one of three unplaced starts to date. Stable going well down south and this effort was that of an improver.

Haley Jaccka (3f Always B Miki – Erin Jaccka) Tr. B Gray

Got to trail, popped out to lead 800m, sprinted sharply to do best in the run home. Overall time nothing startling but home in 57.9/400m in 27.9. A recent qualifier from a four win mare who race timed in 1:53, that gets one’s attention. A promising filly worth putting into the black book

South Seas Rock (5g A Rocknroll Dance – Fire Dancer) Tr. T Dewe

Straight to the front and always going well, skipped away around final bend, won with a ‘leg in the air’, last 800m in 56.5, 400m in 27.3. Already the winner of five5 (4 from the Geoff/James Dunn stable), did win for new stable back in December and freshened before tailing field home home in a strong Wyndham Cup (16/3/24) on last start resumption. Stable knows how to put on a winning polish.

Wag Star (4g Sweet Lou – Sunny Two Shoes) Tr. C Ferguson

Wyndham (23/3/24) only had the two rivals and trailed early before improving to lead midrace, not extended to stay in front, last 800m in 56.2, 400m in 26.7. The winner of four from 10 has not started since a last start seventh behind the likes of Merlin and Don’t Stop Dreaming at Addington back in early December. Won’t have any trouble winning a few more in the deep south judging by his race record to date. Huki Fella led before going back to third, parked last 600m and gave plenty of cheek over the final stages. Another by Lord Forbes who made a positive impression last campaign.

By Chance (2g Lord Forbes – Livy Franco) Tr. A Milne

Speaking of the sire, the Milne trained runner zipped straight to the front and kept up a strong run to stay in front of 4 rivals, last 800m in 58.1, 400m in 27.5. Found Always Dreaming and co too tough on debut. Would like him more in a southern maiden but the connections possibly eyeing a start in the Kindergarten Stakes, has a motor all the same.

Captainshavtime (2f Captain Crunch – Betterthanbrie) Tr. B Gray

Led two rivals throughout, sprinted away in stylish fashion to come clear final stages. MR:2:03.4, 800m in 58.5, 400m in 28.6. Qualified impressively at the beginning of March (beating By Chance) and could be getting her chance against the better 2yos in the coming weeks. Dam won five and further breeding supports her case to be a handy racehorse.

Carolan Questro (3f A Rocknroll Dance – Averil’s Quest) Tr. R MacKenzie

Cambridge (23/3/24), led out over her two rivals before taking a trail after 600m, didn’t wait for passing lane, came three wide on straightening and did best final 50m without being pushed. MR:2:03.3, 800m in 58.2, 400m in 28.7. Didn’t flatter in only start at Auckland but is the fourth foal from a 9 win mare who won in excess of $115k and the first three foals have all won at the races. Shows enough to warrant consideration in the right maiden field.

Strikem (2g Art Major – Ima Single Girl) Tr. M Jones

Ashburton (26/3/24) Jones runner got to trail stablemate Mystery Beach after 400m, out to take issue inside 600m out, too strong over concluding stages without over exerting itself. Last 800m in 57.9, 400m in 27.8. Dam an unraced full sister to Spankem (21 wins, 1:47.7 and $2M in stakes) so has a bit to live up to on the score of breeding alone

Jazzy’s Upstart (3f Downbytheseaside – Shikaka) Tr. B & T White

Only three in the heat, settled third before improving to lead with 1600m to run, clear 400m, far too strong for impressive win, last 800m in 60.0, 400m in 30.2. Half sister to Jazzy Star (7 wins) who was good enough to run 1:50.8 in Australia. This filly has plenty of upside judging by this effort 6 secs under qualifying time

My Royal Break (3f Royal Aspirations – Break Out) Tr. G O’Reilly

Stepped beautifully in this qualifier (field of three) and soon left clear in front as ‘trailer’ broke after 500m, ran away from rivals last 800m and officially a ‘distance’ away at the line, nearly 9 secs under the required time, last 800m in 59.3, 400m in 29.3. Dam won five and this is the immediate family of former top trotter Sovereignty (28 wins + $780k). This heat win got our attention just on its own.

Hi Hopes (4m Downbytheseaside – Roanne) Tr. T Bagrie

Rangiora (26/3/24) settled fifth of six in indian file, worked into 1x1 cover inside final 800m, swept up wide on final turn and too good over the concluding stages. Last 800m in 57.9, 400m in 29.1. Lightly raced one win mare and hasn’t started form fell away when tackling the Nelson summer circuit, put plenty of dash into this effort. Stablemates Eurokash (T) (off 40m) and maiden Lady Vincent both ran nice trials to finish just in behind the winner.

Magic Dash (5g Kadabra – Habibti Sadie) Tr. Wallis & Hackett

Pukekohe (27/3/24) Note the change of stable, previously with Regan Todd (last start mid Dec 2023), settled fifth of six, still way off the pace 400m out, made ground stylishly over final stages to snare third, last 800m in 63.6, 400m in 31.0. A winner of four down south, his sectionals would have been superior to those off the front. Dam a daughter of Ten To One, making Dash a close relation to a stack of good fast winners. Stable knows how to kick goals with these type of horses.

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