Williamson v Purdon in fillies trot
By Jonny Turner
It's Williamson versus Purdon at the top of the market for the Canterbury Spa and Pool Group 3 Sires Stakes Classique at Addington tonight.
Three-year-old trotting fillies will go head-to-head for a $40,000 purse with Mark Purdon to pilot the early favourite Paramount Empress.
Brothers Nathan, Matthew and Brad Williamson take the reins behind the next three favourites with the Phil Williamson trained Majestic Love next behind them.
Purdon was on fire on the Williamsons’ home patch at Oamaru last weekend, dominating the Hannon Memorial meeting.
This time the Williamsons head to Purdon’s territory with four serious contenders, including Nathan Williamson’s unbeaten filly Hidden Talent.
The three-year-old has only been seen at the races twice and she’s been highly impressive in both runs.
First up, Hidden Talent missed away before staging a huge recovery to win.
She then reeled off outstanding sectionals to score second up at Winton, showing perfect manners.
“I was pleased with her race at Winton and she has had a couple of trials since then and she has pleased me in them too,” Nathan Williamson said.
“I would say on the manners side of things, fingers crossed she will be pretty right.”
Hidden Talent cops barrier 9 under Friday night’s preferential barrier draw.
Though no one wants to draw such a wide alley, the filly’s speed looks a big factor in overcoming it.
“It’s not ideal, but that is just the way it is,” Williamson said.
“We will work into it as best we can and if she is close enough I am sure she will be running on well.”
Williamson has just one minor reservation heading into the Sires Stakes Classique.
The race comes on the filly’s first big trip away from her home base in Southland.
“She has got the talent there, it is just a question of whether she can handle the experience of her first trip away, which is a slight concern.”
“Hopefully she can take it in her stride.”
“Going forward, I definitely think she has the makings of a lovely mare.”
Matthew Williamson drives a filly he part-owns in Minnie McGoogan in the Group Three Sires Stakes Classique.
The three-year-old’s gate speed looks a massive factor in the Sires Stakes Classique.
Brad Williamson lines up Mixed Faith who has shown plenty of talent but must overcome starting from the unruly.
Phil Williamson starts Majestic Love first up from a spell after winning her only start, with Blair Orange in the sulky.
The remainder of the market is headed by Ellatine from the Craig and Aimee Edmonds stable.