Day At The Track

Grass track racing returns tomorrow

05:00 PM 16 Sep 2017 NZST
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Friend, Harness racing
Friend and Gavin Smith after the Methven trial win
Harnesslink Photo

This Sunday will see the return of grass track racing, as the Methven Trotting Club hold their spring harness racing meeting at the Methven track.

Last Saturday the Mt Hutt trials were run on the track and Friend,Dundee Lady and Bank Raider were all impressive winners who are all lining up again this Sunday at the races.

Friend (Changeover - Rafiki) is trained by Phil Burrows at Rangiora and the 3yo colt was an impressive qualifier at Rangiora two weeks ago.

At Saturdays Mt Hutt trials, Friend settled back on the outer early but powered home in the middle of the track to win untouched for driver Gavin Smith. He looks a big chance in a strong maiden field on the weekend and is well drawn at barrier two.

Stablemate Dundee Lady was also impressive, leading all the way in her Saturday trial and winning easily. She is having her first start this weekend and is drawn barrier six 

Bank Raider beat a good field in the last trial of the day, winning well from the front for trainer/driver Leo O'Reilly. A grass track specialist, Bank Raider would be a good chance at longer odds in Race 7 on Sunday.

Rakaia trainer Warren Stapleton had a big team in at the trials last weekend and is looking to back most of them up again at the races on Sunday.

Dean Stapleton who drove several of the Stapleton runners at the trials said of the Stapleton team, "they are all in need of a run and will definitely improve with the trial run under their belt".

"Most of todays runners will be back on the track for the races on Sunday"

"I think our team has been going ok lately", he said.

"Classie Cullect was overdue a win at Kurow as he had been unlucky previously and Leading The Way has really improved, since we stepped up his workload at home"

Dean thought the new handicapping system was a help to their stable runners, by allowing them to drop back into races they were competitive in.

There is free admission and free race books at Methven this Sunday for the Clubs of Canterbury Spring race day. For more details click here.

Often called a punters graveyard, the Methven track can produce some big dividends due to the large field sizes and often softer track conditions.

Buriton Bailey winning in the snow in October 2010


Harnesslink Media


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