Day At The Track

Plutonium Lady wins Ladyship Final

08:42 PM 12 Oct 2019 NZDT
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Plutonium Lady,Harness racing
Plutonium Lady
Bruce Stewart photo

Burnham trainer Mark Jones has always been a fan of Southern Harness racing. He loves to head south to set up his three year olds for both the Southern Supremacy Stakes and the Southland Oaks later in the season.

In consecutive races at Gore today he produced a couple of three year olds that look capable of featuring in both those finals at Ascot Park in April.

Plutonium Lady easily won the $15,000 Ladyship Final beating hot favourite Need You Now by six lengths after leading and clearing out at the top of the straight.

The winning time of 2-43.2 was impressive, in the cold easterly conditions.

“She’s still got a lot to learn but a typical Bettor’s on race day when she becomes a racehorse,” Jones said.

Plutonium Lady had won two races ago at Winton and is now the early season leader on the Southland Oaks leader board.

“She might have one more go at the Sires Stakes Heat at Addington. We won’t take her to Auckland. We’ll just target the filly’s races down here and she may go to the New South Wales Oaks in February. Late in the season will be the Nevele R and New Zealand Oaks and the Southland Oaks. She’ll be a better filly later on so if we look after her now it’ll work out good.”

Plutonium Lady is owned by Sir Loins Limited and Starmark Limited which consist of Grant Hatton, Michael Jones and Jim Haines.

“It looks as though we picked the right one out at the sales.”

In the next race Burnham Boy was posted three wide from the start with driver Sam Ottley having to let him drift back to the rear. With just over a lap to run she took the Bettor’s Delight gelding three wide to improve round the field and sat parked from the 800. Just before turning in, Ottley pulled the ear plugs and soon took the lead from pacemaker Fireforefiddle. And typical of the Bettor’s Delight breed, fought bravely to beat Targaryen by a length and a quarter.


Burnham Boy also wearing number 4 saddle cloth winning for trainer Mark Jones   – Photo Bruce Stewart

In the last race of the day Ottley reined Ideal Draw to win. It was the driver’s 400th winner.

Earlier in the week Jones announced that from the beginning of next month, he and Benny Hill are going into training partnership.

“It’s a new challenge and a chance to refocus and get back on track. It’s an indication that two pretty above average trainers are battling, so we decided to join forces and get stronger. That’s the way forward. The big trainers are getting bigger so we have to combine our forces and get our owners together. It’s got to be better in the long run.”

Earlier in the day Helluva Way cleared maiden ranks at Gore for harness identity Art Bloxham.


Helluva Way returning to the birdcage with driver Blair Orange   – Photo Bruce Stewart

The five year old having its fifteenth start, muscled out favourite Orlando Magic by a head.

It’s was Bloxham’s first winner since Commanding View at Roxburgh in 2008.

The drop back system worked perfectly for Skyvalley mare Spotlight The Valley in the McKeown Group Junior Drivers Trot.

Spotlight The Valley has won seven races, and today raced against horses who’ve had either one or two wins. After trailing leader Justan’s Sister, she came up the passing lane for driver Johnny Morrison to nab Justan’s Sister by a head.

Trained at Balfour by Robert Wilson, the seven year old is raced by the Sunbeam Syndicate.

 

Bruce Stewart

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