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Chase Auckland may have has lost two weeks out of his NZ Cup preparation with a minor injury but that is by no means the end of the penny section as the Aussies say. "It's a muscle thing, something he has just nicked in  the paddock and is nothing serious" Natalie said "We have put him on ultrasound treatment and we expect that it will be all cleared up in two weeks tops" "If that is the way it works out it doesn't threaten a Cup preparation but any longer and it could be a problem from that point of view. But I doubt it will take any longer than that and probably not that long" Chase Auckland returned to the stable recently to begin his new preparation which is not guaranteed to end in a NZ Cup attempt anyway. With all the rich four year old features on both sides of the Tasman through the spring and summer it is being viewed as an option in a perfect scenario but nothing beyond that at this stage.    Courtesy of All Stars Website

The biggest night of the Albion park harness racing calendar is finally here and the competition looks as fierce as ever. Tomorrow night we will honour the famed pacer Blacks A Fake, who earnt over $4.5mil with 72 wins under his belt. Trained & driven by Natalie Rasmussen, he won the 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2010 Inter Dominion Championships - making him the only four-time winner of Australasia's premier harness race. Other achievements include wins in the Queensland Winter Cup (3 times), Victoria Cup, Hunter Cup and three Australian Horse of the Year titles. The $200,000 grand circuit event, the "UBET Blacks A Fake" starts as race 8 on the program at 8.40pm. Race favourite, Atomic Red lines up against last week’s Garrard’s Sunshine Sprint winner, Tact Tate as well as the likes of Let It Ride, My Field Marshall, Cruz Bromac and Glenferrie Hood. Additional group races on the program include the G1 QBred Triad Finals for the two year olds, G2 AQWA Constructions Queensland Derby, G3 Ted & Edna Badcock Memorial 4YO Championship and G3 Haras Des Trotteurs Marathon. The program also highlights Australasia’s most talented drivers in the Garrard’s Horse & Hound Drivers Invitation Pace with New Zealand’s Dexter Dunn joining Queensland drivers Nathan Dawson, Grant Dixon, Pete McMullen, Gary Whitaker and Kelli Dawson alongside interstate competitors Luke McCarthy, Chris Geary, Amanda Turnbull, Anthony Butt, Matthew Craven and Rob Morris. For the meetings full form analysis and selections refer to Racing Queensland harness racing specialist Darren Clayton’s deliberations on the meeting: http://www.harness.org.au/punting/punters-corner/form-analysis/?keyNum=221470 The race meeting has a number of exquisite betting propositions courtesy of wagering service provider UBET. Headlining these offers is a $25K First 4 jackpot pool on race 1 scheduled for 5:08pm EST. This is complimented by a $5K First 4 jackpot pool on race 8, the UBET Blacks A Fake. Additionally, a $2.5K Quadrella jackpot is listed for races 2 to 5 with the first leg due at 5:42pm EST which is complimented by $2K jackpot Trifectas on races 3 to 6. The first race of an action packed 10 event card begins at 5.08pm EST. For further information contact the Club on 07 3262 2577 or info@aphrc.com.au Racing Queensland

Several leading harness racing drivers have had their fines reduced after being charged for failing to come up into and/or maintain their position behind the starting gate at this years harness jewels at Cambridge. The normal penalty for breaking this rule is $100 but the Judicial Committee however, in all cases imposed higher penalties as the meeting was a major one with all stakes being higher than $40,000. Gavin Smith, Ricky May and Mark Purdon were fined $400. Natalie Rasmussen was fined $500 because she had been warned earlier in the day. Brent Barclay was fined $200 and his licence was suspended for one day and Terry Chmiel had imposed on him a three day suspension. All drivers appealed their penalties and all were succesfull with the fines reduced to $200 for Mark Purdon, Gavin Smith, Ricky May and Natalie Rasmussen. Terry Chmiel had his suspension reduced to two days and since two days had already been served there was no further penalty. Brent Barclay had his penalty reduced to the fine of $200 only.   Full details below: BEFORE AN APPEALS TRIBUNAL OF THE JUDICIAL CONTROL AUTHORITY FOR RACING UNDER THE RACING ACT 2003 IN THE MATTER of the New Zealand Harness Racing BETWEEN MARK PURDON TERRY CHMIEL BRENT BARCLAY NATALIE RASMUSSEN RICKY MAY GAVIN SMITH Appellants AND RACING INTEGRITY UNIT Respondent Appeals Tribunal: Mr Garry Thompson, Chairman Mr Russell McKenzie, Member Written decision issued on the 30th June 2018 It was ordered by consent that the appeals be dealt with on the papers. DECISION OF THE APPEALS TRIBUNAL OF THE JUDICIAL CONTROL AUTHORITY 1. INTRODUCTION 1.1 Each Appellant was charged under Rule 857(7) which states “no horseman shall fail to come up into and/or maintain his position” 1.2 The Rule referred to above is normally dealt with as a minor offence being listed in the Minor Infringement Schedule but the Race meeting at which this was held being the Waikato Bay of Plenty Harness Racing Club (Harness Jewels meeting) meeting on 2nd June 2018 at Cambridge Raceway had every race carrying a stake of $40,000 or greater being what is described in the Penalty Guide as a major race. 1.3 Accordingly, the RIU stewards sought to uplift the penalty amount which had a standard penalty of $100 and therefore filed the charge with the raceday Judicial Committee. 1.4 The Stewards submitted that a 100% increase in the normal penalty be imposed since in all cases these were major races. They therefore submitted that a penalty of $200.00 or an equivalent suspension was appropriate. 1.5 The Judicial Committee, however, in all cases imposed higher penalties. Messrs Smith, May and Purdon were fined $400. Ms Rasmussen was fined $500 because she had been warned earlier in the day. Mr Barclay was fined $200 and his licence was suspended for one day and Mr Chmiel had imposed on him a three day suspension. All have appealed. 2. THE APPEAL 2.1 It is necessary for the Appeals Tribunal to form its own decision on the matters placed before it and in this case the Tribunal has directed that this be dealt with on the papers. 3. SUBMISSIONS FOR THE APPELLANTS 3.1 Mr Lawson submitted that what the Stewards submitted by way of penalty was appropriate and that the penalties imposed by the Judicial Committee were excessive. 3.2 Mr Lawson raised a number of relevant matters including the fact that it was not suggested that the penalties had previously been manifestly inadequate, the losing driving fees after 6th position were the same as any other meeting, the visual aspects of knowing where 1609m starting point was created a difficulty and the mobile barrier moved faster than normal because of the distance of the race and the quality of the horses. 3.3 Mr Lawson admitted that the penalties should all be $200.00 except that Mr Barclay who received a one day suspension as well as a $200 fine simply have this replaced by a $200 fine only and Mr Chmiel who received a three day suspension, but no fine have his suspension reduced to two days. 4. SUBMISSIONS FOR THE RESPONDENT 4.1 Mr Ydgren submitted that a 100% increase on $100 being the standard penalty to $200 was appropriate except in the case of Mr Chmiel who had a previous breach of the rule so his penalty it was submitted be a two day suspension which had already been served. 4.2 Mr Ydgren explained the allowance horsemen have of half a length grace and stated that drivers are required to know where the starting position is on the track and that in the circumstances all the horseman either made a simple error and misjudged their position or were unaware of where the actual starting point was. 5. DECISION Having considered the submissions on behalf of the Appellants and the Respondent we are satisfied that a 100% increase in the penalty prescribed by Minor infringement Scheme is appropriate in the circumstances this being the submission of the RIU stewards at the Race Day Hearing. The onus is on the Appellants to show that the penalty imposed by the Judicial Committee was manifestly excessive and in our view the Appellants have discharged that onus. 6. PENALTIES We impose a penalty of $200 fine on Mark Purdon, Gavin Smith, Ricky May and Natalie Rasmussen. We impose a penalty of a two day suspension on Terry Chmiel he having had a previous breach of this rule and since two days have already been served there is no further penalty. Brent Barclay was issued with a fine of $200 and had his licence suspended for one day and his penalty is reduced to the fine of $200 only. 7. COST AND FILLING FEE Mr Lawson has made no application for costs and submits that costs should lie where they fall. He has submitted that the $250 filing fee be refunded. We agree with both those submissions. The penalties we are imposing are what were submitted by the RIU at the hearing and the Respondent should not be penalised because the appeal is successful. The Appellants should not be out of pocket as they were successful. Dated this 30th June 2018 Garry Thompson CHAIRMAN   Harnesslink Media

Eamon Maquire has capitalized on a great trip in the running to win the harness racing Gr1 $150,000 4yo Emerald today at Cambridge Raceway. Driven superbly by driver Natalie Rasmussen, the Art Major four year old had a great run in the one by one behind A G's White Socks who sat parked while Tiger Thompson ran them along in front. In the straight A G's White Socks hit the lead but could not withstand the finish from Eamon Maquire and Star Galleria, with Eamon Maquire coming out on top by half a length from Star Galleria with a further length back to A G's White Socks in third. Part owner Graeme Anderson  who trained Eamon Maquire for the early part of his career was jubilant after the race saying it was a no-brainer giving the horse to Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen to train. "We have a small team and can not travel so giving the horse to Mark and Natalie was a no brainer to me. "I am grateful to them for the job they do. They are quite good at it you know,'" he joked. "The horse has always had a lot of high speed and we just had to wait for him to develop, but he will be a better horse in twelve months time," he said. Natalie Rasmussen gave a lot of the credit to Graeme Anderson after the race for the way the horse had been developed. "We got this horse in such good condition and we did not have to do much with him. " I have joked to Graeme he is not getting him back," she said. Eamon Maquire paced the mile in1-51.9 with a final 800m in 56.1 and the 400m in 27.4 seconds. Interview with Graeme Anderson Eamon Maguire   ALLIED SECURITY 4YO EMERALD (MOBILE PACE) (Gr1), $150,000, 4YO GELDINGS & ENTIRES, 1609m   For 4-year-old pacing geldings & entires. Video  Weather: Overcast     Track: Fast      Race History     Plc Bk Horse Barrier Hcap Stakes Fav Time Margin Driver Trainer 1 10 Eamon Maguire 10 fr 75,000.00 1/1 1-51.9   N C Rasmussen M Purdon & Ms N C Rasmussen 2 11 Star Galleria 11 fr 22,500.00 2/3 1-52.0 0.50 Z E Butcher S J Reid 3 2 A G's White Socks 2 fr 15,000.00 3/2 1-52.2 1.50 R T May G P & Mrs N M Hope 4 9 Black Chevron 9 fr 6,375.00 9/8 1-52.6 3.30 J H Abernethy D B Gale 5 1 Northview Hustler 1 fr 4,735.00 6/5 1-52.7 3.90 A P T Poutama R W Green 6 12 Billy Badger 12 fr 3,770.00 7/7 1-52.7 4.00 J R Dunn R J Dunn 7 5 Tiger Thompson 5 fr 3,770.00 4/4 1-52.8 4.10 M J Williamson B K Mowbray 8 6 Italian Delight 6 fr 3,770.00 8/11 1-52.9 4.60 T A Cameron (J) A G Herlihy MNZM 9 8 Check In 8 fr 3,770.00 12/10 1-53.2 6.50 D J Butcher S G Telfer 10 7 Royal Bengal 7 fr 3,770.00 11/12 1-54.0 10.50 B G Barclay K & T Barron 11 4 Classie American 4 fr 3,770.00 10/9 1-54.3 11.60 T W Mitchell R D Richardson 12 3 Run Boy Run 3 fr 3,770.00 5/6 1-55.2 16.10 D J Dunn M P Kerr $150,000.00   Scratchings SCR 13 Somewhereinbrooklyn 13                     Divs: $2.40. $1.30. $1.40. $1.40. Quinella $3.30. Trifecta $12.90. TAB Double[races-6,7]:(5,10) $6.70. TAB Conc.:(5,11) $4.00. First4 $163.80. Margins: 1/2 length, 1 length, 1 3/4 lengths Times: Mile Rate: 1-51.9 Last 800m: 56.1 Last 400m: 27.4 Placed Horses:       Eamon Maguire 2013 4 B g Art Major - Kim Maguire   (by In The Pocket)    Trainer: M Purdon & Ms N C Rasmussen, Rolleston    Owner: B D Sceats, G J Anderson, R Chalklin, S R Pulley, A D Gow, Mrs P P Gillan    Breeder: R L Kennedy,Mrs D C Kennedy    Star Galleria 2013 4 B g Art Major - Starlitnight   (by Tuapeka Knight)    Trainer: S J Reid, Pukekohe    Owner: R N Caldow, S J Reid, J A Screen, Mrs T C Screen    Breeder: R N Caldow    A G's White Socks 2013 4 B g Rock N Roll Heaven - Atomic Gold   (by Soky's Atom)    Trainer: G P & Mrs N M Hope, Woodend Beach    Owner: G P Hope, P G Laboyrie, P I Baken, Mrs V M Robertson, W R Stewart, Mrs C L Stewart, A R Pullar, Mrs B E Pullar    Breeder: P G Laboyrie

Art Major filly Princess Tiffany has kept her unbeaten run intact by winning the Gr1 $150,000 Diamond for harness racing 2yo fillies. In an incident laced race, the first upset came when the Aussie horse and expected leader Platinum Revolution was crossed off the gate by the maiden pacer Linc's Bute Girl. Meanwhile Princess Tiffany had to be good to win after getting back near last early out of the early burn before looping the field to win going away for driver Natalie Rasmussen. Natalie was overjoyed after the race and gave credit to the fillies speed and stamina. "She is a super 2yo filly and just feels like an older horse, Natalie said on trackside after the race. "She has just got such an amazing turn of speed and different gears, her toughness and manners just set her apart and she is a credit to the barn," she said. Princess Tiffany was lucky to avoid a skirmish 700m out from home that ruined the chances of several runners including those of the stablemate Kayla Marie. Winning by 5 lengths, Princess Tiffany paced the mile in 1-54.23 and beat the Robert Dunn trained Arma Indie with Havtime running home well into third for driver Zachary Butcher. Interview with Owner Braeden Whitelock straight after the win Princess Tiffany RA & JV YARNDLEY 2YO DIAMOND (MOBILE PACE) (Gr1), $150,000, 2YO FILLIES, 1609m    (Qualifying Time: 2-06.4)   For 2-year-old pacing fillies. Video  Weather: Overcast     Track: Fast      Race History     Plc Bk Horse Barrier Hcap Stakes Fav Time Margin Driver Trainer 1 8 Princess Tiffany 8 fr 75,000.00 1/1 1-54.2   N C Rasmussen M Purdon & Ms N C Rasmussen 2 4 Arma Indie 4 fr 22,500.00 10/10 1-55.2 5.20 J R Dunn R J Dunn 3 10 Havtime 10 fr 15,000.00 5/5 1-55.6 7.20 Z E Butcher B Purdon 4 12 Bubbled Up 12 fr 6,375.00 6/6 1-55.8 7.90 T M Williams M Purdon & Ms N C Rasmussen 5 7 Kayla Marie 7 fr 4,735.00 3/3 1-55.9 8.40 Mark Purdon M Purdon & Ms N C Rasmussen 6 9 Buzinga 9 fr 3,770.00 4/4 1-56.1 9.50 D J Dunn C T Dalgety 7 11 One Kool Kat 11 fr 3,770.00 11/11 1-59.1 24.80 A P T Poutama D W & Mrs C McGowan 8 1 Platinum Revolution 1 fr 3,770.00 2/2 1-59.3 25.70 L R Tritton S P & Mrs L R Tritton 9 2 Linc's Bute Girl 2 fr 3,770.00 12/12 1-59.8 27.90 B D Butcher (J) R W Green 10 6 Gold Rocks 6 fr 3,770.00 7/8 2-02.8 42.90 D J Butcher R W Green 11 5 Sezana 5 fr 3,770.00 9/9 2-03.0 44.10 B N Orange C T Dalgety Pup 3 Fantasize 3 fr 3,770.00 8/7     T A Macfarlane T A Macfarlane $150,000.00   Scratchings SCR 13 Kendra 13                     Divs: $1.80. $1.20. $13.80. $3.20. Quinella $82.70. Trifecta $605.00. First4 $4236.20. Margins: 5 1/4 lengths, 2 lengths, 3/4 length Times: Mile Rate: 1-54.2 Last 800m: 55.8 Last 400m: 28.2 Placed Horses:       Princess Tiffany 2015 2 B f Art Major - Dancing Diamonds   (by Bettor's Delight)    Trainer: M Purdon & Ms N C Rasmussen, Rolleston    Owner: B J Whitelock, Mrs C J Whitelock, P J Creighton, Mrs M C Creighton    Breeder: B J Whitelock,Mrs C J Whitelock    Arma Indie 2015 2 Br f Well Said - Arma Courage   (by Courage Under Fire)    Trainer: R J Dunn, Woodend Beach    Owner: Miss D L Harrison, J P Mathers    Breeder: Miss D L Harrison,J P Mathers    Havtime 2015 2 B f Mach Three - Bettor Move It   (by Bettor's Delight)    Trainer: B Purdon, Clevedon    Owner: Havtime Breeding Limited, Malcolm Little, Sarndra Little    Breeder: Mrs C M Dalgety,Mrs M C Creighton,P J Creighton,D Zame    Harnesslink Media

One of New Zealand’s most promising trotters has been bought by one of the legends of the industry just days out from the Harness Jewels. Which means Oscar Bonavena will join the All Stars army for Saturday’s massive meeting at Cambridge. After having looked an outstanding talent in just two start for trainer Phil Williamson the two-year-old colt was sold to former Kiwi now US-based trainer Chris Ryder and the godfather of New Zealand harness racing Roy Purdon. Roy’s son Mark will be the new trainer, with partner Natalie Rasmussen to drive Oscar Bonavena on Saturday in the $125,000 two-year-old trot. “He is a lovely colt and I was very impressed at Addington last start when he finished second to our other horse, Enhance Your Calm,” said Purdon.  “So we are thrilled to get him for Chris and of course for Dad.” While no trainer likes to see a horse as good as Oscar Bonavena leave the stable, Williamson was all smiles yesterday.  “It is a good sale and I hope he turns out to be a champion for them,” said Williamson.  “It is a very good price, which it needed to be as we had a lot of interest in the horse.  “And obviously he is going to a great home.”  Williamson got a kick out of Roy Purdon taking a half share in the son of Majestic Son after he came out to watch Mark trial Oscar Bonavena on Monday.  “I said to Mark at the time, you are not bad having a bloke like him (Roy) come and give you a second opinion.  “But I am thrilled Roy got a share in him, he is the legend after all.”  Usually any horse joining the All Stars days before a group one race would shorten dramatically in the market but with Williamson one of the most highly regarded trainers of trotters in this part of the world, any great price slash for Oscar Bonavena would be an over-reaction. Michael Guerin

Shez All Rock (3yo Diamond) - Following the running of the New Zealand Pacing Oaks on Friday the 18th of May it was noted the horse Shez All Rock broke from its gait over the final stages and then paced indifferently through to being pulled up after the race. A post-race Veterinary examination showed the horse to have some minor shoulder soreness. The following day the filly underwent further Veterinary examination at the ‘All Star’ stables where some sensitivity was noted in the horses’ fetlocks. These joints have subsequently been injected. Stewards will continue to liaise with the stable regarding this. Elle Mac (3yo Diamond) - Driver and co-trainer Natalie Rasmussen reported she had been slightly disappointed with the efforts of this filly in the New Zealand Pacing Oaks. The stable have advised that it is their intention to have blood taken on the 22nd of May for analysis and undertook to notify Stewards of the results of these. Diababa (3yo Diamond) - Driver and co-trainer Terry Chmiel has notified Stewards that following this fillys performance in the New Zealand Pacing Oaks, which he perceived to be disappointing, a Veterinary examination was carried out. Resulting from this the filly has had her fetlocks injected. Mr Chmiel also had blood taken for analysis and undertook to notify Stewards of the results. Run Boy Run (4yo Emerald) - Run Boy Run was late scratched from the Oamaru HRC meeting on the 20th of May after being found to be lethargic and off it’s food on race morning. Trainer Mitchell Kerr has advised that the horse was also displaying some nasal discharge and a course of treatment has commenced. Mr Kerr added that it was his intention to continue with the horses’ preparation towards the Harness Jewels. Jesse Duke (2yo Emerald) - A slight lump was noticed on the front right leg of this horse following its winning performance in the Sires Stakes Final at Addington Raceway on the 18th of May. The Stable notified Stewards of this and their intention to have the leg scanned. This afternoon a Veterinarian scanned the leg and was satisfied the horse was able to continue with its Harness Jewels preparation. Stewards will continue to liaise with the stable regarding this. HRNZ

Iron horse Eamon Maguire has narrowly won tonight's Group One $100,000 NZ Messenger. Eamon Maguire showed blazing gate speed to lead early before handing up to Tony Herlihy driving Star Galleria. In the straight Eamon Maguire (Art Major-Kim Maguire) was always the horse to beat given the great run in transit he had received and he levelled up to Star Galleria and clawed his way to a half head victory.  Driver Natalie Rasmussen gave a lot of the credit for the win to former trainer Graeme Anderson. "We have only had the horse ten days," she said after the race, so a lot of the credit has to go to Graeme. "This horse is a pleasure to have in the barn, he's got perfect manners and he zipped off the gate and got that perfect trail tonight. "A few of them were getting pretty tired near the finish but my guy had that little advantage and held it," she said. Eamon Maguire paced the 2700m mobile in 3-15.7 with a final 800m in 56.2 and 400m in 27.9 seconds.  Star Galleria battled on gamely for second to give sire Art Major the quinella in the race and A G's White Socks ran home well for third.   Eamon Maguire winning the Group One Messenger Harnesslink Media

After being good enough to run second to unbeaten stable mate Princess Tiffany last week, honest filly Kayla Marie gained a deserved win in the 2yo fillies feature at Alexandra Park tonight. Kayla Marie was simply too good for the opposition in tonights Group One $150,000 Magness Benrow Sires Stakes final. Driver Natalie Rasmussen settled back early before making a move mid race to land the park position with 700m to go. In the straight Kayla Marie asserted control early in the run home and cruised to the line to win by nearly a length, beating early leader Havtime and driver Zachary Butcher. Natalie was thrilled with the effort and said after the race, "From the draw I was just a little bit lucky they went hard early and I got around them pretty cheaply. "The wee filly felt great in the run tonight and that run last week tightened her up nicely for this evening. "She has been a bit of a bridesmade in her races and really deserved that win tonight," she said. Kayla Marie set a New Zealand record for a 2yo filly, blasting over the 1700m mobile in 2-01.2 which equated to a mile rate of 1-54.7.  The last 800m was cut out in 57.6 and the last 400m in 27.9 seconds. The All Stars Stable also won with smart trotter Winterfell, who easily accounted for a smart field of trotters in the 2018 Breckon Farms Northern Trotting Derby. Natalie Rasmussen drove Winterfell and for the second week in the row he was too strong for runner up Majestic Man who again battled on well for second. Kayla Marie winning the fillies feature   Harnesslink Media  

Unbeaten 2yo harness racing filly Princess Tiffany has been scratched from her upcoming race at Alexandra tomorrow night.  The scratching comes after Princess Tiffany suffered an infection after standing on a nail and puncturing her hoof during the race she won at Alexandra Park last Friday night. Natalie Rasmussen said on the All Stars Website, "I think we were always up against it with her because in our experience an infection almost always follows a nail in the foot and it was just a case of whether we might dodge a bullet. "Poi rang this morning (Wednesday) to say he wasn't happy with her so we were not going to risk the best filly around even if we could have. "How long she will be out is not certain," she said. Princess Tiffany was a red hot $1.18 fixed odds win favourite with the TAB for the $150,000 group one fillies Sires Stakes and now the race opens up considerably. The All Stars Stable mates Ruby Rose and Kayla Marie have both firmed into around $4.00 favourites in the race. Bordeaux is also a late scratching later in the programme. The classy trotter is suffering from tie-up issues and a minor laceration and is out of the (Gr1) $150,000 Rowe Cup.   Harnesslink Media

The entire Alexandra Park track has scanned by a mental detector to avoid a recurrence of what could have been a group one disaster there last Friday. But Auckland Trotting Club officials are adamant a nail found driven into the hoof of exceptional juvenile pacing filly Princess Tiffany did not come from the construction sites alongside the track. Princess Tiffany was found to have a nail lodged in the frog, the triangle shaped  section on the bottom of a horse’s hoof, after her group one win in the Caducues Club Classic. Co-trainer and driver Natalie Rasmussen believes the filly could have stepped on the nail in her preliminary when she felt her take a misstep, with adrenalin helping her through the race before she showed signs of soreness upon cooling down. The nail drew blood and was removed when Princess Tiffany returned to the stabling area and she was then given antibiotic shots. “She seems to have come through the whole thing well and wasn’t sore this morning,” said co-trainer Mark Purdon. “So while it wasn’t a great thing to happen, we think she will be able to start this Friday. “The main thing is she seems all right and Dominique Dowding (ATC chief executive) rang to talk over the whole situation with us, which we appreciated.” Dowding says while the incident shocked the ATC they are confident the nail didn’t come from one of the two construction sites at Alexandra Park where two apartment buildings are being built. “While we can’t be certain we think that is very doubtful,” says Dowding.  “The construction sites are 8-9 metres back from the track and they are at a stage where nails aren’t being used, mainly metal and bolts. “The guys here who looked at the nail said it was very encrusted with track surface and we are thinking there is a chance it was in the surface material we put on the track last week.  “Either way, the safety of the horses and the drivers is paramount to us and the staff here have been right around the track with a metal detector three times today and found nothing else.”   Dowding says the float park area where the horses arrive and the stabling area will also be scanned.  “We can’t absolutely certain how it got there but we are confident now there is nothing else metal on the track.   “We will also have measures put in place when the construction sites move into a different phase which might involve nails. But as I said, they are a long way from the track.”  Princess Tiffany has a golden opportunity to remain unbeaten and claim another group one in the $150,000 Sires’ Stakes Final this Friday, drawing barrier three while her two stablemates and key rivals have drawn the second line over the 1700m. Winterfell will also be short odds in the $100,000 Northern Trotting Derby after he drew the ace but the $100,000 Messenger looks more spicy with a host of the big names drawing the front line.  Last Friday’s Taylor Mile winner A G’s White Socks has barrier two in the 2700m group one, More The Better (three), Eamon Maguire (four) and Star Galleria (barrier seven).  Speeding Spur has been the big win in the draws for the $150,000 Rowe Cup, drawing handy on the front line over 3200m whereas defending champion Temporale (eight) and Enghien (seven) are drawn wide and last Friday’s Anzac Cup winner Lemond will start from the second line.   Michael Guerin

Unbeaten 2yo filly Princess Tiffany has taken out the Group One $110,000 Woodlands Stud Caduceus Classic tonight at Alexandra Park. Driver Natalie Rasmussen had the Art Major filly in a good spot for most of the race and she was too good for the opposition in tonights race, blasting up the inner near the line to beat stable mate Kayla Marie and driver Blair Orange. "She is the complete package this little 2yo", said Natalie after the win. "With her speed you can place her anywhere and she is so genuine and professonal. " I was getting a little bit worried when Blair got away on us a bit on the turn, but to her credit she just picked them up easily." The All Stars Stable landed the trifecta in the race with Bubbled Up and driver Brent Mangos running home in to third place. Princess Tiffany paced the 2200m mobile in 2-42.6, only 0.7 of a second outside the New Zealand record. The last 800m was paced in 56.4 seconds. Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen also won the $60,000 Haras Des Trotteurs Sires Stakes during the night with smart 3yo Winterfell. New Zealands top training duo were unlucky to have their good filly Luby Lou scratched out of the race with a minor injury, but got the job done with their second stringer Winterfell. Driver Natalie Rasmussen was happy with the effort of the Majestic Son gelding after he looped around to the breeze mid race and was too strong in the run to the line. "He is pretty green this fellow but he has got that bit of raw talent, and I just let him settle early before making a move. "I wanted to be near them at the turn and not be coming wide when the sprint went on and to his credit he is pretty tough and he stuck it out well,"  she said.   Princess Tiffany winning the Group 1 tonight     Harnesslink Media    

Luby Lou showed she was the best 3yo trotter in the country when she waltzed away to win the $100,000 (Gr1) New Zealand Trotting Derby at Addington raceway tonight. Two weeks ago Luby Lou beat the fillies convincingly in the Trotting Oaks and trainer Mark Purdon was in two minds whether he would start her against the boys in the Derby.  "She is such a natural trotter and I thought if there are a few there that make mistakes, then she will be there to capitalize even if she has to do a bit of work in the running," he said tonight. During tonights race, Luby Lou (Muscle Hill - Luby Ann) was beyond midfield early before getting a beautiful cart up three wide behind the stablemate Winterfell until the home turn. In the straight driver Mark Purdon only had to flick the reins at the classy filly and she powered to the front to win easily by more than three lengths at the line. Winterfell stuck on well for second to make it an All Stars quinella for driver Natalie Rasmussen and Majestic Man battled on well into third. Luby Lou trotted the 2600m mobile in 3-14.2, not far off the New Zealand record of 3-13.5 set by Habibti in this race five years ago.   Luby Lou winning the derby   Harnesslink Media    

War Dan Delight continued on his winning way when he took out the time honoured Alabar New Zealand Kindergarten Stakes at Wyndham yesterday. "He's a little professional, a typical Bettor's Delight and just does what he has to when he has to. Today he felt great in the running and sits on good speed. I think he's going to be a genuine racehorse with really good speed," said driver and co-trainer Natalie Rasmussen after the win. For most of the 1609 metre journey she trailed stablemate Jack Jones who ensured there was a strong pace early. Halfway down the straight Rasmussen pushed the colt into a gap and he came home nicely to beat a late charge from another stablemate Another Masterpiece. The winning margin was a neck.  Natalie Rasmussen and War Dan Delight (2)          - Photo Bruce Stewart. "He got a bit lost when he hit the front. He was going to go woosh but then when there was nothing to chase he went ........ okay (knocked off). I think a few gear changes will sort that out."  War Dan Delight is out of the seven win Elsu mare Miss Elsie which won two of her five two year old starts including her debut at the Northern Southland meeting in January 2010. Miss Elsie, as a broodmare, has also left Raukapuka Ruler which has won six of his fifteen starts.  He's owned by Australian Danny Zavitsanos and was bought at the 2017 Sale of the Stars for $90,000 when named Horotane Jack. Rasmussen says she's had a bit to do educating War Dan Delight.  "I've had a lot to do with him. He was just borderline early on and we ummed and arred. I had to iron out a few little niggles with him. After his first or second trial he thought 'ah I am a racehorse' because he's just so casual. Even in the trail today he was very kind and at the 1000 I had to turn the stick around and say come on, wake up. But he's going to go places."  The time of 1-53.3 was a new race, track and Southland record for two year olds. The previous record of 1-54.3 was jointly held by Kindergarten Stakes winners Le Sol (2010) and Itz Better To Win (2014).  "No surprises there. The track was lightning fast. Just beautiful and in great order."  It was the seventh time Mark Purdon has won the Kindergarten and the fourth time in the last five years that the Purdon/Rasmussen training combination have won the race. Purdon, as a solo trainer, won it in 2003 with Lennon and again in 2013 with Messini. In 2008 he won it with Sir Clive who he trained in partnership with Grant Payne. His last five winners with Rasmussen have been; 2016 - Pacing Major, 2015 - Waikiki Beach and 2014 with Itz Bettor To Win. The win also gives War Dan Delight a good chance of completing the time honoured treble of the Sapling Stakes (Ashburton), Kindergarten Stakes (Wyndham) and Welcome Stakes (Addington). The last horse to do that was Pacing Major in 2016.   And in a major move, the Rolleston training partnership recently decided to buy fewer yearlings at the sales so it's likely that they'll have fewer two year olds next season.  "We ended up with about 18 instead of thirty or forty so we can concentrate on each individual a bit more." Bruce Stewart Southland Harness Racing  

Sensational harness racing 3yo Chase Auckland was back in winning form tonight, easily winning the $235,000 Woodlands Stud Northern Derby in race and New Zealand record time.  The imposing son of Auckland Reactor has now won eight races from nine starts this season, with his only defeat coming last week, when he was beaten by stablemate Sicario in the Derby prelude. Sicario ran second tonight giving trainers Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen the Derby quinella. Chase Auckland (Auckland Reactor - Delicata) did not get it easy in tonights race and had to work hard to get to the front. However once getting there he never looked like getting headed and he cruised to victory in 3:16.8 for the 2700m mobile. Driver Natalie Rasmussen was full of praise for the 3yo after the race and said, "He raced well wide for a long way and I had to let him settle before committing him to take the front. All credit to the horse, he tried real hard and always felt great in the run."   "He actually felt like he could not get beat when he got to the front."  "It was great to wear the teal pants and win in a race like this," she said. The All Stars Stable had a very successful night also winning with Princess Tiffany and Jesse Duke. Princess Tiffany won the 2yo fillies $80,000 Delightful Lady Classic after sitting parked for the whole trip, while Jesse Duke put in an amazing run when winning the Group One $100,000 Young Guns. The impressive Jesse Duke (Bettor's Delight - Daisy Dundee) looked like he would be unlucky for the second week in a row when he was squeezed and broke early, but he picked himself up and zoomed home out wide from last at the turn to win narrowly in a 1:55.0 mile rate. His run was one of the best 2yo performances seen on the track in recent years. Chase Auckland winning the Derby   Harnesslink Media    

Mark Purdon will be hoping for a second training win in the Miracle Mile on Saturday night and if it happens he will know it has been well earned. So will Natalie. Both could tell you how hard a race it is to win. Bloody hard!. Even by super race standards All Stars has one on the board thanks to HAVE FAITH IN ME driven by Natalie in his fabulous, record shattering  2016 victory over Lennythshark. But both Mark and Natalie have hard luck stories in other runnings of the race. BLACKS A FAKE posted two second placings for Natalie one by half a head. IL VICOLO was twice second also for Mark. The second time, when he went down to Iraklis in December 1996 they set a mile rate which was never bettered in the race while it was run over 1760m, which it was until 2009. JACK CADE trained and driven by Mark was second to Sokyola in 2003 and SMOLDA second to Lennytheshark last year when LAZARUS was third and WAIKIKI BEACH 4th.  That makes six second placings between Mark and Natalie so perhaps Natalie's strike rate won her the drive this year ! The race is also tougher for New Zealand horses to win than you may think especially given the number of superstar horses we have developed i n the last 20 years. Kiwi-trained horses have only won four Miles this century. Holmes D G won his second in 2000, Monkey King won the first mile race nine years later and Christen Me and Have Faith In Me have scored since. The other thing about the Miracle Mile- If you are an avid supporter of the Kiwis and you have heart problems-don't watch. Only one horse has won the race over the mile  by more than 2 metres. Which isn't very far. The last three have been won by short half heads (nose to us) or a head and that tradition looks like continuing on Saturday. Only one  of the mile races has not broken 1.51 and that was when Smoken UP easily beat Karloo Mick and Imamightyquinn back in 2011. There is no fear of a 1.51 mile this year with 1.47 under threat if we get the fireworks many are expecting,    Courtesy of All Stars Racing Stables www.allstarsracingstables.com               

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