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There is nowhere Nicky Chilcott would rather be than the West Coast this weekend.  Because while there is a premier meeting at Alexandra Park on Friday night,  Chilcott says the two Team Teal Lady Drivers Challenge races starting at Westport on Friday mean more to her.  And for a very personal reason.  Chilcott is one of the three ambassadors who have helped fly the teal flag during the Teal Pants campaign, which has been running in harness racing since February 1 and raise funds for the fight against Ovarian cancer.  With $400 being donated every time a female drivers wearing the teal pants wins a New Zealand race, $24,000 has already been raised with a goal of $30,000 by Sunday’s end of the campaign.  The fundraising has been widely embraced by the harness racing industry but finishes with a high this weekend with female-drivers only races in which all drivers will wear the teal pants at both Westport and Reefton.  And Chilcott wouldn’t miss it for the world.  “My mother (Lyn) is a cervical cancer survivor so it is a subject very close to my heart,” says Chilcott.  “So I am proud to go down there and drive alongside all the other women.  “I’ll be honest, we are a bit short of staff at the moment and it is a tricky time to be away but this is more important than that. I wish I could have done more to help.” Then with her trademark cheeky chuckle Chilcott admits to a small bonus to her West Coast trip.  “I think I have driven at most of the tracks around the country but never Westport or Reefton so that will be a great experience.  “That and all the people you meet. I find that any time you travel you meet new people make new contacts.  “So to do all that, with the other female drivers and for such a great cause it is going to be a special weekend.” The Westport club will double the usual club donation of $100 per Teal pants win at their meeting to $200 and every race will have a punters club draw where the winner gets two $50 bets, one for themselves and one for the campaign. Reefton will end the campaign with a blaze of teal on Sunday with any patron who wears teal going into the draw to win $1500 worth of prizes. Michael Guerin

New Zealand raises $19,000 for Team Teal   Harness Racing New Zealand are thrilled to annouce that we have raised $19,000 for the Teal Pants Campaign.   The campaign which started on February 1 and finished on March 12 was run for the first time in New Zealand this year and we are extremelyhappy with the results.   We had a total of 39 reinswoman win races throughout the period with each win receiving $400 in donations.   Harness Racing New Zealand donated $200, Woodlands Stud $100 and the Club $100.   The total money raised will be sent to the Womens Cancer Foundation to help with research around Ovarian Cancer.   We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our reinswoman for getting behind this fantastic cause and wearing the teal pants, and a special thank you to our Ambassadors- Sheree Tomlinson, Sam Ottley, and Nicky Chilcott.   We would also like to thank the following for their contribution to this cause: - All NZ Harness Racing Clubs - $100 per win - John Bougen - Reefton INC - Prize for “Wear teal and win” - Hororata Trotting Club - Teal Day - Auckland Trotting Club - Hosting the Women’s Day Shoot - Reefton Trotting Club - Teal Day - Cambridge Raceway - Hosting Ladies Night - Michelle Wallis - Losing driving fees - Woodlands Stud - $100 per win - Kirstin Barclay - Winning driving stakes - Jay Abernethy - $200 donation - Nicky Chilcott - $100 donation - Methven Florist - Flowers for the Fashion Contest - Gore Harness Racing Club - Donation - The Butchers Pie - Vouchers for Fashion Contest - Haircare Market Bush Inn - Prizes for Fashion Contest - Amanda Tomlinson and David Broadhurst - Hurunui Raceday Donations - Kidz Kartz - Wearing teal ribbons - Flair - Donation - Addington Raceway - Charity of the Month - Trackside - Wearing teal and promoting the campaign   Once again we thank everyone for taking part in this fantastic cause. We are already looking forward to supporting this campaign next year. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me on the details below.   Courtney Clarke Harness Racing New Zealand

Waikato Bay Of Plenty Harness Racing is set to support Team Teal in a big way next Thursday 22 February.   The club is thrilled to announce that they will host the three ambassadors for Team Teal in Nicky Chilcott, Sam Ottley and Sheree Tomlinson.   Nicky of course is a local identity, and Sheree and Sam will available for driving engagements at the meeting.   The track holds fond memories for Sam, after she won the Group 1 Four-Year-Old Diamond with Rocker Band in 2016.   “It’s just so great to be able to raise awareness for such a worthy cause, and to be able to drive at Cambridge again is going to be a buzz.    "I’m just excited to be a part of the ladies night,” Sam said. Whilst driving at the Cambridge course will be a whole new experience for Sheree who will drive there for the first time.   She’s no stranger to breaking new ground of course after becoming the first female driver to win the Dominion Handicap with Amaretto Sun last year.   “I haven’t driven in an official race at Cambridge, but I have been there twice before driving with Kidz Kartz. So I’m really looking forward to heading there and supporting the cause, but this time the sectionals might be a bit different!” said Sheree.   The meeting will be known as ‘Ladies Night Supporting Team Teal 18’ and is set to include a ladies night event oncourse, with a proportion of ticket sales going to support the Woman’s Cancer Foundation and further awareness for Ovarian Cancer.   Tickets are only $30 and include and antipasto platter, reserved seating, drink on arrival and a $10 donation to the Wom- an’s Cancer Foundation.   Club President Rob Lawson said the club was only too eager to help support awareness around Ovarian Cancer and the Team Teal Campaign, which started on February 1 and will end on March 11. “I am delighted that our Club can participate in this wonderful cause – it should be exciting having Sam and Sheree here to add a real highlight to our Ladies Night meeting.” The campaign is running nationwide where all female drivers wear Teal Pants to raise awareness for Ovarian Cancer. For each win the pants gain Harness Racing New Zealand will donate $200, Woodlands Stud $100 and each club donates $100 for a win at their track. So in short, $400 goes to the Woman’s Cancer Foundation for each win during the six weeks.   To book tickets for the Ladies Night at Cambridge, or to book Sheree or Sam for drives please contact the Cambridge Raceway Office on 07 827 5506 or email dave@cambridgeraceway.co.nz     Jess Smith

Harness Racing New Zealand are thrilled to announce that following the huge amount of support for the Teal Pants Campaign, all female drivers have agreed to be a part of the appeal. Starting February 1st 2018, all female race day drivers around the country will wear teal pants to help raise awareness around Ovarian Cancer in New Zealand. The campaign will run until 11 March 2018 and three ambassadors have been selected to also wear teal silks. They are Samantha Ottley (Canterbury), Sheree Tomlinson (Southland) and Nicky Chilcott (North Island). Ottley is thrilled to be a part of the first New Zealand campaign. “I’m so pleased to be able to be a part of such a great cause. It’s such a big thing in Australia, so it’s pretty cool to see us Kiwis getting behind it too. Here’s hoping I can drive a few winners in the pants and raise a bit of money!” The first female driver to win the Dominion Handicap, junior driver Sheree Tomlinson is excited to be able to help the cause. “It’s a great way to be able to support women with ovarian cancer, but to also help raise awareness about it and band together as an industry,” Tomlinson said. “I’m really looking forward to being an ambassador for this important cause.” For Nicky Chilcott the chance to be an ambassador hit her on a personal level. “When I was asked to be an ambassador I jumped at the chance to help. My mother was diagnosed with cervical cancer 25 years ago and I’m thrilled to say she is a survivor of it, but I know how hard it was on her and the extended family going through that. She’s very lucky to be here,” said Chilcott. “If we can help anyone going through that terrible experience then I think that’s a huge part of giving back.” The Teal Pants movement initially started in Victoria in 2014 following the loss of Duncan McPherson’s wife Lyn in 2010 to ovarian cancer. It then was held throughout Australia last season. Determined to ensure her passing was not in vain, McPherson came up with the concept to raise awareness, as the symptoms of ovarian cancer often are not obvious. It is a silent killer. He found that often partners of the women taken by ovarian cancer were left lost and without support also, which meant he was often on the other end of a cold call from men who just needed to talk to someone who could understand and help them cope. McPherson has focused a lot of the awareness campaign around targeting men to get them to support their female partners in getting tested early if something doesn’t seem right. But the main message around the Teal Pants Campaign in both Australia and New Zealand is the dire need for better awareness, services and early detection. HRNZ Marketing

Pukekohe harness racing trainer Ray Green grabbed a training double last night when both Linc's Tiger and Rocknroll Lincoln won their respective races easily in  wet conditions at Cambridge Raceway.  Linc's Tiger gave his sire Sir Lincoln another boost, trailing for most of the race before bolting away in the straight to win by 4 lengths and running a quick 57.7 for his last half in the slushy conditions. Rocknroll Lincoln was even more impressive winning in a very quick mile rate of 1:57.5 for the 2200m mobile. His winning time of 2:40.7 was superb considering he led and was attacked twice in the running before winning untouched for driver David Butcher. Cambridge trainer Nicky Chilcott, also trained a double for the night when Shay Scott and Harry H won the two trotting races on the card. Shay Scott showed his liking for the track when winning his second in three weeks at Cambridge Raceway. Although his winning margin of 4 lengths was not as impressive as when he won by 27 lengths three weeks ago, he still won with plenty in hand suggesting there are more wins in store for the eight year old Sundon gelding. Harry H (Muscles Yankee - Sound Of Chiola), a recent addition to Chilcott’s barn won the the higher rated R51-84 handicap stand later in the night. The half-brother to former eighteen win trotter Martina H trailed for most of the race and got the upper hand close to the line to win by a length from the fast-finishing favorite Lovely Bundy. Trainer Arna Donnelly trained her second winner of the season when 5-year-old Bettor's Delight gelding Bet Out Of Ell won the feature event last night. His time of 2:43.7 was only just outside of Awesome Armbro’s national stand start record for 2200m.  Bet Out Of Ell (Bettor's Delight - Elle Mary Rose) started from a handicap of 20m and the race was held in wet conditions making the run of the winner even better. Donnelly was confident of a good showing, thinking the drop in class last night would suit the horse and he duly obliged.       Harnesslink Media

He might not have won the Alexandra Park or Cambridge Raceway junior driving premierships this season, but Dylan Ferguson already looks to have claimed the title of the top ‘North Island Junior Driver’ in 2016-2017. The 20-year-old Cambridge reinsman, who notched up his 50th career win this season, and last week drove his first Forbury Park winner at his first attempt, has won a personal best 22 races this season ($177,417). He is fourth on the national junior driving premiership behind three South islanders. The top three are Rory McIlwrick (38 wins), Matt Anderson (25), and Sheree Tomlinson (23). The next highest North island juniors are Tony Cameron and Jack MacKinnon with 16 wins apiece. But with just two meetings remaining at Alexandra Park this season, Ferguson needs four wins to equal pace-setter, Jack MacKinnon. “I’ve beaten my previous personal best number of wins in my debut year (13 in 2013-2014), and at the start of the season it was my goal to win the North island premiership. I’m rapt I’ve almost achieved that. “I really enjoyed winning at Forbury Park last week. I’m just glad we never raced on the Thursday. The weather was atrocious,” Ferguson said. Ferguson drove the Kirk Larsen trained $4.10 loose favourite, Arthur Lowe, in the fifth race last Saturday, which was also a New Zealand Junior Driver's heat. He finished eighth with 24 points, but in 2014 he was runner-up behind Michelle Neilson. “I’d been to Forbury Park before to watch races but that was my first drive. It was a different shape to what I’ve been used to but the surface was beautiful. “The staff at Forbury need to be applauded for the way the presented the track for the Series. I really enjoyed driving there despite my second drive breaking (Noble Gamble 12th),” Ferguson said. Ferguson, who is the son of former New Zealand Driving champion (2006-2007), Peter, has recorded his 22 wins this season at seven tracks. They have been at Manawatu 9, Alexandra Park 5, Cambridge 4, and Wairarapa, Hawera, Kapiti, and Forbury Park one win each. Ferguson has recorded 56 career wins ($491,989) in New Zealand since he took out his driver’s licence in 2013 – all on nine different tracks. He has also driven winners at Addington and Wanganui in seasons gone by. “It’s been a memorable season. Getting my 50th winner was satisfying. I got most of my opportunities at Manawatu and I’m delighted to have won nine races there this season. “I want to thank all the owners and trainers who have supported me this season. I just want to keep on winning for them all. I’m very grateful and never get sick of that winning feeling,” Ferguson said. The Waikato driver notched up his 50th win behind his boss’s (Nicky Chilcott) 4-year-old Mach Three pacer, Razor Brogden, at the Hawera Harness Racing Club's on April 15. Ferguson nailed his first career win at Cambridge on November 17, 2013 behind the Ken Webber trained Carlos. Then the following year he drove the Pat and Mike O'Brien trained outsider, Beckingsale to win the $25,000 North Island Country Cups Final. Ferguson was 17 at the time. "That's been my biggest win so far. I'm rapt with the way this season has been going. I just want to keep driving winners, and if I do happen to drive for any new trainers or owners I want them to know that I have given my very best for them," the White Star employee stressed. Ferguson had a brief stint in Australia before returning to New Zealand in 2015. Alexandra Park Junior Drivers Premiership 2016-2017 (as of Thursday July 20 - tote races only): Driver Starts Wins Seconds Thirds UDR Jack MacKinnon 79 9 7 6 0.188 Sean Grayling 44 8 6 3 0.2803 Dylan Ferguson 47 5 7 8 0.2358 Rob Argue 61 5 6 5 0.1639 Tony Cameron 35 4 3 6 0.2190. Cambridge Raceway Leading Junior Driver (final points): 1) Jack MacKinnon 23; 2) Dylan Ferguson 22; 3 ) Robert Argue 18; 4) Tony Cameron 15; 5) Mark Johnson 14. Duane Ranger

Waikato galloping trainer Gary Alton has brought many horses back from the verge of retirement - but never a trotter. Tonight (Friday) at Alexandra Park the Cambridge conditioner will see if his work with The Crown Jewels pays off. "When he came to me he was in a bit of a bad state. It was the first time I had tried to mend a trotter. I had always dealt with tendon and ligament problems on gallopers and I could see and feel what I was doing. "You can gallop a thoroughbred and see how he is improving but you can't with trotters. It was unchartered territory really," Alton said. The Nicky Chilcott trained The Crown Jewels came to him with stifle problems at the start of the year because Chilcott knew Alton had experienced success with horses who used his treadmill. "I've had the treadmill for almost six years and it's worked wonders for me. Historian was only trained on it, and nothing else, and he went on and won a couple of Group Ones," Alton said. He said he watched The Crown Jewels slowly progress towards race-day. "He came to me about four months ago and stayed with us for several weeks before Nicky took him home and brought him back regularly for treadmill work. "I was there to watch his first trial back. It was quite heartening" Alton said. It’s been a long, arduous road for the son of Pegasus Spur and Landora's Image. The five-year-old brown gelding hasn't raced since July 8 last year. That night he ran a 22-length 10th at Cambridge. The Crown Jewels and Chilcott won his first workout back at Cambridge Raceway on June 17 by half a length and six lengths, trotting the up to R50, 2200m event in 3:08.7 (mile rate a sedate 2:18). "I was impressed with the way he won that workout. I went and watched him, he has come a long way since the day I first saw him at home. "I only hope the treadmill has helped or fixed his problem. I would be so happy for Nicky and her owners if he did go on and win more races," Alton said. His owners are Barry Lichter, his partner Donna Chisholm (Auckland), Neslisa Turan (Cambridge), David Lichter (New York), Garry Ferris (Auckland), Gary Birkett (Auckland), and Philip Taylor (Auckland). Lichter and the Chisholms (Donna, Alan, and Graham) bred the son of Pegasus Spur. He has so far won two of his 24 starts and placed in seven others for $21,217 in stakes. The Crown Jewels underwent arthroscopic surgery, which is a surgical procedure on the stifle joint. An endoscope that is inserted into the joint through a small incision. The five-year-old brown gelding will start from the unruly (1) front line on Friday at 8.18pm. Duane Ranger

A 2:18 winning mile rate at the Cambridge Workouts is nothing to raise the roof over, but the owners of The Crown Jewels are just rapt they just have something to smile about. The Nicky Chilcott trained and driven 5-year-old brown gelding hasn't raced since July 8 last year. It’s been a long, arduous road for the son of Pegasus Spur and Landora's Image. His career looked as might as if it had come to an abrupt halt after he ran 22-length 10th in his last tote assignment at Cambridge Raceway. The verdict: stifle disease. “He had been suffering from bad stifles and only one-to-one special care from Nicky has ensured his recovery. It didn’t look good there for a while there, but at least now he’s back on the track again. “Nicky lined him up just so to see if he could negotiate the corners okay and he appears to have come through it well. Even though he was nominated for tomorrow’s meeting at Alexandra Park (Friday), that was never going to happen,” said co-owner, Barry Lichter. “We would rather line him up in a 2200m than 2700m , so he will have his first race back in over a year in the next few weeks,” he added. The Crown Jewels and Chilcott won his first workout back at Cambridge Raceway last Saturday by half a length and six lengths, trotting the up to R50, 2200m event in 3:08.7. “We are not getting too carried away but we would expect him to beat those maiden horses. It’s encouraging all right, but he still has a bit of a mountain to climb yet,” said Auckland-based Lichter, who co-owns the gelding with Donna Chisholm (Auckland), Neslisa Turan (Cambridge), David Lichter (New York), Garry Ferris (Auckland), Gary Birkett (Auckland), and Philip Taylor (Auckland). Lichter and the Chisholms (Donna, Alan, and Graham) did the breeding. The Crown Jewels has so far won two of his 24 starts and placed in seven others for $21,217 in stakes. Lichter said the gelding had undergone arthroscopic surgery, which is a surgical procedure on the stifle joint. An endoscope that is inserted into the joint through a small incision. “He’s always had a bit of ability and it’s just so good to see him back on the track again after a year off. In some ways that is success in itself because it didn’t look good there for a while. “Nicky’s intensive around-the-clock care has got him back to where he is now. All the praise has to go to her. I can’t stress that enough. She is a brilliant horsewoman,” Lichter said. Lichter said the arthroscopic surgery discovered the stifle problem. “You couldn’t see the problem but the ligament was definitely damaged. Then he had to go through a very strict procedure. He was boxed in a very small box for three months and then he graduated to a small yard “He has done a lot of treadmill work and has been trained on the beach at Raglan. It’s all about keeping the pressure off his joints. At this stage and then hopefully he can build up to becoming a race horse again,” Lichter said. “It’s just good to have a the old horse almost back again, but you can’t get too excited after what he’s been through,” he added. Duane Ranger

A second line draw for the likely pre-post favourite and an outside of the front line draw for her high class stable mate has done enough just to throw some murky cloud over Friday night’s Group One New Zealand Oaks at Addington. Last Friday night’s Nevele R Fillies Final winner, Spanish Armada was handed the outside of the second line as she shoot for a second Group One victory in seven days while Partyon has been given the much despised barrier of nine from behind the mobile arm. While a step up to 2600 metres should negate many of the issues for Spanish Armada, who has shown she is good enough to do work in her races and still find the required at the business end of a race, it does leave the door slightly ajar for her rivals. In particular Bonnie Joan, who showed she’s as good as anything else going around at the moment with her bold dead-heat effort for second with Delightful Memphis last Friday night behind Spanish Armada. With high early speed the Cran Dalgety trained filly should be able to get across and find the markers before any of her rivals in the $150,000 event. Delightful Memphis hasn’t been quite as well served in the draw as what she was a week ago, despite picking up the same marble. The Mark Jones trained filly will start from the inside of the second row for the second time in a week, but doesn’t have the luxury of following a favoured runner through on Friday night. Northern Oaks runner-up, Juice Brogden will bring fresh legs to the party after missing the Nevele R Final for her trainer Nicky Chilcott and will have the advantage of drawing inside Bonnie Joan with the potential to follow her across. With more than $750,000 worth of stake money up for grabs on Friday night there will be plenty of attention on Addington. Trotting star Enghien will make an appearance, and start a short priced favourite in the $80,000 NZ Yearling Sales Series Final for the three-year-old trotters while Alta Maestro and Spankem look well drawn to dominate the $170,000 Sires Stakes final for the two-year-old male pacers. Elle Mac, the unbeaten two-year-old filly will have to overcome an outside of the front line draw if she is to keep her winning record intact and win the NZ Yearling Sales 2YO Fillies Final. The night’s open class feature, the Winter Cup will see a number of those pointing towards next month’s Harness Jewels having another hit out with Piccadilly Princess needing a top three finish if she is to make her way into the Top 12 for the Four-Year-Old Diamond category. Matt Markham

Second top qualifier, Everything, only needs to step to be a huge chance in this evening's $25,000 North Island Country Cups Final at Cambridge Raceway. This season's Otaki and Stratford Grass Cup winner has won twice and placed twice from four standing starts, but it's the first 100 metres that worries his Cambridge trainer/driver Nicky Chilcott. “He’s been a bit iffy in his last couple of stands. Last start at Hawera he missed away and then recovered to run third. I haven’t given him too much practice from a stand because I think more could worsen the problem. “We won’t be able to afford to give them a start this time because horses like Fleeting Grin (top qualifier) can run a quick 2700m off the front. Apart from that little concern the horse is very well and it’s amazing to think just how much he’s progressed this season,” Chilcott said. Everything shot to prominence on January 29 when he nailed the first of his two Country Cups at Otaki. Everything, who is out of the seven-win ($45, 478) Camtastic mare For The Girls, won the Otaki Cup in 3:57.1 (mile rate for the 3,000m stand: 2:07.1) and home in 58.5 and 30.6. Then on March 5 the 5-year-old Sands A Flyin gelding was the $3.40 favourite when winning the Stratford Grass Cup in 3:31.6 (mile rate for the 2,600m stand: 2:10.9) with final 800m and 400m sectionals of 60.3 and 29.6. “He’s a special horse because he keeps on turning up. He’s also such a lovely pacer to drive because you can sit parked, trail, or get back in the field with him - and then when you push the ‘go-button’ he goes. “He also relaxes when you want him to. He’s an absolute pleasure to be around as well. Imajollywally is the horse to beat but if my fella can step then he’s right in this,” Chilcott said. The 45-year-old Cambridge horsewoman has a special affinity with Everything. On the first day of her Otaki Cup win the gelding notched up her 400th training victory. Everything won four of his first five workouts before qualifying 4.6 seconds under time at Cambridge Raceway on July 9 in 2015. "Les White, who works for me, noticed that the horse wasn’t doing much and I got him through Les. He did a lot of his early work, so the horse is a credit to him,” Chilcott said. She said Everything galloped on debut at Alexandra Park on August 14 and then defibrillated next start. He was then turned out and has come back a new horse winning four of his last six starts. “We formed the Syndicate because a lot of people wanted me to get them involved in racing. We have had a wee bit of success to date but nothing major. “It’s all about fun and affording what you can. Some of the 30 to 40 owners might only only a hair out of the tail but they will have fun. I’m sure they did tonight even though I didn’t see too many on-course," aid Chilcott. Everything was bred by Hambletonian Limited. He is owned by the Summer Fun Number 1 Syndicate. Tonight’s Revital Fertilisers-sponsored NI Country Cups Final is the feature event at tonight's 10-strong HarnessRacing Waikato – Bay of Plenty twilight meeting. Chilcott also said Everything was her best winning chance. Past North Island Country Cup winners have been: 2016 (at New Plymouth) - The Anne-Marie Best trained Tijuana Bromac (David Butcher). 2015 (at Manawatu Raceway): The Tony Herlihy (MNZM) trained and driven Darcee. 2014 (at Hawera): The Pat & Mike O'Brien trained Beckinsale (Dylan Ferguson - j). 2013 (at Manawatu): The Tony Grayling trained Brydon Delight (Sailesh Abernethy - j). 2012 (at New Plymouth): The Ian Small trained Zenola Seelster (David Butcher). 2011 (at Alexandra Park): The Barry Purdon & Scott Phelan trained Kobe Bryant (Brent Mangos). 2010 (at Alexandra Park): The Maurice McKendry trained and driven Percy The Punter. 2009: (at Alexandra Park): The Tony Herlihy (MNZM) trained and driven Ohoka Dallas. 2008 (at Alexandra Park): The Geoff Small trained Victory Spirit (David Butcher). 2007: (at Alexandra Park): The Tony Herlihy (MNZM) trained and driven Armbro The Thug. 2006: (at Alexandra Park): The Pat & Mike O'Brien trained Kay N Kayes (Peter Ferguson). North Island Country Cup winners this season were: December 28: Te Awamutu Grass Cup - The John & Josh Dickie trained Joanednobettor (Josh Dickie). January 15: Rotorua Grass Cup - The Michelle Wallis & Bernie Hackett trained Full Speed Ahead (Todd Macfarlane). January 21: Parawai Grass Cup - The Steve Telfer & Chris Garlick trained Sir Richie (Maurice McKendry). January 27: Wellington Grass Cup - The Andrew Stuart trained Pay Me Visa (Kyle Marshall). January 29: Otaki Grass Cup - The Nicky Chilcott trained and driven Everything. February 5: Tauranga Grass Cup - The Chris Webber trained Fleeting Grin (Peter Ferguson). February 9: The Manawatu Cup - The Mike Berger trained Lusty Mac (Philip Butcher). February 12: Wanganui Grass Cup - The Brent Mangos trained and driven Maxim. February 24: The Franklin Country Cup (Alexandra Park) - The Brent Mangos trained and driven Maxim. March 2: Taranaki Grass Cup - The Tony Herlihy (MNZM) trained Walkinshaw (Scott Phelan). March 5: Stratford Grass Cup - The Nicky Chilcott trained and driven Everything. March 31: Palmerston North Gold Cup - The Mike Berger trained Bettor Spirits (Philip Butcher). April 17: Hawera Grass Cup - The Arna Donnelly trained and driven Imajollywally. The top qualifiers for the North Island Country Cups Final (with points) are: Fleeting Grin 39, Everything 36, Imajollywally 22, Maxim 20, Full Speed Ahead 18, Bettor Spirits 15, Sir Richie 15, Pay Me Visa 14, Beyond the Silence 10, Joanednobettor 10, Lusty Mac 10, Mo Casino 10, Walkinshaw 10, Extra Guinness 8, Kenrick, Eldolar 5, Major Classic 4, Dikerry 3, Hudy Haxwell 3, The Tracker 3. Duane Ranger

The 2017 chapter of Dylan Ferguson’s driving career is unfolding nicely. The 20-year-old Cambridge junior reinsman notched up his 50th career win behind the Nicky Chilcott trained Razor Brogden at the Hawera Harness Racing Club's meeting last Saturday. It was also his 16th win this season - three better than his previous best achieved in his debut season of 2013-2014. Ferguson is in his fourth season as a junior driver. He said he was now starting to fulfil some of the goals he set at the start of the season. "I wanted to be the leading North island junior driver this year both - with wins and points, and with just over three months of the season I'm on top, and really want to remain there. "I knew my 50th win was getting close because that’s when I lose my claim. It is pretty special because it was behind Nicky's nice 4-year-old. I really enjoy working for Nicky. She has given me a lot of claiming drives and for that I’m extremely grateful," Ferguson said. "I also want to thank all the other trainers and owners who have put me on their horses. It all started with Graeme Rogerson and Peter Blanchard and now there are many regulars I'm thankful to. Pat and Mike O'Brien (Blenheim) are just two more," he added. Ferguson nailed his first career win at Cambridge on November 17, 2013 behind the Ken Webber trained Carlos. Then the following year he drove the Pat and Mike O'Brien trained outsider, Beckingsale to win the $25,000 North Island Country Cups Final. Ferguson was 17 at the time. "That's been my biggest win so far. I'm rapt with the way this season has been going. I just want to keep driving winners, and if I do happen to drive for any new trainers or owners I want them to know that I have given my very best for them," the White Star employee said. Ferguson had a brief stint in Australia before returning to New Zealand in 2015. All up he’s now driven 50 winners from 843 drives. He's also placed 155 times for $448,019 in career stakes. His lifetime UDR strike-rate currently sits at 0.1406. This season it's 0.1859. Ferguson has won $133,447 in stakes this season. His previous best was $120,910 earned in 2013-2014. But he has some way to catch up on his father Peter's 1,897 ($16.6m) career wins. "If I could achieve half that number I would be happy. He’s a real inspiration," he said. Ferguson leads the North Island Junior Driving Premiership with 16 wins from 165 drives. That is 11 wins fewer than New Zealand’s leading junior - Rory McIlwrick. Jack MacKinnon is the second best North Island junior with 11 wins followed by the now New South Wales-based Sean Grayling with 10. Ben Butcher and Tony Cameron round out the top five with nine wins apiece. The top five North Island Junior Driver points scorers are: 1) Dylan Ferguson 175; 2) Ben Butcher 118; 3) Jack MacKinnon 113; 4) Tony Cameron 88; 5) Sean Grayling 82. “I would love to win the New Zealand and Australasian Junior Championships one day, but for now I want to be the leading North Islander. That was my goal at the start of the season and it would mean a lot to me,” Ferguson said. Duane Ranger  

Monday’s Hawera Cup winner, Imajollywally, will progress on to the North Island Country Cups Final at Cambridge Raceway on ANZAC Day. The 7-year-old Armbro Operative gelding has come through his two-length victory over the Series top qualifier, Fleeting Grin, well - and the $25,000 Final is now his immediate goal. “That’s my first Country Cups win since Ideal Success won five Cups in a season a couple of years ago. At the moment Imajollywally is probably the stable star. “He's the loveliest pacer to drive and has quite high speed for an older horse. He jogged it yesterday, which was a surprise as the track was pretty testing,” Donnelly said. The Cambridge trainer and driver settled Imajollywally fifth along the markers from their 20m handicap in Monday’s $12,000 South Taranaki Club Hawera Cup for the R60 and faster pacers. They then tracked Everything and Nicky Chilcott down the back straight before pouncing out of the one-one at the top of the straight to run away and win in 4:37. The Parawai Cup (Thames) runner-up recorded a 2:21.4 mile rate for the 3150m stand. Imajollywally also came home in 61.6 and 29.7 on the trying surface. He has now won 11 of his 83 starts and placed in 14 others ($75,786) for his owner/breeder Craig Good. “Wally pulled up great and I’m looking forward to the Country Cups Final on our home track. I’m also hoping Eldolar will make the field,” said Donnelly. Eldolar finished with five points in the Series, but notched up his fifth career win (all this season) at the Hawera meeting on Saturday. Junior reinsman Mark Johnson drove Eldolar to a head victory over Everything (Nicky Chilcott) for trainer Donnelly in the $9,000 Egmont Tyre Service R59 to R80 pace. Meanwhile, Saturday night’s Easter Cup place-getter ($4.50) and 2014 Victory Derby winner – Maxim – should be tough to beat in the 2017 North Island Country Cups Final. The Brent Mangos trained and driven 6-year-old only had two starts in the 13-race Country Cups Final Series and won them both. They were the Wanganui Grass Cup on February 12 and the Franklin Country Cup at Alexandra Park 10 days later. Maxim was the only pacer to win two North Island Country Cups this season. The classy Bettor’s Delight gelding got 10 points for each of those wins, and finished fourth highest qualifier in the ‘summer series’ behind Fleeting Grin 39, Everything 36, and Imajollywally 22. North Island Country Cup winners this season were: December 28: Te Awamutu Grass Cup - The John & Josh Dickie trained Joanednobettor (Josh Dickie). January 15: Rotorua Grass Cup - The Michelle Wallis & Bernie Hackett trained Full Speed Ahead (Todd Macfarlane). January 21: Parawai Grass Cup - The Steve Telfer & Chris Garlick trained Sir Richie (Maurice McKendry). January 27: Wellington Grass Cup - The Andrew Stuart trained Pay Me Visa (Kyle Marshall). January 29: Otaki Grass Cup - The Nicky Chilcott trained and driven Everything. February 5: Tauranga Grass Cup - The Chris Webber trained Fleeting Grin (Peter Ferguson). February 9: The Manawatu Cup - The Mike Berger trained Lusty Mac (Philip Butcher). February 12: Wanganui Grass Cup - The Brent Mangos trained and driven Maxim. February 24: The Franklin Country Cup (Alexandra Park) - The Brent Mangos trained and driven Maxim. March 2: Taranaki Grass Cup - The Tony Herlihy (MNZM) trained Walkinshaw (Scott Phelan). March 5: Stratford Grass Cup - The Nicky Chilcott trained and driven Everything. March 31: Palmerston North Gold Cup - The Mike Berger trained Bettor Spirits (Philip Butcher). April 17: Hawera Grass Cup - The Arna Donnelly trained and driven Imajollywally. Tuesday April 25 (ANZAC Day): The 2017 North Island Country Cups Final worth $25,000 at Cambridge Raceway. The top qualifiers for the North Island Country Cups Final (with points) are: Fleeting Grin 39, Everything 36, Imajollywally 22, Maxim 20, Full Speed Ahead 18, Bettor Spirits 15, Sir Richie 15, Pay Me Visa 14, Beyond the Silence 10, Joanednobettor 10, Lusty Mac 10, Mo Casino 10, Walkinshaw 10, Extra Guinness 8, Kenrick, Eldolar 5, Major Classic 4, Dikerry 3, Hudy Haxwell 3, The Tracker 3.   Duane Ranger

An incident at Forbury Park involving Cambridge horsewoman Nicky Chilcott over 18 years ago was recalled when she returned to the Dunedin raceway last Thursday. Chilcott was a special guest at a function combined with the race meeting to honour women in business and the harness racing industry. Jess Smith, the Trackside television presenter and radio host, was MC for the function. “It (the function) went off really well with a number of those in attendance at a race meeting for the first time,” said Rodney Moore, the general manager of the Forbury Park Trotting Club. There were some 50 persons in attendance. Chilcott (45) is the most successful female driver and trainer (sole capacity) in the history of New Zealand harness racing with 604 and 407 wins respectively. Natalie Rasmussen has won 478 races as a trainer in NZ in partnership with Mark Purdon and driven the winners of 462 races. Chilcott was at Forbury Park in October, 1998, mainly to drive in a race for invited female drivers. She had other engagements including Honey Gazelle in the second race. She had arrived at the course and deposited her bag of driving gear in the designated facility then left to attend other matters. When she returned the bag was missing. “We searched everywhere with no luck then asked a man on the gate and he said he had seen a guy with a bag leave the course,” recalled Chilcott. “So we started looking in the streets outside, We were about to give up when I spotted this guy bending down close to a fence with the bag.” Chilcott was none too gentle with the thief and reclaimed the bag. She rushed back, geared up and made a late appearance at the start of race two. She drove Honey Gazelle to win at odds of 55 to one. The 5-year-old W R H mare trained at Waikouaiti by Graeme Chalmers, was 11/11 in the betting and set up a declared trifecta of $34,430 with Deville (12/12) and Scottish Banner (10/10). Chilcott, who attended the meeting with Michelle Wallis to represent the North Island, finished last on Chipover in the invitation race. It was won by Bernie Rae driving the Cran Dalgety-trained Silver Lined Pocket from Holmes Princess (Karen Sutherland) and Sunny Boy (Lauren Pearson). Others to contest the race were Jackie Law, Tracey Healy, Maree Price, Karen O’Connor, Joanna Davies, Jan Meikle, Jan Gould and Jo Herbert. Sutherland drove the Dalgety-trained Imagery to win earlier in the night and Healy won the last of 10 races with Lincoln Hanover for Waimate trainer Bruce Wylie. Chilcott drove her first winner, Local Choice at Alexandra Park in July 1993. Her first training win was at Cambridge in November, 1997 with Wahora. She drove in one race on Thursday, being unplaced on Jerry Fitz in the final event. Tayler Strong

A fortnight after her nailingher 400th training success at Cambridge Raceway, Nicky Chilcott drove her 600th career winner at Alexandra Park tonight (Friday). The Cambridge driver, who is New Zealand’s most successful horsewoman, notched up the milestone with $1.50 favourite, Juice Brogden in the first race – the $12,000 Kuan Yap Maiden Pace. Ecstatic with the victory, Chilcott said it was very appropriate that she nailed the 600th behind the 3-year-old Bettor’s Delight – Hayley Brogden filly. “She’s gone 2:40 tonight and it felt like she was walking. I would go as far as saying that she is now the best filly I have trained, and I have trained some nice ones like Attsa Nice, who won six races.  “I’m also rapt for the co-owners – Graeme and Judy Bowen, who also bred the horse. They have been such loyal supporters and this win is even more special because of them,” Chilcott said. Chilcott said it was also appropriate that she won behind Juice Brogden in the red, yellow, and black Waikato colours. “Graeme was the CEO of the Waikato Rugby Union (from 2007-2015) and there’s no-one more ‘Waikato’ than both him and myself. “I’m so pleased for all the owners because they have a very nice filly. She did it so easy tonight. She really did cruise it. I think we are going to have some fun with her,” the 45-year-old said. Juice Brogden was having her fourth start after three previous placings since making her debut at ‘The Park’ on December 2. Chilcott shot her to the lead from barrier three and from that point the race was for second. The filly paced the 2200m mobile in a slashing 2:40.8 (mile rate 1:57.6) and home in 57.5 and 29.1. American Princess (Brent Mangos) and Luis Alberto (Simon Lawson) were some one-and-a-half lengths and one-and-a-quarter lengths back in second and third. Chilcott’s 600th win came a night after her pacer Everything achieved 599 victories for her. The 5-year-old Sands A Flyin gelding gave Chilcott her 400thdriving success at the Kapiti Coast Harness Racing Club’s meeting on the Otaki grass on January 27. “I’m just a simple country girl who has achieved everything on my own, soI’m quite proud of what’s happened. It’s pleasing to have landed 1,000 wins nowboth as a trainer and a driver,” Chilcott said. Chilcott first sat in the sulky on race-day in the 1992-1993 season and has had 6,971 drives for 600 wins, 646 seconds, 41 thirds and has amassed almost $4.1 million in stakes in the bike. The Cambridge conditionerstarted training in the 1997-1998 season and has had 3602 starts for 404 wins, 405 seconds and 375 placings. She has won $2.8 million in stakes. Meanwhile, three $25,000Young Guns 2-year-old were staged at Alexandra Park tonight – all from the 1700m mobile. The first – the Breckon Farms Heat for colts and geldings was won by the Barry Purdon trained and Zac Butcher driven $1.20 favourite, South Beach Arden. The Somebeachsomewhere colt stopped the clock in 2:07.9 (mile rate 2:01 even) and home in 58.7 and 27.9. He had a head to spare over stablemate Mach Shard, who was driven by his trainer. Purdon and Butcher repeated the dose in the fifth event – the Crombie Lockwood Bloodstock 2yo fillies heat which was won by Spandau Ballet from the widest front-row draw of eight. The Bettor’s Delight – Giveitawhirlgirl filly won in 2;05.6 (mile rate 1:58.9) and sprinted her last 800m and 400m in 58.7 and 29. She had three quarters of a length to spare over Eye Candy (Todd Mitchell) and Harmony Blue (Tony Herlihy MNZM). She was the $9.50 fifth favourite. The final 2yo race – anotherCrombie Lockwood Bloodstock fillies heat was taken out by the John and Josh Dickie trained New York Rain, who won from gate seven. The American Ideal – Ohoka Moon filly won by three quarters of a length from Gold Orchid in 2:07.26 (mile rate 2:00.4) and home in 58 and 27.4. She was driven by Simon Lawson and was the $6.40 fourth favourite. Purdon and Butcher were the most successful trainer/driver combo tonight winning three races. Their other victory came in the non-tote event with the trained 2-year-old Love You – Paramount Star trotter, Paramount King. But Butcher was undoubtedly the horseman of the night driving five winners. His fourth driving success came behind the Ray Green trained Alta Intrigue in the eighth event and then number five came two races later when he reined Kate Black to victory for the Dickie father and son training partnership. Duane Ranger

The Nicky Chilcott trained Everything can win his second Country Cup in 11 days when he lines up in the $14,000 Speight's Ale House Manawatu Cup for the up to R90-rated pacers at Manawatu Raceway tonight (Thursday). The R71 rated Everything will start from four off the front line, and according to Chilcott, he has come through his latest assignment well and is primed to go a big one in the 2500m mobile. “He is having his first start at Manawatu but every time I have asked him to step up he has done that – and some. I couldn’t be happier with him. “I know it’s a step up in grade for him, but he keeps improving and winning his races easily. He’s my best drive of the night,” Chilcott said. Chilcott will also drive Loki Brogden in the fourth event. That 9-year-old Continentalman gelding will start from a 20m handicap and his Cambridge trainer/driver said he can win with luck in the running. “If the real Loki Brogden stood up he would win that race, but it’s not going to be easy from the back mar,” she said. If both Everything and Loki Brogden do win they will notch up Chilcott’s 599th and 600th driving successes – less than a fortnight after she achieved her 400th training victory at Otaki on January 27. Chilcott said she would dearly love to win the Manawatu Cup - a race that has eluded her in recent years. Everything has now won four of his last six starts since joining the Chilcott stable this season, including the Otaki Grass Cup last start on January 29. In fact the Sands A Flyin gelding won on both days of the Kapiti Coast Harness Racing Club’s meeting. All-up the brown 5-year-old has now won four of his eight starts and $17,496 in stakes for the Summer Fun Number 1 Syndicate. “I can’t fault him. He’s such a lovely horse to have in the stable. He never leaves a grain, has a great constitution, and also possesses a wonderful nature. He seems to take everything in his stride,” Chilcott said. Chilcott said he was originally trained by Tony Shaw but when he gave up training Everything ended up at the Butchers (John and David) “Then Les White, who works for me noticed that the horse wasn’t doing much and I got the horse through him. He did a lot of his early work so the horse is a credit to him,” Chilcott said. Everything, who is out of the seven-win ($45, 478) Camtastic mare For The Girls, was bred by Hambletonian Limited. His only win on the all-weather track came at Alexandra Park on December 22 when he won a maiden 2200m mobile by three quarters of a length in 2:45.2 (mile rate 2:00.80 and home in 56.7 and 27.5. "He's a much stronger and more experienced horse than then, and even though there's some nice horses in the Manawatu Cup I think he can surprise a few, because like I said he's never let me down yet," said Chilcott. Toughest for Everything to beat will be the Andrew & Lyn Neal trained Beyond The Silence (Lyn Neal), the Mike Berger trained Lusty Mac (Philip Butcher), and the Tony Herlihy (MNZM) trained Bettors Pocket (Stephen Doody). Past Manawatu Cup winners have been (with times, driver and trainer): 2016: Risk, fr, 3:06.3, Todd Mitchell, Andrew & Lyn Neal. 2015: Te Kawau, fr, 3:12.6, Ricky May, Stephen Doody. 2014: Maximan, fr, 3:08.5, Jim Curtin, Jim Curtin. 2013: Star Of Isis, fr, Jim Curtin, Jim Curtin. 2012: On The Razzle, fr, 3:07.7, Peter Ferguson, Graeme Rogers & Peter Blanchard. 2011: Reklaw's Chance, fr, 3:06.9, Jay Abernethy, Wayne Higgs. 2010: Cyclone Night, fr, 3:07.8, Peter Ferguson, Gareth Dixon. 2009: Flyin Interstate, fr, 3:09.2, Andrew Suddaby, Brent Lilley. 2008: Victory Spirit, fr, 3:07.3, David Butcher, Geoff Small. 2007: Daibin, fr, 3:09.1, Brent Mangos, Kenny Tarrant. 2006: Sandstorm, fr, 3:07.3, Peter Ferguson, Pat & Mike O'Brien. Duane Ranger

Nicky Chilcott is thankful for Everything. The 45-year-old Cambridge horsewoman has Everything to thank for back-to-back Otaki Country Cups victories and has Everything to thank for notching up her 400th and 401st training victories last weekend. Everything, a 5-year-old Sands A Flying gelding, won yesterday’s (Sunday) $10,000 Boundary Oceans Otaki Cup for the R60 and faster pacers. This time last year Chilcott was celebrating her Wellington Cup - Otaki Cup double when Jet Black Shadow won on both days of the Kapiti Coast Harness Racing Club's grass track meeting. "I actually think Everything was good enough to emulate Jet Black Shadow's double of last year, but I thought it was a big step up for him to line up in the Wellington Cup on the first day (Friday), so I put him in a R56 to R80 event. "On hindsight I was probably being a bit cautious. Looking back now though he amazes me. To win on both days like he did is an absolute delight. "I'm going to have to be careful where I place him now because I don't want him to whip through the grades too quick. The Country Cups Final is now his main goal and I don't want him to be off a long mark in that," Chilcott said. Everything notched up his third and fourth wins from just eight starts at Otaki - but more importantly created the milestone for Chilcott. "To win 400 races as a trainer and to be sitting on 598 driving victories is absolutely amazing. "I'm just a small-town country girl who trains a few out of Cambridge. It's quite hard getting owners these days and for me to have almost 1,000 wins as both a trainer and a driver is quite humbling," Chilcott said. "It is extremely satisfying. I am very proud of the achievement," the Cambridge horsewoman added. Everything, who is out of the seven-win ($45, 478) Camtastic mare For The Girls, won his 2100m mobile by a neck on Friday in 2:41.4 (mile rate 2:03.7) with final 800m and 400m sprints of 61.3 and 32.3. Then two days later he cleaned up his Otaki Cup field by one-and-three-quarter lengths pacing the 3000m stand off the front in 3:57.1 (mile rate 2:07.1) and home in 58.5 and 30.6. He was the $2 favourite on day one and the $6.40 favourite on the second day. "He amazed me what he did on Sunday. After Friday’s race he was such a tired horse. I didn't think he had it in him to win the Otaki Cup over 3000 metres. "That was a really brave performance. I'm going to look after him now. I'll take him home and sit down and plan where we go from here. He's achieved so much in such a short time," Chilcott said. Everything won four of his first five workouts before qualifying 4.6 seconds under time at Cambridge Raceway on July 9 in 2015. "Les White, who works for me, noticed that the horse wasn’t doing much and I got the horse through him. He did a lot of his early work, so the horse is a credit to him,” Chilcott said. She said Everything galloped on debut at Alexandra Park on August 14 and then defibrillated next start. He was then turned out and has come back a new horse winning four of his last six starts. Everything was bred by Hambletonian Limited. He is owned by the Summer Fun Number 1 Syndicate. “We formed the Syndicate because a lot of people wanted me to get them involved in racing. We have had a wee bit of success to date but nothing major. “It’s all about fun and affording what you can. Some of the 30 to 40 owners might only only a hair out of the tail but they will have fun. I’m sure they did tonight even though I didn’t see too many on-course. “A big shout out must go to Jess Smith because she made this Syndicate happen. She did a fantastic job helping me get owners for this horse,” Chilcott said. Chilcott had a good day at the office on Sunday. Her 8-year-old Continentalman brown mare, Hot Chocolate Tart finished a close second behind Silver Stream and Jay Abernethy in the feature trot - the $7,000 Pegasus Spur At Woodlands Stud R50 and faster handicap. "She's has also done a wonderful job. She's won eight races now, but is coming to the end of her racing career because she is in foal," Chilcott said. Duane Ranger

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