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ALL STAR STALWARTS Jean Feiss and Phil and Glenys Kennard and their syndicate members came up trumps at the successful New Zealand Bloodstock Standardbred sales which ended Wednesday outlaying over $1m between them for some choice lots whose careers will be guided from Rolleston. Jean, who spent just over $500,000 bought the most expensive All Star lot going to $170,000 for a Bettor’s Delight colt from a daughter of Beaudiene Babe named Beaudiene Big Time. “I was sure in my own mind he would go north of $150,000 but fortunately he was not too far north” she said. She also paid $100,000 for Stag Party a Bettor’s Delight colt bred on the same cross as Lazarus and from a strongly performing family. At Auckland Jean had parted with $140,000 for a Sweet Lou cold closely related to Smooth Deal, last year’s sale topper who is already a winner. “It was a strong sale at the top end and fairly tough competition though I noticed there seemed to be a lot of passings on the board” Jean said of the Christchurch sale. Kennard Bloodstock, unusually, went to $100,000 for a richly bred trotting colt in Auckland as its major purchase but wasted no time swinging into action yesterday. going to $100,000 for a BEttor’s Delight Priscilla Shard colt closely related to familiar All Stars names like Mighty Cullen and Likemesiah and $90,000 for Arden’s Ace, a colt from former brilliant racemare, Venus Serena. Phil said that he had a few disappointments at the Auckland sale. “We found it quite tough at the top end. One colt in particular we had lined up for the Major Mark syndicate but we couldn’t match the firepower. We are not generally going at the top end of the market for our syndicates” All Stars itself added further to its tally yesterday its sale purchases being largely in the $60-70,000 range except for the Captaintreacherous-Veste colt bought in Auckland for $130,000   Courtesy of All Stars Racing Stables http://www.allstarsracingstables.com/

The connections of the "money horse" Isaiah will not be persevering with him as a harness racing propoosition but feel he has a future in a number of non racing areas. "While he is not a racing proposition at the level at which he would have to compete at, he is fully sound in himself and we see a future for him for the right person in the show or sport horse area because he has such a lovely temperament as well as all his other attributes" said syndicate spokesman Phil Kennard. "We haven't made any decisions yet but that is where we would like to see him go-to a good home with an active side to life" Isaiah has not raced since running 5th in the Harness Jewels last May from gate 13 but that was no reflection on the value of his racing career. Remarkably, although he did all his racing at an elite level, Isaiah was only further back than 5th five times in 38 starts 29 of them in the first three and the winner of $589,000 in stakes. Isaiah won the PGG Wrightson Sales Pace Final at both two and three beating Sky Major in the first of those and Locharburn in the second. Perhaps the most disappointing run of his career was his courageous, pace setting try at the NZ Derby at three going down in the last few strides to Locharburn. He had beaten that horse and Tiger Tara in the Flying Stakes at the leadup. He was also third in the Chariots of Fire and the New South Wales Derby. A bold sight on the track with his head, minus an overcheck hanging low, he had a change of direction as a four year old after a lengthy spell following a tough three year old programme. It was just as successful. Starting with the Akaroa Cup, Isaiah went through the Summer Cup season like a whirlwind adding the Ashburton Cup (4.00.6) and the Northern Southland Cup before being switched to the Pelorous Classic at Marlborough on the eve of his Chariots trip, beating a classy  field (Tiger Tara, Venus Serena, Te Kawau) in a mile rate of 1.56.6. Isaiah went amiss with a ligament injury in the spring and there was never any real hope he could resume racing at the best level. But there are a lot of things he can do. You may be able to add to our ideas. David McCarthy All Stars Racing Stables   -   Check site here

The first of this years harness racing yearling sales were held in Melbourne yesterday with  the Victorian section of the  Australian Pacing Gold being staged As has become common in recent years, there was quite a few Kiwis on hand and they were active again throughout the day. The first Kiwi in action was Neil Pilcher who continued his long standing habit of buying a son of Courage Under Fire at most sales. On this occasion Neil brought lot 7 which was a colt from the former 1:58.7 two year old Artificial for $25,000. Artificial has already left Im For Real 1:55.6 while the grand dam is the talented racemare Counterfeit Girl 1:58.1 ($118,769) Neil has had a great run with his Couage Under Fire purchasers in the last few years and this one has all the credentials to keep up his strike rate. Second cab off the rank for the Kiwis were the prominent husband and wife team of Philip and Glenys Kennard. Their first purchase was lot 102 which is a Bettor's Delight colt from the unraced Mach Three mare Miss Montoya. Her claim to fame is she is a half sister to the dam of A Bit Of A Legend 1:54.7 ($760,747) and London Legend ($456,124) so the $26,000 purchase price looked good value to us. Well known trotting owner Trevor Casey was next up but as this was a pacer only sale, thats what he brought. Trevor brought lot 105 which is a son of Art Major from the imported American mare Magic Z Tam 1:57.1 ($83,942) The first foal from the dam, the colt is related to a string of top performers in North America and even though he cost Trevor $72,000, he didn't appear an expensive colt once you had read his pedigree page. High flying New Zealand trainer Cran Dalgety was the next Kiwi into the fray forking out $60,000 for a colt by American super sire Somebeachsomewhere from the imported daughter of Bettor's Delight in Molly's Lucky Star 1:54.2 ($96,700) The grand dam Pacific Destiny is a half sister to the brilliant Pacific Fella 1:48.2 ($1,064,631) so he has all the credentials to make it on the track. The Kennards were next into the fray again when they went to $42,000 to secure lot 131 who was an Art Major colt from the race winning Albert Albert mare in Nosotros who has already produced Red Vee Hanover 1:58.8 ($89,094). The dam Nosotros is a half sister to the former brilliant grand circuit performer in Hexus 1:55 ($555,114) and with Nosotros being a 3/4 sister to the smart Winforus 1:55 ($139,915) this colt ticks plenty of boxes. Mark Purdon waited to lot 167 before he brought his one and only purchase for the day. Mark purchased a Modern Art colt from a Badlands Hanover half sister to the champion juvenile Gotta Go Cullen 1:58.2 ($1,127,567) for $34,000 The grand dam is a half sister to Mark's former champion pacer Il Vicolo 1:56.7 ($1,580,945) and to the dam of Stunnin Cullen 1:54.1 ($1,359,094) Mark has a history of plucking horses out of sales for not a lot of money and turning them into stars and this colt has a maternal pedigree to die for. The last purchase by Kiwis for the day was when the Kennards went back to the well for the third time and spent $30,000 to buy lot 173 who is an Art Major colt from the former race winning two year old Sophies Girl. She was from a half sister to Seinfield 1:55.1 ($126,082) and belongs to the New Zealand family made famous by the great Manaroa 1:58.1 ($218,159) back in the 1970s. The top priced colt for the sale was lot 63 who was a Western Ideal half brother to the brilliant Guaranteed 1:50.4 ($829,5910). The top price in the fillies division of $51,000 was shared by Lot 159 who was a Rocknroll Hanover filly from a mare tracing to the great New Zealand broodmare Armiss and Lot 187 who was a Bettor's Delight filly who had the outstanding Lordship broodmare Black Debate as her third dam. Overall the sale would have to considered a big success with the average up nearly $3,000 ($26,046)  and the clearance rate on a par with last year at just under 80%. Harnesslink Media

Absent owners were a feature of All Stars night out at Addington but their horses didn't mind-and Natalie certainly coped well. Diane Cournane, breeder and part-owner of Fight For Glory was on her last day of business  in the deep south and couldn't  really be away from that. Ann Gibbs has had a leg injury which put her out of contention in the same race. Phil and Glenys Kennard along with Neil Pilcher are also co-owners of Follow The Stars and headed off early to Melbourne leaving Phil Creighton to carry the flag. And Willow and King Denny,  are raced by Australians Jean Feiss and Merv and Meg Butterworth respectively who will also be tending to races and sales on the home front this weekend. Border Control ended a period of frustration for his owners winning the Summer Cup after another quality drive from Natalie. He had had only one start since last May when wear and tear of a testing career took its toll. Because of his lack of racing perhaps, Natalie allowed him to settle off the pace early. "They went real quick for him anyway but I was happy to let him settle" Natalie said. "Actually the race worked out good for us." "I had to go when I did which meant being parked but they went some easy sectionals in the middle there and that suited us." "He will head to Auckland now, he is up with the best when he is right." "They ran a 26.5 quarter and he handled that well" The mile record holder (1.50.5) is just under $500,000 in earnings and has won virtually half of his 37 race starts. Fight For Glory was driven a treat by Natalie -and these days we expect nothing less !  She sent Fight for Glory early then let "filly to beat" Delightful Lana take over giving her the passing lane. Fight for Glory, which had raced so well in Auckland with little luck, snuck through easily and nailed the rich $85,000 first prize Willow  was a trifle unfortunate taking some time to work into the clear in the Mares Special and was beaten a neck.  "We had had a good run but she just had to go around a couple of horses  at the turn and the winner had a lovely trip in the trail so that was the difference" King Denny just showed sheer class winning the final event. Admittedly on what he had shown in the past he would be expected to beat a field like this but he had blotted his copybook in the south. Mark put that down to freshness and was proven right. Natalie drove him confidently sitting out the back until the 1100m then circling the field, going clear and never being under pressure. The results meant that at the end of January Natalie's sensational driving record at Addington means she has only been further back than fourth three times in 27 drives Courtesy Of All Stars Racing Stables - Check site here  

Plenty of harness racing pundits thought that the smart 2 year old Lazarus would be hard pushed to repeat his debut win when he lined up in heat two of the Young Guns series at Alexandra Park today. After all his main competition in Swamp Major and Motown had both drawn nicely in close while Lazarus had drawn badly at barrier eight. With the margin from their first meeting being so narrow, many thought that the result would be reversed this time. Swamp Major with Blair Orange in the bike left the gate quickly and grabbed the early lead while Motown slotted into a lovely trail from barrier two. Mark Purdon went forward from barrier eight with Lazarus and when Sabrage galloped he was able to slot onto the back of Kimani in the one by one. That is the way the order stayed until 150 metres from home where Mark angled Lazarus off Kimani's back and dashed home the last bit for a narrow but impressive victory. Swamp Major was game in second place with Motown battling into third place along the passing lane. Lazarus paced the 1700 metres in a quick 2:03.1, a mile rate of 1:56.5 with closing sectionals of 55.7 and 27. Part of last years Studholme Bloodstock's consignment to the yearling sales, Lazarus was purchased by long time All Stars clients Kennard Bloodstock for $75,000 and they were joined in the ownership by Trevor Casey and Kevin Riseley.  While loath to compare him to previous top 2 year olds he has trained, Mark Purdon gave the son of Bettor's Delight a good rap. " He is just a natural 2 year old and has great manners and that counts for a lot in these races." " The time didn't surprise me as they have been running time in most of the races here," Mark said. When quizzed about whether Lazarus looked the early favourite for the Young Guns final Mark was a touch more circumspect. " Bit early to say but he is certainly heading in the right direction,"Mark said  Harnesslink Media  

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