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Just six weeks after arriving in Brisbane from NSW to pursue a career as a professional trainer/driver, talented young horseman Ben Battle has finally broken through for a well deserved win. Ben steered home the 'ever consistent' six year old pacer Whiskey Blaze to a 'heart stopping' half head victory at Albion Park on Tuesday afternoon. Since arriving in Brisbane, Ben has guided the gelded son of Kenneth J to three second placing's in succession at Albion Park, plus a hard hitting fourth, prior to saluting the judge with a meritorious victory, albeit by the barest of margins. Two races later and Ben was back in the action again, aboard Whostolemypigeon, but this time it was a different scenario, going under by a half head, after sitting 'parked' throughout the entire trip. "At the end of the day, I am really pleased that the stable is finally starting to fire and getting rewarded," a reservedly excited Ben said. "I'm hoping that now that we've finally broken through, more wins may come our way for my team. "I only have ten horses currently in my stable, but if I can keep achieving results, then I'm hoping that I might a be able to build on that," he concluded. Without doubt, and judging by the way that he is acquitting himself in Queensland to date, that may be sooner .. rather than later !!   Ken Davis

Queensland’s best juvenile filly of last season, Smart As Camm Be, will by-pass the Group One $200,000 New South Wales Derby on March 2 for Group racing in the sunshine state. The talented Cammibest - Too Smart For You (by Famous Forever) filly and her trainer Kylie Rasmussen finished a neck-second behind Grant Dixon's I'm No Outlaw back at the Albion Park Trials yesterday (Tuesday). It was Smart As Camm Be's first run since winning the Group One $100,000 QBRED Triad 2yo Fillies Final at Albion Park on July 21 last year, with a slick 1:55.7 mile rate. “She went well and will trial again next week. I have been happy with her progress but she is still behind the eight ball. She’s not as forward in her preparation that I would like," Rasmussen said. “She had a great 2-year-old season but it took it’s toll on her. She suffered from bone chips in her knee and we had to put her out for a fair while to recover. “She’s fine, but just needs more time than less than a month to prepare for a big race against Australia’s and New Zealand’s best 3-year-olds." Last year's Queensland 2yo Pacing Filly-of-the-Year, had a brilliant first-up season in 2017-2018. She won five of her seven starts from March 27 until July 21 - the last five in a row. As well as her Triad victory, Smart As Camm Be also won the $25,000 Listed Classic QBRED Breeders Classic. Yesterday she sat parked for the last lap and cruised to the line under a big hold. Rasmussen had her fourth in the running line early from gate six (of seven) in behind the eventual winner, I'm No Outlaw. Dixon then took I'm No Outlaw to the lead at the bell, and Smart As Camm Be followed him to sit in the death seat. A slow third quarter of 29.5 saw the duo both cruise to the line without being asked for any big effort. The final sprint was in 27.3. The winner's time for the 1660m mobile: 2:02.1 (mile rate 1:58.4). “I’m working a team of about 30 at the moment and this girl is up there with Lilac Flash and Mr Kalypso as the best of them,” said Rasmussen. Mr Kalypso had his first run back at Albion Park yesterday as well. It was his first race since winning a C2-C5 pace at the same venue on December 1. It was also his first defeat in eight starts at Queensland harness headquarters. The son of Art Major got too far back in the running and was three-wide and parked when the acid went on in the last lap. Mr Kalypso then finished a gutsy two-metre fifth and will have derived much benefit from the run. Meanwhile, Rasmussen will be looking to emulate her feats of 2010 and 2011 with her former female star, the 2007 Famous Forever mare, Forever Gold. She won won the QBRED 2yo Fillies Final in 2010 and then the following year nailed the QBRED 3yo Fillies Final and the prestigious Group One Queensland 3yo Oaks. Smart As Camm Be has so far won five of her seven starts and placed in one other for $88,088 in career stakes. "The QBRED 3yo fillies Final (April 13) and the Group One $100,000 Queensland Oaks (July 13) are her main priorities for her now," Rasmussen said.   by Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Albion Park's feature pace will be contested at 6.37pm on Saturday night, but for Doug Brewin, it's more than just a 2138m horse-race. Brewin, who has blood cancer, and hasn't been well of late, owns the 27-win pacer, Sir Julian - who will start from two on the second row (9) in the $21,160 Remembering 'Son Of Pearl' M0 Open. Brewin never misses watching the 8-year-old Four Starzzz Shark gelding race, and just after 6.30pm he will again be glued to the TV set. Doug's son, South Australian horseman Justin Brewin, said watching Sir Julian race was the highlight of his father's week.  "And believe me, he needs as many pick-me-ups as he can get right now," he said.  "He has had liver problems and it’s all very sad. It would also be a great tonic for my step-mum (Lucy) who broke her arm recently, “We all love Sir Julian. He’s always been a lovely gentle horse. He will come back to Adelaide to retire with us one day." Brewin, his wife Yvette, and parents Doug and Lucy, paid $4,000 for Sir Julian when he was a four-year-old in 2015. They won 20 races with him and then when he ‘reached his mark’ in South Australia (June last year) Brewin passed the talented pacer onto Greenbank (Logan City) trainer, Graham Dwyer. “There wasn’t much left for him down here so we moved him on the Queensland where there would be better races for him," Brewin said. "Graham, who we met through a friend, has won another six with him. He’s done a good job. We wish him luck on Saturday night. I can guarantee my parents will be watching. They never miss. “Dad’s had lots of horses going back many decades, but this fella is his best. He really perks when Sir Julian is on the telly." Dwyer said it wouldn’t surprise him if he went one better than when he finished a 4.1 second behind Argyle Beach in a C4 and Better Pace at Albion Park last Saturday night. “He’s an opportunist and just when you forget him he can be very dangerous. Sometimes in the stables I think he can’t win this, and then when he steps out on the track and I look at him, I think he can," the trainer said.  “But you have to be realistic and realise this is a very strong field and he will have to be driven for luck. Perhaps being on the rails might be a good thing." The South Brisbane trainer believed the Kylie Rasmussen trained duo of Invincible Loxton (6) and Lilac Flash (11) would be toughest to beat. "I have a lot of respect for a few horses in the field, especially those two. I think Invincible Loxton will take control of the race and then perhaps Lilac Flash could take over," he said.  "I think John (Cremin- driver) is better to play a waiting game and hopefully luck goes his way." Lilac Flash and Rasmussen were too good in last week's open pace after settling back and then coming into the race, via the three-wide train, down the back the last time. Invincible Loxton, who sat parked faded out of it. Dwyer said Sir Julian was the best of his 14 horses in work. He was also lining up Redriverdebba (10) in the ninth event at 9.40pm. "She will need this one because she hasn't raced since Christmas Eve. She's also drawn the second row, so probably not this time. Place at best," said Dwyer. As for Sir Julian, he has now won 27 of his 122 starts and placed in 37 others for $118,543 in stakes. He was bred by D.J. and J.M. Howe.   By Duane Ranger for Racing Queensland

Cancer researchers would have been delighted after watching the state’s best female drivers display their prowess at Albion Park on Saturday.  Female reinswomen won half the card (five races) and in doing so raised $200 per win for the annual ‘Team Teal’ campaign which runs throughout February and early March. It’s the third year in a row the female drivers in Queensland have donned the teal strides. And it was the women who dominated early on Saturday evening nailing a $794.60 quaddie in races two, three, four and five. Chantal Turpin trained and drove Argyle Beach to win the second event; and then 33 minutes later Narissa McMullen steered the Peter Greig trained Parisian Rockstar to a 1.1 metre victory. Trista Dixon drove the Grant Dixon trained Aqua Miss to win race four; and then at 8.08pm Kylie Rasmussen trained and drove Lilac Flash to win race five – the feature open class pacing event. The first three home all paid $5 to win, while the latter returned $6.50. It was a good night for Dixon. She also won the eighth event behind the Grant Dixon trained $13 shot, Southern Alps. Asked to comment on ‘Team Teal’, Kylie Rasmussen said should would do everything she could to raise money for cancer sufferers. “We are all affected in some way or another. I’ve had no relations or close friends die from ovarian cancer, but my Aunt did have breast cancer. It’s so sad and I personally am so pleased to be doing this," she said. “It was a nice feeling when the horse won, and then knowing $200 would be going to such a worthy cause. It’s a great idea." Patrick Estate trainer, Chantal Turpin, also said she was proud to be wearing the teal colours. “It’s a good cause because it affects a lot of women, and I’m only too pleased to help out. It’s also great motivation to do even better,” Turpin said. Turpin’s only win last night came in the second event behind the five-year-old Somebeachsomewhere mare, Argyle Beach. The Somerset horsewoman was so happy with that 4.1 metre victory she will now take her to New South Wales this week alongside her 16-time winner ($136,666), Mattgregor. "She's earned her trip to go south and have a go at the Ladyship Mile (March 2). Mattgregor will race in the Newcastle Mile on Friday night. More will come down later, including Watch Pulp Fiction," Turpin said. Turpin was rapt with Argyle Beach saying “she’s really flying at the moment,” but she will be retired from racing in May. “She’s been a great little horse and won real well this time. She will be let down in May so she can prepare for the next breeding season when she will be served by Betting Line,” Turpin said. Argyle Beach and Turpin sat second last early before joining the three-wide train down the back the last time. They then loomed up at the 300m and ran away to an easy victory over Sir Julian and claimer, Stacey Weidemann. The mare paced the 1660m mobile in 1:56.7 (mile rate 1:53.2). Her sectionals were 26.2, 29.9, 28.5 and 28.9. It was the Ross Patrick owned mare's 14th win in 40 starts. She has also placed 14 times and banked $81,404. "That was her quickest mile rate yet and she did it pretty easy. I'm going to miss who when she retires," said Turpin who works a team of 36. Meanwhile Racing Queensland, Albion Park and the Redcliffe Harness Racing Clubs will continue donate the $200 to the Women's Cancer Foundation every time a female driver salutes the judge. The reinswomen are wearing teal coloured pants, while leading drivers Kylie Rasmussen and Narissa McMullen are donning specially-made ‘Team Teal Silks’ as ‘Queensland’s Ambassadors’. The Queensland Teal Campaign ends on March 9 when the Albion Park HRC hosts the 2019 Australian Female Drivers Championship. It will feature the best female drivers from across the country. The Team Teal concept was created by Duncan McPherson OAM, who lost his wife Lyn to ovarian cancer in 2010. Racing Queensland has raised more than $60,000 since 2017. The Women’s Cancer Foundation target is $250,000. Extensive results and race videos from last night’s meeting can be viewed here.   Duane Ranger  for Racing Queensland

Slice of Heaven has 100,000 reasons to maintain his solid form-line at Albion Park on Saturday night. Trainer Donny Smith, said he was now on top of the five-year-old gelding’s feet problems, and if he continued to race the way he has been, then a trip to Sydney was on the cards. “I’ve had him for just on a year now and he’s never felt this good. There’s a $100,000 race on Miracle Mile night at Menangle I’d like to take him south for that,” Smith said. “But for him to get there he’s going to have to keep doing what he’s been doing – and I think he can." The $1m Ainsworth Miracle Mile will be held on Saturday March 2. On Saturday Slice Of Heaven will make his open class debut in the richest race - the $14,580 Congrats C. J. Gerrard Oam C/7+ Pace. The son of Rocknroll Hanover has copped the widest second row draw (12). "(Glenferrie Hood) and Lilac Flash are the horses to beat, but my fella can win if things go his way," Smith said. "Drawing 12 isn't so bad because we might be able to get on 'Glenferrie's' back and get into the race that way. I'm looking forward to his open class debut because there's some nice horses in the race and I know he can measure up." Slice Of Heaven has won three of his last four starts including a close-up victory over last season’s Horse-of-the-Year, Colt Thirty One, at the same venue seven days ago. "He's had a few niggles over the years and when he came to us (from J J Alchin – NSW) I knew within a month he was better than average. He’s come ahead leaps and bounds," Smith said. “I told the staff he’s the best we’ve got. That was last April and he’s gone on to prove us right. He did have soft feet and it's taken a while for them to harden up, but I seem to be on top of that, which really pleases me." Smith said he didn’t train Slice Of Heaven like a champion. "He's got quite a bit of untapped potential. I just train him like I do any of the other horses. He’s yet to be tapped into," he said. “Yes he can win on Saturday. We need him to warrant a trip to New South Wales." Slice of Heaven, the winner of 14 of his 34 starts (and $77,653), was bred in New Zealand by Harvey Kaplan of the Jordash Breeding Trust. He was the fifth foal of 10 out of the unraced 2003 Kiwi mare, Pacific Rocket - She's Mighty. Smith said he was sold to Alchin and his clients for $52,000 at a Ready To Run Sale before he was two. Alchin trained him to win five of his 22 starts before Smith took over the training duties in March last year By Duane Ranger For Racing Queensland

Tomorrow is the day lady drivers all around Australia and New Zealand will hang up their traditional white driving pants and replace them with Teal pants for a very worthy cause. For the next six weeks (between February 1 and March 10) these ladies will form “Team Teal”, an awareness and fundraising campaign that connects the harness racing industry with Women’s Cancer Foundation. Each time a female driver wins a race they secure funds for ovarian and gynaecological cancer research conducted by the Australia New Zealand Gynaecological Oncology Group (ANZGOG). While the campaign initiated in Victoria in 2014, it has since grown to an international status with hundreds of reinswomen wearing teal driving pants last year, securing a total of 315 winners and close to $200,000 in donations. This year they strive for more with the fundraising goal set at $250,000. As in tradition the campaign ends with the Australian Female Drivers Championship, this year being staged at Albion Park on March 9. Narissa McMullen and Kylie Rasmussen will represent Queensland in the multi-race series and therefore have been selected as Queensland’s Teal Ambassadors who will also wear Teal driving silks throughout the campaign. McMullen has been the most successful Queensland female driver while driving in her teal pants for the past two campaigns, in which she has accumulated a total of 19 winners. “It’s great that we are back driving in the teal pants again this year, getting a winner is always great but to raise money for such a worthy cause while doing so is even better,” McMullen said. The harsh reality is that this year, more than 1400 women in Australia alone will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Over 900 of these same women will die from the disease. The Women’s Cancer Foundation strives to change these statistics, however we need your help to raise much needed funding to support their research projects and raise awareness. Donation buckets and Teal merchandise will be available at Albion Park as well as many other harness clubs. You can also donate directly at https://donate.everydayhero.com/d/XS0leTYXVguOJ1_hqCb5_w/amount   Albion Park

In-form pacer Lincoln Road will remain local. The former New Zealand pacer was purchased last year with aspirations of being a contender for the Gr.1 $200,000 Chariots of Fire, the pinnacle event for four-year-old’s staged at TABCORP Park, Menangle next month. An impressive winner of his past five starts, the latest comes on Tuesday afternoon at Albion Park when leading throughout in fast time. And while his current form lines read impressively, connections will resist the temptation of an interstate trip. “We’re thrilled with his efforts of late and he’s clearly performing at a very high level but a trip south is not the right thing for the horse. It’s his first campaign and he’s become a little stirred up and I think it could tip him over the edge.” Trainer Alistair Barnes said. A winner of 9 races from 21 starts, the versatile gelding has won 5 of his 8 starts in the Sunshine State. But Barnes is looking long term with his stable star. “I think the Brisbane winter carnival is a better option, we can give him an ease up and build nicely to those features rather than putting him in the deep end by chasing the Chariots. “He’s a horse we’re hoping can reach open class grade and have plenty of fun with along the way, he’s only a young horse and still very inexperienced. He’s still got plenty of upside and should continue to develop. “He has led, parked out and come from behind in his victories to date and I honestly feel his best option is sitting off the pace and coming with one run. As he rises in class, we may have to drive him more that way so that’s a nice problem to have.” Lincoln Road is raced by Victorian based couple, Cesare and Maria Di Gregorio. And they’re racing a number of prospects through the Barnes stable. Handy performer Bet Im Special was their maiden purchase while they’ve added Miss Blue Glory and the trotter Whataboyz. Barnes, a dual licence trainer, currently has a team of 17 in work.   RQ Web News

Last start APHRC Members Cup winner Mr Kalypso is close to a return. The hulking stallion remains unbeaten in the Sunshine State after seven starts for Kylie Rasmussen and Darren Weeks highlighted by his feature race triumph at his most recent start last month. In the Members Cup, the Art Major – Kalypso pacer crushed his rivals after starting from a tough second-line draw. Following a freshen-up immediately after that performance, the rising star is set to return next week. “We’re looking at giving him a trial next week before looking at a return race, we’re really happy with the way he’s training and looking forward to getting back to the track with him. He pulled a muscle in his chest a week after winning the Members Cup but he’s completely over that.” Weeks said. Previously prepared in New Zealand by the All Stars stable (Mark Purdon & Natalie Rasmussen), Mr Kalypso has quickly developed a big following in his adopted state. The regally bred entire has charged through his grades and looks destined for bigger and better things which may include the Brisbane winter carnival later this year. “We really like him but we haven’t confirmed any plans at this stage, we’ll just take it race by race at the moment before making any firm decisions. “He’s done everything asked of him at this point and we’d like to think he could step into the better races in time to come.” Mr Kalypso has won 8 of his 14 starts while his earnings have surged beyond $50,000. Meanwhile, another former Kiwi pacer is close to a return in the shape of Lilac Flash. The Bettors Delight gelding has proven to be a great money-spinner since landing on Australian soil last year. A winner of 12 races from 21 starts which included a winning sequence of 8 races, the speedy performer has not raced since he finished second behind The Space Invader in 1:53.3 at Albion Park on December 1. Lilac Flash is also expected to trial next week. Overall, he has won 14 of his 41 starts while banking in excess of $89,000.   Chris Barsby

In-form pacer Sams A Champ has run his final race on Australian soil. The Jack Butler prepared pacer has claimed three straight victories including the Redcliffe Christmas Cup followed by back to back Albion Park triumphs in recent weeks. But his form surge has caught the eye of several agents. And a deal has been struck which will see his future racing days completed in North America. “That was actually his last start for us last weekend and he won’t race again in Australia, he’s going straight to the States.” Butler said. During his past three victories, the Dawn Ofa New Day gelding has shown great versatility in which he led throughout at Redcliffe before coming from near last at Albion Park at his next start. Last week, in the Remembering ‘Hes Poplar’ Open Pace, he again showed his high gate speed and led throughout defeating in-form mare Our Millwood Maizie in a time of 1:55.1 for the 2138m distance. His final splits were covered in 27.8 and 26.9 seconds. “He went great but it came as no surprise given his two previous efforts, he’s right in the zone at the moment but it was nice to see him do it at the open class level. “We’ve always liked him and his overall record is very good so hopefully he carries this good form with him in North America for his new connections.” Sams A Champ has won 20 of his 80 starts while earning in excess of $120,000. He was raced by Harness Racing New South Wales Chairman, Mr. Rod Smith.   Chris Barsby

Form guide for Harness Racing at Albion Park Tuesday 8th of January RACE ONE MISTER OZ (5) is knocking on the door with placings in 3 of his past 5 starts the latest in open company on Sat night. Finding the pocket trail he was solid to the line when 8m from the winner IVANOV. He closed strongly here 2 starts back and from the 30m tape can cash-in. NORTHERN MUSCLE (6) will strip fitter after returning from a freshen here over the 2138m last start. Starting fav he was working home in good order wide out but was no match for the winner who skipped clear. Putting together a stretch of 4 wins in his past 6 he looms as a danger in this. JUSTABITLIKEMUM (2) will take further benefit from her latest run when 2nd up from a break. Her return run had merit after striking trouble and with a safe getaway can give some cheek here. EL SWAVO (4) went back-to-back with success in similar races before meeting some tougher types at his past 3 runs. His run last start was a nice effort against open performers and he can chime in here. SELECTIONS: MISTER OZ (5), NORTHERN MUSCLE (6), JUSTABITLIKEMUM (2), EL SWAVO (4) SUGGESTED BET: MISTER OZ (5) to win   RACE TWO OUTLAW FELLA (1) will be tightened from his latest start when returning from a break. Starting from gate 5 he worked forward to find the breeze and was in for the fight when only 4m from the winner. He finds his best gate in recent outings and can look to capitalise. LUCIFERS LEGEND (4) is also 2nd up from a break and comes out of the same race as OUTLAW FELLA. Starting from the 2nd line in that contest he was angled to the pegs for a cosy trip and was hitting the line in good order when 7m from the winner. Fitter he can find position and be closing late.   IMA GRUMPY POSSUM (8) did some early work in a slick opening panel on Sat night and after finding cover was strong to the line when only 4m from the winner. With a cosy trip on offer here look for her taking a closing shot. LANCELOT BROMAC (9) has started to work his way back into some form after going through a lean patch. He found the line nicely last start behind SIR JULIAN and with early options is in the mix here. SELECTIONS: OUTLAW FELLA (1), LUCIFERS LEGEND (4), IMA GRUMPY POSSUM (8), LANCELOT BROMAC (9) SUGGESTED BET: OUTLAW FELLA (1) to win     RACE THREE GOD SAKE (1) chased gamely to hold 3rd behind MAJOR CROCKER at Menangle 2 starts back and then when returning to Qld didn’t have many things in his favour when down the line behind COURAGEOUS LEO. He started fav last time out and from the ace gate here he looks to get his chance to atone. THE MUSE (8) will be sweating on the 1 looking for an all the way effort as that will bring her right into contention. Finding the pocket trail last start she chased hard when holding on for the bronze behind the in-form LINCOLN ROAD. With the cosy trip available she will be ready to strike. EVERYTHING (9) had a dip for the front last start and despite looking to have crossed couldn’t get to the pegs. Takin cover in the run he then never had a shot at them. Racing tough in previous starts he can throw down a challenge in this. GRINVIL (6) took on mares company on Saturday when chasing home well to be 4m from the winner DARKERSHADEOFPALE. The wider gate hurts her chances but she can be thereabouts with even luck. SELECTIONS: GOD SAKE (1), THE MUSE (8), EVERYTHING (9), GRINVIL (6) SUGGESTED BET: GOD SAKE (1) to win     RACE FOUR MONTANA CHIEF (1) was after a hat-trick of victories last start when forced to work hard in the breeze from gate 4. With the solid tempo he couldn’t see it out when fading in the closing stages to finish mid-field. He took them all the way from this gate over the 2138m 2 starts back and can dictate here. JUST DEAL IT (10) made her debut back on Dec 18 when starting from gate 1 she was given plenty of time balance up and take a trail. When sent into space she hit the line nicely and extended away in good style to victory. With the experience from that run she will be a big threat in this. PINUP BOY (8) was working home wide off the track last start and hitting the line in good order to grab the silver when 5m from the winner TUESDAYS FELLA. He will be coiled and ready to strike after a soft trip. ONE OFF (6) has been down the line at his past 2 starts after finishing in the top 3 in 7 successive starts when arriving in Aus. Finding a spot without being too far back will be key here and he can chime in late. SELECTIONS: MONTANA CHIEF (1), JUST DEAL IT (10), PINUP BOY (8), ONE OFF (6) SUGGESTED BET: Flexi trifecta 1-6-8-10     RACE FIVE STEVIE DEE (3) had been struggling to show her best until her last start when finding a suitable target and from a long way back in the pack was able to finish over the top to score. Only 6m from VALTONA in a mares qualifier the start prior, she can go back-to-back in a wide open contest.   IMA TOP TYCOON (9) was closing out in good order from a long way back at Redcliffe 3 starts back to be 3m from the winner in solid time. He finished best through a strong closing 800m split to score at Marburg 2 starts back and was tough from the breeze last start. Despite the gate he can feature.   MACHIN OUT (10) went back from a wide gate last start and then was never in the hunt against the closing tempo. That followed a run where he didn’t have a great deal of luck and he can be sharper here. GOODTIME STRIDE (4) has been 5m from the winner at each of her past 2 starts with the latest a tidy effort from the 2nd line over the Redcliffe 2040m. With the right trip she will be in the mix. SELECTIONS: STEVIE DEE (3), IMA TOP TYCOON (9), MACHIN OUT (10), GOODTIME STRIDE (4) SUGGESTED BET:     RACE SIX BALLYMORE BOY (9) took on a qualifier last start and after racing wide to find the position outside the leader he was in for the fight when 6m form the winner COURAGEOUS LEO. Absolutely luckless the start prior when probing for space that never arrived. With a nice trail through early he can break a run of frustrations. MARETTI (5) features in a stable change and will line up for Cristina Monte for the 1sttime. His run 4 starts back was strong when fighting in the breeze and only beaten a half-neck and last start he was grabbed late after doing some early work. Despite the tricky gate he will be right in the fight. MACHEASY (4) made the most of the passing lane on Sat night to claim a 2nd division qualifier. Finding the front form gate 6 the start prior he was grabbed right on the line and will be close here. KEY LARGO (2) started fav on Sat night and was forced to do the heavy lifting after pressing ahead from gate 6. He can hold an early spot here and if limiting the work can be in a great spot to strike. SELECTIONS: BALLYMORE BOY (9), MARETTI (5), MACHEASY (4), KEY LARGO (2) SUGGESTED BET: BALLYMORE BOY (9) to win     RACE SEVEN LIFEONTHEBEACH (11) rolled forward from gate 7 over the 2138m here 2 starts back and was working in the run when fighting gamely to claim the silver behind CHARMING MAJOR. He started fav last start and after easily holding the lead threw his chances away with a gallop. With some good temp in this he can atone. TOM ME GUN (10) is racing in good touch and has been in the money at 5 of 7 starts since returning from a spell. He closed out strongly last start when a 2m 2nd to the in-form LINCOLN ROAD which followed a tough run from the breeze. With even luck from the tricky gate he can challenge. SOMWHEREOVARAINBOW (4) will take further benefit from his latest run when 2nd up from break. Beaten for early speed from gate 2 he was closing out strongly when 2m from the winner. He will be in the mix. MY SECRET TORQUE (1) will be 2nd up after returning at Redcliffe when using the passing lane following a cosy run to grab a 1m 2nd to LIFEINHEAVEN. With the options from the gate she looks a place contender. SELECTIONS: LIFEONTHEBEACH (11), TOM ME GUN (10), SOMWHEREOVARAINBOW (4), MY SECRET TORQUE (1) SUGGESTED BET: LIFEONTHEBEACH (11) to win   Racing Queensland    

The 2018 Racing Queensland summer carnival came to a dramatic close last night (Saturday) at Albion Park. But to the delight of punters, both favourites saluted in their respective features. The Gr.2 $50,660 Egmont Park Stud Queensland Cup featured reigning Queensland Horse of the Year Colt Thirty One and the mighty four-year-old prevailed by a nose margin defeating Smooth Showgirl and Avonnova in the 2138m mobile start event. Starting from the outside of the second-line (gate 13), trainer/driver Grant Dixon set alight his richly talented performer early and circled three-wide before parking outside of the race leader Glenferrie Hood. With a strong speed being set, Colt Thirty One was able to overpower Glenferrie before withstanding the late finishing burst of Smooth Showgirl who came via the passing lane. It was a nose margin in favour of Colt Thirty One ($1.75) over Smooth Showgirl ($9.50) while Avonnova ($23) was further 2.4 metres away in third. The winning mile rate was 1:55.0 – sectionals of 30.2, 28.4, 28.4 and 28.8 seconds. The victory was Colt Thirty One’s 20th at Albion Park and 23rd overall while remaining unbeaten in four starts this campaign. “He went well and had to fight hard in the straight, I knew it was close but I’m really proud of his effort.” Dixon said. The Mach Three – Charm Personified entire is raced by his breeders, Kevin and Kay Seymour. The next major assignment for Colt Thirty One will be the Gr.1 $200,000 Chariots of Fire at TABCORP Park, Menangle in February. In the trotting feature, the Sydney trained Monaro Mia proved victorious defeating Miracle Rising and Needle in the Gr.2 $40,770 Egmont Park Stud Darrell Alexandre Memorial Trotting Championship Final. Slowly away and ending up nearer last than first, trainer/driver Darren Hancock bided his time back near the rear before taking off three-wide with a lap remaining in the 2647m standing start feature. Entering the back straight, Hancock seized the opportunity and sent his big striding mare into overdrive and quickly established a race winning lead. At the finish, Monaro Mia ($2 fav) defeated Miracle Rising ($10) by 3 metres with a further 8.4 metres back to Needle ($5.50) in third. The winning mile rate was 2:04.1 with the final 800m metres covered in sectionals of 28.7 and 28.6 seconds. “A big thanks to Uncle Brian and my son Corey who have looked after the mare and the rest of the team up here over the past three weeks, this mare has thrived and got better each start.” Hancock said. Monaro Mia is raced by Glenn Holland who was trackside for the victory. And the victory takes the mare’s prizemoney total past $100,000. In the $14,999 King of the Claimers Final, victory went the way of Rory Mach for trainer Darrel Graham and driver Jacob Wallace while the $21,160 C2/C5 event was taken out by classy mare Fame Assured who sprintlaned to beat stablemate Aqua Miss in a time of 1:53.6. Both mares are prepared by Grant Dixon. Another metropolitan card of racing is scheduled for next Saturday night. Racing Queensland

Star horseman John McCarthy is not getting ahead of himself. The former multiple Albion Park Premiership winner has recently returned to take part in the 2018 Racing Queensland Summer Carnival at Albion Park where he grabbed the spoils on the opening night when Rakarolla proved too classy in the Gr.3 $31,400 Be Good Johnny Sprint on December 1. It has been the one and only start McCarthy has given the giant gelding in Brisbane. Until now. McCarthy will head back to Albion Park this Saturday night searching for another feature race victory when Rakarolla takes his place in the Gr.2 $50,660 Egmont Park Stud Queensland Cup, the final feature of the carnival. The 2138m mobile start event features rising star Colt Thirty One, the reigning Queensland Horse of the Year and McCarthy believes he’s the real deal. The Grant Dixon prepared Mach Three four-year-old had his first taste of open company last week when he quickly dispatched a tidy field in the Christmas Cup in race record time when coming from near last. “He’s a very good horse; he was brilliant last week and despite a nasty draw this weekend, he’s the horse we all have to beat. I had a good look at him at the wash bay and he’s a good looking horse, he’s got class written all over him.” McCarthy said. Colt Thirty One has drawn the outside of the second-line (gate 13) while Rakarolla has drawn nicely in gate four which gives McCarthy several options. Rakarolla took inside runs to win the sprint feature two weeks ago but McCarthy is adamant his versatility will have him as a key rival. “Despite his age, he’s actually quite an immature type who’s still learning but he’s adaptable to different situations. I think he’ll be even better next year and could measure up for some better races. “The fact he raced week in and week out in lead-up to the Brisbane trip has worked to his advantage, he raced six weeks straight and was really fit for the Be Good Johnny. “He’s trained on well since that victory and should prove competitive again, I was happy to bypass last week and focus on this week’s event.” UBET has listed Colt Thirty One at $1.90 while Rakarolla is quoted at $6.50. Rakarolla is raced by his New Zealand based breeder, Brendan Fahy. The Queensland Cup is listed as race 8 and is scheduled to start at 9.37pm local time.   Chris Barsby

Cometh the hour, cometh the man. Reigning Queensland Horse of the Year Colt Thirty One solidified his position as the state’s best pacer with a brilliant come from near last to first victory in the $21,160 AQWA Constructions Christmas Cup at Albion Park last night (Saturday). The Grant Dixon trained and driven four-year-old was having his first official open class start when tackling the 2680m mobile start feature and many proven and seasoned stars. Starting from a tricky second-line draw, Dixon sat patiently towards the rear of the field with Colt Thirty One ($2 fav) before gaining perfect three-wide cover over the concluding stages before unleashing a devastating sprint to easily beat Aztec Bromac ($8.50) and Alleluia ($16). The Mach Three entire created a new race record when posting a winning mile rate of 1:56.4. The lead time was covered in 77.5 seconds; sectionals for the final mile were covered in 28.8, 30, 29.1 and 28.4 seconds. Triple Queensland Horse of the Year Avonnova led the way from his inside draw before being overpowered over the concluding stages. “We’ve waited an entire life time to breed a horse like this and we’re so thrilled with the way he keeps stepping up to the challenge. It looked to be a tough challenge from the draw but Grant gave him another perfect drive and it was fantastic to see him round them up as easily as he did.” Winning owner/breeder Kevin Seymour said. Trading under the banner of Solid Earth Pty Ltd, Seymour shares ownership with his wife Kay. The victory of Colt Thirty One takes his record to 22 wins from 32 starts while banking more than $420,000. Colt Thirty One will back-up in next week’s feature, the Gr.2 $50,660 Egmont Park Stud Queensland Cup, a feature over the distance of 2138mbefore embarking on a Sydney campaign centred around the Gr.1 $200,000 Chariots of Fire at TABCORP Park, Menangle on February 16. In the other feature, the $21,160 AQWA Constructions ‘Forever Gold’ Mares Open Pace, race favourite Smooth Showgirl ($1.60) led throughout to beat a game Eleniark ($2.60) and Annika Magic ($71) in a time of 1:55.7. The Art Major mare posted sectionals of 28.6, 32.1, 28.5 and 26.7 seconds. Prepared by Ian Gurney and handled by young Sydney reinsman Chris Geary, Smooth Showgirl registered her 20th victory from 69 starts while taking her career earning past the $300,000 mark. Next week, the Queensland summer carnival comes to a climatic ending with the running of the Gr.2 $50,660 Egmont Park Stud Queensland Cup, the Gr.2 $40,770 Darrell Alexander Memorial Trotting Championship Final, the $21,160 C2/C5 feature plus the $14,999 King of the Claimers Final. It promises to be another exciting night of action. Chris Barsby

Former New Zealand trotter Arnold makes his local debut this weekend at Albion Park. Purchased by trotting enthusiast Jeroen Nieuwenburg , the Muscle Mass – Niamey gelding arrived last Saturday and will start in the Radio TAB Trot over 2138m. Arnold will start from gate six in the 2138m mobile start event. A winner of 4 races from 12 starts to date, Arnold finished near the rear of the field behind Missandei at his most recent start at Addington during Cup week. Arnold ranks as a half-brother to talented performers Pocaro, Sun Of Anarchy and Daenerys Targaryen. Nieuwenburg races classy trotter Needle (by Muscle Mass), a leading player in the Darrell Alexander Memorial Trotting Championship currently taking place at Albion Park. The Gr.2 $40,770 Final is scheduled for next Saturday. *********************************************************************************** Another former Kiwi now calling Queensland home is Paravani. The Christian Cullen four-year-old has joined the stables of Chantal Turpin and Pete McMullen at their Patrick Estate property. At his most recent start, Paravani finished 7th behind Bettor My Dreamz at Addington on Cup day last month. A winner of 2 races from 27 starts, his victories came via Oamaru and Addington. The Turpin/McMullen stable are currently campaigning Mattgregor during the Inter Dominion Pacing Series in Melbourne. *********************************************************************************** Champion horseman Noel Daley has arrived back on home soil. Based in the United States for the past 29 years, largely in New Jersey, Daley has prepared some all-time greats during his time abroad. His champion pupils include Mr Muscleman, Broad Bahn, Explosive Matter, All Speed Hanover, Cedar Dove, My Little Dragon, Impressive Kemp and Caviart Ally among many others. After working as a groom for Brett Pelling, Daley went out on his own in 1998 and captured the training title at the Meadowlands in 2003. Daley prepared his team from Magical Acres Farm where he prepared up to 125 horses at one point. A number of key horse people have spent time working under him including Luke & Andy McCarthy, Anton Golino, James Rattray plus Mat & Gemma Rue. But the Queensland born horseman has returned to Australia to become the private trainer for leviathan owners Emilio and Mary Rosati. He will prepare the team their Londonderry property in Sydney. During his time in North America, Daley prepared 2570 winners with earnings in excess of $61,454,588. Only Ron Burke, Jimmy Takter, Robert McIntosh, Erv Miller and Mark Ford have won more money. *********************************************************************************** Another former Queensland trainer, Tahn Camilleri is currently enjoying strong success in North America. Based in New Jersey, Camilleri prepared former Redcliffe Cup winner Constantlysideways who scored a stylish victory at the Meadowlands last weekend in a time of 1:49.1. Constantlysideways was handled by champion New Zealand reinsman Dexter Dunn. The Village Jasper gelding was previously prepared by Bill Crosby. Another solid performer for Camilleri is Three Of The Best, also a last start winner at the Meadowlands in 1:51.1. Three Of The Best was handled by star reinsman Andy McCarthy. The Mach Three gelding was previously prepared by Shannon Price and Scott Miller. *********************************************************************************** Scintillating last start feature race winner Muscle Factory is set to resume. Back In August, the Shane and Lauren Tritton prepared rookie set Albion Park ablaze with an unbelievable effort to claim the heat and final of the Gr.1 $100,450 Albion Park Gold Brisbane Graduate Final. In the heat, the Roll With Joe colt rated 1:54.1 before taking the final a week later in 1:53.1 – the fastest time ever recorded by a juvenile at the famed Breakfast Creek oval. Subsequent to his feature race romp, he was crowned the NSW 2yo of the Year. He won 5 of his 9 starts and banked more than $112,000. Muscle Factory starts on Tuesday at Menangle; he will start from gate four in the DM Plumbing Pace over the 1609m. *********************************************************************************** Queensland driver Isobel Ross will never forget her maiden voyage to Menangle. Now based in New South Wales and working for leading trainer/driver Amanda Turnbull at Bathurst, Ross took the winning drive behind talented mare Eye See Diamonds in the feature event, the Gr.3 $30,600 Garrards Teeny Teeny Stakes. The winning time was 1:51.6. It was her first drive on the 1400m circuit. Ross has only recently moved to Sydney after stints with Jack Butler and Grant Dixon. Boasting over 200 career victories, Ross landed the Gr.3 $30,540 Egmont Park Stud South East Oaks behind the Dixon trained Red Charmer. *********************************************************************************** Last start APHRC Members Cup winner Mr Kalypso is an early scratching tomorrow night (Saturday). Unbeaten in seven Queensland starts, the Kylie Rasmussen trained pacer was engaged to start in the Mr Feelgood @ Egmont Park Stud Pace where he listed as a short priced favourite. But a paddock mishap earlier this week where he strained some chest muscles forced his scratching. He is expected to make a quick recovery. Since arriving from the All Stars stable of Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen, the Art Major entire has been stunning charging through the grades.   Chris Barsby

It was a fitting result with leading horseman John McCarthy returning in style. The former multiple Albion Park Metropolitan Trainers Premiership winner returned back to his old stomping ground and claimed the Gr.3 $30,660 AQWA Constructions Be Good Johnny Sprint last night (Saturday), the opening night of the Queensland summer carnival. McCarthy guided giant New Zealand gelding Rakarolla ($9) to victory in the 1660m feature after racing three back against the pegs before sprinting past the Ian Gurney duo of Mach Alert ($3.30) and Our Hi Jinx ($7.50) in a scorching time of 1:51.9. Sectionals of 27.3, 28.4, 28.3 and 27.9 seconds. The winning time is well outside of the track record of 1:50.4 set by champion pacer Im Themightyquinn back in 2014. It is the second time McCarthy has prepared the winner of the feature named in honour of his former champion after Washakie scored back in 2011. Now based at Cobbitty near Menangle, the highly decorated horseman prepares a team of around 20. “It’s great to win a race that’s named after my best ever pacer, I got a good run against the inside and that’s the best place to be when the running that sort of time. He finished off really well and we’ll start in the Christmas and Queensland Cups,” McCarthy said. “Earlier this week, I sat and thought about taking my horses to Newcastle and then thought I should drive a little further north and take in the Brisbane features. So I headed up with a small team and it’s been a good start.” He added. Rakarolla is raced by his New Zealand based breeder, Brendan Fahy. In the other feature, race favourite Mr Kalypso ($1.75) accounted for the Grant Dixon duo of Aqua Miss ($14) and Red Charmer ($7.50) in the AQWA Constructions APHRC Members Cup. The Kylie Rasmussen trained and driven pacer rated a strong 1:57.1 after racing without cover for the bulk of the 2138m event. Mr Kalypso remains unbeaten in seven Queensland starts. The Art Major – Kalypso five-year-old entire looks destined for bigger and better things in the future. Next week, the features include the $20,660 Christmas Cup and the $20,660 Forever Gold Mares Open Pace. RQ Media

Reigning Queensland Horse of the Year Colt Thirty One made a triumphant return to Albion Park last night (Saturday). Starting at prohibitive odds in the Gotta Go Cullect @ Egmont Park Stud Pace, the Mach Three entire quickly circled the field from his second-line draw before controlling the race outside the leader Our Major Day. The brilliant four-year-old quickly gained the upper hand soon after straightening and drew clear from a game Our Major Day while Top Flight Cruize filled third placing. The winning mile rate for the 2138m event was 1:57.2 while covering the final half in 55.6 seconds. The victory took his earning past $400,000. It was the first full metropolitan meeting staged at Albion Park since September 22 after the track underwent major remediation works following a spate of cancellations owing to poor weather. The Grant Dixon prepared pacer was having his first start since finishing second behind Ride High in the Gr.1 $195,000 Breeders Crown Final at TABCORP Park, Melton on August 25. And without the benefit of a public trial. “Obviously we couldn’t trial him at Albion Park in preparation for his return but we have plenty of handy types that can make him stretch out at home, I was really happy with where he was at prior to his return and he didn’t disappoint and felt like his normal self.” Dixon said. The Queensland summer carnival over the next three weeks has been added to his program as they build towards their main target, the Gr.1 $200,000 Chariots of Fire at TABCORP Park, Menangle on February 16. “We’re definitely going to have a look at some these local features in the coming weeks, he won’t start in all of them but he will be tested at some point against the open class performers. “He’s destined for open class and this looks the right opportunity to dip his toe in the water, it fits his schedule nicely.” The Gr.3 $30,660 Be Good Johnny Sprints kicks off the carnival on December 1 followed by the $20,660 Christmas Cup (December 8) and then the Gr.2 $50,660 Queensland Cup (December 15). The trio of open class features will be raced over the distances of 1660m, 2680m and 2138m. With the return of racing to headquarters, Dixon enjoyed a great night preparing five winners. His haul included Eleniark, Fioki, Colt Thirty One, Alleluia and Our Overanova. It is the 10th time he has achieved the feat. And it’s the 7th time he’s achieved it at Albion Park. The previous occasion came earlier this year when preparing five winners on May 12. Chris Barsby

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